For six decades, Dennis Harold Biery did whatever good he could for Louisville and the Stark County area. Whether it was through Louisville High School and area colleges Walsh, Malone and Mount Union or service agencies like the YMCA and United Way, Biery and his family business, Biery Cheese Co. in Louisville, were generous in their philanthropy.

Dennis Biery’s son, Ben Biery, said the love of humanity his father possessed came back to the Biery family this week after the passing of Dennis Biery, 75, on Sunday after a battle with cancer.

“In the Louisville community, it’s amazing the amount of outpouring that my mom (Judith Lynne), me, my wife (Michelle Ann), my sister (Jennifer Lynne Biery Trujillo) have received,” Ben Biery said Tuesday. “The one thing that everyone seemed to say was that he was a great man.

“Dad had the ability to connect to people. People could relate to him, because he was down to earth. He cared about who they were and what they did. Even if it was just for one meeting, he had the God-given ability to make them feel stronger about themselves.”

The Louisville community showed Dennis Biery that they cared for him just this spring when they came out to christen the Leopards’ renovated baseball (and softball) stadium as the Dennis Biery Athletic Complex and Andy Aljancic Field. Biery was not doing great that day, but when he got onto the baseball diamond and spoke to the Louisville baseball team before the dedication, “it was like he strapped on his game face,” Ben Biery said. “It was perfect. That was dad.

“It was the community’s way of saying they needed to do something for (him). He was humbled by it, humbled by the thought of people doing something for him.”

Dennis Biery did a lot of living (and giving) in his 75 years.

As a youngster he was the first Louisville High School wrestler to qualify for the state tournament. He went to Ohio State University, and while there joined the Army Reserves.

“He was gone one week a month,” said Ben Biery said. “He liked to tell the story of how he got to guard Fort Knox for one night. It always brought a smile to his face. He always cared for those in the armed forces, he had a great deal of respect for those who served.”

Dennis Biery was on the board of directors at Walsh University but also contributed to Malone and Mount Union.

“Dad loved Walsh and what it stood for,” Ben said, “but he cared for all three (institutions) and the greater education of kids.”

By the time he was 35, Dennis Biery had become president of Biery Cheese, taking over for his father, Harold Norman Biery. Dennis grew the business just as his father had grown it from his father, Norman F. Biery (and just as Ben Biery has done in the past decade as CEO).

The Biery family would like to thank the Louisville community in particular and the great Stark County area in general via a celebration of life for Dennis Biery from 3 to 7 p.m. Sunday at the Louisville Eagles.

“We realize that there will be people who want to share memories (of dad),” Ben Biery said. “We want to make sure we give people appropriate time.”

 

Reach Jim at 330-580-8336 or jim.thomas@cantonrep.com

On Twitter: @jthomREP