Richard Alden William Holty, 87, of Mabel, Minn., passed peacefully at home surrounded by his family on Monday, May 22, 2023.
Incredible father to Jim (Elaine), Pam (Brian), Joyce (Tony), and Ron (Kimberly), grandpa, great-grandpa, brother, uncle, cousin, and friend to many.
Richard was born on April 9, 1936, at home on the Dotseth farm, located between Spring Grove and Caledonia. At age three, his family moved to the farm near Newhouse, Minn., where he has lived ever since. He attended the Newhouse Country School through eighth grade and then Spring Grove Public school in town until the 10th grade, when he left to pursue a successful farming career. He farmed first with his father and then his two sons. He married Verly Burke on September 1, 1956, at the age of 20 and they enjoyed 64 ½ wonderful years of marriage. He has sung many solos, duets, trios, and quartets and led the singing each Sunday for over 50 years. He was the last surviving charter member of Calvary Evangelical Free Church and served as Sunday School teacher and other church leadership roles for many years. He was also happy to be a member of the Spring Grove Public School Board in the 1980s.
He is preceded in death by the love of his life, Verly; infant son Russell, grandson Wesley Olson, parents Alden and Lillian, brothers Lorren, Keith and Franklyn; sister Lyla Thompson, as well as several other close loved ones.
Survived by his above-named children, grandchildren Natalie (Tyler) Schmidt, Nicholas (Nancy) Holty, Reid Olson, Lydia (Nicholas) Mostrom, Luke (Elizabeth) Heppner, Moriah (Aaron) Koehler, Noah and Joshua Heppner, Haley (Gabriel) Sunderland, Taylor, Carter, Danika, Evan, and Savannah Holty; and great-grandsons Grantley Koehler and Cameron Holty. Also survived by his sister Kathy (Roger) Martin, sisters-in-law Peggy Holty, Elaine Holty, Wilma Burke, and many nieces and nephews, who knew him as “Uncle Dick.”
He was kind and generous, known for his compliments, laughter, “duck” quacking noises, ready smile and beautiful blue eyes. He shared the gospel of Jesus Christ with many people, caring for the souls of friend and stranger alike. His favorite verse to quote was Proverbs 3:5-6
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.”
He will be greatly missed.
Services will be held at Calvary Evangelical Free Church, Spring Grove, Minn., with visitation from 4-7 p.m. on Thursday, May 25, 2023, and funeral at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, May 26, 2023. He will be laid to rest beside his wife at the Mabel Public Cemetery, awaiting the trumpet sound when the dead in Christ will rise to live again. The Mengis Funeral Home in Mabel is assisting the family.
Richard chopped corn silage for my father. Jim and myself played football in the yard. He was a great person. I never heard a bad word uttered from him. I feel privileged to have known him and his son.