Minnesota Lake Gerald "Jerry" H. James, age 90, of Minnesota Lake, died Thursday, Feb. 23, 2012, at Mapleton Community Home in Mapleton.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2012, at 10;30 a.m. at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Minnesota Lake. Visitation will be Monday, Feb. 27, 2012, from 4-7 p.m. with a 7 p.m. prayer service, and visitation will continue one hour prior to the service on Tuesday, all at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church. The Rev. Thomas Niehaus will officiate and burial will take place in Lura Cemetery, Lura Township, Faribault County. Military Honors will be accorded by Minnesota Lake American Legion. Bruss-Heitner Funeral Home in Wells is assisting the family with arrangements.
Jerry was born Jan. 27, 1922, in Faribault County, the son of Alvin and Myra (Chaffee) James. On July 6, 1973, he was united in marriage to Adeline (Dulas) Sonnek in Minnesota Lake. He was a WWII Veteran, serving in the Air Force from 1942-1945. After his Honorable Discharge he operated a portable feed mill for many years. He had worked at the Farmer's Elevator, Don's Supply, and Matawan Grain and Feed. Jerry was a member of the Minnesota Lake American Legion and the Wells VFW. He enjoyed fishing, playing cards and spending time with his family. In his younger years he played baseball.
Jerry is survived by his wife, Adeline, of Minnesota Lake; step-children, Roger (Mavis) Sonnek, of Eagle Lake, Janet Sonnek, of Waseca, Janice (Jerry) Evenson, of Easton, Edith (Raymond) Woitas, of Albert Lea, Susan (Jerome) Behnke, of Winnebago, Bradley (Marcy) Sonnek, of Easton, Donna (Jim) Glaser, of Rochester, and Dori (David) Papke, of Waseca; 15 grandchildren, Christine (Randy) Pietsch, David (Cindi) Sonnek, Jeffrey (Linda) Evenson, Jason (Nicole) Evenson, Justin (Jodi) Woitas, Alan (Stephanie) Woitas, Chad (Nadia) Woitas, Amanda (Jay) Zabel, Alison Behnke (special friend, Scott Dorpinghaus), Devin Sonnek, Samantha Sonnek, Logan Sonnek, Joseph Glaser, Michael Glaser and Ryan Papke; 16 great-grandchildren, Bethany, Alex, Rachel, Timothy, Drake, Reve, Evalee, Luke, Benjamin, Gabriel, Hunter, Matthew, Connor, Jayden, Jared, Annie, and one more on the way. He is also survived by his sister, Margaret "Sue" (Al) Robbins, of Easton; sisters-in-law, Correan James, of Mankato, and Arlene James, of Mankato; special family friend, Bernetta Wolff, of Waseca; and many nieces, nephews and their families.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Dudley, Charles "Jesse", and Calvin (Virginia); and stepson, Glenn Sonnek.