WDAZ: Your Home Team

Published March 03, 2011, 05:54 PM

City Mourns Councilman Richard "Dick" Grassel

Friends and family gathered Thursday morning to mourn the passing of East Grand Forks City Council President Dick Grassel.

The people of East Grand Forks are mourning the loss of not only a favored city official, but a life-long resident and family man.

"He cared about his grandkids probably more than he cared about us and that's a good thing and my brother and I hope we can be as good of a grandparent like he has been to our kids," said Dick's son Chad Grassel.

Councilman Dick Grassel spent 22 years on the city council and wasn't afraid to stand up for those in his ward and the city.

"He was concerned about the people of East Grand Forks so to me he exemplifies the finest characteristics of a public servant," said Councilman Henry Tweten.

"Very stand-up, he has strong convictions and strong opinions and he didn't have a problem telling you what any of those were and that's the reason why I think he was a good leader," said Police Chief Mike Hedlund.

"I didn't realize what an impact he has made on the city. When it's your dad, it's your dad and you think that he just went about and did his business and I didn't realize how many people he has affected," said Grassel.

Dick's family says there was nothing he believed in more than the city of East Grand Forks and its residents.

"He never did this to have a park named after him, he did this because he loved the city of East Grand Forks," said Grassel.

Dick Grassel died of cancer earlier this week. He was 67.