Richard “Dick” Kern – Duluth News Tribune


Richard “Dick” Kern, 96, born December 29, 1925, son of the late Ralph and Lillian (Larsen) Kern, died Monday July 25, 2022 after a brief illness. He grew up in Duluth and attended Duluth Central High School until he enlisted as a high school student in the US Army Air Corps at the start of World War II at the age of 17.

Dick served in the Air Corps from 1943 to 1945, spending his time on duty in the China-Burma-India theater as a B-24 gunner/engineer. After the war, he continued his military service in the MN Army National Guard and retired as Chief Warrant Officer 4 and completed his military service in 1979. In his civilian life, he worked for Power Screen Co., Borchert/Ingersoll and Ziegler Company. . Dick was married twice, first to Myrtle Miller, with whom he had children Richard, Lynne and Donald, and in 1979 married Shirley (Slover) Bartholomew.

Dick was a member of the 1980 US Olympics in Lake Placid, NY and was a judge for men’s ski jumping competitions. He was also a member of the Duluth Ski Club and past president of the organization. Just before his passing, Dick learned that he would be inducted into the American Ski Jumping Hall of Fame on August 20 for his contributions to the sport. Dick was active and belonged to a multitude of clubs including Ionic Lodge #186, Scottish Rite, Eagles Club of Grand Rapids, Viking Shrine Club and a 60+ year member of the AAD Shrine in Duluth where he was Potentate in 1992. He was also a member of the Lake Avenue Loafers, the Duluth R/C Flying Club and the Retired Officers Association. Dick was a member of Christ Lutheran Church, AALC.

Dick was predeceased by his parents; his wife Shirley; brother Robert Kern; sister Mona (Kern) Johnston; and grandson Brian Hallfrisch. Her incredible life will forever be cherished by her survivors, children Richard (Dori) Kern, Lynne Simmons, Donald (Donna) Kern and Kim (Tom) Ochocki; grandchildren Jon Hallfrisch, Ryan (Lyndsay) Kern, Reid (Susan) Kern, Nathan (Amy) Kern, Patrick Kern, Jason (Alli) Sebok and Cameron Ochocki (Sam Fox); Sister Marge Dahl; and a host of great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, cousins ​​and devoted friends.

Services will be held Saturday, August 6, 2022 at Christ Lutheran Church, 2415 Ensign Street in Duluth, with a 9:30 a.m. visitation until the 10:00 a.m. memorial service. Military honors will be presented by the Duluth Honor Guard, followed by a celebratory luncheon in the church social hall. Interment will be at the MN Veterans Cemetery in Saginaw, MN at a later date. Memorial donations can be made in Dick’s honor to the Shriner Hospital for Children ( To leave online condolences for the family, visit


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