Funeral services for Merlin Beyer of Morris will be held Thursday, Aug. 6, 2009 at 10 a.m. at Assumption Catholic Church in Morris. Father Tim Baltes will be officiating. Visitation will be held Wednesday from 4 to 8 p.m. with a prayer service at 7 p.m. at the Pedersen Funeral Home in Morris and for one hour prior to services at the church on Thursday. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery in Morris. Military rites will be provided by the Morris American Legion, VFW and AmVets.
Merlin Alvin Beyer, son of Alvin and Gertrude (Arnold) Beyer was born on March 20, 1934 in Marysland Township in Swift County. He grew up on a farm in rural Hancock. He attended the West Central School of Agriculture, and was a graduate of the class of 1951. Upon graduation he began farming, but his career was cut short by the Korean War. In 1954 he enlisted in the US Marine Corps. He proudly served his country from 1954 to 1962. During his time of active duty, he received various service medals. He was released from active duty in 1957 and served the remainder of his military career in the Marine Corps Reserve until he was honorably discharged in 1962. He married the love of his life, Mary Margaret Ascheman, on March 2. 1957. Although Merlin had hoped to resume his life as a farmer, circumstances had changed and so he pursued other business opportunities. Having enjoyed spending his free time as a barber in the Marine Corps, he decided to pursue a career in barbering. Upon graduation from the Lee School of Barbering in St. Paul, Merlin and Marge moved to Montevideo and Benson before settling in Morris. Merlin worked as a barber for many years, and the couple also began a joint venture as restaurant owners/operators: Mar-Merl's Recreational Center in Morris; the Del Monico Cafe in Morris; Trailways Cafe (later named the Holiday Cafe) in Morris; and the Del Monico Cafe in Benson. Eventually Merlin retired from barbering to focus on the business needs of the restaurants. After selling the Del Monico restaurants, Merlin began a career as an insurance sales representative. He continued in this role until retirement. Merlin was very committed to the community of Morris. He was a member of the Assumption Catholic Church, the Knights of Columbus, the VFW, the American Legion, and the Amvets. He was involved with the Morris Area Chamber of Commerce, he was a member of the city council, served terms as Mayor, coached VFW baseball (leading his team to a state championship), and was readily available to help others as needed. He enjoyed dancing, hunting, fishing, playing softball, playing the accordion, and spending time with his family and friends, especially his grandchildren.
Merlin died on Sunday, Aug. 2, 2009 at the Courage Cottage in Morris, having lived to reach the age of 75.
He is survived by his wife: Marge Beyer of Morris; four sons: Tom (Stacy) Beyer of Willmar, Ed (Carol) Beyer of Morris, Joel (Jamie) Beyer of Morris, and Jerry Beyer of San Antonio, Texas; four daughters: Julie (Mark) Grimme of Bloomington, Jan Jallo of Morris, Beth Beyer of San Antonio, Texas, and Bonnie Beyer of Eden Prairie; seventeen grandchildren; two brothers: Lloyd (Cindy) Beyer and Norman (Diane) Beyer both of Hancock; one sister: Marian (Bill) Milton of Charlotte, N.C.; three brothers-in-law; three sister-in-laws; and several nephews, nieces, cousins and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents; stepmother: Melda Beyer; his sister, Phyllis; his son-in-law, Joel Jallo; his mother and father-in-law: Rose and Henry Ascheman; his brothers-in-law: Richard, Harold and Roy; his sisters-in-law: Rose Ann and an infant girl.
Pallbearers for the service are Merlin's grandsons: Adam Beyer, David Hill, Jacob Beyer, Andrew Jallo, Jonathon Jallo, Ryan Beyer, Matthew Beyer and McKinley Beyer. Honorary pallbearers are Merlin's granddaughters: Renee Hill, Kate (Beyer) Paris, Angie Jallo, Mary Hill, Sara Beyer and Sydney Beyer. Linda and Ken Hodgson and Tom and Sharon Kosel will provide special music for the service. In lieu of flowers the family prefers memorials to the Courage Cottage in Morris, Calvary Cemetery in Morris or the American Diabetes Association. Pedersen Funeral Home in Morris is in charge of the arrangements.