Thursday, November 23, 2017

Vern Wendt Obit

Vernon F. Wendt, 84, of Flandreau, passed away Wednesday, November 22, 2017, at the Arlington Care and Rehabilitation Center. Funeral services will be held at 2:00 pm Sunday, November 26, 2017 at First Lutheran Church in Brookings. Visitation will be from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm Saturday, at Rude’s Funeral Home in Brookings.

Vernon Fred Wendt was born on March 20, 1933, the son of Arthur and Esther (Runck) Wendt, who were modest farmers near Springfield, MN. He was the middle child of three boys and remained in Springfield until he graduated from Springfield High School in 1951. From his humble beginnings, Vern accomplished many things. He joined the U.S. Army at the age of 18 and traveled Europe during his time in the Korean War as a Military Policeman. Upon his discharge from the Army, he graduated from South Dakota State University with a degree in Industrial Engineering. During his college years, he met the love of his life and lifelong companion Dorothy Shelden. The couple was united in marriage on September 1, 1957, in Brookings, SD. They were blessed with five children and his family will always remember him for being a loving and devoted father and husband. He worked very hard to provide for his family, working as an Industrial Engineer for a number of companies including Univac, Lake City Industries, Control Data and Gopher Signs. Vern retired from engineering in 1998.

Vern was proud of his service to the country and was a member of the American Legion. He was also a member of the American Institute of Industrial Engineering, served as chapter President in the Twin Cities and later formed the Hiawathaland Chapter in Winona, MN. He enjoyed dancing, woodworking, and playing cards. His greatest joy was being able to live out his dream to travel the country with Dorothy, in their later years, living full time in their motorhome.  They are grateful for the many friendships they were able to form through their travels. More than anything, Vern cherished his family and the time he was able to spend with them.

Left to cherish his memory is his wife of 60 years, Dorothy Wendt, of Flandreau, SD; his four children, Rhonda Wendt, of White, SD, Renee (Guy) Hanlon, of Verdon, SD, Rochelle (Ted) Clucas, of St. Louis, MO and Richard Wendt, of Sioux Falls, SD; seven grandchildren, Krystal (Brent) Ripperda, Kevin (Julianna) Hanlon, Keith Hanlon, Dominic, Dylan, Daria and Damian Clucas; four great grandchildren, Hunter Hanlon, Grady and Gabriella Ripperda and Lucas Hanlon, with two more great grandchildren due to arrive soon; one brother, Virgil (Karen) Wendt, of Chicago, IL and many nieces and nephews.

Vern is preceded in death by his parents; son, Randall Wendt and one brother, Leroy Wendt.

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