Richard George Stokes 1951 - 2022

Richard George "Dick" Stokes was born June 11, 1951, to James and Winola Stokes.  He was raised in Fairfield, Connecticut, and graduated from Andrew Warde High School and Western Connecticut State University.

Dick is survived by his wife of 49 years, Sandra (Lutrus) Stokes; his daughter, Leah Veronica Stokes McGlade, and her husband, David Robert McGlade, and his granddaughter, Olivia Violet McGlade. Other survivors include his sister, Judith Stokes of McMinnville, Oregon, and Jayne Stokes of Cambridge, New York. His two brothers predeceased him, Bill Stokes of Amherst, New Hampshire, and Jack Stokes of Newtown, Connecticut.

Professionally, Dick was a chef.  In 1974, he was hired as a breakfast cook at Harvey’s Casino in Lake Tahoe, and within a few years Dick moved up the ranks to become the Executive Sous Chef d'Hotel and the Executive Chef of Catering at Caesars Tahoe. His entrepreneurial spirit led him and his wife Sandi to open their first restaurant in 1985, Grand Central Café. A few years later, he moved his family to Brookfield, Connecticut, and opened his second restaurant, Capers Restaurant and Catering Company, which he and Sandi successfully owned until 2000.  In 2001, Dick and Sandi moved back west where Dick became the Executive Chef of Spinner's Seafood Steak & Chophouse in Gold Beach, Oregon. In 2016, Dick and Sandi moved to McMinnville, Oregon, to be closer to his daughter and her family. Not wanting to step out of the kitchen, Dick took his first Harvest Chef job at Domaine Serene and has worked every harvest since for wineries such as Elizabeth Chambers Cellar, Domaine de Broglie, Domino IV and Dobbes Family Estate.  When not working harvest, over the years Dick has worked as a private chef for a McMinnville family and launched a members-only dinner delivery service called Join Us for Dinner. Every summer Friday night for the past three years, Dick ran Tasty Pop!, a small pop-up kitchen which brought delicious food to Friday Fandango at Elizabeth Chambers Cellar.

 Although often referred to as a Renaissance man, Dick was also a student. Genuinely competent and skilled in multiple fields, he was as productive as he was talented.  Examples are numerous and varied. Here are a few:

  • Bread maker: Found a simple sourdough recipe in The New York Times which he further developed over three years, eventually becoming a bread he sold to many customers.


  • Sculptor-turned-luthier: Dick expertly worked with soapstone and exotic woods, which led to his love of hand-making guitars. Rebuilding old amplifiers was another favorite hobby. He took the time to do it right, tracking down original parts from around the country.


  • Bike aficionado: Dick spent many years on his bike, participating in Time Trials in Connecticut, building and rebuilding Cannondale Bikes with exact parts to enhance their performance. The payoff came on a trip to Switzerland, where he rode his bikes through the Swiss Alps with friends.

 As all who knew and loved Dick Stokes could see, his keen observation skills and constant learning created a treasure trove of expertise. He filled his days, and thus our lives, with delights. Our hearts will be forever imprinted with this joy.




Web Design and Web Development by Buildable