Richard ‘Dick’ Tegge

IRON RIVER, Mich. – Lt. Col. (Ret. USAF) Richard “Dick” Tegge, 78, of Iron River, passed away Wednesday, March 6, 2013, at his home with his children by his side.

He was born on 16 March, 1934, in Stambaugh, son of the late Albert H. and Esther (Scheurle) Tegge. Dick graduated from Iron River High School, Class of 1952. He married Lucille Hilberg in 1993. She preceded him in death on August 24, 2010.

After attending Michigan State for a year, he elected to join the United States Air Force. During his distinguished 25 year career as a navigator he was recognized many times for his significant contributions to our nation. Highlights include: Crew member of Operation Deep Freeze which performed mapping missions and established McMurdo Station in Antarctica. His participation was recognized by the naming of “Mount Tegge” in the Ellsworth Mountains, Antarctica. Dick was an original member of the elite “Air Commando” group established in 1961, designated as one of the Air Force’s first counter-insurgency units which saw some of the earliest action in Vietnam. He was a strong contributor to the C-5 aircraft flight simulation instructional program. Prior to his retirement in 1978, Dick returned to the U.P. as the Executive Officer for the 87th Fighter Interceptor Squadron at KI Sawyer.

Dick was an avid outdoorsman; he leaves a legacy of love for hunting and fishing. He freely shared his knowledge and experiences with family and friends.

He is survived by three children, Richard (Beth) Tegge, Marquette, Mich., and their two sons, Steven and Zack; Linda (David) Rajala, Covington, Mich., MAJ Steve (Kathy) Tegge, Troy, Mich., and their two daughters, Lydia and June; two stepdaughters, Jeanne (Michael) Ferraro, Traverse City, Mich., Sandra (Kenton) Pfister, Omaha, Nebr.; four stepsons, Ronald (Diane) Hilberg, Crystal Falls, William (Rose) Hilberg, Escanaba, Mich., Gary (Diane) Hilberg, Crystal Falls, George (Patty) Hilberg, Crystal Falls; one sister, Marilyn (Moe) Gorowsky, St. Paul, Minn.; his ex-wife and lifelong friend, Sandra Lindstrom Tegge; twenty grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; several nieces, nephews, and close friends.

In addition to his parents and wife Lucille, Dick was preceded in death by two sisters, Shirlee Stoker and Elaine “Peaches” Tegge.

The visitation will be Saturday, March 9, 2013, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. CST at the Jacobs-Plowe Funeral Home, Crystal Falls. The Crystal Falls Masonic Lodge will offer a memorial service at 12:00 p.m. CST at the funeral home. The West Side Veterans Alfred Branchini Post No. 17 and the VFW Covington Post No. 8945 will accord military honors at 12:15 p.m. CST at the funeral home. Funeral services will be Saturday, 12:30 p.m. CST at the funeral home. Celebrant Chuck Tooman of Lake Superior Hospice will offer a celebration of life service. Burial will be in Resthaven Cemetery, Iron River.

Donation may be made in Dick’s memory to the Lake Superior Hospice, 914 W. Baraga Ave., Marquette, MI 49855, or the Wounded Warriors Project, P.O. Box 758517, Topeka, KS 66675 (

You may light a candle in remembrance of Dick or leave a condolence to his family online at

The family has chosen the Jacobs-Plowe Funeral Home, Crystal Falls, to honor Dick’s Legacy of Life.