Obituaries 5/9/19

Delmer Backhaus, 85

Delmer Henry Backhaus, age 85, of St. Michael, passed away Monday, May 6, 2019. He was born October 18, 1933 in Pollock, SD, the youngest of seven children to Henry and Emma (Ketterling) Backhaus.

Del was raised in Miltona, MN and was a 1951 graduate of Alexandria High School. He enlisted in the US Army and proudly served his country from 1953 to 1955.

Del met the love of his life, Nancy, through her brother, Jimmy. On July 1, 1961, Delmer Backhaus and Nancy Negus were united in marriage. The two were blessed with three children: Patrick, Steven and Stacy.

Del worked for Red Owl for 35 years. He was a member of the Osakis Lions Club and Osakis Lutheran Church. Del enjoyed bowling, fishing, hunting, playing horseshoes and cards, and spending time with his family and friends.

He was preceded in death by: his son, Steve Backhaus; parents, Henry and Emma Backhaus; and six brothers and sisters.

Del is survived by: his loving wife of 57 years, Nancy Backhaus; son, Patrick (Jaime) Backhaus; daughter, Stacy (Paul) Berning; grandchildren, Jordan and Kaija Backhaus, Blake, Brandon, Brady and Isabelle Berning, Kaylin and Cory Backhaus; and many nieces, nephews, family and friends.

A memorial service will be held Wednesday, May 15, 2019 at 11:00 a.m., with visitation one-hour prior, at Saron Lutheran Church, 311 Lake St S., Big Lake.

Serving the family is The Peterson Chapel St. Michael-Albertville Funeral Home.


Mary Dziuk, 81

Mary “Dianne” Dziuk, age 81, of St. Therese Oxbow, Brooklyn Park, formerly of Buffalo, passed away peacefully on May 4, 2019, after a short battle with pancreatic cancer.

Mary was preceded in death by: husband, John; and parents, Marjorie & Hector Dupont.

She is survived by: children, Cecilia (Mark) Laberda, Richard (Brenda) Dziuk,Karen Dziuk and Edward Dziuk; siblings, Renee (Marv) Meschke, Gedeon (Jackie) Dupont & Tom Dupont (Maggie Stopera); six grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren.

Mary was born and raised in Minneapolis, taught at St. Anne’s school in Minneapolis and later moved to Buffalo and was a Para for Buffalo Elementary School and volunteered in the school after her retirement.

She was a humbly gifted pianist and an incredibly talented artist as well. She also enjoyed sewing, being outside, listening to classical music, and spending time with family. She was a remarkably strong willed woman but was always gleaming with a smile. Her silliness and contagious giggle will truly be missed.

Knowing she has been reunited with her true love of 59 years brings us sincere comfort in her passing. We will love and miss you for the rest of our days. Until we meet again, Rest in Peace, Mom.

Mass of Christian Burial will take place 11 a.m. Friday, May 10, with visitation two hours prior, at the Church of St. Gerard Majella, 9600 Regent Ave No., Brooklyn Park. Private interment.

Thanks to Twin Cities Physicians, Hospice of the Midwest, St. Therese of Oxbow & special thanks to JA Wedum Residential Hospice who cared for our mother in her final days. In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to Alzheimer’s Association, Pancreatic Cancer Action Network or JA Wedum Residential Hospice Compassion Fund.

Serving the family is Washburn-McReavy, Coon Rapids.


Clarine Eull, 90

Clarine “Connie” Jeanette Eull, age 90, passed away on May 3, 2019 at Guardian Angels Nursing Home in Elk River.

She was born on August 12, 1928 in Hamel, Minnesota the daughter of Joseph & Clara Roy.

On September 2, 1950, Clarine “Connie” Roy and Earl A. Eull were joined in holy marriage at The St. Michael Catholic Church. God blessed their marriage with three sons.  Earl Eull preceded his wife in death on February 20, 2004.

She enjoyed crafts, singing in St. Albert’s Church choir, making church banners and playing cards.

Connie belonged to St. Andrew Catholic Church in Elk River.

Connie is survived by: her loving sons, Jacques (Debbie) Eull of Monticello, Joel Eull of Waverly Hall, Georgia and Jay (Mary) Eull of Albertville; six grandchildren, Kristina, Alyssa, Michael, Joshua, Paul and Dean; seven great-grandchildren; other relatives and friends.

In addition to her husband, Connie was preceded in death by: her parents; brothers, Rayburn & Ellsworth Roy; and by an aunt, Yvonne Neddermeyer.

