William Beck, 94

Published 5:36 pm Thursday, May 4, 2023

William Beck of Bemidji, passed away on December 27, 2022 at the age of 94.

Bill was born in Los Angeles, California in 1928 and enlisted along with his best friend in the U.S. Navy in 1946. He served as an Electronic Technician until his honorable discharge in 1948. During the summer Bill would often travel via train to visit relatives in Minnesota. It was one of these relatives who set Bill up on a blind date with his future wife, Audrey. They were married in September of 1950. Bill and Audrey lived in California until 1953 when they purchased the Green Acres Resort on Turtle River Lake in northern Minnesota. After running the resort for ten years and expanding their family to include 3 children, they made the difficult decision to sell and move to Austin, Minnesota where Bill took a position teaching electronics at the Vo-Tech school. In 1965, the same year their 4th child was born, Bill and Audrey purchased a cabin on Long Lake. Over the next few years, although not required for his job, Bill took courses at the University of Minnesota eventually completing his BS degree in Industrial Education in 1971. In 1985, Bill retired and he and Audrey moved to Long Lake full time.

After retirement, Bill’s long list of hobbies were given the time they deserved. Known for his woodworking skill, Bill’s creations grace all his children’s houses and those of friends as well.

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Photography also became Bill’s passion and he took pride in the perfect shots he was able to take around the cabin and the lake.

In addition, Bill loved to cook and was especially known for his soups, french bread and the English toffee he would make every Christmas.

A devoted husband and extraordinary father, Bill’s greatest role may have been that of “Grandpaw” to his grandchildren, Adam, Thomas, Haley, Anna and Rachel. He took great delight in teaching them how to fish, stack wood, and look for things he had hidden in the forest for them to find. They are all grateful to have had so much time with him.

Bill was preceded in death by his wife Audrey and his son Thomas. He is survived by his children, James (Becki), Carol, and Susan (Jon), 5 grandchildren and 1 great-granddaughter.

Bill was an active member of First Presbyterian Church of Bemidji and a Memorial Service will be held there on Tuesday, May 23, 2023 at 10am.