American Veteran 04
Official Obituary of

Richard L. Hayes

February 25, 1933 ~ September 14, 2023 (age 90) 90 Years Old

Richard Hayes Obituary

BG (Bvt)(Ret) Richard L. Hayes passed away surrounded by his loving wife, Betty, of seventy years and his four children at his home in Brainerd MN after a long struggle with Parkinson’s. He was born in Brainerd MN on Feb 25, 1933, to Francis and Inis (Bourassa) Hayes. He attended St Francis School then graduated from Washington High School, Class of 1951. He was employed at local grocers and the railroad before being drafted into the Army where he served with the 27th Engineer Bn (Combat) at Fort Campbell, KY. Following his discharge, he joined the MN Army National Guard. He began full-time employment at Camp Ripley in 1955 and served in various assignments until his retirement in 1988. During these 35 years he served in positions of increasing responsibility from platoon through State Staff Level. His key leadership assignments were OIC of the 47th DISCOM, OIC of the State Military Academy, State Personnel Officer, Camp Ripley Commander, and Chief of Staff for the MN National Guard. While working these assignments, he completed both military and civilian education with graduation from the US Army Command and General Staff College and Metropolitan State University. H was instrumental in resurrecting the Memorialization Board which yet today honors past members of the MN Army Guard in the Court of Honor at Camp Ripley. He always volunteered at his church, was involved with the local American Legion and was the Commander of Coon Rapids Post 334 and the Past Commander at Post 225 in Brainerd. He was a proud member and alum of the class of 51 of Brainerd High School. After retirement, he and Betty embarked on a long project to help grow the Minnesota Military Museum at Camp Ripley which flourished into one of the finest museums in the country.

Of his numerous awards and accomplishments he was most appreciative and proud of these: Class 1 of the Minnesota Military Academy Officer Candidate School where he was commissioned as a 2nd LT and later inducted into the Officer Candidate School Hall of Fame; the Norwegian Home Guard Medal; the Legion of Merit Medal; the Meritorious Service Medal; the MN Distinguished Service Medal; the MN Meritorious Service Medal; the Camp Ripley Officer Club that bares his name; and the Armor Association’s Order of Saint George.

He is survived by his loving wife Betty Joanne (Rundquist) Hayes who he has been married to for 70 years. He was preceded in death by his parents, daughter Karen Teale, son-in-law Rick Waltz, Granddaughter Shannon O’Brien, Grandson Jared Hackel, three great grandchildren, brother Wayne Hayes, sister-in-law Joanne Hayes, niece Nadine Hayes and many friends.

He is survived by daughter Cathy Hayes (Ron Bolland), son Wayne Hayes (Shawna), daughter Robin Kuechle (Ron), son Richard Hayes (Valerie), son-in-law Tom Teale, 14 grandchildren, 31 great grandchildren, 6 soon to be 7 great-great grandchildren and many good friends and extended family. He was loved.

If desired, memorials may be directed to the MN Military Museum or Crow Wing County Historical Society or a charity of your choice.

A visitation will be held at the Nelson Doran Funeral Home in Brainerd on Wednesday, September 20, 2023, from 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. A Mass of the Christian Burial will take place at Saint Francis Catholic Church at 11:00 a.m., Thursday, September 21, 2023.  Family and friends are invited to gather one hour prior to Mass and stay for a reception to follow.  Interment with Military Honors will be held at 2:00 p.m., Thursday, September 21 at Minnesota State Veterans Cemetery near Camp Ripley.





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