Richard “Whitey” Mettlach

Richard “Whitey” Mettlach, 72, of Monett, passed away Feb. 19, 2021 while at Specialty Select Hospital in Springfield from coronavirus complications.
He was born in Pierce City to Raymond and Rose (Stipp) Mettlach. He graduated eighth grade from St. Mary’s Catholic School and was a 1966 graduate of Pierce City High School. He joined the Missouri National Guard in 1973 and retired as a staff sergeant after serving 20 years. Upon graduation, he worked in several manufacturing supervisory roles in Monett including Engineered Apparel and Wells Aluminum, while attending college at Missouri Southern State College in Joplin. He completed his degree in secondary education and teaching in 1974. He married Dorothy (Dot) Heim in January 1972. They were blessed with one son.
In 1978, he began his teaching career at Monett High School, and it was the start of his long and meaningful impact on hundreds of students and athletes.
He was Monett’s first baseball coach and was twice, in 1992 and 1994, awarded the Big 8 Coach of the Year. He started coaching the Monett Cross Country team in its second year, and mentored students both on and off the track. After retiring from teaching in 2006, he continued to coach until 2008, but couldn’t turn down an opportunity in 2015, to work as an assistant baseball coach for Pierce City High School under the leadership of his nephew Christopher.
He was a long-time parishioner of St. Lawrence Catholic Church in Monett where he served on the parish council, school board and for the past several years on the finance council. He was active in the Knights of Columbus giving charitably of his time and for many years could be found working their famous fish fries. His Catholic faith was an integral part of his life and he lived that out, sponsoring others into the church and serving as a godparent to many.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife; brothers, Don and Joe Mettlach; sister, Betty Houston; in-laws, Max and Louise Heim and a brother-in-law, John Heim.
He is survived by his son Lance; daughter-in-law, Emily; two granddaughters;  sister, Linda Stellwagen of Monett; brother, Raymond Mettlach (Cheryl) of Pierce City; sisters-in-law, Stephanie and Christine Mettlach of Sarcoxie; brothers-in-law, Richard (Alice) Heim, and Bob (Deborah) Heim of Monett and Dennis (Anne) Heim of Rogersville and a host of nieces and nephews, great nieces and nephews and great-great nieces and nephews, along with countless family and friends.
Friends paid their respects Feb. 24-25 at Buchanan Funeral Home. Visitation was held Feb. 26 at St. Lawrence Catholic Church, Monett. A Mass of Christian Burial was held Feb. 27 at St. Lawrence Catholic Church. Interment followed at Mt. Calvary Cemetery. Memorials have been suggested to the Whitey Mettlach Memorial Fund in care of the funeral home. Arrangements have been entrusted to Buchanan Funeral Home, Monett.


Lawrence County Record

312 S. Hickory St.
Mt. Vernon, MO, 65712


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