Cover photo for Richard  J. Dysart's Obituary
Richard  J. Dysart Profile Photo
1932 Richard 2021

Richard J. Dysart

May 6, 1932 — October 18, 2021

Richard J. Dysart, 89, died October 18, 2021, of natural causes at Livingston HealthCare. He was born in Chicago, Illinois, May 6, 1932, to Mildred (Fehrenkamp) and William Repetto. He learned to love outdoor activities at the Chicago Junior School (a Christian Science School for children of single parents), in Elgin, Illinois. His mother met Raymond Dysart, a widower, visiting his son Roger at the boarding school. Ray adopted Dick and they made a family together in Hinsdale, Illinois. Dick received his B.S. (1954) and Ph.D (1960) in Entomology at the University of Illinois, Champaign/Urbana. Dick served in the army as a 1st Lieutenant stationed in Hanau, Germany 1954-56. Dick's entomological research led him to southern Illinois, and he fell in love with the beauty of the Shawnee Hills region. Dick found and bought 18 acres (while at a bar) adjacent to the Shawnee National Forest. With the help of friends, he built a primitive A-frame cabin (no electricity, running water, or indoor bathroom), transporting supplies in an International Harvester Scout over almost impassable terrain (it destroyed the Scout). He and his friends hunted and fished there for 50 plus years, sharing stories, cooking incredible meals, enjoying George Dickel whiskey, and hiking across the hills, valleys, and creeks, until age made the mile trek to the cabin difficult. His ashes will be spread in the Little Cache Creek, near the cabin, Memorial Day weekend.After his Ph. D. from the University of Illinois, Dick took a position as an Assistant Professional Scientist (entomology) at the Illinois Natural History Survey where he worked on insects of forage crops from 1960-65. In 1965 Dick joined the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agriculture Research Service (ARS) as a Research Entomologist and was assigned to the European Biological Control Laboratory (EBCL) near Paris, France for six years. After joining ARS and for the rest of his professional career he worked on the biological control of insects. His last assignment was at EBCL which had moved to Montpellier in southern France. Between European assignments, he worked at ARS laboratories in Moorestown, NJ, Newark, DE, and Sidney, MT. Upon retirement in 1997, he and his wife, Priscilla, moved to Livingston, MT.Dick enjoyed many passions and pursuits, including stamp collecting, clocks, windmills, early 20th century aviation, flying an ultralight plane, and local history. He was active for many years with the Friends of the Yellowstone Gateway Museum. He researched and wrote articles about Old Faithful Inn blacksmith George Colpitts, World War I Croix de Guerre recipient Eugene Knoke, writer/artist Copeland Burg, and Martin Zollman, Livingston aviator and policeman killed by an unhappy citizen. He indexed Doris Whithorn's 20 books and produced an index of the indexes ("A is for Aldrich") for her books. He also indexed the History of Park County 1984 (the index is 109 pages - a great resource to local genealogists). Dick is survived by his wife Priscilla (Archambault) of 53 years. They met in Paris, ate great food, enjoyed wine, and travelled their way through life. Dick is also survived by son Marc James Dysart of Denver, daughter-in-law Stephanie Iwanski and granddaughter Norah Dysart, and son Craig David Dysart of Kirkland, WA, daughter-in-law Lindsay Welker, and grandson Henry Dysart.He was preceded in death by his parents Mildred and Raymond Dysart, brother and sister-in-law Roger and Ann Dysart, as well as Priscilla's parents and two of her sisters.A Celebration of Life will be held in Livingston in the summer of 2022. Donations in memory of Dick may be made to the Friends of the Yellowstone Gateway Museum, P.O. Box 815, Livingston, MT 59047.
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