Udell Wegner, 70Udell “Red” Victor Wegner, 70, died Wednesday, May 30, 2012, surrounded by his family at the Douglas County Hospital in Alexandria.
Udell “Red” Victor Wegner, 70, died Wednesday, May 30, 2012, surrounded by his family at the Douglas County Hospital in Alexandria.
Udell was born May 24, 1942 in Alexandria, the son of Harold and Anna (Dahlbom) Wegner. The Wegner family farmed in Alexandria and during his childhood Red helped his father along with other farmers in the area.
Red enlisted in the U.S. Navy in November of 1959 and proudly served his country from 1959-1963. After boot camp at Great Lakes Naval Base in Chicago, Illinois he served in Washington, D.C. Red was then stationed in Norfolk, Virginia and served with great pride on the U.S.S. Enterprise CVAN-65 (the world’s first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier). During this time he was personally selected by Robert C. Walsh to be one of three to work under him as a machinist mate. Red was a part of the original crew, as plankowner, when the ship was commissioned. Red was very proud of his service to his country and a very patriotic man.
After serving his country, Udell returned to Alexandria where he was employed as a truck driver. He was married in 1964 and to this union he was blessed with two sons, Bob and Tom.
On June 16, 1984, he married Colleen Woolery in Glenwood and was blessed with her three children, Eric, Dawn and Tina. The couple would have celebrated their 28th wedding anniversary on June 16.
After 30 years of driving truck for Didier Brothers and Dahlen Transport, he retired as a MN Teamster. Red was an honorary member of the Minnesota Teamsters Retiree Club, the USS Enterprise (CVAN/CVN-65) Association, Rose City Threshing Association and many area service clubs.
After his retirement in 1998, Red greatly enjoyed gardening, sharing his produce with others, canning and experimenting with new recipes. During his retirement years, Red worked at Fleet Farm where he made new friendships and was reacquainted with old friends. He also looked forward to his USS Enterprise reunions where he could reunite with his Navy shipmates.
His sons were his pride and joy. He enjoyed hunting, fishing and helping them with their mowing service. But more importantly he instilled his work ethic on his sons and would be heard saying, “A hard day’s work never killed anybody.” He lived by this philosophy right up until the end. He was even disappointed when he couldn't go mowing two days before he passed away.
He will be remembered as a hard-working, fun-loving, devoted family man with a good sense of humor but his greatest gift was his generosity, which was shown even after his death by being an organ donor that helped five other people.
He is survived by his wife, Colleen; children, Robert (Jennifer) Wegner of Alexandria, Thomas (fiance’, Melinda) of Alexandria, Eric (Karen) Woolery of Georgia, Dawn Woolery (partner, Marie Sherwood) of Bloomington, Tina Woolery of Alexandria; six grandchildren, Sara Wegner, Harold Wegner, Michael Woolery, Alexander, Aaron, Isabella Johnson; brothers, Paul (Darlene) Wegner of Alexandria, and David (Cathy) Wegner of Maryland.
He was preceded in death by his parents.
Funeral services were held Tuesday, June 5 at Bethesda Lutheran Church in Alexandria. Military honors were by MN National Guard, VFW Post 936 and American Legion Post 87. Burial was at Kinkead Cemetery.
Arrangements are with Anderson Funeral Home in Alexandria; www.andersonfuneral.net.
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