Tragedy strikes North Dakota ranch family

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A tragic auto accident last week claimed the lives of rancher Jack Patrick Reich and his 10-year-old son Vander. An Angus breeder, Reich formerly served as president of the North Dakota Stockman’s Association. His wife, Mardee, also was seriously injured in the accident.

The family reportedly was returning home from the hospital following Vander’s treatment for a brain tumor.

The North Dakota Stockman’s Association provides the following obituaries.

*Vander Reich*, age 10, was killed in a tragic automobile accident on Tuesday, November 6, 2012. The world is poorer for the loss. Everyone that met Vander came to realize that he was a special little guy.

Vander was born to Jack and Mardee Reich on March 25, 2002, in Dickinson, North Dakota.

Vander was an extremely active young man, who would throw himself completely into any interest that captured his imagination. One example would be him going into a Sporting Goods Store and walking right up to a salesman, introducing himself while shaking hands, and asking to see several firearms by model number and with specific options. This occasionally left the salesman momentarily bewildered, but he would soon find himself well into a detailed conversation about the options available on the guns Vander happened to be interested in. This is a situation that played out in Implement dealerships, saddle shops, and cattle conventions. Vander was not a shy young man, and was eager to
engage anyone in conversation, whether with an adult, or a kid, Van never met a stranger.

Vander had many interests; hunting and fishing being chief among them. Closely following was his interest in farming and ranching. Vander participated as a member of the Thunder wrestling club, Mercer County 4-H, youth rodeo as a steer rider, as well as being a member of the Zap Gun Club and trap shooting team.

Van was one hell of a shot and often out-shot his Uncle Joe, which annoyed Joe greatly.

Van….you will be missed....it was a blessing and an honor to have you for such a short time as a member of our family. Van was a source of pride and enjoyment to all he came in contact with.

Vander is accompanied in death by his father, Jack Reich, and survived by his mother, Mardee Reich, a sister, Kaydee, brother, Will, grandparents, Delvin Reich (Zap, ND), Bob and Maureen Williams (Eudora, KS), great-grandparents, Maurice and Mary VanLerberg (Shawnee, KS), Uncles: Joe Reich (Zap, ND), Justin Williams (Eudora, KS); Aunt, Stephanie (Reich) Keltner (Terry, MT), numerous cousins and extended family and friends.

Services will be held at 10:00 AM CDT, Wednesday, November 14, 2012, at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Beulah, with Fr. Kenneth Phillips officiating. Burial will follow at the church cemetery, Beulah. Visitation will be held Tuesday, November 13th, from 3:00 to 7:00 PM, at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Beulah ND with the rosary service to follow at 7:00 pm.

In lieu of flowers the family requests donations to North Dakota Stockmen’s Foundation's Scholarship Fund, Bismarck, ND.

Arrangements conducted by Barbot-Seibel Funeral Home, Beulah and Hazen.

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A sense of mourning falls over Mercer County North Dakota…and reaches beyond any border.

*Jack Patrick Reich*, age 43, passed away in a tragic motor vehicle accident on Tuesday, November 6, 2012. Jack was born to Delvin and Joyce (Boland) Reich, on September 15, 1969, in Mandan, North Dakota. Jack attended Zap public schools and graduated Salutatorian in 1988. He competed in high school rodeo as a bareback rider and attended the High School National Finals in Pueblo, Colorado, numerous times. He competed on the rodeo team for Montana State University, Bozeman, Montana, and graduated with a BS in Animal Science in 1993. Jack was a member of PRCA for several years, until his passion for ranching and family outweighed the draw of the arena.

Jack married Mardee Williams from Eudora, Ks., on May 3, 1996, in Shawnee, Kansas. Mardee was quickly embraced by his family and friends and they went on to have three children, Vander, Kaydee and Will,

Jack enjoyed working with his horses, roping, and especially hunting with his son Vander; but his true passions in life were his family and the Angus herd that he built and took great pride in. Jack and Mardee along with their three children owned and operated the Reich Angus Ranch known for its registered Angus bulls. For the past several years, they sold their bulls at an annual sale held at the ranch south of Zap, ND.

Jack spent many years involved with the North Dakota Stockmen’s Association, and eventually went on to serve a 2-year term as Vice President, and a 2-year term as President of the NDSA, and continued
working closely with the association after his presidency. Jack was instrumental in introducing Registered Black Angus into Kazakhstan. He visited the country and hosted their cattle breeders at his annual bull sale.

Jack is accompanied in death by his oldest son Vander, preceded by his mother, Joyce Reich, and survived by his wife, Mardee, his two children Kaydee and Will, his father Delvin Reich, sister Stephanie (Reich) Keltner, brother Joe Reich, several nieces and nephews, and an extended family and friends.

Services will be held at 10:00 AM CDT, Wednesday, November 14, 2012, at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Beulah, with Fr. Kenneth Phillips officiating. Burial will follow at the church cemetery, Beulah. Visitation will be held Tuesday, November 13th, from 3:00 to 7:00 PM, at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Beulah ND with the rosary service to follow at 7:00 pm.

In lieu of flowers the family requests donations to North Dakota Stockmen’s Foundation's Scholarship Fund, Bismarck, ND.

Arrangements conducted by Barbot-Seibel Funeral Home, Beulah and Hazen.



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