Dr. Bruce R. Beier, 86, passed away Jan. 29, 2021 at Oakview Terrace in Freeman, S.D. A funeral service will be held on Saturday, Feb. 6 at 2 p.m. at Bethany Mennonite Church in Freeman. Pastor Shane VanMeveren will officiate. Public visitation will be from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. prior to the service. Burial will be at the Freeman Cemetery. Memorial monies will be donated to the Bethany Mennonite Church television ministry.
Bruce was born on June 21, 1934 in Delmont, S.D. to Carl and Bertha Beier. He joined his 10-year-old brother Glen to complete the family. During his childhood years, his family moved from Delmont to Lake Benton, Minn. and then settled in Freeman, where he graduated from high school in 1952. Attending church and having a faith in Christ was important to Bruce and he was baptized as a teenager.
Bruce loved sports, especially football, and because of his skill throughout high school, he was recruited to play football for South Dakota State University. There he also studied diligently and graduated with a degree in pharmacy. During his first pharmacy job in Winona, Minn., Bruce became a member of the First Baptist Church where he met and fell in love with Florence Sulack and they were married on Feb. 16, 1957. Through this union they were blessed with three sons, Scott, Donald and John.
Bruce then continued his education at the University of Minnesota where he graduated with a doctoral degree in dentistry with high honors. In 1965, Dr. Bruce Beier moved his family to Freeman to be close to his mother and to open his private dental practice. After faithfully serving the Freeman community for 35 years, he retired from his dental practice in 2000.
To keep his mind sharp and to share his passion for education and the gift of dentistry that he was blessed with, Bruce became a dental lab instructor at the University of Minnesota Dental School for the next eight years. His students loved and respected him and rewarded him with the teacher of the year award every year.
Bruce was a member of the Bethany Mennonite Church in Freeman where he enjoyed singing in choir and was supportive of the many church projects and ministries within the church. He was faithful in raising his family to attend church each Sunday. Bruce also taught his sons to work hard, to be responsible, to show respect toward others, and to be careful to not draw attention to yourself and your accomplishments but rather to live a quiet and respectful life.
Bruce loved to hunt and train dogs. His wife and sons spent a lot of time helping with the training of his dogs and were able to travel together to attend some of the dog trials. He was also a member of the Sioux Falls Retriever Club Hall of Fame.
Golfing was another hobby that Bruce enjoyed. He was a member of the Freeman golf course and took it upon himself to not only golf but to plant and maintain trees to beautify the golf course.
As an avid football athlete, Bruce strongly encouraged his sons to try all sports throughout their school years and was faithful in attending all of their sporting events. He encouraged his grandchildren in this area, as well as in music, making every effort to attend their sports and music events.
Several granddaughters have special memories of grandpa and grandma coming to visit and treating them with A&W root beer, DQ ice cream, and walks to the bakery for treats. Grandpa always insisted that they play a song on the piano for him at every visit.
Bruce is survived by his wife, Florence; his three sons: Scott (Peggy) Beier of Sioux Falls, S.D., Donald (Deb) Beier of Freeman and John (Donna) Beier of Cherokee, Iowa; six grandchildren: Garrett (Kara) Beier of Crystal Lake, Ill., Darcie (Austin) DuFrain of Platte, S.D., Bethany (Carlos) Soto of Cherokee, Kristen (Ross) Peterson of Cleghorn, Iowa, Melissa (Daniel) Patterson of Nevada, Iowa, Nichole (Joshua) Anderson of Cherokee; and nine great-grandchildren: Otis and Ivy Beier, Brenna and Benton DuFrain, Curtis Soto, Elias, Emma, Rosalyn Peterson and Liam Patterson.
The family would like to thank the staff at Terrace View and Freeman Community Hospital for the care given to Bruce these past years.