Beachnau, Richard “Dick”

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Richard (Dick) Lawrence Beachnau, age 85 of Gaylord , passed away on Thursday, July 27, 2017.

Richard was born to Louis and Alice (Joslyn) Bitschnau on February 23, 1932. His love of theater and music began in high school at St. Mary Cathedral in Lansing while playing the saxophone for the Blue Notes. Also, while in high school, he achieved the rank of Eagle Scout and wore his ring proudly for the rest of his life. He was also selected as a varsity quarterback at St. Mary. He met his wife Rosemary in high school and they married in 1954, just before he left to serve in the Korean War. Dick attended Michigan State University where he earned his Bachelor and Master degrees in Social Work and was a Spartan fan for life.

Dick and Rosemary moved their seven children to Gaylord in 1972 to pursue Dick’s career with the Diocese of Gaylord. He was influential in the community serving on the school board, with United Way, the Sportsplex, OCCOA, and St. Mary’s Cathedral parish and school.

He enjoyed being both a Burgermeister and a Harmonymeister, and had many other varied interests dear to him; but his family always came first.

Dick is survived by his wife of 63 years, Rosemary (Hathaway), and his children, Mike (Joan), Pat (Carol), Brian (Barb), Mary (Bob) Johnson, Karen Robb, Greg (Chris), and Paul. His grandchildren, Justin (Emily), Emily (Brian) Boos, Katie Robb, Kate (Jeff) Spanke, Joe (Danielle), Allie Robb, Matt (Maegen), Megan Robb, Adam (Fiancé Pamela), Sam Johnson, Kelly (Fiancé Eli), Christina, Oliver Johnson, Isabel Johnson, Jimmy Robb, Abby, Timmy and eleven very special great- grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his three brothers, Lou, Don and Bill Beachnau and his granddaughter, Jennifer.

A Mass of Christian burial will be held on Monday, July 31, 2017 at 11 AM from St. Mary Cathedral in Gaylord.

Visitation will take place at the Nelson Funeral Home on Sunday, July 30, 2017 from 3 PM – 6 PM and on Monday at the cathedral beginning at 10 AM until the time of service.

A parish rosary will be offered on Sunday at the funeral home beginning at 5:30 PM.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in his honor may be made to Gaylord St. Mary Cathedral Schools.

Funeral arrangements were entrusted to the Nelson Funeral Home and Cremation Service, PO Box 1548, Gaylord, MI 49734.

18 comments on “Beachnau, Richard “Dick””

  1. Dear Rosemary, Karen, Katie, Allie, Megan, Jimmy and all of the family,
    Great memories of Grandpa B, his wonderful smile, kind manner and welcoming presence. May God bless you during this time. Sending love and prayers,

  2. Dear Rosemary and Family: I am deeply saddened to learn of Dick’s passing. My mother is the former Ruth Beachnau and my grandfather, Jerome Beachnau, was your father-in-law’s first cousin. I met Paul a couple of years ago while I was staying at our cottage in Lewiston and had hoped to meet you and Dick during another stay up north. After reading all of the wonderful things about him here, I regret that I didn’t try harder to connect earlier. I do share his love of music, singing in my home parish choir and at St Francis in Lewiston. I have been doing a lot of genealogy research on my family, including the Beachnaus, and hope to meet you or the rest of your family if any of you would like. Please let me know, and I can make the time.

  3. So hard to say goodbye to cherished people in life. I know he’s driving the angel choir nuts right now trying to get a band formed or an album started and go on tour. Never met a man who loved his family and others so intensely.
    This earth will feel his absence, I will also. Rosemary and all you Beachnau’s be so very proud of his faith, fairness, appreciation of family values, love of life. He tried several times to sway me with terrific cigars, too many steaks, very good Merlot and it worked! Bye Dick, Love Ya. JR

  4. Edward and Cora Thaxton

    Dear Rosemary and Family, we feel so blessed to have been greeted by Dick by his ever pleasant smile and sincerity of friendship I also feel blessed to have greeted Dick at Mass
    last week and was able to shortened his distance back to his pew after receiving Holy Communion and again get a nice smile and a thank you Ed with his ever pleasant smile. He
    is at his everlasting home. Be assured our prayers are with you and your family.

  5. Aunt rosemary so sorry for your loss. We are so thankful that we stopped to see you both. I can only imagine what those four brothers up there are doing. Kisses and hugs to you and the kids. We will see you Monday.

  6. To the Beachnau Family:

    May I offer my condolences to the Beachnau family on Dick’s passing. Most of my knowing Dick was many years ago when I was a principal and Dick was on the Gaylord Community School Board and President of the School Board for many years. He was a very good School Board Member and an excellent President. I particularly remember one situation when Superintendent Tom Gill and the teachers were at a prolonged stalemate and a work stoppage or strike was a distinct possibility during contract negotiation. The Board decided to allow Dick be the chief negotiator. With Dick’s calm and tactful manner it seemed like just a few days and the contact was settle and both the teachers and the Board walked away happy with the results. Thank you for your many years of community service, Dick. May you Rest In Peace.

  7. Andy and Jamie Flanagan

    Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with you and the entire Beachnau Family. Wish we could be there in person.

  8. Denise Pallarito

    Rob and I are sad to have learned that Dick has passed away. My time with him on the Gaylord Chamber Orchestra Board provides me with a number of great memories, including loving to hear him sing. Our prayers are with the entire Beachnau family during this sobering time.

  9. Dear Rosemary & Family: We are so deeply saddened to learn of the death of Dick. He was a treasure to his family as well as to the community. He served us all so very well in so many ways. We will always treasure his friendship and time spent with the Beachnau family. Know of our thoughts & prayers during this difficult time & only wish we could be with you on Monday.

    Our Love…..Bill & Chetti Green & Family

  10. Janice Krajniak

    Dear sorry for your loss. If you need something we will be ready to help. Sending you and your family our sincere condolences

  11. Barry Wilkinson

    Jan and I are so very sorry for your loss. We are happy that we saw Dick last Saturday. Dick will be missed by many. Thoughts and prayers to you and family!

  12. Suzanne Medellin

    My dear Rosemary, My heartfelt prayers go out to you and your family. I am sending big hugs to you.

  13. Tim and JoAnn Beechnau

    Dear Aunt Rosemary and family,
    Our love and prayers are with you. Three happy brother’s welcome another home. We love you all.
    Love, Tim and JoAnn

  14. Connie & Mike Zaborowski

    Our thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family during this difficult time. Know that God will give you comfort and strength thru the love and compassion of your extended family and friends.
    God Bless you all

  15. Connie & Mike Zaborowski

    Our thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family during this difficult time. Know that God will give you comfort and strength thru the love and compassion of your extended family and friends.
    God Bless you all

  16. I will always remember him as Mr.B or my fave Kmart Santa Claus
    Def a very special man indeed.
    Heaven is certainly shining a little brighter now.
    I’m sure he’s creating quite a show with my gma who also was a music major and choir director lol. Oh I can only imagine those 2 carrying on.
    Your family is in my prayers.

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