Dean C. Klicker, 84, of St. Paul, MN former longtime Park Rapids resident passed away on Sunday, September 22, 2019 at the United Hospital in St. Paul. Born to Ernest and Hazel Klicker on Jan 11, 1935, Dean spent 83 years in his beloved town of Park Rapids. He served his country in the US Army and dedicated over 30 years to the federal government as a civil engineer for the US Forest Service. Dean married the love of his life, Betty, on July 22, 1972. Together with a blended family of 6 children, their home was very busy for 36 years straight.
Dean adored his wife and family, enjoyed hunting and fishing, loved having coffee with friends and his Saturday morning breakfast with the guys. He was an amazing cook and took joy in preparing wonderful meals for family and friends. He was well known in the aisles of the grocery stores, as he loved to chat with everyone while shopping. Dean was a longtime, active member of Calvary Lutheran Church. He was also incredibly competitive, especially when it came to playing cards, a trait he proudly passed down to his children! He rarely missed seeing a Vikings game, as most of our neighbors could probably attest to. He loved to cheer very, very loudly.
Dean was a loving and dedicated grandfather and great grandfather. He loved exploring in the woods, making smores on a campfire, teaching them how to fish, hunt, cook, and shoot a bow. He loved to tell stories and sing to them.
As the years passed and their children grew up, he and Betty took up gardening and fishing together. They were always excited to get away from everything, to their favorite place in Door County. They also loved to pack the car and head off on an adventure, sometimes with no particular place in mind. Whether it was about the music in Branson, zip lining in Wisconsin, playing cards in AZ, or ending up at a pride street party their first time in New York, they always had amazing and unexpected stories to tell when they returned.
In 2015, Dean was diagnosed with an aggressive pancreatic cancer, which he fought (twice) and beat in true Dean Klicker fashion. He was just as social in the hospital as out and was loved by doctors, nurses and patients alike. He would often walk the halls serenading everyone with his beautiful voice. His range of interesting songs kept everyone guessing and smiling. In 2018, they moved to Woodbury MN, to be closer to their kids, grandkids and great-grand kids. After an unexpected illness, Dean peacefully made his way home to heaven on Sept 22nd, 2019, with Barb and Amy by his side.
In one of his last conversations Dean said, “I have had a wonderful life. I was a lucky man. I am so lucky.” Dean lived a full and blessed life and was loved by all. He thought he was lucky, but in reality we, his family and friends, are the lucky ones. Although our hearts are heavy right now, we celebrate his life, knowing he is heaven watching over us.
Dean was preceded in death by his parents Ernest and Hazel Kicker and his brother Ernest Klicker, Jr. He is survived by his sisters Bette (Deneffe) and Kay (Leadholm), his loving wife of 47 years, Betty Klicker, his children: LeAnn, Barb (Dave), Mike (Sheila), Diane, Amy (Chris), Ann, and many grand and great grandchildren.
Memorial services will be held Saturday, October 12, 2019 at 11:00 AM at Calvary Lutheran Church in Park Rapids with Pastor Justin Fenger officiating. Visitation will be held for one hour prior to the service. Friends may leave online condolences at ceasefuneralhome.com. Arrangements are being handled by the Cease Family Funeral Home of Park Rapids, MN.