A Memorial Mass of Christian Burial for Clarine “Connie” Eull will be held on Friday, May 10, 2019 at 12:30 p.m. at St. Andrew Catholic Church in Elk River.  

Inurnment St. Andrew’s Cemetery in Elk River.

A time of gathering will be held on Friday, May 10 from 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. at the church.

The Peterson Chapel St. Michael-Albertville Funeral Home is serving the family.   Online condolences may be made to


Marlys Fiedler, 77

Marlys Jean Fiedler, age 77, of Buffalo passed away on Thursday, May 2, 2019 at Park View Care Center.

She was born on May 23, 1941 in Minneapolis the daughter of Arthur & Delores (Williams) Iverson.

She was formerly employed as an Administrative Assistant for many years at Buffalo Plumbing and Heating.

She especially loved her grandsons and enjoyed watching them play baseball and having them stay over at grandma’s house.

Marlys is survived by: her loving son, Tim (Tawnya) Fiedler of St. Michael; grandsons, Jack and Ben Fiedler; a sister, Judy Iverson; a nephew, Eric (Judy) Iverson; other relatives and many friends.

She was preceded in death by her parents.

A Memorial service for Marlys Fiedler will be held on Friday, May 10, 2019 at 10:30 a.m. at the chapel at Park View Care Center in Buffalo.  Reverend Paul Kling will officiate. Interment took place on Sunday, May 5th, 2019 at The Lakeview Cemetery in Buffalo.

The Peterson Chapel in Buffalo is serving the family.   Online condolences may be made to


Michael Johnson, 75

Michael Walter Johnson, age 75, of Oakdale, passed away April 1, 2019.  He was a thirty-eight-year resident of Buffalo.

Mike was born August 10, 1943 to Ella Kretsch Johnson and Walter Johnson in New Ulm.  He grew up in Winthrop where he graduated.

He graduated in 1965 from Mankato State University with a degree in English and Speech, and that fall began a 30-year career teaching in the Buffalo School District. At Buffalo he directed several Buffalo school plays, served as an assistant wrestling coach, and was the play-by-play announcer for the Buffalo football games.

As an English teacher, he was a respected leader with the teaching faculty, serving many years as the lead teacher negotiator, and a founding member of the teacher’s union.   

Mike married Sharon Malmberg in 1966, and their daughter Michelle was born in 1969.  Throughout his life, Mike enjoyed spending time with his family and friends, creating intricate wood projects, sailing, reading, and model building.

Mike was an avid sailor, co-owning a boat with Mike Kirkwood. Together he and our familly sailed on Lake Pulaski, Lake Superior, San Diego and the San Juan Islands, Washington.  

The family made the trip to Topsail Island, North Carolina for the winter at his request where he passed away. 

Mike is survived by: his wife, Sharon; daughter, Michelle Bynum (Tim); sisters, Joan Conzano (Pete) of Haslett, TX, Pat Scheman (Ken) of Pelican Rapids; sisters-in-law, neices and nephews.

He was preceded in death by: his sister, Nancy and brother-in-law, Lloyd Hostelka of Des Moines, IA.

A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, June 1, 2019 at the home of Marci Wold, 2871 53rd St. N.W., Buffalo (a rural address) from 2-5 p.m.  Memories will be shared about 3 p.m.

Memorials may be sent to the Minnesota Animal Humane Society, the Lower Cape Fear Hospice in Wilmington, NC or organizations of your choice. 


Robert Kilian, 80

Robert M. “Bob” “Daisy” Kilian, age 80, of St. Michael passed away on Tuesday, April 30, 2019 at his residence.  

He was born on February 25, 1939 in St. Michael the son of Leon & Stella (Cardinal) Kilian.

On September 28, 1957, Robert M. Kilian & Charlotte E. Friendshuh were joined in holy marriage at the St. Michael Catholic Church in St. Michael. God blessed their marriage with six children Gary, Margie, Steve, Mary Beth, Dennis and Molly.

He owned and operated Bob Kilian Electric for the past forty-five years along with his family. He belonged to IBEW Local # 292.

Bob was a faithful member of the St. Michael Catholic Church in St. Michael. He was also a member of the Knights of Columbus.

