Kenneth J. Washa

Kenneth J. Washa

FAIRMONT — Mass of Christian Burial for Kenneth J. Washa, age 84, of Fairmont, Minn., will be 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020, at St. John Vianney Catholic Church in Fairmont, with full military honors following the service at the church by the Lee C. Prentice American Legion Post 36 and Martin County Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1222. A private family burial will be held in Calvary Cemetery.

Visitation will be two hours prior to the time of service, from 9-11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020, at St. John Vianney Catholic Church in Fairmont.

Kenneth passed away Monday morning, Oct. 12, 2020, at his home in Fairmont.

Lakeview Funeral Home and Cremation Service in Fairmont is assisting the family with arrangements.

The family asks that people are mindful of social distancing guidelines, wear masks and follow the best practices in helping to reduce the spread of COVID-19. The number of visitors will be monitored.

Kenneth John Washa was born Aug. 15, 1936, in Montgomery, Minn., the son of Nathan and Rose (Dietz) Washa. Growing up on a farm, Ken found a love for the outdoors, adventure and fixing things. He attended school in Montgomery and graduated from Montgomery High School.

Following his graduation, Ken enlisted in the U.S. Army, where he served his country proudly. On Dec. 20, 1957, Ken received his honorable discharged and returned home to Minnesota.

Upon his return home, Ken attended Dunwoody Industrial Institute and focused his studies on mechanics and graduated in 1959.

On Aug. 13, 1960, Ken was united in marriage to Ellen Schaefer in Richfield, Minn. Together, the couple would make their home in Fairmont and would be blessed with four children: Mark, Susan, Deanne and Katherine. Ken and Ellen were blessed to celebrate 60 years of marriage this year.

Ken loved turning wrenches and could fix anything that needed repair. He worked for Park Motors, later known as Fairmont Ford for 38 years, retiring on Sept. 3, 1998.

Ken’s passion for the outdoors was evident as he spent warm summer days under the sun trying his luck with a line in the water and his favorite lure on the end trying to catch the next big fish. The change of the seasons and the cool fall mornings would bring a new challenge to Ken as he honed his hunting skills, never taking for granted the beauty of nature around him. He looked forward to new challenges and trying new things. He became an accomplished winemaker and knew his way around the kitchen whether it was while camping or at home baking. Ken could often be found tinkering on various projects, and his quiet time was spent watching westerns and movies on the military.

Family was extremely important to Ken and he cherished time spent with Ellen, his children and grandchildren.

Left to cherish his memory is his wife, Ellen Washa; children, Mark (Maria) Washa and their children, Nathan (Griffy), Noah, Joseph, Mark Jr., and Christo; Susan (Scott) Williams and their children, Aaron (Amanda), Jacqueline, Zachary, and Derek; Deanne (Gregory) Luhmann and their children, Jacob (Ashley) and their children, Kadence and Kanon, Alexander (Melissa), and Cory (Cas); Katherine “Kate” Grathwohl and her children, Daniele (Conner), and Matthew; siblings, Sharon (Peter) Kendrigan, Robert (Nancy) Washa, and Mary (John) Turek; brother-in-law, Daniel (Ursula) Schaefer; sister-in-law, Kathleen Gallagher; as well as many other extended family and friends.

Ken was preceded in death by his parents, Nathan and Rose Washa; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Albert and Dorothy Schaefer; son-in-law, Kevin Grathwohl; and two brothers-in-law, David Schaefer and Thomas Gallagher.