Francis Bechen

Francis J Bechen

Saturday, March 9th, 1935 - Friday, August 23rd, 2019
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Francis J. Bechen, 84, of Dubuque passed away on Friday, August 23, 2019. Visitation will be from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Wednesday at the Egelhof, Siegert and Casper Funeral Home and Crematory, 2659 Kennedy Road. Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 2 p.m. on Thursday at the Church of the Nativity with burial at the Mt. Calvary Cemetery immediately following.
Francis was born March 9, 1935 in Dubuque, Iowa, son of Frank and Crescentia (Wathier) Bechen.
He was a beloved school teacher for the DCSD for 30 years, teaching Spanish at both Dubuque Senior and Hempstead High Schools and then retiring in 1998.
Francis was a six-time Iowa Golden Gloves boxing champion and six-time Ringside World Masters Champion. He was also a boxing judge and referee for over 40 years. He was recently inducted into the National Golden Gloves Officials Hall of Fame and received the Outstanding Judge Award. Outside of the boxing world, he enjoyed watching football, bowling, skydiving, fitness and traveled extensively. He was also a loving and supportive father and grandfather, pilot and member of the EAA, former member of Optimist Club and devoted member of the Church of the Nativity.
Francis is survived by five children, Dan Bechen of Aurora, Illinois, Darci (Austin) Bechen Terry of Missouri City, Texas, Scott (Stephanie) Bechen of Dubuque, Jeremy (Kate) Bechen of Dubuque and Todd (Leslie) Bechen of Des Moines; and nine grandchildren.
He is also survived by four siblings, Richard Bechen of Dubuque, Robert Bechen of Dubuque, Zita (Larry) Elgin of Dubuque and Pauline (Harlow) Meyer of Dubuque.
He was preceded in death by his parents, a brother, Olin Bechen, a sister, Ruth Becker and a nephew, Greg Becker.
The family would like to send their special thanks to the boxing community, all his former students and dear friends who have brightened his life.
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Wednesday, August 28th, 2019 | 3:00pm - 7:00pm
    Wednesday, August 28th, 2019 3:00pm - 7:00pm
    Egelhof, Siegert & Casper Funeral Home and Crematory
    Address Not Available
  • Mass of Christian Burial

    Thursday, August 29th, 2019 | 2:00pm
    Thursday, August 29th, 2019 2:00pm
    Church of the Nativity
    1225 Alta Vista
    DUBUQUE, IA 52001
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Private Condolence
Love, Londo Vivone III sent flowers to the family of Francis J Bechen.
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Rico from Fat Tuesday’s

Posted at 02:47pm
I’m at Friend) years ago as he would stop by the bar for a beverage in the afternoon. He was so eager to share his stories about boxing and in life and I was probably even more eager to hear them. I would also see him at the sports complex when I was down there watching my son play baseball. Fran was a true gentleman and always had a smile on his face. Rest In Peace my friend!

Lori Westmark

Posted at 11:59am
I am so sorry I just read of Fran's passing ! I met Fran when I had purchased the Hawkeye Trailer Park on University and he rented the lower level of my duplex ! Definitely one of the kindest souls I had ever met. He was so proud to tell me of his boxing and skydiving stories. So kind as to bring me strawberries he picked the morning of. He has left a legacy and we need more people like him ! Will never forget the SkyHawk car !

Michael McMurry

Posted at 06:25pm
Fran did so much for amateur boxing in Iowa that it will be difficult to gauge his long lasting impact. He was a most interesting conversationalist and could engage with one in several languages. We were friends for 45 years and, indeed, I will miss his humor, wit and wisdom.

Angie Harter

Posted at 11:02pm
Fran was a client of mine who made regular visits into my office. He was always planning ahead for his next adventure. Fran always had a spark in his eye. Usually a travel related story would be attached to anything we talked about. He most recently was very excited to tell me about the trip he took to visit his daughter and all the fun things they did including a sporting event. In his worn out wallet he proceeded to pull out this and that which all had meaning to him and a little story to go with it. His wallet was pretty full and then out came the photo's of him and his daughter. He was a proud dad showing me a picture of his beautiful daughter. Fran was so happy to still be involved with the boxing community. A true passion he had for that I missed the obituary in the paper and my heart fell when I read it. When Fran would leave my office he would say good-bye in 3 or 4 different languages which would make me chuckle. I'll miss out visits together. Angie @ Travel Headquarters

Heartfelt Sympathies Store

Posted at 08:18am
With love and hugs,
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