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David Bechtle

November 30, 1937 April 28, 2020
David Bechtle
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Obituary for David Bechtle

The community lost a cherished member, David B. Bechtle (Dave) passed away on Tuesday afternoon of April 28, 2020 after a hard fought, 2-week battle against the Covid19 virus. He was 82 years old.
People like Dave are a rare find and much harder to lose. He will always be remembered for his tireless dedication and limitless energy. He set an example, inspired others, and he was a gift to whoever knew him.
The son of Claire Pickard Garman and George Bechtle, he was born in Syracuse, NY. He spent his entire childhood in the area until he graduated from Eastwood High School in 1955 and then studied Microbiology at Syracuse University and received his bachelor’s degree in 1959. A few years later he went on to get a master’s degree in Environmental Science in St. Paul, MN.
In 1960 he took a job with the New York State Health Department where he found himself working for a woman named Dorotha Ballard George. Dorotha introduced Dave to her daughter, Donna. On June 28, 1964 Donna and Dave were married and spent 50 more years together until Donna's passing on May 7, 2015.
Among those many years together, Dave spent his whole career as a member of the Orange County Health Department in Goshen, NY where he worked his way up to a Principal Public Health Sanitarian. He also enjoyed working part time for decades at Brotherhood Winery in Washingtonville, NY. Even after his retirement from the Health Department in 1999 he continued to work for Brotherhood Winery.
Donna and Dave raised 4 wonderful children who all grew up and had children of their own. Dave was a fantastic father and grandfather. He sacrificed any way he could to raise his children and was always a shining example of what a person should be. He spent many weekends traveling to Baton Twirling and Marching Band competitions with his children. He was loving, dedicated, hardworking and fun to be around.
His volunteer efforts over his life were extensive. He has been a member of the Lions Club for decades. 1st with the Town of Wallkill Lions and then with the Middletown Lions Club. Some of the many hats he wore: Serving as president several times (TOW Lions) as well as Zone Chair for MD-20-O Membership, Director LCIF Coordinator, Lion Tamer, Lions Service Projects, No Kids Hungry, Alzheimer walkRun 4 Downtown, Fishing Derby , OC Fair Booth, Veterans Clothing Drive, ride services for vision impaired (Jewish Family Services), friendly shopper ( Jewish Family Services). He was also loyal supporter of Guiding Eyes for the Blind in Yorktown Heights, a charity he was introduced to as a Lion. He was always heavily involved in fundraising and charity events.
He was incredibly involved with St. Paul's United Methodist Church in Middletown. Not only were he and Donna married there, he remained a member his entire life. He was a huge part of their warming center, volunteering to work overnight shifts and being one of the primary contacts to coordinate the center. Dave was involved with various committees in the church (he could be called a "pillar of the church"). He was the chair of several committees. He became a Certified Lay Speaker and filled in for the minister frequently, giving sermons and running the entire service on Sundays. He had to go through extensive classes and training in order to accomplish this.
When not volunteering or helping out his fellow man, Dave enjoyed traveling with Donna. He was a Syracuse University, NY Mets, and Miami Dolphins fan, in that order. His love for his alma mater was unwavering. He played clarinet for their football marching band while in college and then for the Syracuse Alumni band in the many years that followed. He cheered on any sport that Syracuse plays. His exuberance often got the best of him at any live games as he was very energetic at cheering for his team. He enjoyed bowling, dancing and running. He is well known for his unique bowling style. Anyone who saw Dave bowl and dance were in for a treat. He did both things “like nobody was watching,” there is no way to describe it unless you had the pleasure of seeing it with your own eyes.
Dave is survived by his daughter, Kimberly of Middletown; son, Paul and his wife, Clarice of Slate Hill, NY; daughter Stefanie Bramer and her husband, Mike of Louisville, KY; son-in-law, Darrin Villegas, Sister Dottie Couch Green and her husband, Bob; Brother-in-law Jon George and wife Merilee of the Villages, FL; grandchildren: Erik, Joseph, Shea, Nicholas, Makenzie, Logan, Kal and Meg. Nieces and nephews: Jodi, David, Paula, Steven and Christopher.
He was predeceased by his loving wife, Donna; their daughter, Heidi Villegas and granddaughter Sierra Anne Villegas.
Due to the ongoing health crisis, services will be private, and Dave will be buried at the family plot next to his wife, Donna in Wallkill Cemetery in Middletown. In lieu of flowers donations can be made in Dave’s honor to any of the following charities: American Cancer Society, Guiding Eyes for the Blind in Yorktown Heights, Arbor Day Foundation.

The family will hold a celebration of life for Dave; to be announced at a later date, when it is safe to come together.
May you Rest in Peace. You will always be with all of us, through all the experiences and memories created from all the moments with you.

A Video tribute will be posted shortly, and graveside services will be webcast on Monday, May 4, 2020 at 11 am on this site.

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Previous Events

Graveside

Monday

4

May

11:00 AM 5/4/2020 11:00:00 AM - 11:45 AM 5/4/2020 11:45:00 AM
Wallkill Cemetery

160 Midway Road
Middletown, NY 10940

Services will begin on webcast at 11 am

Wallkill Cemetery
160 Midway Road Middletown 10940 NY
United States
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