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Richard "Dick" Frank Bleth

Richard "Dick" Frank Bleth

Richard “Dick” Frank Bleth, 78, of Bemidji died Tuesday, August 6, 2013 after a courageous battle with strokes and Alzheimer’s Disease, at Meadowlands Elder Care Homes in Tenstrike, MN, surrounded by loved ones.

Memorial Services will be 2:30 pm, Friday, August 9, 2013 at the St. Philip’s Catholic Church in Bemidji, MN with Father Don Braukmann officiating. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service at the church. Interment will be at the Holy Cross Catholic Cemetery in Bemidji, MN under the direction of the Cease Family Funeral Home of Bemidji.

Richard was born on July 7, 1935, in Dickinson, ND, the son of John Sr. and Mary (Schaff) Bleth. He grew up in the Gladstone, ND area and moved with his family to Bemidji in 1950. Richard graduated from Bemidji Public School in 1953, and in 1954 he went to the Iron Range where he drove dual-axle and 35 ton Euk trucks. He also worked for Taconite Tires of Virginia, MN, and while working there he took a correspondence class in Diesel Mechanics and later went to Chicago, Ill., where he graduated. He married Marian Lease on July 7, 1956, in Bemidji. They lived in Virginia, MN until that fall, when he was laid off from work. They returned to Bemidji and he was employed at Firestone Store changing car, truck, and tractor tires, as well as repairing bicycles. In 1966 he began work for the Skelgas plant west of Bemidji and worked there until the spring of 1970, when he went to work for Great Lakes Gas Transmission Company. He worked there until his retirement in January of 1996. Richard was a member of St. Philip’s Catholic Church and sang in the choir from 1950 until the new church was built. He was a member of the Paul Bunyan Barbershopper Chorus for many years and had a beautiful tenor voice. Richard was a talented pool player, played golf, and many card games. He loved watching the Vikings and Twins. He loved music and was a beautiful dancer. The family wishes to thank the Sanford Bemidji Hospital, Meadowlands Elder Care Homes, and the Hospice personnel for all the compassionate, loving care he received while in their care.

He is survived by:his wife,Marian Bleth of Bemidji, Daughters,Karen Barkley of Lithonia, Georgia,Susan (Dale) Bushman of Bemidji,Theresa (Gary) Westin of Bemidji,Sons, David (Lori) Bleth of Dacula, Georgia,Patrick (Cheryle) Bleth of Cohasset, MN,12 Grandchildren, and 14 Great-Grandchildren,Sisters,Kathleen Yost of Norwalk, CA,Mary Ann Weaver of Seminole, Florida,Brothers,James (Zola) Bleth of Walker, MN,William (Virginia) Bleth of Forsyth, Montana

He was preceded in death by his parents, brother John Jr., sisters Edna Nelson, Marlene Bagwell, and great-grandson Layne Johnson.

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