The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Donald E. Wesenberg


IRONWOOD, Mich. - Donald E. Wesenberg, 85, of Ironwood, died peacefully early Sunday morning, Dec. 13, 2015, at home, surrounded by his loving family, following a courageous, two-year battle with cancer.

Don was born June 14, 1930, in Milwaukee, son of the late Elmore and Helen (Peterson) Wesenberg, and moved to Ironwood at the age of 5, where he attended G.N. Sleight School and graduated from Luther L. Wright High School in 1948. He then enlisted in the U.S. Navy on June 25, 1948, proudly serving his country as an aircraft mechanic in the Air Corps during the Korean Conflict, and was honorably discharged on June 17, 1952.

Following his discharge, he worked at Nicholas Distributing in Ironwood for a short time, then was employed as an electrician for Harlow Moore at Moore's Electric in Ironwood for 18 years, retiring as a union electrician throughout Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan in 1992.

Don was a member of Salem Lutheran Church in Ironwood and the former St. Luke's Church, Local 242, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Ironwood American Legion Post 5, Iron Mountain Masonic Lodge 388, and the Marquette Shrine. An accomplished home-builder, he enjoyed building and remodeling homes with his boys. He also enjoyed camping, loved deer hunting, and was a former Scoutmaster.

On Aug. 29, 1953, he was united in marriage to the former Joan Marie Walquist of Ironwood at St. Luke's Church by the Rev. Hanser.

Surviving are his wife, Joan, of 62 years; three sons, Scott and Mark (Robyn), both of Ironwood, and Jeff (Barbara), Ironwood Township; a daughter, Patricia Packmayer, Gile, Wis .; six grandchildren, Carrie (Ryan) Philippon, Surprise, Ariz., Nikki Mitchell (Daniel), Haslett, Krystal (Steven) Wallin, Gile, Nicholas (Maggie) Samardich, McFarland, Wis., Ryan Wesenberg, Green Bay, Wis., and Brandon Wesenberg, Ironwood; eight great-grandchildren, Kylie and Mason Philippon, Londyn and Zayden Samardich, Greyson and Jamesen Wallin, and Penelope and Mara Tucker; a brother, Mitchell (Vanohe) Nicholas, Sterling Heights; sister-in-law, Connie Nicholas, Indianapolis; niece, Angela (David) Mazzara, Wichita, Kan .; and two nephews, Robert Nicholas, Indianapolis, and John Nicholas, Pittsburgh.

Besides his parents, he was predeceased by a brother, David Nicholas.

Per Don's wishes, cremation has taken place.

Memorial services will be held Friday, Dec. 18, at 11 a.m., preceded by visitation beginning at 10 a.m., at Salem Lutheran Church in Ironwood, with Pastor Kurt Kovanen officiating.

Full military honors will be accorded at the church by the Ironwood American Legion Post 5 Honor Guard.

Luncheon will follow at the Bell Chalet in downtown Hurley.

Private interment will be in Riverside Cemetery, Ironwood.

In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to Regional Hospice, 216 E. Aurora St., Ironwood, MI 49938.

Arrangements have been entrusted to McKevitt-Patrick Funeral Home and Cremation Services of Ironwood. Condolences may be given to Don's family online at


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