Richard “Dick” McSweeney
  • Born on: May 25, 1931
  • Departed on: July 3, 2024
  • Resided in: Hampton, IA

Richard “Dick” McSweeney

Richard “Dick” McSweeney, longtime Hampton resident, died on July 3, 2024 in Pleasant Hill, Iowa, at the age of 93. Dick was born on May 25, 1931, in Mitchell County, Iowa, the seventh of eight children born to Stuart and Charlotte (McGrane) McSweeney. Dick grew up on various sharecropping farms near Osage and Saint Ansgar. During his formative years, he developed a passion for horses, sports, and hard work. He excelled in football and basketball at Saint Ansgar High School.

After graduating in 1950, Dick joined the Air Force serving during the Korean Conflict, mainly in Alaska on a radar unit. After an honorable discharge, Dick farmed with his family for 3 years. In the late 1950s, he accepted employment at a Hormel Foods meat packing plant in Fort Dodge. In time, he worked his way up from night watchman to supervisor of the rendering department.

During his early years at Hormel, he met Janet LaVelle who worked in the front office at Hormel. They married on September 1, 1962. In March of 1964 son Mark was born. A few years later Dick moved his family to an acreage outside of Moorland so he could have land and a place for his horses. In the 1970s he focused on showing his Quarter horses all over the state as well as coaching the basketball teams that Mark participated on. He also developed the horse program at the Webster County Fair and worked on expanding the fair in general.

In 1978 Dick took a job as rendering supervisor at Farmland Foods in Iowa Falls. His family rented a house on the west edge of town, and Mark was a Cadet for a year. Dick assessed that the basketball class in Hampton was better than Iowa Falls, so the family moved to Hampton the next year. It didn’t hurt that Jan found an acreage on the south end of town with a horse barn and indoor arena. One of Dick’s biggest thrills was watching Mark’s basketball team win the conference title and play in the state tournament in 1982.

After Farmland Foods shut their plant in Iowa Falls in the mid-eighties, Dick worked various jobs including managing the Hampton Municipal Airport along with Jan. Soon after, Dick joined Hampton Community Schools as a bus driver. He drove a regular route as well as activities. During this time, Dick worked with many area kids helping them with their horse riding or basketball skills. He was able to develop more than one all-stater for Hampton High.

In Dick’s later years, he suffered the loss of Jan, his wife of 45 years, to cancer. Two years later he married Jeanne Hansen whom he went to high school with. They were married for 12 years until her death in early 2022. Months later he suffered two heart attacks and lost much of his mobility. He moved to Copper Shores Senior Living Village in Pleasant Hill to be close to Mark’s home. His mobility and overall health continued to decline until his death.

Dick was preceded in death by his parents, both brothers, all five sisters, two nieces, a grand-nephew, all of his old friends, and both his wives, Janet and Jeanne.

Dick is survived by his son and daughter-in-law, Mark and Dawn of Pleasant Hill and a number of nieces and nephews.

There are no services planned.

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