Michael J. Belcher 73, of Marion, Ohio died at home in the early morning hours of the New Year. Friday, January 1, 2021. His loving family surrounded him.
Dr. Belcher, known by all as “Doc”, lived a full and rather extraordinary life. His last years saw him actively involved with his family as well as his various business and musical interests and though he no longer worked full time, he maintained his license to practice psychology and he enjoyed counseling and encouraging members of Marion's recovery community.
Above all, Doc was a thinker, a teacher, a mentor, a giver and a doer. Doc was a very learned man and he enjoyed mentoring and teaching those with whom he associated and all who showed interest in any of the myriad pursuits into which he vigorously threw himself.
Dr. Belcher was born in Bremerton, Washington on May 30, 1947. He was not born “Doc” but that was surely his destiny. During his formative years, Doc enjoyed the beauty of nature that surrounded his hometown. He spent many days with friends exploring the inlets of the Pacific Ocean, fishing and hunting for oysters and crabs and turning them into memorable feasts.
For a time, Doc lived on a working farm and he learned the value of hard work caring for cows, pigs, goats and horses, among others. His father owned several rental properties and Doc frequently helped his dad with property maintenance and improvement projects. That experience served him well and Doc later invested in and managed numerous commercial and residential properties. Many of Doc's properties were those associated with his life's work, including Nursing Homes, Rest Homes, Residential Care Facilities and Office Buildings as well as Residential Properties.
After high school, Doc attended Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington. Where he earned his B.A. (cum laude) in Psychology and Sociology. Two years later, he had earned his M.A. in Clinical Psychology and Sociology.
Doc continued his academic pursuits in Chicago, Illinois where he earned his Ph.D. in Psychology with a specialization in Clinical Psychology from Illinois Institute of Technology.
As a committed lifelong learner, Doc continued course work related to his business pursuits and that led to one final course that resulted in an MBA from University of Dayton in Dayton, Ohio. As part of an assignment, Doc wrote a business plan that ultimately led to his entry into the long-term care industry.
Doc Belcher and his wife Fran owned operated and administered as many as five nursing homes over a period of 25 years. Doc was personally responsible for the development of Skilled Nursing Homes in the State of Ohio, exclusively for patients with mental health and cognitive issues.
Doc's professional life also included work as a Clinical Psychologist and he employed various techniques to assist his patients in dealing with their problems, included hypnosis, individual and group therapy and independent living skills.
Doc Belcher was a lover of music. Especially blues music and harmonicas. Doc combined his love of harmonicas and business to become one of the largest sellers and distributors of harmonicas and related instruments and accessories on line through more than thirty websites such as Harp Depot, DocsUkeles.com, and DocsGuitars.com among many others. These websites were all developed and programmed by Doc. During this time, Doc taught himself how to maximize exposure of his sites by learning and
using search engine optimization techniques. He was proud of the fact that two of his harmonica websites showed up on the first page of google and yahoo for very common search terms.
At the tender age of 26 Doc was in Israel when the Yom Kippur War broke out between Israel and Syria. Doc volunteered to stay and fight with Israel. Doc was assigned the command of 269 "fighters”, including young IDF soldiers, Foreign Nationals and Israeli Adolescents. Amazingly, these fighters were able to fend off and ultimately help to defeat more than 3500 Syrian troops in a fierce battle known as the Valley (or Vale) of tears. Several dozen of the fighters under Doc's command were under the age of 15.
Doc did indeed have an amazing life. His family, his co-workers and business associates and his few close friends, will dearly miss him.
Doc was preceded in death by his parents Tom and Ann Belcher, Sister Susie Belcher and wife and partner Fran Belcher. Brother Doug Belcher survives him, along with sons Andy Belcher and Brad Belcher, daughter in law Heather Belcher (Nicolosi) and granddaughter Sa’Valie.
Funeral Services will be held at Edwards Funeral Service in Marion, Ohio on Wednesday January 6. Family time 11:30, Public visit 12:00 to 1:00pm with services 1:00 to 2:00pm. Burial will follow at Riverview Cemetery, 1809 West Shantz Avenue, Dayton, Ohio. Anyone who cares to drive the distance is welcome.
Royal Family Kids of Marion, Ohio, serving abused, abandoned and neglected children, will gladly accept memorial Contributions.
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