Richard W. “Rick” Kleinschmidt, age 70 of Sauk Centre, died from injuries sustained in an automobile accident on Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2020, near Long Prairie.

A Mass of Christian Burial was held 2 p.m. Monday, Nov. 16 at Our Lady of the Angels Catholic Church in Sauk Centre with Rev. Jeremy Theis officiating.  Interment was in the Calvary Cemetery.

Visitation was held from 1-5 p.m. Sunday at the Patton-Schad Funeral Home in Sauk Centre. There was no public visitation prior to the Mass on Monday.

Richard William Kleinschmidt was born July 27, 1950, in Melrose, to Orville “Ollie” and Teresa “Trix” (Liebel) Kleinschmidt. He graduated from Sauk Centre High School in 1968.  On June 17, 1972, he married Carol Rasmusen at Our Lady of the Angels Catholic Church in Sauk Centre. Rick worked with his father at Centre Jobbing after high school and purchased the business in 1989. Rick sold Centre Jobbing in 2013 but continued to serve his customers to this day.

He was a member of Our Lady of the Angels Catholic Church in Sauk Centre, Knights of Columbus, Sauk Centre Conservation Club, Sauk Centre Jaycees, and the Stearns County Chapter of Pheasants Forever. Rick served as president of the Sauk Centre Hockey Association and was instrumental in bringing high school hockey to Sauk Centre and the construction of the Civic Arena. 

Being dedicated to his community, Rick was on the Sauk Centre Fire Department for 32 years, 7 years as an assistant fire chief, 12 years as a training officer and 16 years as a Minnesota State Fire Instructor. In 1987, he was nominated for fire fighter of the year in the State of Minnesota. Rick was an active EMT in Sauk Centre for 25 years and retained his license for 41 years. Rick was a coach of the Sauk Centre High School Trap Team and played in many softball leagues. He played on the Collegians softball team that won the state championship in Chisholm in 1975. Rick was an avid beer can collector and had his name in the Guinness Book of World Records for the longest beer can toss. Christmas was one of his favorite holidays and he truly enjoyed playing Santa Claus in Sauk Centre for over 50 years.  

He enjoyed hunting and fishing, and loved spending time with his family, especially his children and grandchildren.

Survivors include his wife, Carol Kleinschmidt of Sauk Centre; sons, Ryan (Abby) Kleinschmidt of Osakis and Jamie “Bird” (Melissa) Kleinschmidt of Sauk Centre; five grandchildren, Carter, Gemma, Blake, Brooke, and Tyson; mother, Teresa “Trix” Kleinschmidt of Sauk Centre; brother, Robbie (Gloria) Kleinschmidt of Avon; sister, Renée (Gary) Leinonen of Sauk Centre; and brother-in-law, Phil Behnen of Sauk Centre. 

Rick was preceded in death by his father, Orville “Ollie” Kleinschmidt on May 28, 2012; brothers, Randy Kleinschmidt and Ronnie Kleinschmidt; and sister, Roxann Behnen. 

Serving as casket bearers were John Juelke, Tim Weir, Bob Uhlenkamp, Virgil Marthaler, Dan “Tootie” Moening, and John Haskamp. Cross and scripture bearers were Rick’s grandchildren. Honorary bearers were members of the Sauk Centre Fire Department.

In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred for contributions to Rick’s many organizations he was affiliated with.

Arrangements were made with Patton-Schad Funeral & Cremation Services of Sauk Centre.