Wayne Wenzel

In the early morning hours of Friday, April 20, 2018, Wayne Wenzel, age 87, passed away peacefully surrounded by family, in his home in Jordan, MN.

Wayne’s life will be honored with a visitation on Monday, April 23, from 4-7 pm, at Ballard-Sunder Funeral and Cremation 4565 Pleasant Street SE, Prior Lake, MN and on Tuesday, April 24 from 10-10:45 am, followed by a Celebration of Life Service at 11 am, at St Paul’s Lutheran Church 5634 Luther Road, Prior Lake, MN. Longtime friend Pastor Robert Krueger will preside. His grandchildren will act as pall bearers. Wayne will be laid to rest at St Paul’s Lutheran Cemetery, with military honors provided by the Prior Lake VFW Honor Guard.

The parents of Albert and Caroline (Haus) Wenzel, proudly announced the birth of their third son, Wayne Alvin, born on April 12, 1931, in St Paul, MN. He grew up on a farm, with older brothers Victor and Lawrence. At the age of 4, Wayne’s mother died from cancer. With the help from family, Albert and the boys pressed forward. Wayne attended a one room school house through the eighth grade. Summers, the family spent countless hours tending to the chores on the farm, especially taking home grown potatoes to the market with his dad. Winters, Wayne and his brothers enjoyed ice skating and playing hockey on the farm pond, with neighbors and friends.

In 1950, Wayne graduated from Rosemount High School. He then served in the United States Army. Returning from the service, Wayne owned and operated a gas station in St Paul for a short time. He took his knowledge as a mechanic and worked for Carlson Tractor for several years. For many decades, Wayne worked for his brother, Larry at Wenzel Plumbing and Heating, as an equipment operator. He was also a member of the 49er’s Union.

After completing his military obligation, Wayne started courting a young lady named Louise Ratzlaff. They instantly hit it off and on September 15, 1956 at Berea Lutheran Church in Bloomington, MN, Wayne and Louise exchanged wedding vows. Through the years, they were blessed with four children, Gary, Kevin, Greg and Karla.

The Wenzel family enjoyed being outdoors camping, fishing and snowmobiling. They would pack up the RV exploring the country side in hopes of finding that perfect fishing hole, to drop a line into. In 1979, Wayne and Louise purchased a lot in Sherwood Forest in Aitkin, MN. The family especially enjoyed the annual Memorial Day trips camping with other family. Through the years, Wayne and Louise enjoyed traveling to the Bahamas, exploring Europe, and seeing the sights on an Alaskan Cruise. Their favorite destination was traveling to Las Vegas with family and friends.

Wayne enjoyed the simple things in life. He spent countless hours sitting in a boat or in an ice house simply fishing. Wayne loved traveling to Canada and Michigan with family and friends on the annual fishing trips. He enjoyed tinkering in his garage working on small engines and rebuilding a John Deere and Ford tractors. Many happy hours were spent with friends and family building the horseless carriage or just sitting around talking. Wayne had quite a gift and could fix just about anything. He didn’t mind repairing the same item over and over and over.

It was Wayne’s fun-loving personality will be remembered the most. His mind was always searching for that next prank to be played. Wayne loved teasing people, followed by his hardy laugh and giant smile. Wayne had a heart of gold filled with kindness, loyalty and a love for family and friends. And we must not forget his deep love for Mickey Mouse!!!

Wayne will be forever loved and missed by wife of 61 years, Louise; children, Gary (Theresa) Wenzel, Greg Wenzel, Karla (Joey) Menden; daughter-in-law, Mary Kay Wenzel; grandchildren, Chad (Heather) Wenzel, Dale Wenzel, Anna Wenzel, Grant Menden, Blake Menden; great-grandchildren, Tegan, Karlee, Samantha; brother, Vic (Bernice) Wenzel; sister-in-law, Doneene Wenzel; many other relatives and friends.

There to welcome Wayne home in heaven is his beloved son, Kevin; parents, Albert and Caroline and brother, Larry.

Ballard-Sunder Funeral and Cremation proudly served and cared for the Wenzel family. www.ballardsunderfuneral.com

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Condolence Messages

  1. Farewell my friend. Wayne was the greatest friend a person could have. He will be deeply missed by more than just myself . Wayne, the pain is over now R.I.P.

  2. Darlene and Rich Davidson

    Theresa & Gary,
    Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family during this difficult time.

  3. Steve Effertz and Ingrid Evanson

    So very, very sorry for your loss and yes, Wayne will be missed!
    May God give you peace.
    Steve and Ingrid

  4. Steve Effertz and Ingrid Evanson

    So very, very sorry for your loss! Will miss Wayne’s great sense of humor and
    gentle heart. Wishing the whole family peace.

  5. Randy & Jackie Forar

    Our thoughts and prayers are with the Wenzel family. So sorry for your loss.
    Randy & Jackie Forar

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