Richard (Dick) Andresen (1935-2023)
Richard Roy Andresen was born Aug. 15, 1935, to Roy and Gladys Andresen of Bloomfield, NE, and lived to be 88 years old (like the number of keys on the piano he played so well). He grew up an only child but with many deep friendships in their small town, helping out at his dad’s drugstore and soda fountain. He knew everybody, which came to be a theme throughout his life. Polio eliminated his chances at being a star athlete, but he excelled at piano, trumpet, singing, and academics, earning him a full-ride scholarship to the University of Nebraska. He was clever and intelligent, and could have done anything, but he settled on law.
At college, Dick met the love of his life, Julie Dowell, and they married June 8, 1958, shortly before Dick shipped out to Germany, having entered into the Army. He served as a second lieutenant in the Big Red One, as a medical corps supply and logistics officer. To his surprise, Dick’s new wife was even spunkier than he knew, and Julie showed up in Europe a week after his arrival. Thus, began more than 60 years of following Julie’s harebrained ideas. If he could figure out a way to swing it, he would. No dream was out of reach.
After their time in Germany, Dick and Julie moved back to Nebraska, where Dick practiced law. They adopted two children, Dan, and Annie. They also turned their lives over to Jesus, and this was to be the biggest adventure of all. Dick’s devotion to God fueled his decisions; he gave up smoking and any other vice, and took on big projects, including running a Charolais cow-calf operation, retiring early from the law practice, and eventually co-pastoring a church in the Pacific Northwest. The family moved to Olympia, WA, and then down the West Coast to Santa Barbara, CA, while spending summers on the farm in Nebraska. Dick’s problem-solving, people skills, and leadership mindset made him an ideal leader for mission trips to Mexico. After Dan and Ann had finished their educations in California and relocated to other states, Dick and Julie came back to the Midwest to stay, along with periods of living in Florida.
Everyone brought a sparkle to Dick’s eye. If he knew you, he was interested in what made you tick. His winning smile gained him friends everywhere. He loved to sing (bass, on key, loudly). He loved telling stories. When his grandchildren, Elanor, and Jonathan, were born to Dan and Rachel, he told stories to them and brought them along on his adventures.
Dick was concerned with taking care of everyone, especially Julie and their kids, but also whatever church they were going to at the time, and whatever pets they had at the time. He lay awake at night thinking of ways to install solar systems and put in new windows. Everything was a yes for him; there was always a way. He gave generously in every way. Although he had no illusions about how the world worked, there was an old-fashioned innocence to him that put ladies first and earned him everyone’s affection back. He was kind to animals and grocery-store cashiers. He loved a steak and a milkshake, and he loved God the most.
Dick died Aug. 22, 2023, at home. He is survived by his wife of many years, Julia (Dowell) Andresen; his son, Daniel, and his wife, Rachel; his daughter, Annie; and his two grandchildren, Elanor, and Jonathan. He was preceded in death by his parents, Roy and Gladys Andresen.
A funeral service will be held in honor of Richard Saturday August 26, 2023 with Visitation at 1pm followed by funeral beginning at 2pm at Longview Funeral Home, 12700 SE Raytown Road, Kansas City, Mo 64149. Interment will conclude services at Longview Cemetery.
In Lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made in Richard's honor to the International House of Prayer- https://www.ihopkc.org/give/.