Mass of Christian Burial was Nov. 20 at the Church of St. Augustine in St. Cloud for Richard R. Ruegemer, 89, of St. Cloud.  The Rev. Brady Keller officiated with entombment in Assumption Cemetery in St. Cloud.  

Richard Ray Ruegemer, aka Dick, aka R³, was born Nov. 28, 1931, to Erwin and Louise (Foltmer) Ruegemer in St. Cloud, the oldest of five children. Dick died peacefully Nov. 15, 2021.

Dick attended Riverview Lab School, graduated from Tech High School in 1949 and graduated from the St. Cloud Teachers College in 1952. After working for several years in Minneapolis and Spokane, Washington, he graduated from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, in 1960 with a master’s degree in engineering mechanics.

Dick married Marlene McCarthy June 2, 1962, and the couple had four children. Dick and Marlene were married for nearly 35 years until Marlene’s death in 1997. Dick married Diane Varsnick Sept. 16, 2000, and the couple enjoyed more than 21 years together.

Dick took great pride in his family. He was proud of his children, stepchildren, grandchildren and great-grandchildren and all of their spouses and significant others. He loved attending their events and bragging about them to anyone who would listen. He always focused on each of their strengths and abilities. He taught each of them valuable lessons about unconditional love, faith, optimism, hard work and humility. He also taught some of them practical lessons about algebra, trigonometry and calculus (he helped anyone who asked, with their math homework), woodworking, fishing, mechanical and electrical design, why the sky is blue and too many other subjects to list them all here.

Dick also took great pride in his work. He started his first job in engineering Nov. 2, 1952, and he retired from his last engineering job 65 years later to the day, Nov. 2, 2017, at the age of 86. More than 53 of those years were spent working at DeZurik in Sartell. He also worked at the University of Minnesota, Kaiser Aluminum (Spokane), Univac (St. Paul) and at St Cloud State University as an adjunct instructor for engineering.

Lakes and fishing were a huge part of Dick’s life. His grandfather, Peter Ruegemer, started Ruegemer’s Lakeview Resort on Horseshoe Lake in Richmond, and Dick spent many days at the resort and on the lake swimming, water skiing and fishing. Every summer and fall, for most of his life, he would find time to go on fishing trips with family and friends. In 1998, Dick bought a cabin/home on Clitherall Lake in Ottertail County, near Battle Lake. His goal was to get a place large enough so all of his children and grandchildren could be there at the same time and create new family traditions while experiencing lake life, fishing and the great outdoors. It was such a success that he, Diane, Danna and George decided to buy the original house at the old resort that Dick’s grandparents lived in on Horseshoe Lake and began many traditions with Diane’s children and siblings.

Dick is survived by his wife, Diane; children Therese (Dan) Haker, Nashville, Tennessee, Anne (Mark) Houghland, Maple Grove, Paul (Caroline), St. Cloud and Amy (Ken) Gohman, Avon; step-children Krisie (Jeff) Barron, New London, and Danna (George) Mokamba, Chanhassen; grandchildren Joe (Ali) Haker, Kelly (Levi) Watson, Katie (Jon) Haker, Adam (Tara) Traut, Eric (Nicky) Traut, Emily (Lisa) McEwan, Philip Ruegemer, Michael (Ellie) Gohman, Megan Gohman, Andy (Kayla), Charnley, Joe Charnley and Zaria Mokamba; great-grandchildren Adelaide, Kaden, Jude, Braxton, Kiana, Emery, Mateo, Wallace and one on the way; siblings Joyce Haskell, Helen (Jerry) Weber, Jack (Bonnie) and Mary Jonas; in-laws Gary (Theresa) Gohl, Deb Millner, Cindy (Rick) Mahutga and Barb (Don) Scherbing.

Preceding Dick in death are his parents, first wife Marlene and many in-laws.

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