DICKINSON, N.D. – A funeral Mass for Ben Richard, 42, of Belfield, N.D., was Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2018, at St. Bernard’s Catholic Church in Belfield with celebrants Father Shane Campbell and Father Bill Ruelle. Burial will follow in St. Bernard’s Cemetery.
Visitation for Ben was from 4 to 7 p.m., Monday, Sept. 10, 2018 at Stevenson Funeral Home, Dickinson with a rosary and vigil service following.
Ben passed away Wednesday Sept. 5, 2018, at Sanford Hospital, Bismarck, N.D. Ben valiantly fought Squamous Celled Thymic Carcinoma for nine months.
Benjamin Patrick Richard was born Aug. 21, 1976, in Dickinson to Roger and Rose (Privratsky) Richard. Ben unwillingly began grade school at St. Bernard’s Catholic School and in 1995 graduated from Belfield High School. While in high school, Ben began riding bucking horses. His skilled riding landed him a rodeo scholarship to Eastern Wyoming College in Torrington. In 1997, he graduated from college with an associate’s degree in welding.
During his two years at EWC, Ben developed a close relationship with his welding instructor, Leland Vetter, and his wife Maryann. Leland always made sure Ben made it to church on Sundays. The bond between Ben and the Vetter family continued through the years. Their son Steven worked for Ben for several years, inspiring Ben in many ways.
Ben’s Welding career took him to many places including Blair, Neb., where he met his wife Jessica Flynn in 2002. On July 3, 2008, Ben and Jess were wed in their special place Spearfish, S.D. Through the years, the couple’s love grew deeper. The love they shared brought them strength they had never known while apart. Knowing that their love was once in a lifetime, they never took it for granted. The loving couple were blessed with three beautiful children Jackson (9), Jones (5), and Alexa (3).
As Ben’s family grew, so did his business, Ben’s Welding and Fabrication Inc. Over the past 10 years, Ben used his welding expertise to create a niche in the welding industry that kept his business flourishing even when the oil boom slowed. Ben had impeccable timing and business sense, allowing his entrepreneurial spirit to shine.
Ben never liked the term “employee.” To him they were his “guys,” extensions of his family. He was proud of his team and what they accomplished. Ben valued their hard work and dedication.
When Ben wasn’t working, he enjoyed relaxing at his other home is Spearfish and cruising in his Camaro with the top down.
In the winter, Ben loved skiing with his sons, as well as his brothers, sisters, nieces, nephews, and cousins. Ben loved taking his sons fishing to Lake Sakakawea. The highlight of the fishing season was the annual Richard fishing trip to Lac Seul, Canada, with his father, brothers, uncles, cousins and friends. Ben also enjoyed hosting family BBQs, making his famous ribs especially for his adored nieces and nephews.
Ben was a husband most girls only dream of. As a father, Ben taught his children the value of a day’s work, reminding them, “It’s not work if you love what you do.” Family was everything to Ben; he was proud of his children and loved them with his whole heart.
Ben adored watching his little Alexa dance & sing. This past June, Ben taught his precious girl to ride her bike without training wheels. Ben also taught Jackson how to drive the riding lawn mower.
Ben is survived by his wife Jessica; three children, Jackson, Jones, and Alexa; his father, Roger Richard and stepmother Tarla; four siblings, Becky (Jon-Eirik) Holm-Johansen and their son, Elliott; Jason (Michelle) Richard and their children, Maizie, Lane, Gabe; Dustin (Christina) Richard and their children, Clay, Cole, Clint, Natalie; Megan (Trent) Ochsner and their son, Caleb; in-laws, Theresa (Keith Biffer) Flynn; Leslie Flynn Sr.; Jeremiah (Aimee) Flynn; Leslie (Anna Saville) Flynn; as well as many beloved aunts, uncles and cousins.
Ben was preceded in death by his loving mother Rose; grandparents Albert and Emma Privratsky, Walter and Eleanore Richard.
Remembrances and condolences may be shared with the family at www.stevensonfuneralhome.com.