Thomas Richard “Dick” Jelinek passed away peacefully at his home in Pequot Lakes after a short illness with stomach cancer on Friday, May 1, 2020. Dick was born on January 3, 1938 in Austin, MN to Tom and Christy Jelinek. Dick was raised in Blooming Prairie where he resided most of his life. He graduated from Blooming Prairie High School in 1956 and loved working on the reunion committee. Dick met Connie Fread when she moved to Blooming Prairie in July 1951. They married August 18, 1956. Dick served in the US Navy stationed on the destroyer USS Daly in Newport, RI. They returned to Blooming Prairie where he eventually became employed with Contel working for them for 30 years.
Dick and Connie raised two daughters on a beef farm near BP. They enjoyed traveling and camping in their various RVs. They retired from farming and moved to the lake near Backus in 1998 and spent 20 years wintering in Welton, AZ. They moved to Pequot Lakes 8 years ago.
Dick enjoyed his old cars, woodworking and traveling. His past time was visiting with anyone he could strike up a conversation with.
Dick is survived by his wife, Connie; daughters, Ginger (Mark) Hoffman of Pequot Lakes and Tracey (Bob) Bengson of Litchfield; two grandchildren, Carley (Noah) Neuhaus and Kyle Hoffman; step grandchildren: Renae (Joe) Schlechter, Robin (Tim) Hoffmann, Robert Jr (Michele) Bengson and Bradley (Jackie) Bengson and their families; his siblings, Jon (Sandy) Jelinek, Jerilyn (Lyle) Noble; sister-in-law, Harriet Fread; and many nieces and nephews.
No service is being held due to Covid-19. A graveside memorial service will be held later at the Blooming Prairie Cemetery.