Sally, born in Boston, MA in 1925, was the second of four children of Stephen and Dorothy Wheatland. Sally earned a B.S. from Vassar College in 1946 and a Masters in Zoology from Stanford University in 1948. She practiced marine biology for the next 50 years focusing on estuarine fish, shellfish and birds, eventually running the locally renowned "Little Harbor Lab" out of her Guilford home.
She devoted much of her time to local and regional conservation efforts, including the Guilford Land Conservation Trust of which she was a founding member, the Guilford Shellfish Commission, Faulkner’s Island Light Brigade, the U.S.Coast Guard Auxiliary and the Nature Conservancy. From an early age she was a passionate supporter of the Democratic party and its candidates.
Sally and her husband, the late Frederic M. Richards, whom she met while both worked at Yale University in the 1950's, were avid sailors, spending many summers in the high latitudes of Nova Scotia and Newfoundland on their boat, Hekla. The couple also crossed the Atlantic via Iceland under sail and were life time members of the Cruising Club of America.
She was preceded in death by her brother, Richard Wheatland, II of Boston, MA and leaves her sisters Mary Schley, of Columbus, GA, and Alice Wellman, of Bangor, ME, her son George H. Richards, of Fairfield, CT, two step-daughters Sarah O. Richards, of Coupeville, WA, and Ruth Richards, of Cabot, VT, three grandchildren, one step-grandson, and many nieces and nephews.
A memorial service will be held at 2 pm on Tuesday, April 26th at the First Congregational Church of Guilford. In lieu of flowers, donations in her memory may be made to the Guilford Land Conservation Trust, P.O. Box 200, Guilford, CT 06437, Faulkner's Island Light Brigade, P.O. Box 444, Guilford, Connecticut 06437, (203) 453-8400, or the CT Challenge, P.O. Box 566, Southport, CT 06890. In her memorable words that many friends and family heard on their message machines, "Sally Out".