Cover photo for Lester W Wilson's Obituary
Lester W Wilson Profile Photo
1929 Lester 2010

Lester W Wilson

May 24, 1929 — June 19, 2010

Born on May 4, 1929, Les liked to say that he was born the year the stock market crashed. And that simple statement explains much of what the life of he andhis 11 brothers and sisters was like in those difficult days. He told stories of picking up coal along the train track,WPA work for his dad, big pans of Homemade cornmeal mush and hominy, and government supported commodities trucks that made the rounds with flour and other staples and then came back around to pick up trash ? but there was none because people used everything. He told us about the pet pig that followed the kids like a dog, but ended up in the pork barrel one day; the trips they made down Sioux City?s snowy hills on a discarded metal sign; and chasing the girls with a snake at school. In 1944, at age 15, he enlisted in the army and served in World War II. His allotment check came home to help support the rest of the family. While overseas he served in the signal corps and spent time in Austria and Germany. He witnessed the horrors of Dachau concentration camp shortly after its liberation. He returned to the States, and in 1951 married Joyce McKenzie. They had three children: Larry, Diana Jo, and Peggy. They left Iowa and lived in both California and Oregon, where he worked in a lumber mill. They parted in 1955. Les returned to the Midwest and worked for many years as a long haul truck driver. He was married to Bonnie (Clark) from 1957 to 1969. Together they raised his first three children and four of their own: Norma, Mary Rose, Tim, and Rebecca. They lived in the Council Bluffs area, then moved to Martinsburg, NE, where he owned and operated a garage/welding shop and then, at his mother?s request, farmed with her for about six years. Les was intrigued by anything mechanical, from trains to Model T?s, and had a gift for repairing vehicles for family and friends as well as constructing some unique creations of his own ? often an amalgam of miscellaneous parts he?d collected. For a time he worked as a mechanic in Nebraska, then moved to Sioux City when he married Donna in 1973. He became Dad to Donna?s daughter Jodi. In 1974 he was baptized and confirmed. For a few years he drove a U.S. mail truck between Sioux City and Omaha, and then spent 14 years with the Sioux City Transit System as a city bus driver until his retirement in 1991. He loved talking and joking with people ? those on his bus, on his HAM radio, fellow church members, and anyone who happened to be around him ? no one was a stranger. Three years ago he and Donna moved to Sioux Falls and joined Resurrection Lutheran Church. On June 19, 2010, the Lord called him home. Children and Spouses Larry Wilson (deceased), and Tina Diana Jo Block, and John Peggy Gregg, and DeRoy Norma Sogn, and Jeff Timothy Wilson Mary Rose McDaniel Rebecca Merkley (deceased) Jodi VanderWiel, and David Brothers and Sisters and Spouses Francis Wilson (deceased) Ernest Wilson Jr., and Lillian (both deceased) Geneva Marshall, and Floyd (both deceased) Arnold Wilson, and Donna (both deceased) Ina Weaver, and Ollie (both deceased) Margaret Tarrence, and Lowell (deceased) Vera Ashley Robert Wilson (deceased) Phyllis Jordt Duane Wilson, and Carolyn Carol Peterson, and Don 14 grandchildren 25 great grandchildren 1 great great grandchild
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