Richard Lee “Dick” Hale, 89, passed away Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2019, at his home in Lawrence.
Dick was born January 3, 1930, to Glenn and Ruby Hale of Mankato, Kan. He was the youngest and last surviving of five siblings: John, Fred, Arden and Maxine. He was raised in Mankato where in high school he excelled in scholastics, football, basketball and track. He graduated from the University of Kansas in 1952 with a degree in Journalism and shortly thereafter was inducted into the U.S. Army. He attended the school for the Army’s Counter Intelligence Corps (CIC) and was assigned to Upstate New York during the Korean War era.
In his junior year at KU, Dick had a blind date with Nancy Craig of Cresco, Iowa. The couple has been together ever since. Dick and Nancy were married in her hometown in February 1953 and celebrated their 66th anniversary in 2019.
Upon leaving the Army in 1954, Dick and Nancy moved to northwest Kansas where Dick became owner and publisher of the St. Francis Herald and the Bird City Times. If asked to name his “home,” Dick would say it was St. Francis where he, Nancy and family were an integral part of the community for two decades and where they gained many lifelong friends.
Both papers were sold in 1974. Dick then transitioned into a series of national magazine editing positions. Dick edited Golf Course Management in Lawrence (1974-76 and 1980-82), PGA Magazine in North Palm Beach, Fla., (1976-80) and was Editor and Publisher of Dental Economics in Tulsa (1982-97). Upon retirement in 1997 Dick and Nancy returned to Lawrence.
Dick was involved with numerous professional and civic organizations, including the Kansas Press Association, Rotary, Shriners and several church boards of directors. He was a lifelong member of the KU Alumni Association and is past president of Alvamar Golf Club in Lawrence.
Dick had many passions, none greater than family. A dedicated and loving husband, father and “Papa,” by example he instilled in his charges such values as self-respect, honesty, integrity,
hard work, compassion and patriotism. He was a man of keen intelligence, good-natured wit and one who expressly made fun an important part of his daily agenda. He was a gifted journalist, writer and storyteller.
Dick and Nancy loved to travel and visited much of the United States and parts of Europe. Few things, however, equaled Dick’s passion and enthusiasm for the game of golf, of which he was a skilled and competitive player up to the final year of his life. He loved all sports, especially so when the competition involved his children and grandchildren and most certainly his beloved KU Jayhawks. He enjoyed New York Times crossword puzzles, word-challenge games and bird watching. Dick was an avid reader of newspapers, periodicals and books and had a deep appreciation of music and the arts, most notably live theater performances.
Outgoing and personable, Dick accumulated an extensive and treasured network of friends through his work, travels, church, athletics and social activities. Wherever Dick and Nancy journeyed, invariably new friendships and relationships resulted. Dick considered those friendships a true blessing.
In addition to wife Nancy of the home, survivors include four children, eight grandchildren, 10 great children and several nephews and nieces: son Steve Hale and wife Sharyl, Gardner, Kan., and their sons Tyler Hale and partner Kali Park, and Dylan Hale and his sons Craig and Rylen; daughter Kris Hale Shurtz and husband Mike Shurtz, Lawrence, and their son Tad Shurtz and wife Monica and their son Jude and daughters Ruby and Willow, and daughter Shelby Shurtz; son Mike Hale and wife Jerri, Omaha, Neb., and their sons Lee Hale and wife Jennifer and their daughter Rosylnn, and son Thom; daughter Sarah Hale Wilcher and husband Todd Wilcher, Kansas City, Mo., and their son Cleve Wilcher and wife Caitlyn and their son Boone and daughter Toby, and daughter Piper Wilcher Maranjian and husband David Maranjian and their sons Phineas and Cyril; and nephews and nieces Gary Hale (Kay), Connie Hale Jensen (Kendall), Marla Hale Dorgan and Valerie Hale Bearley (Craig).
Services will be at 2 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 16, at Plymouth Congregational Church, 925 Vermont St., Lawrence. Interment will be at Fort Leavenworth National Cemetery at a yet-to-be-determined date.
Visitation with family will be at Plymouth Congregational Church at a post-services reception. The family suggests memorials to Plymouth Congregational Church, Douglas County Visiting Nurses Hospice and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.