Bob is survived by: loving wife of sixty-one years, Charlotte; children, Gary (Deb) Kilian, Margie (Randy) Tiernan, Steve (Bonnie) Kilian, Mary Beth (Steve) Long, Dennis (Kelly) Kilian & Molly (LeRoy) Lindenfelser; twenty-six grandchildren & twenty-nine great grandchildren; siblings, Maurice “Ditto” (Coleen) Kilian, Paul “Archie” (Audrey) Kilian, Shirley (Roger) Loftman, Jacob “Jack” (Terry) Kilian, James “Jim” (Kristy) Kilian & Cynthia “Cindy” Kilian; a sister-in-law, Anne Kilian; many other relatives and friends.  

Preceded in death by his parents Leon & Stella Kilian, a brother Marvin “Buddy” Kilian and by his in-laws Roman & Clara Friendshuh.  

A Mass of Christian Burial for Bob Kilian was held at 11:00 a.m. Tuesday, May 7, 2019 at the St. Michael Catholic Church, 11300 Frankfort Parkway N.E., in St. Michael.  Father Peter Richards was the Celebrant.  Interment followed at the St. Michael Catholic Cemetery. A visitation was held on Monday, May 6, from 4-8 p.m. at the church.   Further visitation was Tuesday morning, May 7, from 9:30-10:30 a.m.

Casket Bearers were Josh Kilian, Matt Tiernan, Joe Kilian, Daniel Long, Kyle Kilian and Roman Lindenfelser.

In lieu of flowers, memorials to Crescent Cove (Respite and Hospice Home for Children) or St. Michael Catholic Endowment Fund.  

The Peterson Chapel St. Michael-Albertville Funeral Home served the family.     Online condolences may be made to


Gene Kubu, 75

Gene G. Kubu, age 75, of Buffalo passed away on Wednesday, May 1, 2019 at North Memorial in Robbinsdale.

He was born on September 8, 1943 in Marshalltown, Iowa the son of George T. & Wilma A. (Breja) Kubu.  Graduated from Van Horne High School in 1962 and later attended Dunwoody Institute for two years.

On November 9, 1963 he was joined in holy marriage to Jean H. Garbers. God blessed their marriage with two sons.  He was employed for thirty-nine years by The Tennant Company and later part-time at Ryan Motors for five years. 

He enjoyed fishing, winters in Arizona, lawn work, the out of doors and being with his grandchildren and going to all their activities.

Gene is survived by: his loving wife of fifty-five years, Jean; a son, Talion (Sara) Kubu; grandchildren, Tyller, Benjamin, Anna and Nicholas; a sister, Manon (Don) Coons; a sister-in-law, Joan Garbers; many friends and relatives.

He was preceded in death by: a son, Gregory; his parents; and by a sister, Gwendolyn.  

Mass of Christian Burial for Gene Kubu was held at 11:00 a.m. Tuesday, May 7, 2019 at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Buffalo.  A visitation was held at the church, Monday, May 6, 4-8 p.m. Further visitation was held on Tuesday, May 7, one hour prior to Mass.

In lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested to the Leukemia Society or Buffalo Youth Hockey.

The Peterson Chapel in Buffalo served the family.  Online condolences may be made to


William Rancour, 85

Our Dad was born on January 28, 1934 in Buffalo, Minnesota. He and all his siblings were born in the house his parents, Thomas and Bertha (Otten), built.

They homestead their farm outside of Buffalo on Division Street. His brothers were Lawrence, Herbert, and Raymond Rancour, and his sisters were Florence Zachman, Louise Rancour, Marie Riggs, Lorraine Buehl, and surviving sister, Ester Arne.

Bill went into the Air Force right out of high school in 1953, and proudly served for over 30 years. While serving in Vietnam, he received the Bronze Star. He retired at the highest rank of Chief Master Sergeant (CMSgt) in 1984.

Our father is now in heaven with his Father, our Lord. Our father is still in our hearts and memory forever. His love was for his family and pets. We will miss him until we see him again. He will be waiting for all of us to come home; He loved the family life.

He married Janice Krunzel and had two daughters, Tina (Edward) Kern and Deborah Rancour.

He later married Loan Anh “Kitty” and her children, Linda (John) Roberts, Andrew (Esperanza) Rancour, Jacque (Regina) Robert Rancour, Lisa (Eric) Imiola, and Susan (Greg) Stepovich joined the family.

He then married Lila Bruska and her children, Doug Bruska, Gayle (Charles) Melin, and Debbie Schmidt, joined the family.

