David (Red) Parsons, 86, died at Cooley Dickinson hospital in Northampton. He was born April 10, 1935 to the late Philip and Evelyn Parsons of Southampton. David attended Sheldon School in Southampton and graduated from Easthampton High School in 1952. He continued his education at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, graduating with a degree in physics. His degree gave him access to a job in engineering in California for a brief time. In December 1956 David entered the army where he was assigned to the Army Chemical Center near Baltimore, spending two years there. Then in 1958 he returned to his greatest joy in life, farming, with the Searle family, at Wolf Hill Farm in Southampton. Red, as all his close friends called him, loved farming and gardening, and worked side by side with Mike Searle. He milked and did farm work there, eventually keeping some of his own herd after 1983. He retired in 2005 from day-to-day operations but continued to have a small herd with the help of Todd Jarosz until 2018. Up until the last few months, Red could be found enjoying a Wendy’s hamburger, sitting at the farm, and listening to the birds, a hobby passed down from his mother. Red was an intelligent, generous man with a love of farming, nature, and sports. He enjoyed playing basketball, golfing, skiing, and fishing as a young man. Later on in life he liked watching sports especially the Red Sox, and he also enjoyed working on crossword and sudoku puzzles.
David is survived by caregivers, lifelong friend Todd Jarosz of Southampton and his cousin, Dale Canon of Easthampton, as well as several other cousins. He was predeceased by his father Phillip Parsons in 1995, his sister Phyllis Parsons in 1995 and his mother Evelyn Coe in 2007.
There will be a graveside service at Center Cemetery in Southampton at 11:30 on June 3rd.
Donations may be made in David’s memory to Mass Audubon, 208 South Great Rd. Lincoln, MA 01773 or to Future Farmers of America: National: FFA Foundation, PO Box 68960, Indianapolis, IN 46268-0960
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