Aug. 2, 2013
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -
Former Purdue football player and longtime university benefactor Dick Dauch passed away Friday morning. He was 71.
Dauch played fullback and linebacker for the Boilermakers from 1961 to 1963 while earning his bachelor's degree in industrial management and science. He and his wife, Sandy, have been generous contributors to Purdue, including the athletics department, for more than 30 years. The Dick & Sandy Dauch Alumni Center on campus is named in their honor. They are longtime John Purdue Club members and recipients of the Diamond P Award for distinguished service to the athletics department. The Dauchs endowed a football scholarship in 1997.
Always wanting to get involved for the betterment of his alma mater, Dauch was a member of both the Purdue Athlete Advisory Council and the Purdue Football Advisory Council. He worked with department leadership advisor Cathy Wright-Eger to create the John R. Wooden Leadership Institute. Dauch delivered a motivational speech to the football team last year.
Dauch enjoyed a nearly 50-year career in the automotive industry. Most recently, he co-founded American Axle & Manufacturing Holdings Inc. and served as its chief executive officer from 1994 to 2012. Previously, he had stints at Chrysler Corp., Volkswagen of America and General Motors.
Dauch was the recipient of numerous professional honors, including Automation Alley's CEO Legend Award (2005), Detroit News Michiganian of the Year (1999), Crain's Detroit Business Newsmaker of the Year (1997), Michigan Manufacturers Association Manufacturer of the Year (1997) and the Automotive Hall of Fame's Industry Leader of the Year (1996).
Dauch co-authored a book about his experiences, "American Drive: How Manufacturing Will Save Our Country," that was published in September of 2012.
A native of Norwalk, Ohio, Dauch and Sandy, had four children: sons, Richard F. and David, and daughters, Teri Gigot and Jane Harvey. They had 16 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
Arrangements are as follows:
Vasu, Rodgers & Connell Chapel, 32515 Woodward Ave., Royal Oak, Mich. 48073
Viewing: Aug. 5, 3-8 p.m. and Aug. 6, 3-6 p.m.
First United Methodist Church of Birmingham, 1589, West Maple Rd., Birmingham, Mich. 48009
Viewing: Aug. 7, 10-11 a.m.
Funeral: Aug. 7, 11 a.m.
Charitable Contributions: In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to ...
"Richard E. Dauch Memorial Fund" to support research and education in the fight against pancreatic cancer, Beaumont Foundation, P.O. Box 5802, Troy, Mich. 48007-9620
"Hospice of Michigan," Donation Processing Center, 400 Mark Ave., Detroit, Mich. 48201