Cover photo for Richard B Froelich's Obituary
Richard B Froelich Profile Photo
1934 Richard 2023

Richard B Froelich

December 21, 1934 — July 5, 2023

Richard B. “Dick” Froelich, 88, Mandan, passed peacefully on July 5, 2023, at the Baptist Home in Bismarck.

Mass of Christian burial will be held at 10 AM on Tuesday, July 11, 2023, at Christ the King Catholic Church, Mandan, with Fr. Nick Schneider celebrating. Burial will be at 1 PM at the North Dakota Veterans Cemetery. 

Visitation will be held from 5 to 7 PM on Monday, July 10, 2023, at Weigel Funeral Home, Mandan, with a Parish Vigil and Rosary at 7 PM. Visitation will continue one hour prior to the service at the church on Tuesday.

Dick was born December 21, 1934, in Mandan, ND, to Alexander and Wanda (Mason) Froelich. In his youth, Dick attended school in Renton, WA, during WWII, and later in Mandan where fate led him to Lorraine Stumpf. Their lockers stood side by side, and destiny brought them together. In 1956, Dick and Lorraine exchanged vows, embarking on a remarkable journey that spanned 67 years.

After enlisting in the ND National Guard following high school, Dick achieved the rank of staff sergeant. With his father’s untimely passing, Dick joined his Uncle Leo Eckroth in managing the business that Leo and Alex founded in 1947, A & L Oil and A & L Excavating. Dick took charge of the service station (next to Ohm’s in West Mandan), and the bulk fuel and oil delivery business. His mother initially helped with the bookkeeping until Lorraine took on that role, and she and Dick successfully led the company until their retirement in 2000.

While raising their children, Dick was very involved in Mandan Legion Baseball, supporting his boys' participation and earning induction into the Hall of Fame. Many a Monday night was spent at the Legion helping out with the spaghetti dinner fund raisers and road trips in Dick's van of the moment were treasured traditions as they cheered on the team across the upper Midwest. He loved to drive and always had his avocado green, large Tupperware container full of various nuts and candies at his side.

Additionally, Dick also spent many years helping with the pit beef at the Elks annual picnic, something he loved doing in subsequent years in his backyard and out at the river place. He also actively participated in various Mandan Elks Club events as a Trustee and, and was known to spend a ‘few minutes’ meeting friends there after work. His contributions extended beyond the local community, as he played a pivotal role in founding the North Dakota Petroleum Marketers Association and earned a place in their esteemed Hall of Fame.

In 1978, Dick and Lorraine had the opportunity to purchase several gas stations from Exxon Co., also a becoming a ND distributor for them. They rebranded the company Froelich Oil, Inc. and relocated to Bismarck. They embarked on a journey that spanned over two decades, expanding their business alongside their now-adult children. In 2000, they returned the business to Mandan, renaming it Missouri Valley Petroleum (MVP), where their children would continue their enduring legacy as they retired.

With lots of time on their hands, Dick and Lorraine focused on their shared love of gardening at their river place south of Mandan. Their legendary onions, nurtured in the rich Missouri River soil, became a symbol of their generosity as they distributed bags upon bags of fully grown onions to friends and neighbors. If you live in the Bismarck-Mandan area, chances are you’ve eaten an onion from their bounty.

Living just a block away from Christ the King Church and School, Dick and Lorraine were devout parishioners. In his younger years, Dick also dedicated his time to coaching boys' basketball at the school. He was a die-hard fan of the Green Bay Packers and NDSU Bison, even though he sometimes couldn't bear to watch the entire game! From the Packers to the Bison to Mandan American Legion Baseball, Dick embodied the spirit of the Green and Gold.

Known for his warm and welcoming nature, Dick created his own informal "coffee group." Each morning, a gathering of friends would convene by the pop cases at the Country West MVP store. Over the years, this group grew to include upwards of 30 individuals, fostering lifelong friendships. Even today, a small group continues to meet at 7 am, honoring the tradition established by Dick himself.

Above all, Dick was a devoted and caring husband, sharing a lifetime of love and laughter with his beloved Lorraine and family. He leaves behind his children, David (Connie), Kathy (Mitch), James (Maria Curtis), and Lawrence "Larry" (Cheryl); as well as his daughter-in-law, Lisa (Don Willey). He will be remembered fondly by his 12 grandchildren, Mallory (Kris), Cydney, Mason, Madison, Danielle (Trevor), Kathrine, Christian, Garrett, Alexander (Abby), Alison (Colyn), Emily, and Cooper; and three step-grandchildren, Brooke, Ross, and Reed Nilles, and their nine children. He also leaves behind six adored great-grandchildren, Olivia, Kallahan, Gracelyn, August, Sawyer, and Foster. Surviving relatives include cousins, Allen Mason, Donna Schultz, and Doris Johnson; as well as sister-in-law, JoAnn Stumpf. 

Preceding him in death were his youngest son, Thomas; his parents, Alexander and Wanda; in-laws, Lawrence and Rose Stumpf; brothers-in-law, Clem (Mary) Stumpf, Leo "Peanuts" (Marlys) Stumpf, Donald "Beaver" Stumpf; and sister and brother-in-law, Polly and Bill Barth; and cousin, Bill Mason.

A special thank you to the staff at the Bismarck Baptist Home and their rehab wing.  You are a group of amazing, dedicated, and generous people.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Thomas Froelich Memorial Baseball Scholarship Fund.

 

 

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Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Monday, July 10, 2023

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

Weigel Funeral and Cremation Service

309 4th Ave NW, Mandan, ND 58554

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Prayer Service and Rosary

Monday, July 10, 2023

7:00 - 8:00 pm (Central time)

Weigel Funeral and Cremation Service

309 4th Ave NW, Mandan, ND 58554

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Tuesday, July 11, 2023

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

Christ the King Catholic Church

505 10th Ave NW, Mandan, ND 58554

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Burial

Tuesday, July 11, 2023

1:00 - 2:00 pm (Central time)

North Dakota Veterans Cemetery

1825 46th St, Mandan, ND 58554

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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