Dight Whipple Crain

May 21, 2022



Dight W. Crain (known to many as Nicky) of Hingham and Pocasset and formerly of Natick, died peacefully on May 21, 2022 at the age of 85.  He was predeceased by his beloved wife Rev. Janet M. Crain, to whom he was married for 53 years.

Dight graduated from the University of Massachusetts in 1958, where he met Janet while both were musicians in the concert band.  He had a beautiful tenor voice and a lifelong love of music, singing in church choirs and the Linden Ponds singers.

After college Dight joined his family’s food manufacturing business The Whipple Company in Natick, maker of Grandmother’s mincemeat, jams, jellies, and pie fillings sold to supermarkets and bakeries throughout New England.  Dight devoted 44 years to the business, serving as its 4th generation President.

Dight resided in Natick for most of his life.  There he was an elected member of School Committee for 18 years, including 5 one-year terms as Chair.  He chaired the Natick High School Athletic Advisory Board for 10 years, and was an elected Town Meeting member for over 30 years.  He was a Director of the Natick Trust Company and then US Trust, was a member of the building committees for Leonard Morse Hospital and several new schools, and was a longtime member of the Natick Rotary Club.

Dight was a lifelong member of the United Methodist Church and actively participated as a layperson on a local, regional, and international basis.  He worshipped and sang in the choir for much of his life at Fisk Memorial United Methodist Church in Natick, where his great-grandfather and grandfather had been ministers and where his wife Janet became the first ordained Deacon in New England in 1996.  Dight served 11 years on the United Methodist General Board of Pensions; he was a delegate to the quadrennial General Conference (the international governing body of the denomination) from 1972 to 2000 and a delegate to the Northeastern Jurisdictional Conference from 1968 to 2000; and he volunteered as Treasurer and Business Manager of the Northeastern Jurisdictional Conference for 27 years.  In retirement he worshipped and sang in the choir at Carter Memorial United Methodist Church in Needham.

Dight was a longtime summer resident of Pocasset, where he and Janet enjoyed an endless variety of summer sunsets over Buzzards Bay with their family and friends and enjoyed attending performances of the College Light Opera Company.  For the past decade he lived at Linden Ponds in Hingham, where he made many dear friends and continued his tradition of community service as a member of the Resident Advisory Council for 4 years and as a precinct warden in Hingham elections.

Dight was the son of Alvin and Dorothy (Whipple) Crain.  He leaves his son Andrew and wife Mary of Mattapoisett; his daughter Susan Yardley and husband Daniel of Matthews, NC; his grandchildren James, Joseph, Elizabeth, Timothy and Abigail Yardley and Julia and Matthew Crain; his sister Dorothy Molind and husband Dr. Samuel Molind of Okatie, SC; and many nieces and nephews.

Visiting hours on Sunday May 29, 2022 from 4:00 to 7:00 PM at the Eaton Funeral Home, 1351 Highland Ave., Needham.  Funeral service on Monday May 30, 2022 at 10:30 AM at Carter Memorial United Methodist Church, 800 Highland Ave, Needham.   Burial on Tuesday, May 31, 2022 at 10:30 AM at Dell Park Cemetery, 163 Pond Street, Natick. 

Donations in Dight’s memory may be made to the Preacher’s Aid Society of New England at or to the Linden Ponds Resident Aid Fund, Linden Ponds Philanthropy Office, 203 Linden Ponds Way, Hingham, MA 02043.

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May 29, 2022

4:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Eaton Funeral Home
1351 Highland Avenue
Needham, MA 02492

Funeral Service
May 30, 2022

10:30 AM
Carter Memorial Church
800 Highland Ave.
Needham, MA 02492

May 31, 2022

10:30 AM
Dell Park Cemetery
163 Pond Street
Natick, MA 01760

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