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John Richard "Dick" Anderson, 87, devoted husband, father, grandfather, uncle, and friend passed away on February 17, 2017 following a long illness. He was born July 22, 1929, in Chicago, Illinois to John Martin and Ellen Marie (Siivonen) Anderson. Dick graduated from Rockford East High School in 1947. He married, Evelyn Marie Seaver, of Sharon, Wisconsin on April 10, 1954. Dick received his B.S. in Education from Northern Illinois University (NIU) in 1966, and his M.S. in Education from NIU in 1972 with a major in Educational Administration. Dick enjoyed a 36 year career as an educator and guidance counselor working for Rockford Public Schools (Wilson and West Middle Schools), and 25 years as an instructor for the Carpenter's Apprentice Program at Rock Valley College.
Raised in Rockford, Dick was a first generation American, Korean War Veteran, Boy Scout leader, and dedicated educator, among many professional and personal achievements. First in his family to go to college, he went on to get his Master's degree and devoted his life to supporting others on their paths to learning. Dick was a master carpenter, yet another illustration of his infallible work ethic and curious nature. In his free time, he could be found with his wife Evie in northern Wisconsin whipping through historical fiction, golfing, fishing, and both enjoying and advocating for the preservation of Lost Lake in Sayner, Wisconsin. On a humorous note, Dick was known for his zealous pursuit of a perfect yard which was admired by many friends and neighbors. An expert ballroom dancer, whenever the Glenn Miller Band came on he could be found leading his wife across the floor. His boisterous laugh will be sorely missed by all whose lives he touched.
Dick is survived by his daughters Kathy (Dan) Weiss of Milwaukee, WI and Sue (Kevin) Merchen of Rockford, IL; granddaughters Elizabeth Weiss of Chicago, IL, and Sarah Weiss of Minneapolis, MN; sister-in-law Peg Snudden of Beaver Dam, WI; numerous beloved nieces, nephews, godsons; and many friends across the country. Dick was preceded in death by his beloved wife of 60 years, Evelyn. Special thanks to all his dear friends and neighbors over the years. We are especially grateful for the tender caregivers, nurses, and administrators at Anam Care who helped our family navigate through his challenging journey with Alzheimer's. In addition, we are deeply grateful for the compassionate care and support from the Serenity Hospice staff.
Memorial service will be at 5:00 p.m. Friday, February 24, 2017 with visitation preceding the service (4:00 to 5:00 pm) at Christ the Rock Lutheran Church, 8330 Newburg Rd, Rockford, Illinois, 61108. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that expressions of sympathy take the form of contributions to the Alzheimer's Association or the Lost Lake Community Club.

Condolences & Shared Memories (14)

  1. Dave & Marie Kuemmel

    Many memories of Dick and Eve Anderson from Ed Gabe's in St. Germain. Our sympathy to Cathy and Sue and family

  2. John Paulsgrove

    I worked with Rich at Wilson Middle School back when we were both relatively young. He served as one of the counselors. Rich always treated everyone with respect and kindness. He was a man of many talents, but the most important thing I remember about him was that he was a genuinely good man! I am happy he lived a fairly long and enjoyable life. He tried to make life better for those around him.

  3. Dan Salvi, Jr.

    Thanks for the years of service to students in Rockford Public Schools, Rich. I know you made my burden lighter with your support and humor. I believe all who met you were enriched by the experience. A great soul John Richard "Dick" Anderson.

  4. Terri Wiegert

    Sue & family, So sorry to hear about the lost of your dad. Cherish the wonderful times to get you through this very difficult time. Thoughts and prayers are with you.

  5. Gordy and Jan Hoffman

    Dick was a good golfing pal and friend. We will miss seeing him with his dog. Neighbors on Nelson Parkway.

  6. Rick Ellen varga

    Loved them the first day we met -- great people,you have some great memories our prayers are with the Anderson family

  7. Margo Pettis

    So sorry to hear of the loss of your beloved father and dear grandfather! I'm thankful for so many fun memories of visits on the patio! May God comfort you with His loving arms and give you peace!

  8. colleen ubersox

    I am so sorry for your loss. Although I only knew Richard for a few months, his gentleness and kindness were always evident. Also, the devotion of his daughters is a tribute to the kind of man he was. Your family is in my thoughts.

  9. Toni Green

    Prayers in your time of grief. May you know that Dick will be missed but the memories of him will be forever at Ed Gabeson on Lost Lake


    His picture expresses him beautifully. He was very lucky to have great Daughters & Sons in Laws to rely on the last month's. He is in a better place now, leading Evie across the dance floor. Love you guys.

  11. Jeff Walter

    I soooo.... loved both Dick and Evie! Like second parents to me!

  12. Karen & Louie Gugliuzza

    Condolences on the loss of your Dad....thoughts and prayers for you and your family.

  13. Bob and Carol Mayer

    What a wonderful life and a beautiful tribute. May your memories of him always warm your hearts.

  14. Liz & Mark Asprooth

    We are so sorry for the loss of your beloved Father dearest friend. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Love you.

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