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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Sunday, July 27, 2014

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We'll miss Dick Bacon in the sun


A true one-of-a-kind, Dick Bacon was a Milwaukee legend even before his shocking passing on August 18, at age 68. Bacon, who died in his South Side home on Friday, was well-known to anyone who ventured down to the lakefront. Spring, summer, fall or winter, Bacon could be found sitting amongst his reflectors, catching some rays and, well, bakin' in the sun.

Always a darling of the community and the local media, Bacon was featured many times on local television, in the newspapers and in pub conversation. His charming demeanor made him eminently approachable and sealed his position as one of the city's true characters. His work with the Channels 10/36 auction and the American Heart Association attested to his reciprocal love for the community.

His devotion to fitness, bronze skin and nudism helped him nab the Mr. Nude America, Mr. Nude Apollo and Mr. Nude Galaxy titles in the 1970s. Those traits also aided in his work as a nude artists' model.

Bacon strenuously lobbied for a nude beach in Milwaukee or, at least, a clothing-optional one. His activities in this area led to numerous arrests.

Things have been changing quite a bit lately along the lakefront, with the new art museum expansion and the widening of the street. But nothing will change the face of the Milwaukee lakefront as much does the loss of Dick Bacon. It just won't be the same without him.

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