Clifton Thomas Dougherty


NOVEMBER 10, 1941 - APRIL 14, 2020 Clifton Thomas Dougherty, 78, a long-time resident of Willmar and, most recently, the Minnesota Veterans Home in Minneapolis, died on April 14, 2020, of Covid 19. Clif was born on November 10, 1941, in Watertown, SD, the youngest of six, and only son, to Helen Marie (Farley) and Clifton Patrick Dougherty. He was raised in Willmar, MN, and graduated from the Willmar Senior High School in 1961. On December 29, 1962, he married his high school sweetheart, Beverly Pederson. He served in the US Air Force from 1962 – 1966 as an Airman First Class, during the Vietnam War. He was stationed at Sewart Air Force Base in Smyrna, TN, spending most of this time in the Philippines.

After serving in the military, he returned to Willmar, MN, and began working for Pederson Construction Company as a painter. He loved the outdoors and spent many days hunting and fishing. He missed his calling as a stand-up comedian and will always be remembered for his wicked sense of humor and incredible gift of story-telling. Although Clif struggled with alcoholism, he was sober for the last 13 years and enjoyed entertaining family, friends and caregivers at the Minnesota Veterans Home.

In addition to Willmar, MN, Clif lived in California, Oregon, Nevada and Illinois, before moving to Minneapolis in 2008.

He is survived by his children, Nancy Taranto (Bill) of New Hope, PA and Jason Dougherty of Willmar, MN; daughter-in-law, Kerry Dougherty-Hansen (Jim) of Lawrenceville, GA; grand-children, Ryan Dougherty of Chicago, IL, Kate Dougherty of Lawrenceville, GA, Lily Dougherty of Lawrenceville, GA, Brynne Taranto of New Hope, PA and Lia Taranto of New Hope, PA; first wife, Beverly Dougherty of Willmar, MN, and second wife, Wendy Reuss Dougherty of Eagan, MN. He is also survived by his sister, Delores Cysewski of Alameda, CA and many nieces and nephews. He considered himself beyond blessed to have 5 beautiful sisters and 5 beautiful grand-daughters.

He was preceded in death by his son, Tim Dougherty of Lawrenceville, GA; sisters Marilyn Turner of Watertown, SD, Eileen Cusack (Bill) of Coos Bay, OR, Patricia Row (Russ) of Waterloo, IL and Geraldine Johnson (Neil) of Willmar, MN; parents Clifton Patrick Dougherty and Helen Marie Dougherty (Farley).

His entire family would like to send a huge thank you to all of his caregivers at the Minnesota Veterans Home in Minneapolis. He loved everyone there and considered them part of his family.

A Memorial Service will be held on a future date at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Willmar. Memorial contributions to support the Recreation Department at the Minnesota Veterans Home, are very much appreciated.

Minnesota Veterans Home

5101 Minnehaha Avenue South

Minneapolis, MN 55417

Attention: Sandy Larson

Please note in memo: CLIFTON DOUGHERTY

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