Dell Rapids, SD (formerly)
October 8, 2021
Larry Dean Heesch, age 71, passed away on Friday, October 8, 2021, at the Sanford USD Medical Center in Sioux Falls. Memorial services will begin at 2:30 PM Friday, October 15, 2021, at the Minnehaha Funeral Home, Dell Rapids, with a memorial visitation beginning at 2:00 PM.
Larry was born on November 7, 1949, in Sioux Falls, SD, the son of Clarence and Norma (Swenson) Heesch of Dell Rapids. At the age of six months, Larry was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy and spent his youth and young adult life being lovingly cared for by his devoted parents on the family farm. Larry attended Sioux Falls Crippled Children’s School for about a year but was unable to continue due to the complexity of his disabilities. Growing up Larry spent many hours outdoors in his wheelchair pulling his red wagon while in the company of his trusty dog and protector, Laddie. He was fascinated with John Deere tractors and looked forward to taking trips to town to eat out and visit machinery lots. His favorite football team was the Dallas Cowboys and watching old John Wayne movies was a favorite pastime. Listening to Tennessee Ernie Ford hymns on the car radio while traveling provided him contentment and would often motivate him to hum along. With the assistance of family, Larry was able to belong to a 4-H club and exhibit lambs for a few years, and regularly attended Sunday School where his mother was a teacher. Visits and holidays spent with his great niece and nephews brought much delight. In 1993 Larry became a resident of DakotAbilities in Sioux Falls where he thrived under the dedicated and compassionate care of staff and where he met many new mentors and friends. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Larry’s health declined and in February of 2021 he left DakotAbilities and his second family at Newcomb House. In June of 2021, he became a resident of the Centerville Care and Rehab Center, Centerville. SD.
Left to cherish his memory are his brother, Dale (Paulette) Heesch, Brookings; niece, Sheila Pickard, Baltic; nephew, Darin (Peifen) Heesch, Alexandria, VA; great niece, Chelsea Anderson; great nephews, Matthew Anderson, Timothy (Savanna) Pickard, and Chase Heesch. In addition to his parents, Larry was preceded in death by grandparents, John and Dena Heesch, and Carl Swenson and Olive Swenson Keyman.