Aug. 10, 1920-Oct. 15, 2013
The Honorable Judge Douglas A. Dehn, age 93, of Haslett and formerly of Mt. Pleasant passed away peacefully on October 15, 2013 in Haslett, Michigan at Home Sweet Home Assisted Living Facility surrounded by family.
Doug was born August 10, 1920 in Three Rivers to William C. and Kittie A. (Petre) Dehn. One of five children, Doug was raised in Three Rivers, graduated from U of M in 1942 with a B.A. in Political Science and History, and served the next four years in the U.S. Army Air Force. Seven of those months included overseas duty in Okinawa.
In 1943, while in the service, Doug married Beatrice Lora Bassett of Syracuse, NY. At the end of W.W.II, Doug re-enrolled at University of Michigan and graduated in 1949 with a Juris Doctor Law Degree. Bea and Doug lived in Grand Rapids for a brief time before moving to Mt. Pleasant in 1951 to practice law, raise a family, and establish Mt. Pleasant as their home.
Doug practiced private law, was twice elected Prosecuting Attorney, and served 10 years as 76th District Court Judge in Isabella County from 1968 - 1978. Doug was involved with Mt. Pleasant Jaycees, United fund, Chamber of Commerce, Boy Scouts, VFW, Elks Club, Lions Club, Mt. Pleasant Country Club, and the First Presbyterian Church. Doug enjoyed fishing and hunting, watching news, music, dancing, playing bridge or poker, drinking scotch, and family events. However, his first love was golf. He enjoyed the game, was good at it, liked being outdoors, and cherished his golf buddies. His family supported and understood his love for the game - with the exception of the plaid pants he often wore.
Doug had a quiet sense of humor. He was often teased by friends with Sammy Davis, Jr's famous line from the TV show Laugh In-"Here comes the judge, Here comes the judge". Chain Saw Charlie's Deer Camp named his blind "The Judge's Bench".
After the death of his first wife in 1971, Doug married Frances Greene Bailey in 1972. Upon retirement in 1978, Doug and Fran moved to Vero Beach, Florida where he spent the majority of time golfing. A few years after Fran's death, Doug moved back to the East Lansing area. Doug is remembered fondly as an honorable, responsible, loyal, compassionate, good-humored gentleman. Assisted living care providers always found Doug to be a congenial gentleman; they were happy to work with him and enjoyed his sense of humor.
Judge Dehn is survived by five children, Marilyn Torosian of Rancho Mirage, CA, Barb (Ken) Henderson of Midland, Bruce (Sue) Dehn of Mt. Pleasant, Kittie (Mike) Butcher of Williamston, and Deb (Bill) Ayers Orland, CA; grandchildren, Kara (Steven) Bauman, Wm. Bradly (Ruby) Hodgkinson and Lori (Abe) Anderson, Derek (Crystal) Dehn and Lucas Dehn, Patrick Butcher, and Nathan (Krysta) Ayers and Amanda Ayers; seven great grandchildren; and step-children, James H. Bailey, Chris Bailey, Ed Bailey.
Doug was preceded by his first wife, Beatrice Dehn; his son, Douglas Dehn Jr; his second wife, Frances Dehn; his brother, Bill; and sisters, Betty, Ruth, and Nola.
Donations may be made to Great Lakes Hospice Foundation 900 Cooper St., Jackson MI 49202, Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 758517, Topeka, Kansas 66675, or the
The family will Receive Friends at Lux Family Life Story Funeral Home on Thursday, Oct. 24, from 3 to 7 p.m. His ashes will be interred at Riverside Cemetery.
To learn more about Doug's life or to sign the online guest book please visit
Published in The Morning Sun on Oct. 20, 2013
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