2011-02-19 / Editorials & Letters

Dick Leindecker ‘touched many lives over the years’


It is with great sadness that I write of the passing of Dick Leindecker.

Dick was not only a dear personal friend but also a great friend of Buckeye Lake. He served admirably for 12 years on the village council as chairman of the Public Safety Committee and Public Service Committee. He always looked to better our village in any way he could.

Even since Dick left council, he has continued to be an active member of the fire department. Dick, and the late Ronnie Colley, established our present fire department after the village council made the decision to stop contracting with a private fire company and start our own Buckeye Lake Fire Department.

Due to the scheduled expiration of the contract with the private company, there was a very limited amount of time to get a new department established and qualified to protect the village. Dick stopped working at his well drilling business for several months, living off of his personal savings, to travel all over the state getting equipment, manpower, and instructors to qualify the new personnel. Due to the efforts of Dick and Ronnie, we had a qualified department ready to serve our village with no lost time in transferring service to the new department.

Dick was very instrumental in conducting fund raisers for the Fire Association and he personally brought in many dollars that benefited everyone.

Dick was one of my most cherished friends as I have known him for 63 years. We were great friends as teenagers here in Buckeye Lake when we attended the old Hebron High School together. I have many great memories of those times with him and his late brother, Chuck, when the amusement park was in full swing.

Dick was very dedicated to his family and his grandchildren. He loved them dearly and was always there for any of them that needed him.

He was also a personal friend to my grandson, Nick. He befriended Nick and greeted him each night at the fire station and talked with him and gave him things that Nick keeps in his room. Nick is also very saddened by his passing. He always said that Dick was his third grandpa.

I will greatly miss my old friend and, life as I know it, will never be the same again without him. I am sure that there are many others in the village that he has helped at one time or the other, over the years, that feel the same way. He touched many lives over the years.

When we meet at the fire house for coffee and friendly conversation each evening, we will all miss you dear friend, but you will always be in our thoughts and our hearts.

Finally, I would like to commend all of those that planned and/or participated in Dick’s funeral and procession. I will not try to name everyone because I would surely leave someone out, but it was fantastic from start to finish.

The Buckeye Lake Fire Association, as well as several other fire departments were instrumental in the planning and operation of the entire affair. Great job everybody, it was wonderful.!!

Jim Bartoe
Buckeye Lake

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