Vernon Haase, 1922-2015

Published 9:24 am Monday, March 9, 2015

Vernon L. Haase (Vern) passed away Friday, March 6, 2015, at Faribault Senior Living in Faribault. Vern was 93.

Vernon Haase

Vernon Haase

He was born in Minneapolis Feb. 24, 1922, to Lawrence E. Haase and Ellen (Halling) Haase. The family moved to Lake City where Vern attended Lincoln High School, graduating in 1941.

Vern enlisted in the Army Oct. 14, 1942. He then attended Dunwoody in Minneapolis from October 1942 until August 1943, studying radio repair.  He took his basic training at Camp Crowder, Missouri. It was at Camp Crowder that he married his high school sweetheart, Evelyn Wegner, Oct. 30, 1943.

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He served as a radio operator with the 3254 Signal Service Company throughout Normandy, Northern France, Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe campaigns for a period of 18 months. He supervised a crew of six men in maintaining contact between advance station and headquarters. He received his honorable discharge as a staff sergeant Dec. 8, 1945.

After being discharged Vern returned home to Lake City and rejoined his wife, Evelyn, and their son, Ronald, who was born while Vern was overseas. He worked at Wise Hardware as a manager trainee under the GI Bill.  He later worked for Ferrin’s Furniture in Red Wing as a salesman. While living in Lake City a second child, Moni Rae, was born.

In 1948 the family moved to Faribault. Vern worked at Mahler Hardware until June 1, 1952, when he joined North American Life & Casualty Co. as a salesman. A third child, Brad Lee, was born in Faribault. Vern was president of the Faribault Jaycees and president of the Faribault Chamber of Commerce.

In 1970 the family moved to Albert Lea when Vern became manager of the southern Minnesota branch office for North American Life & Casualty Co. He continued in the insurance business until his retirement Aug. 1, 2010. Vern was a member of the Albert Lea Lions Club. He was a 60-year member of the American Legion. He was a life member of the Albert Lea Chamber of Commerce and the Early Bird Investment Club. He was also a charter member of the Chamber Ambassadors.

He is survived by his wife of 71 years, Evelyn; his son, Ronald, and wife, Barbara; daughter, Moni, and husband, Paul Shelstad; son, Brad, and wife, Kelli; grandchildren Mary (Ahmed) Faridi, Erik Shelstad, Dana (Shawn) Spensley, Brett (Ashley) Haase and Katie (Corey) Brandt; and great-grandchildren Hamid and Sana Faridi, Camryn Spensley, Bryn and Ledger Haase, and Anden Brandt. Vern is also survived by four sisters, Virginia Morton, LaVonne Fick and Joyce Zillgitt, all of Lake City, and Gloria (Steve) Shedlov of Rogers.

Vern was preceded in death by his parents Lawrence and Ellen Haase; his father- and mother-in-law Albert and Mary Wegner; and three brothers-in-law, Fred Fick, Curtis Zillgitt and Sam Morton.

Vern will always be remembered for his contagious smile, charm and his many ways to make you laugh just by being “Vern.” His family will miss him dearly.

Memorial services will be at 2 p.m. Tuesday at Fourth Avenue United Methodist Church in Faribault with the Rev. Dennis Tamke.

Memorial visitation will be from 5 to 7 p.m. today at Boldt Funeral Home in Faribault and also at church for one hour prior to the service on Tuesday.

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