Mervin WagnerMervin R. "Sock" Wagner, 83, of Fisher, MN, died Thursday evening, February 10, 2011, in the Villa St. Vincent Nursing Home in Crookston with several of his family members at his side.
Mervin R. "Sock" Wagner, 83, of Fisher, MN, died Thursday evening, February 10, 2011, in the Villa St. Vincent Nursing Home in Crookston with several of his family members at his side.
Sock was born on the family farm, near Fisher, on April 23, 1927, and was the son of Lawrence D. and Lilly (Radi) Wagner. He was baptized and confirmed in the Lutheran faith and attended Fisher schools, graduating from Fisher High School in 1945. Shortly before his graduation, Sock enlisted in the U.S. Navy and left for the Great Lakes Naval Station in Illinois on May 17th. His father received his high school diploma in Sock's absence. Sock drove semis for the Navy until shipping out to Hong Kong, China, as part of the U.S. Occupation Force after WWII. He was honorably discharged on August 6, 1946 and returned home. He attended Bemidji State Teachers' College for the next two years, and one of his favorite stories about those days was about winning a dance contest. He loved to tell everyone how 'light on his feet' he was in those days. He returned to Fisher to farm with his father and brothers, and on June 5, 1949 was united in marriage to Dorothy C. Hanson in Crookston. Sock and Dorothy made their home in Fisher and he continued to farm in Fisher township until retirement in 1992. During the winter months of those first years of farming he also worked as a salesman and truck driver for Fert-L-Flow in Crookston. He served as mayor of the City of Fisher from 1960 through 1964, and was the acting Postmaster from November 1960 until September 1961. In 1987 Sock and Dorothy began spending winters in Mesa, Arizona, where they enjoyed the company of old and new friends for many years. Very sadly, Dorothy passed away there on January 6, 1999. Sock continued to go to Mesa until illness made it necessary for him to return home several weeks ago.
Sock was a devoted member of the Trinity Lutheran Church in Fisher, and held several leadership positions over the years. When in Mesa, he attended Eternal Life Lutheran Church. He held memberships in Fisher's Theodore Stalemo Legion Post #242, of which he was a Past-Commander; and the Red River Valley Sugar Beet Growers Association. In 1986 he was honored as recipient of the Association's Half Century Award. One of the highlights of his later years was a trip Sock made to Washington, D.C. in 2008, with many other area veterans, to visit the World War II Memorial, Arlington National Cemetery, and several other sites. One of his favorite pastimes throughout the years was flying his own plane, including many flights made to Arizona with Dorothy as his trusty partner. He also enjoyed golfing and fishing. Sock was a wonderful husband, brother, uncle, great-uncle, cousin, and friend; and he will be lovingly missed and remembered by all who were a part of his life. May God bless his memory.
Surviving family members include 2 sisters and a brother-in-law, Helen and Harry Puffe of Moorhead, MN, and Rose Skyberg of East Grand Forks, MN; 2 sisters-in-law, Arleen Wagner and Charlotte Wagner of Fisher, MN; and many nieces, nephews, and other relatives, including brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Orland and Vivian Hanson, Howard and Evelyn Hanson, and George and Nancy Hanson, all of Crookston, MN. Sock was preceded in death by his beloved wife of forty-nine years, Dorothy; his parents, Lawrence and Lilly; 2 brothers, Norman "Bud" and Arthur "Art" Wagner; an infant sister, Jeanne Ruth; a brother-in-law, Herman Skyberg Jr.; a nephew, Lawrence "Larry" Wagner II; and a brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Gilman and Maxine Hanson.
The funeral service for Mervin R. "Sock" Wagner will be held at 10:30 am, Tuesday, February 15, 2011, in the Trinity Lutheran Church in Fisher with The Rev. Tim Winterstein, officiating.
Military Honors will be provided by Theodore Stalemo American Legion Post #242.
Visitation will be from 5-7:00 pm Monday at the Stenshoel-Houske Funeral Home in Crookston, with a prayer service at 7:00 pm, and also at the church for one hour prior to the funeral.
Interment will be in Greenwood Cemetery, Fisher, in the spring.
(Stenshoel-Houske Funeral Home, Crookston, MN)