Royce Loesch, 73 of Pierre S.D. died on June 26 at Sanford Medical Center in Sioux Falls, S.D. Funeral services will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, July 18, at Faith Lutheran Church in Pierre with a visitation on Wednesday, July 17 from 5-7:00 p.m followed by a prayer service at 7:00 p.m. Online condolences may be written at: www.isburgfuneralchapels.com
Royce Ray Loesch was born in Faulkton, S.D. September 4, 1945 to David and Alice (Koeppel) Loesch his parents. Throughout his childhood Royce lived in Wolsey S.D., and various towns in Missouri until his graduation from Jackson High School in Jackson Mo. in 1963. Royce then enlisted in the Army National Guard; he graduated from basic training at Ft. Polk, La. as a combat engineer and served during the Vietnam Era until his final discharge in 1974. In March 1964 he went to South Dakota Barber College, Sioux Falls, S.D. and started working in various barber shops in South Dakota until he met his beloved wife of 52 years Jeannine (Bogh) Loesch from Huron S.D.
Royce’s passion was barbering but he also had a love of horses and after barbering a while, he had an idea to get into the horse business. He took a job on an Arabian horse ranch near Flushing Mich., but he soon realized that he missed cutting hair, so he moved to Pierre in 1970 where he worked in variety of shops before opening his own. Royce was recognized for Barber of the Year for the State of South Dakota in 1976.
Roy was a member of Faith Lutheran Church in Pierre for over 50 years, he played softball on the church team, ushered, sang in the choir, member of the Men’s Club and an avid dart ball player.
Royce and Jeannine had two sons, Jeff who was born in 1970 and Justin in 1975. Throughout the years he coached baseball and basketball for his sons and also coached a Basketball team for his oldest grandson Wyatt during his fifth grade year.
Royce and Jeannine owned and operated Dakota Barbers in Pierre, S.D. for over 50 years. They were honored when their son Jeff joined them in 2000 but truly made it a family tradition when their grandson Wyatt joined the team in 2018. During Justin’s’ deployment to Iraq in 2003, Royce traveled to Mobridge, S.D. to keep his Barber Shop open for him.
Royce was appointed to the Barber Board in 1985 by the late Governor Bill Janklow and later appointed to another term by Governor Mike Rounds. He served a total of 16 years.
As a Paid up for Life member of the South Dakota American Legion he served in various positions from the Post level to the National Level. Honors include Legionnaire of the year for both Post and District, Recruiter of the Year, Gold Brigade Award, Robert C Gabrielson Award for Leadership, and special award dedicated to Tribal/Gov’t Relations 2016-2017. One of his greatest accomplishments was when he revitalized Post 20 American Legion in Ft. Pierre. The other was the Highly Rural Transportation Program for Veteran’s in Rural areas to use to go to medical appointments at no charge. He was the sole promoter of this program for Post 20. His dedication to veterans and active duty will be truly missed.
Royce’s hobbies include hunting, camping, fishing, rodeo, watching baseball, high school basketball, football, civil war reenactment, following St. Louis Cardinals and watching his sons and grandchildren compete in rodeos. Royce was an underpaid handyman, he built a pole barn at his son Jeff’s ranch, put up fences for his sons and installed a new deck on his home and his son Justin’s home. He was always willing to give his time freely to his children.
Royce was preceded in death by his parents, father-in law, grandparents, and some relatives.
Royce leaves his wife of 52 years, Jeannine; sons Jeff (Leanne) of Pierre, Justin of Mobridge, and grandchildren Wyatt and Savannah Loesch of Pierre; Tanner, and Jaelyn Loesch of Mobridge; mother-in-law Wanda Bogh of Huron; brothers Lester Hortter Tucson Ariz., Donald Loesch of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Ivan Loesch of Minnesota., and Keith Loesch of Lee Summit Mo.; sister-in-law Elaine Adams (Jim) of Huron, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Memorials may be directed to American Legion Post #20 in Ft. Pierre and Faith Lutheran Church in Pierre.