Dick Bacher was born in Canton, Ohio, and moved with his family to Dayton as an infant. He attended Belmont Elementary School from grades 1 – 5, then they relocated to Alexandria, Ohio, and he attended Lanier Grade School where his athletic career began. He was a member of the gymnastic team, which performed widely at special events throughout the tri-state region, including half-time performances at dozens of varsity games in Ohio. Dick participated from 9 -12 years of age.
Dick earned 6 varsity letters in 3 different sports at Stivers! He played basketball as center for 3 years before an injury at mid-season -finished his game with a 12.5 points per/game average. He was a 3 year letter man in track. He was undefeated his junior and senior years in the shot put. He won the City Meet his senior year at shot-put, set the Stivers freshman record in shot-put and the varsity record in shot-put. He was a 2 year letterman in football. He had record football high-lights including All-City Special Mention as an end his senior year, and he received 6 four year offers of scholarships.
After graduation Dick entered the Navy, again excelling in all 3 sports. While in Key West FL, his basketball talents shone as he led the league in scoring for 2 yrs with an average of 30 points / game and won championships both years. He was chosen by a Committee of Coaches for All-Navy Tournament – East Coast Region. He reached his maximum, life-time distance in track, and as a result, he earned President John Kennedy’s Physical Fitness Award in 1963. His football career soared as he played half-back with the Navy for one year and was invited by Webb Eubank to try-out for the Baltimore Colts. Later he played tight-end and defensive end as a freshman at the University of Dayton. He started as tight end in 1963.