October 28, 1945 – April 2, 2020


Gary “Bucky” Backes, age 74, of St. Joseph, passed away peacefully at his home on Thursday, April 2, 2020.

Due to the Covid 19 outbreak a memorial service celebrating Gary’s life will be held at a later date. Interment will be in the Minnesota State Veterans Cemetery, Little Falls, MN. Funeral arrangements were made by Benson Funeral Home, St. Cloud, MN.

Gary “Bucky” Backes was born on October 28, 1945 in St. Cloud, MN to Cyril and Alberta (Schelper) Backes. Gary served in the U.S. Navy during the Vietnam War on the U.S.S. Hornet. Gary married Lila Imdieke on July 29, 1967 at St. John’s Catholic Church in Meire Grove, MN. After being discharged he began working as a lineman for Northern States Power, now Xcel Energy, retiring in 2001 after 35 years of service.

Just like most of the boys in his family, his friends knew him better as “Bucky.” He had a quick wit and sense of humor that always resulted in everyone laughing. To quote his High School yearbook: “He has charm a mile thick. You bet, he’s in on every trick”.

Gary and Lila enjoyed many activities together including long trips, frequent day trips, walks, and going out to eat. They enjoyed spending time together with their children and grandchildren. Gary also liked hunting, fishing, and being at the cabin with family.

Gary is survived by his loving wife of 52 years, Lila of St. Joseph, MN; sons, Greg Backes of Annawan, IL and Glen (Eva) Backes of Minneapolis, MN; grandchildren, Kirsten, Cortney, and Cade Backes; sister, Margaret Thielman of Avon, MN; and brothers, Dennis Backes of Champlin, MN and Paul (Julie) Loxtercamp of Bemidji, MN.

He was preceded in death by his parents, and brothers, Nick and David Backes.