In Memory of Richard Wartenberg

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Richard Donovan Wartenberg, age 80 of River Falls, WI, passed away peacefully at his home, surrounded by his family on February 12, 2021.  Richard was born October 25, 1940 in Mankato, MN to Donald and Margaret (Dobie) Wartenberg.  He grew up on a farm outside of Amboy, MN.  He was baptized and confirmed at Jackson Lake Lutheran Church, Amboy, MN.  Richard graduated from Amboy High School, with the Class of 1958.  He proudly served his country in the United States Army from 1963-1965.  He was united in marriage to Marilyn Bell in 1970.  Their union was blessed with two daughters, Nancy and Brenda.

Richard farmed for most of his lifetime.  He also had many jobs in the winters driving charter buses.  He retired from farming in 1997 and moved to River Falls, WI to be closer to their daughters. Richard spent many years driving school bus for the River Falls School District.

Richard loved music and played in many bands throughout the years. He was a part of the MerryMaker’s dance band, a dance band trio called Gladys, Herb & Dick, Lake Crystal Community Bank, The Bethany College Community Band, St. Paul Police Band, the MN Over 60 Band and most recently with the German band, The Bavarian Musikmeisters out of St Paul, MN. Oktoberfest was his favorite season and he loved any chance to dress up in his Leiderhosen and lead a rousing rendition of Ein Prosit.

Richard and Marilyn enjoyed wintering in Mission, Texas and spending summers on the Mississippi River at the Island Campground in Hager City.  Richard was a devoted Green Bay Packers fan, who delighted in cheering on his team.

Richard was preceded in death by his parents, Donald and Margaret Wartenberg. He is survived by his loving wife, Marilyn; daughters, Nancy (Jonathan) Williams and Brenda (Tye) Yohannes; brother, David Wartenberg; sister-in-law, Jean (Willy) Lindl; brother-in-law, Carrol (Nancy) Bell; nieces and nephews, Matt Lindl, Steve Lindl, and Erica Wartenberg; many cousins, as well as many other relatives and friends.

A private family service will take place.  A Memorial Gathering for Family and Friends will be held 12 Noon – 2:00 PM Saturday, February 20, 2021 at the O’Connell-Benedict Family Funeral Home, 225 S. 3rd St., River Falls.  Military honors will be provided by the River Falls Fletcher-Pechacek American Legion – Post 121.  A further celebration of Richard’s life will take place this summer.  Interment will also take place at a later date at the Jackson Lake Cemetery in Amboy, MN.

Funeral services have been entrusted to the O’Connell-Benedict Funeral Home of River Falls (715) 425-5644.


Richard's Tribute Wall

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  • I remember Richard when I was in high school. I also remember his beautiful wife Marlyn. May the family know that those we love remain with us for love itself lives on.
    Blessings to all 💕🙏🏽💕

  • I can still hear Richard laughing, he was a great classmate and we played in Bill Adams band all through high school. My prayers are with your family and I am sure your memories will give you peace and comfort.

  • I met Rich while driving School Bus in River Falls. We had many good chats at the bus garage and whenever we met each other around town. He was always so friendly and positive. The last time Jerry & I talked to him & his wife, he was experiencing some serious health problems but seemed to be taking it all in stride. We will miss our encounters with him around town and our friendly chats. Sending our sympathies to his wife, girls and entire family. God Bless and comfort all of you.
    Jerry and Beryl