He is also survived by: his grandchildren, Charles (Alicison) Anderson, Jason Garcia, Derick Garcia, Brandon Garcia, Joey Rancour, Trisha Rancour, Sarha Rancour, James Imiola, Dillion Imiola, Nichole Schmidt, Amie Zavaleta, Andrea Holly, Jeremy Melin and Jason Melin; great-grandchildren, Bennett Anderson, Raena Garcia, Jessinynia, Alicia, Carlos and Alexander, Brook, Mason and Hailly.

Bill was preceded in death by: his wives, Janice and Loan; parents, Thomas and Bertha; siblings, Lawrence, Herbert, and Raymond Rancour, Florence Zachman, Louise Rancour, Marie Riggs, and Lorraine Buehl; and many other relatives and friends.

A Memorial Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Friday, May 10, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. with visitation one-hour prior at St. Francis Catholic Church in Buffalo. Interment will be held at a later date.

Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to The Peterson Chapel of Buffalo. Online condolences for the family may be directed to


John Thibodeau, 70

In Loving Memory of John D. Thibodeau. He will be sorely missed by family and friends.

He lived life to the fullest. Born November 26, 1948 in Dayton. Moved to Minneapolis, attended South High School, started his carpet layer apprenticeship while still in high school then graduated in 1967.

Met and married his first love Coni in 1969, had four beautiful children.

He ran a successful carpet business in Fergus Falls. Then later on relocated to Buffalo area and continued his business where he was known by many as “Johnny the carpet man.”

He loved family and would give the shirt off of his back if needed.

He loved sports, fishing, card games, playing dice and games with his grandkids and being outside with his birdhouses and wind chimes anytime he could.

He loved to travel when he could, he has been to Arizona, Wyoming, Florida, Cancun, Hawaii, Cayman Island, Amsterdam, and Germany twice.

Moved to Buffalo, where he met Kathleen Bock (Kitty), continued his carpet business and later married Kitty. They were together for 25 years.

He is survived by: wife, Kathleen Bock (Kitty); children, Jeff Bury, Jade (significant other Stephanie), Angela (Russell) Himley, Kera (significant other Brandon), Brian (Trish); step-children, Rebecca (James) Reynolds, Michele Bock (Hiro Matsuoka), and Melanie Bock; grandchildren, Ryli Rivas, Bailey & Izik Bartel, Jaimen Thibodeau, Raidyn and Torryn Thibodeau, Alysyn Johnson, Taylor Lindberg, Alex and Haley Bury; many numerous cousins, nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by: parents, Wesley and Victoria Thibodeau; siblings, George, Shirley, Annie, Dorothy, Eleanor, Donna, Leo, Rosie; twin brother James; infant sister; special nephew Joey.

A Memorial service for John D. Thibodeau was held on Monday, May 6th, 2019 at 2:00 p.m. at Our Father’s Lutheran Church in Rockford. Pastor Cathy Jones officiated. A visitation was held one hour prior to services at the church.

The Peterson Chapel in Buffalo is serving the family.   Online condolences may be made to


Leonora Vassar, 55

Leonora S. Vassar, age 55, of Willmar and formerly of Buffalo, passed away on Monday, April 29, 2019 at the St. Cloud Hospital.

She was born on May 17, 1963 in Buffalo the daughter of Tom & Marjorie (Mattson) Vassar.

Leonora is survived by: her children, Christopher Vassar of Buffalo, Angela Lemarr of Rockford, Tiffany Vassar of Buffalo, Paul Vassar of Breckenridge, Melissa Bonk, Molly Bonk, Matthew Bonk and Mary Bonk all of Minnesota; eight grandchildren; a brother, Mike Vassar of Maple Lake; a sister, Joy Vassar of Buffalo; other relatives and friends, including Dexter Walker of Barnesville, Georgia.

She was preceded in death by two stillborn babies; a grandchild, Alyissia Vassar; three other infant grandchildren; a son-in-law, Jeremy Lemarr; her parents; and by an aunt, Janet Endres.

A visitation was held on Sunday, May 5, 2019 one hour prior to services. Funeral services for Leonora Vassar were held on Sunday, May 5 at 3:00 p.m. at The Peterson Chapel in Buffalo. Pastor Jack Heidenreich officiated.  

The Peterson Chapel in Buffalo served the family. Online condolences may be made to


Teresa Wandersee, 76

Teresa Frances (Shandley) Wandersee, age 76 of Buffalo, passed away Monday, May 6, 2019. She was born January 16, 1943 in Minneapolis, the daughter of Donald and Frances (Truax) Shandley.

