Dr. Max A. Beck, DVM, Colton, SD, passed away September 16, 2013, at his home. He was 89.
Funeral services will be held on Sunday, September 22, at 1:00 pm at the Colton United Methodist Church. Visitation with family present will be September 21, 4:00 to 7:00 pm at the Minnehaha Funeral Home in Colton.
Max was born in rural Gregory, SD, on June 30, 1924, to Dave and Agnes (Graesser) Beck. He attended country school in Gregory County, graduated from Burke High School in 1942, and started classes at South Dakota State College that fall. He was drafted into the US Navy during World War II and served in the Pacific Theater as radar man on the fleet oiler USS Cahaba from 1943 to1946. Max returned to South Dakota State and completed his pre-veterinary requirements in 1949. On July 20 of that year, he married Faye Lebert, and in the fall began his studies in veterinary medicine at the University of Minnesota. After graduating in 1953, Max and Faye moved to Dell Rapids to begin his practice and then to Colton where they raised seven children. “Doc” truly loved his work and treated animals large and small well into his 80s as his health allowed.
Max was a member of the United Methodist Church, a charter member of the Colton Lions Club and a 50-year member of the Order of the Eastern Star and Masonic Lodge. He was a fan of Junior Legion baseball and served as the American Legion post athletic officer for decades. He was also a lifetime member of the Studebaker Drivers Club and spent much of his veterinary career driving a Studebaker from farm to farm. Max valued the relationships he developed with his clients and their families and was grateful to have practiced at a time when so many small family farms filled the countryside.
Those left to cherish Max’s memory include his 7 children: Bruce (Deborah) Beck, Belvidere, IL; Barbara Beck, Dunwoody, GA; Brian (Donna) Beck, Dallas; Dr. Brent (Tara) Beck, Cashton, WI; Blaine (JoAnn) Beck, Dell Rapids; Blair (Susan) Beck, Bondurant, IA; Beth Beck, Lauderdale, MN, 13 grandchildren, 2 great-grandchildren, and 2 sisters-in-law: Ruth Beck, Lawrence, KS; Shirley Beck, Winner. He was preceded in death by his wife, Faye, his parents and 5 siblings: Helga Pennington, Lola Whitley, Donald Beck, Jean Aakhus and Emmett Beck.