Richard Laverne (Dick) Hart
The most gregarious genuine man most of us ever knew, Dr. Richard L. (Dick) Hart died early in the morning of November 12, 2022 at St Luke’s Hospital in Meridian, ID after a lengthy illness.
Dick is survived by his wife of 66 years Ramona, sons Jay, and David (wife Grazyna), grandchildren Anthony (wife Caitlin), Whittney (husband Ryan), and Kendall, four great-grandchildren, and many loving nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents Lane and Carrie Hart, and his brother and sister-in-law, Harry and Jeanne Hart.
Born in Cozad, Nebraska December 10, 1929, Dick worked on the family farm alongside Harry and their parents. He graduated from Cozad High School and went on to earn his undergraduate degree from Nebraska Wesleyan University and doctorate from the University of Nebraska.
Drafted into the United States Army during the Korean conflict after teaching just a year of high school in Wakefield, Nebraska, Corporal Hart worked as an aide to Lt. General William Harrison Jr. during the peace talks at Panmunjom and came home with stories both poignant and humorous. Those stories formed the basis of a presentation he developed about his war experiences which he gave numerous times to various school groups and the Rotary Club where he was a long-time member. Mementos of that time decorated the home he and Ramona shared and reinforced just how proud he was of his military service.
Dick went on to teach at Cozad High School where he first met Ramona Fecht (also a teacher). They were later married in July of 1956. After completing his doctorate, he began his career as professor of Education at the University of Maine and the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. Later he moved the family to Ohio, accepting the position of Assistant Dean of the College of Education at Kent State University, and finally one last move to Idaho as the Dean of the College of Education here at Boise State University from which he retired.
Seemingly even in retirement he couldn’t escape his call to serve as he volunteered countless hours at St. Alphonsus Regional Medical Center through the years. An avid gardener, especially of roses in the summer and amaryllis bulbs indoors during the winter, Dick was also a dogged genealogist and proud member of the Mayflower Society. He was equally passionate about Nebraska and Boise State football, and along with Ramona, shared a life-long love of baseball. The two of them travelled the world, visiting locales as far-flung as New Zealand, Germany, Wales and Scotland. One trip dear to his heart, was a return to Korea as a guest of that nation’s government in tribute to his service there.
But above all Dick loved to be surrounded by friends and family for whom he was a model of kindness and hospitality. Most who knew him admitted that he never met a stranger and had a rare ability to move through a crowd and make everyone feel at home. We will all remember his love of big Chryslers, gooey pastries, good glasses of Scotch, and his equal distain for anything having to do with snakes or bananas. Most of all we’ll miss his generosity, his laughter and his love.
A viewing will be held on Monday, December 5, 2022 from 5:00 until 7:00 PM at the Bowman Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held the following day, Tuesday, December 6, 2022 at 11:00 AM again at the Bowman Funeral Home; followed by a ceremony with military honors at 1:00 at the VA Cemetery in Eagle ID where Dick will be laid to rest. Services will be officiated by Pastor Tim Pauls of The Good Shepherd Lutheran Church.
Arrangements are under the direction of Bowman Funeral Parlor of Garden City.
Russell J Centanni, PhD saysNovember 15, 2022 at 11:36 am
I hold wonderful memories of Dick from our time at Boise State and in the years we have interacted during retirement. Let me extend my deepest sympathies to the family.
William Lansbery saysDecember 6, 2022 at 10:54 am
We are so sorry for your loss, it was a pleasure being your neighbor on Antietam St and always enjoyed visiting with you and Dick. We are unable to make the services as we both have the flu and don’t want to make anyone ill. May you Rest In Peace my friend Bill & Clarice Lansbery