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United States District Judge Richard H. Battey

United States District Judge Richard H. Battey

Richard H. Battey was born in Aberdeen, South Dakota, and raised as a farm kid in Frankfort, South Dakota. He graduated from the University of South Dakota School of Law in 1953. In 1951, Judge Battey married Shirley Travis. Judge and Mrs. Battey are the parents of three children: David, Russell, and Dianne.

Judge Battey served in the United States Army as a First Lieutenant from 1953 to 1955. From 1955 to 1985, he was in private practice in Redfield, SD. During this time, he served 13 years as States Attorney. He was a member of the SD Board of Regents for six years and served as its president for two years. He was appointed to the SD Board of Pardons and Paroles. He served on that Board for four years and was chairman for two years. He was an Adjunct Professor of Criminal Justice Studies for USD.

Judge Battey was appointed by President Ronald Reagan as a United States District Court Judge for the District of South Dakota in 1985. He served as Chief Judge from 1994, until he took senior status in 1999. His Chambers were located in Rapid City. He served as president of the District Judges' Association of the Eighth Circuit. He was a State Bar Commissioner from 1979 to 1982, and he served on many Federal Court and SD State Bar committees. He also held various memberships in community and state organizations. In 2007, USD honored him with the Alumni Achievement Award for Outstanding Success in a Profession.

Judge Battey was a lover of life and adventures. He owned and trained horses for years. He loved going on the Custer Trail ride each year with his son, Russell. He also trained dogs, including his Lab, "Chip", who never seemed to make the finals in field trials! He was an avid, self-taught, scratch golfer who won many tournaments and club championships. He was also proud of his 4 Holes-in-One. Judge Battey was an excellent pilot and flew private planes, with an instrument rating (until he said his landings became controlled crashes!). He was honored by the Sioux Nation for his work in helping them.

Judge Richard H. Battey died on Saturday, May 6, 2017 at Grand Arbor in Alexandria, MN, surrounded by his loving family. He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Shirley Battey of Alexandria; children: David (Lucie) Battey of Alexandria, Russell (Marilyn) Battey of Watertown, SD, and Dianne (Steve) Raebel of Lake Barrington, IL; Seven grandchildren: Lindsay (Chad) Lundeen of Chaska, Courtney (Scottie) Walter of Maple Grove, Heather (Chris) Osborn of Aberdeen, SD, Ryan Battey of Sioux Falls, SD, Travis (Brenda) Raebel of Chicago, IL, A.J. (Lissa) Raebel of Waukesha, WI, and Lenna (Tim)Kadlec of Arlington Heights, IL; Nine great grandchildren; and twin sister Marilyn Gellhaus of Aberdeen, SD. He was preceded in death by his parents, Silas and Helen Battey, and a brother Lyle Battey.

A Celebration of Judge Battey's Life will take place on Saturday, May 27, 2017, from 2-4 PM (Open House) at the Anderson Funeral Home in Alexandria, MN. Interment will be in the Black Hills National Cemetery in Sturgis, SD on Friday, June 9, 2017, at 1:30 PM.

Arrangements are with the Anderson Funeral Home of Alexandria, Minnesota.