Cover photo for Richard William Beauchamp's Obituary
Richard William Beauchamp Profile Photo
1947 Richard 2018

Richard William Beauchamp

March 8, 1947 — December 10, 2018

Richard W. Beauchamp, age 71, passed away Monday, December 10, 2018 in Page, AZ. Rich was born in LA in 1947, to Margaret and Gresham Beauchamp, Rich was the 2nd eldest of 4 children (Jeannette Dupre, Carolyn Marie Ephgrave, and John Gresham Beauchamp). The family moved to the Seattle area in the late 50’s. He graduated from Sammamish (Washington) High School in 1965. He didn’t study and had no particular honors, except for being capable of extremely creative monkey business. He enlisted in the Navy (1965) after trying college and marrying his high school sweetheart, Susan. Being young and somewhat inexperienced, they would soon divorce. His son, Michael, born in 1970, was very much like Rich, and his young mischief challenged Rich to be a good parent. Mike and Rich’s daughter, Serena (1972), eventually followed in their father’s footsteps by graduating from the University of Washington. Rich started his university study in 1967 and finished his Electrical Engineering degree in 1975, while working, while in the Reserves and while being very involved with his children. He also studied graduate courses at the Naval War College after attaining his Bachelor’s degree.

Rich was one of the original Sandpoint aviators who went to NAS Whidbey Island to stand up VP-69 back in 1970, during the Cold War. “Many of his compatriots have fond memories (sea-stories) of Rich and that jolly laugh and ‘go get em’ attitude that was his trademark in the squadron” (quote from Mark Blaylock).

He went directly from an enlistee to the Reserves in 1971 until 1995, when he would likely be “grounded” from flying.

He has always been a driven individual seeking to accomplish many goals. He was one of three Chief Warrant Officers in the Navy to also be aviators. On board the P2’s and P3’s he was a navigator. His knowledge of sextants, stars and world-wide experience would serve him well when he worked in civilian life for Mark Air, Atlas Air, and United Airlines. He also traveled by both air and car for a film developing equipment company, as a technical engineer. His young son of 5 would sometimes accompany him, in an age when fathers didn’t take on care of their sons in this “real world” manner.

Rich had many hobbies and was a truly hyperactive adult. He had to be doing a project or reading a book, constantly. He built intricate ships to scale, built railroads in town scenes, built solid wood furniture, model airplanes, and restored almost any vehicle or object of interest. He camped, with dirt bikes and guns with long-time friend, Neil, in the badlands of Idaho and Nevada. He was proud to drive his 1982 Five Star Bow Tie Award Corvette, which he hid and treated like his baby. He even tried Civil War Reenacting on a cannon crew, and as a Navy Lieutenant, to learn about his Confederate ancestors from Virginia. He learned sailing and rigged his self-restored boat for a motley crew of Navy Veterans in Polson, all older than he. They sailed and had wonderful fun, chanting the “Aye Matey, and Yo Ho Ho’s”, but learning to save the rum for drinking onshore. They conquered sailing around Wild Horse Island and planned many future outings involving racing sailboats.

After two “failed” marriages, Rich found the third time really was a charm! He and, soul mate, Kathryn Johnson, were married on Veterans Day in 2001 with the idea that they would live in her home state, Montana, when able. He retired in 2007 from United Airlines in Illinois to live in Polson for the beauty, the freedom and the glorious change of seasons. He substitute taught at the Polson High School Manual Arts classes, served as Commander of the local American Legion, participated in the Honor Guard, and served the community in many other ways. Richard died peacefully in his sleep while travelling from Phoenix to Montana, at Page, Arizona. He led a remarkable life that deserves a fitting farewell! Anchors Away, we all love you Rich!

The funeral service will be at 11:00 am on Dec. 19, 2018, at the Polson Community Church, 1814 1st St. East. The burial will take place at the military section of the Lakeview Cemetery, 2000 Hillcrest, Polson. There will be a luncheon at the church after the burial. For those needing closure, there will be a private viewing at the church from 9 to 10 am.

If you wish to provide a memoriam, please send donations to the American Legion, Polson Post #112, P.O. Box 515, Polson, MT 59860—to help support the 100th anniversary convention being held in Polson in 2019.
Note: Rich was preceded in death by his father Gresham and mother Margaret. Living, are all his siblings, his children (Mike and Serena), Mike’s wife, Kim, and grandchildren, Lily and Scarlett Beauchamp from Rhode Island and Reyna and Jaden Masterson from Washington.

Note: Rich was preceded in death by his father Gresham and mother Margaret. Living, are all his siblings, his children (Mike and Serena), Mike’s wife, Kim, and grandchildren, Lily and Scarlett Beauchamp from Rhode Island and Reyna and Jaden Masterson from Washington.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Richard William Beauchamp, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Starts at 11:00 am (Mountain time)

Polson Community Church

1814 1st St E, Polson, MT 59860

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