Teresa Shandley married John Welter and the two had six children. Teresa later married Kenny Wandersee.

Teresa was a member of 4-H and enjoyed fishing, hunting, the outdoors, horseback riding, and spending time with her family. She was a great speedskater and barrel racer.

She was preceded in death by: her second husband, Kenny Wandersee; parents, Donald and Frances Shandley; son, Danny Welter; grandson, Cole Jenkins; siblings, Ronald Shandley, Kathleen Krippner; and brother-in-law, Bob Ley.

Teresa is survived by: her first husband, John Welter; children, David Welter (Teri), Doug Welter (Shelly Robinson), Duane Welter, Dorraine Lindberg (Mike Munson), Debbie Stewart (Kevin Reyna), Dennis Welter; 22 grandchildren; 18 great-grandchildren; siblings, Roger Shandley (Mary), James Shandley, Marianna Ley, Tom Shandley (Beth), Donna Moore (Tom); beloved dog, Daisy May; and many nieces, nephews, family and friends.

A memorial service will be held Saturday, May 11, 2019 at 2:00 p.m., with visitation one-hour prior, at The Peterson Chapel in Buffalo.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Animal Humane Society.

Serving the family is The Peterson Chapel in Buffalo.


Lawrence Wurm, 78

Lawrence W. Wurm, age 78, of Maple Lake, died Monday, May 6, 2019 at Centennial Villa in Annandale.

Mass of Christian Burial will be held 10:30 a.m. Friday, May 10, 2019 at St. Timothy Catholic Church, Maple Lake with Fr. Andrew Stueve as Celebrant. Burial will follow at St. Timothy Catholic Cemetery. Visitation will be held from 4:00-7:00 p.m. on Thursday and from 9:00-10:00 a.m. on Friday, both at the Dingmann Funeral Care Chapel, Maple Lake. A prayer service will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday at the funeral home.

Lawrence William Wurm was born at home in Corinna Township on August 9, 1940. He was the second child of Russell and Lorraine (Cordell) Wurm. Lawrence attended St. Timothy’s School in Maple Lake and graduated from Maple Lake High School with the Class of 1958.

In 1962, he was united in marriage to Carol J. Eichten at St. Timothy’s Catholic Church; they were blessed with four children.

Lawrence worked as a pipelayer in water and sewer construction for over 25 years with Orfei & Sons and P.C.I.; he later worked at Production Stamping in Rogers. He was a lifetime member of St. Timothy’s Catholic Church.

In his spare time, Lawrence enjoyed sports, NASCAR, wearing and collecting baseball caps, and trying his luck with slot machines. He took great pride in keeping his vehicles and yard in tip-top shape. Above all, Lawrence loved his family and took great pride in all of them.

He is survived by: his wife, of 57 years, Carol of Maple Lake; children, Greg (Pam) of Annandale, Jerry (Tracey) of Maple Lake, Julie (Mike) Moree of McBee, South Carolina, and Glen (Rose) of Woodbury; grandchildren, Nick Wurm, Lauren (Craig) Johnson, Brittany (Carl) Hoiland, Chelsey, Isabella, Francesca, Solomon, and Elijah Wurm; great-grandchildren, Logan and Carter Hoiland and Lindy and Lola Johnson; siblings, Howard (Joyce) of Albertville, Marilyn (Dave) Hochstedler of St. Michael, Lester (Jeannine), Clifford, Marlene Mavencamp, and Mark (Jackie) all of Maple Lake; sister-in-law, Marilyn Wurm of Monticello; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Joyce Schneider, Ralph (Karen) Eichten, Darlene Eichten, Lawrence “Red” (Cathi) Eichten, Russ (Bev) Eichten, and Patty (Fred) Culp; many nieces, nephews, other family members, and dear friends.

He was preceded in death by: his parents; brother, Roger; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Ralph and Frances Eichten; sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law, Carol Smith Wurm, Mike Mavencamp, Dennis Eichten, James Schneider, David and Sherry Larson.

Nick Wurm, Craig Johnson, Carl Hoiland, Roger Wurm Jr., Fred Culp, and Tim Callahan will serve as pallbearers. Krista Elsenpeter and Sarah Goelz will provide music for the service.

Arrangements entrusted to Dingmann Funeral Care Burial & Cremation Services of Maple Lake. Obituary, Guestbook & Video Tribute online at


The Drummer and The Wright County Journal Press

PO Box 159
108 Central Ave.
Buffalo MN 55313

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