Richard Chris Buckstead

Richard Chris Buckstead

  • Funeral Date: 8/05/15
  • Funeral Time: 10 a.m.
  • Date of Birth: 3/17/29
  • Date of Death: 7/31/15
  • Funeral Location: Oaklawn Cemetery, Northfield

Dr. Richard Chris Buckstead died peacefully in his home on July 31st, 2015 in Northfield, Minnesota at the age of 86.

Richard was born on March 17th, 1929 to Lawrence and Ardith Buckstead of Yankton, South Dakota. He graduated from Yankton College in 1951 with a degree in English and later from the University of South Dakota with a Master’s degree in English and a PhD in English from the State University of Iowa.

In 1951, Richard was inducted into the Army Corp of Engineers and served his country in Korea until 1953. He rose to the rank of Master Sergeant.

He married Geraldine Eva Oldaker in 1956 in Iowa City, Iowa while working on his doctorate in English. After earning his doctorate, he spent a year teaching at Augustana College in Sioux Falls and subsequently moved to Cape Girardeau, Missouri where he taught English at Southeast Missouri State University until 1960. In 1961, Richard and Gerry moved to Northfield, Minnesota where he became employed at Saint Olaf College as a Professor of English. He remained with the English Department at Saint Olaf College for 49 years until his retirement in 2010. He was an expert on Ernest Hemingway. Among his many other duties at Saint Olaf College, Richard was appointed the Director of Special Studies and Assistant to the Dean of the College and was also actively involved with the College’s radio station, WCAL. Additionally, he was among the first of the Saint Olaf faculty to formally visit Cuba as part of an educational program with his students. He was proud to have met Hemingway’s “Old Man and the Sea”, Gregorio Fuentes during this visit.

Over the next decade, the couple welcomed four children into their home; Jonathan, Sarah, Chris, and Brian. On July 20th, 1997, Geraldine preceded Richard in death after 41 years of marriage.In 1999, Richard was married to Methanee Boonnampha from Bangkok, Thailand.

Richard will be remembered as an avid traveler, musician, handy-man, father, and husband. He made many trips to Thailand over a period of 30 years and on many occasions, taught classes at a university in Bangkok. He loved classical music, especially violin music, and wrote many articles about violin-making. He, himself, played the violin, accordion, and harmonica. He also enjoyed doing handy work and over his lifetime designed and built many houses and completed maintenance on them, including all plumbing, electrical, and mechanical repairs. Richard was preceded in death by his parents, Lawrence and Ardith and his brother Dennis. He is survived by his sons Jonathan and wife Song Hae from Texas; daughter Sarah and her husband Dan of Dundas, Minnesota; son Chris of Northfield and Brian and wife Numa of Cloquet, Minnesota. Grandchildren include Nicholas and Candace Buckstead, Brandon and Amanda Amy and Oliver Buckstead. Great grandchildren include Matthew, Travis and Pacey.

A private family service will be held on Wednesday, August 5, 2015 at 10AM at the Oaklawn Cemetery.

The family would like to thank hospice for all of the care that they provided and also Bierman Funeral home for their services

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