On October 19, 2008, conservation lost one of its foremost leaders with the death of Tony Dean, at the age of 67.
He left a legacy as an outspoken communicator, a champion for fish and wildlife resources, an accomplished sportsman, and a warm and caring family man.
Tony was born with a million dollar voice and a love of the outdoors. He melded the two into a career that took him to countless fields and lakes and prairie potholes. Along the way, he became committed to preserving those areas, so that future generations would have access to the great hunting and fishing opportunities he enjoyed.
For over two decades, Tony reached more than 200,000 people each week with his award-winning Tony Dean Outdoors TV Show and Dakota Backroads Radio. He wrote many articles for regional magazines and newspapers. He educated his audience about threats to the environment and wildlife, as he wove stories about the outdoors into his shows and articles.
Tony was also active on the political front, lending his voice to environmental issues: efforts related to protecting wetlands, soil and water conservation; and climate change. Tony served on many boards which shared his goals. He also testified on environmental issues in Washington, DC, and attended programs on how climate change will impact our land and wildlife. He planned to teach others the importance of this issue.
Tony Dean left a giant footprint, and spoke for many of us.
Tony Dean's obituary:
Eastman DeChandt II ("Tony Dean") was born Nov. 26, 1940, in Mandan,
N.D., to Anthony and Marion (Smith) DeChandt. He grew up in Mandan and
graduated from Mandan High School. After high school, he attended
Bismarck Junior College.
Tony lived in Bismarck, N.D., until 1962,
when he moved to Cedar Rapids, Iowa, where he managed several
racetracks and performed play-by-play and commentary duties for radio
Establishing his home in Pierre for the last 40 years,
Tony started doing radio broadcasting at KCCR and also managed the State
Fair Speedway racing operations. From 1970 to 1972, he served as
Governor Frank Farrar's press secretary. Tony then started his daily
radio show at KCCR, "Tony Dean Outdoors," which was broadcast in Pierre
and the surrounding media markets. He later started "Tony Dean
Outdoors," a weekly hunting and fishing television series which aired
for more than 18 years and reached an audience of more than 100,000
people each week. During that time, he produced another daily radio
broadcast, "Dakota Backroads," which aired throughout the Midwest along
with an interactive Web site, "Tony Dean Outdoors."
Tony received numerous regional and national awards for both his television and radio broadcasts.
spent his career as an outdoors broadcaster, media personality and
environmental conservationist. In the last 15 years, Tony became
increasingly active in political affairs as they related to land
conservation, wetlands preservation and climate change, serving on the
boards of the Izaak Walton League and Outdoor Writers Association of
Tony is survived by his wife, Darlene; four children:
Cameron Matthew Dean DeChandt, Melissa Teresa Marion DeChandt, Alexia
Anastasia Dominique DeChandt and Anthony Andre Christian DeChandt III;
two grandchildren: Celine Noel DeChandt and Tinsley Valentina DeChandt
Arizmendez; one brother, Thomas Zaccheus DeChandt and one sister,
Francis Sophia McGregor.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Anthony and Marion, and one brother, Robert John DeChandt.
Tony's request for no formal funeral services, there will be a casual
celebration in his honor Nov. 1, 2008, starting at 5 p.m. and running
through the evening at the AmericInn Conference Center in Fort Pierre.
Funeral Chapel of Pierre has been placed in care of the arrangements.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Tony Dean's Acres
Project. They can be sent to 523 E. Capitol Ave., Pierre, SD, 57501.