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1926 Richard 2023

Richard Schwaller

September 5, 1926 — December 10, 2023

Bozeman

Dr. Richard, L. Schwaller, Ph.D., passed away on December 10th, 2023. He was blessed with 97 years of a “Wonderful” life.


“Dick” was born to Raymond and Clara Schwaller in Appleton WI, on September 5th, 1926. Despite the Great Depression, Dick held happy memories of his childhood, where he received no shortage of love and necessities. Dick was always grateful for his faith, his family, Wisconsin, and his beloved Green Bay Packers.


In 1943, during WWII, he enlisted in the Navy. On the train to boot camp in Idaho, he passed through Montana, where he fell in love with the mountains and vowed to return. 


After the war, he attended college on the G.I. Bill. While working on his master’s degree at Marquette University, Dick met his beautiful bride, Jonella Dierickx. They were married on December 28th, 1957, and soon started a family in Minnesota. In 1969, they ventured West, and their skeptical family members eventually embraced their move to Montana – fulfilling his promise.


Dick received a Doctorate in Mathematics from Montana State University in 1971. After establishing his career in Michigan and South Dakota, he achieved his dream of becoming a faculty member at Montana State University. He loved to teach and was appreciated for his sense of humor. While in the Math Department, he declared he worked “At the Department of Redundancy, Department” and would exclaim to his statistics students, “All generalizations are False!.”


In childhood, Dick’s parents posted a chore chart for their kids. He was provided the option of scrubbing dishes or playing the piano. He chose the latter. Quickly, music became his favorite hobby. However, he also loved fly fishing, gardening, and woodworking. More than a few times, the woodworking hobby went too far, and he would build a complete house.


Jonella and Dick instilled their love of music in their children. In the 1970s, at Holy Rosary Church in Bozeman, the family choir belted hymns to the heavens, playing a variety of instruments. Faith was the anchor for their marriage and their family with music being an important expression of their faith. Dick also enjoyed playing jazz and classical music on the piano and around campfires, “PaSchwa” entertained all by playing the ukulele and singing sentimental, simple melodies, and silly songs – a tradition that continues with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.


Dick always had a sense of purpose. When he sold the family property, he preserved several acres for the “Main Street to the Mountains” trail system, for his love of the mountains never wavered. Throughout his life, he volunteered at innumerable organizations such as Catholic Churches, Boy Scouts, Habitat for Humanity, Gallatin County Food Bank, and multiple other charities. In place of flowers, he would request that a donation be sent to one of the above places, continuing his legacy of supporting his community.


He was preceded in death by his brothers, Delmar, Jack, and Eugene, and his infant son Richard. He is survived by Jonella, his wife of 65 years, and his sister, Sr. Marlene, and his children: Art (Lynn), Therese (PutraU), Ray (Carrie), Frank, Kati (John), Mike (Mona), and Jenny (Mark), 15 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.

 

The family would like to extend their appreciation to all of the wonderful caregivers that provided exceptional care and compassion towards Dick and Jonella during his last years of life.  

 

Services begin on Sunday, December 17, 2023, with a Rosary at 5:30 PM, followed by a Vigil and Celebration of Life at 6:00 PM, all at Dahl Funeral & Cremation Service, 300 Highland Blvd., Bozeman, MT 59715. A Funeral Mass will be held at 12:00 PM on Monday, December 18, 2023, at Holy Rosary Catholic Parish, 220 W. Main Street, Bozeman, MT 59715.

 

 

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Richard Schwaller, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Rosary

Sunday, December 17, 2023

5:30 - 6:00 pm (Mountain (no DST) time)

Dahl Funeral & Cremation Service

300 Highland Blvd., Bozeman, MT 59715

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

Vigil & Celebration of Life

Sunday, December 17, 2023

6:00 - 10:00 pm (Mountain (no DST) time)

Dahl Funeral & Cremation Service

300 Highland Blvd., Bozeman, MT 59715

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

Funeral Mass

Monday, December 18, 2023

Starts at 12:00 pm (Mountain (no DST) time)

Holy Rosary Catholic Parish

220 West Main Street, Bozeman, MT 59715

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

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