He was born on August 3, 1931 the son of the late Donald V. and Lucile (Smith) Besley.
He is survived by wife, Linda (Kendall) Besley, his children, Donna (Glenn) Hibler, Exton, PA, Suzanne Besley Bradshaw and her husband Keith Bradshaw, Apex NC, son, Bruce Besley, Norfolk, VA; grandchildren Grace Hibler, Walter and Ross Bradshaw; he is also survived by Linda’s children, Todd (Bernadette) Staudt, Scott ( Carol) Staudt, Kendra (Robert) Davis; grandchildren, Ben, Adam & Alexa Staudt, Crystal (Matthew) Benjamin and their daughter Eve, Angela Staudt, Alaina, Scott, Elizabeth, Leah, Kerri Davis; sister Phyllis Sutton, Roseland, NJ; niece Pamela Diamantis and her daughters; nephew, David Sutton of NJ; mother-in-law, Jean Kendall; brother-in-law, David Kendall, sister-in-law, Judy Dewey and former wife Marlene Besley, Norfolk, VA.
Dick attended the Columbia Cross Roads School for 8 years and graduated from Troy High School in 1949. He entered the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in July 1949 at age 17. He was a pitcher on the Army Baseball Team and sang in the Glee Club. Leaving West Point in 1951 he completed college at the University of Texas, Austin with a B.A. in Physics and a commission in the U.S. Air Force where he entered pilot training.
He put on a herd of Hereford Beef Cattle in 1985 and enjoyed them for 12 years. He was a Life Member of the Hereford Association, Air Force Association, American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars and a member of the C-7 Caribou Association. Dick served on the Troy Area School Board for 8 years, as President for 3. He was past president of the Troy Lions Club, Past Commander of the American Legion and the VFW. He served as Scoutmaster of the Columbia Cross Roads Troop #61 for 9 years and then Troop Committee Chairman. He was a regular blood donor (12 gallon pin) for the Red Cross.
He served the Church where he was baptized and attended Sunday school as a certified lay speaker and church council chairman. Dick maintained his pilot’s license currently until 2009 by flying with his life-long friends, Clyde & Lee Robbins’ airplanes from their Troy Twp. Airstrip.
Dick and Linda especially enjoyed entertaining their grandchildren when they visited the Bicentennial Farm. Picnics and hiking to the creek to throw stones were favorite activities.
Dick was predeceased by his parents, brother-in-law, George Sutton and father-in-law, Merle Kendall.
The family would like the express their appreciation to the Kimberly Dashiell family for their love and support.
Family and friends are invited to call Friday, January 20 from 6 to 8 PM at the Gerald W. Vickery, Jr. Funeral & Cremation Services, Inc. 1093 West Main Street, Troy, PA 16947.
The family will also receive friends on Saturday, January 21, 2017 from 10 to 11 AM at the Columbia Cross Roads United Methodist Church, 6700 Austinville Road, Columbia Cross Roads, PA 16914. Dick’s funeral service will be held there at 11 AM with Reverend Chris Nauta officiating.
Interment with Full Military Honors Accorded will follow in Columbia Valley Cemetery.
Memorials in Dick’s memory may be made to the Columbia Cross Roads United Methodist Church or to a Charity of choice in the Troy Area.
Send online condolences to VickeryFH.com