Richard Flanders

Richard William Flanders was born April 22, 1950 and died on November 18, 2023. Richard attended Michigan State University following graduation from Brandon High School in 1968. He received his Master’s degree from the University of Idaho.

Richard spend his early life in Birmingham and was later raised on his family farm on Hummer Lake Road. The farm has been in the family for 67 years. Although he lived in Fairbanks, Alaska his adult life, he returned often to Ortonville to visit family and friends. He was devoted to his graduating class of 1968, organizing the class roster and the class reunions. He often organized wild game dinners for his high school friends when he would come into town.

Richard was a career geologist who traveled the world, working on every continent except Africa. His specialty was mining gold. Richard was devoted to his geology work, belonging to the Alaska Miners Association. He participated in the recruitment of young talent, representing the Miners Association, and encouraged young people to pursue a career in mining. His company, Ridgerunner Exploration, is listed in the Alaska Miners Association directory.

Richard and his dear friend, Chris Puchner, also a geologist, bought five acre parcels across from each other in Breckenridge Alaska, overlooking the Tanana River. Richard built a beautiful cabin out of massive logs in that area. Chris and he spent the years as retired geologists, enjoying many adventures together. Richard was an avid fisherman, hunter, and flew his own airplane.

Richard was an enthusiastic man, often described as a bundle of energy. Many referred to him as the “answer man,” always researching to find an answer to a problem or an issue.

Richard was preceded in death by his parents, William and Ruth Flanders, his brother Patrick and his sister Christine. He is survived by his sister, Michelle Paschal, and his brothers, William Lyle Flanders and William Ernest Flanders Jr. as well as many nieces and one nephew. Richard will be dearly missed by his many family members and friends.

There will be a celebration of life on June 15 at 3 p.m. at the Village Church of Ortonville. A gathering will follow under the pavilion in Crossman Park, located behind the church.

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