John K. Echternacht (1931 - 2017)

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John K. Echternacht, Senior Master Sergeant Retired, left this world on Aug. 1, 2017, with his wife, Wanda Jeanne, and daughter, Judy, by his bedside at Primrose in Wasilla, Alaska. He had asked the lord to forgive him of his sins and shortcomings and to take him into his care just prior to his last days. He was raised in the Presbyterian faith and continued with military chapels throughout his life.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Sunday, Aug. 13, 2017, at 2:30 p.m. at Primrose, 1123 North Elkhorn Drive, Wasilla, AK 99654. Military and Masonic Graveside will be held on Friday, Aug. 11, 2017, at 3 p.m. at Fort Richardson National Cemetery in Fort Richardson, Alaska. Officiating the service will be Becky Day.
John was born on Feb. 9, 1931, in Spalding, Neb. John Served his country in the United States Air Force from Nov. 30, 1950, to May 31, 1976. While John served in the Air Force he received many awards: Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal and Air Force Commendation Medal with one Oak Leaf. After John retired from the military, he worked at RCA/GE/IBEW from 1977-1988, and then State of Alaska from 1989-1996. In 1976, John moved to Alaska, and lived in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Palmer and Wasilla. John loved to bowl, fish, camp and spend time with family and friends.
John was a very loving and devoted husband to Wanda Jeanne for 67 years; he displayed a very strong presence and example of a strong and disciplined husband, father and friend to many through the years. His children, two daughters and three sons, knew that dad was always there to call and ask for advice which he gave even if it wasn't always what they wanted to hear.
John was very strong in his beliefs that America was a great country and that our military needed to have prayers to be watched over for continued safety. He hoped that all military, active and veteran status, would receive the medical care they needed to have peace and be able to recover to have good lives with families.
John was a member of many organizations. He was a Mason-Scottish Rite, Eastern Star and is still in contact with several of his Fraternal Brothers. He was a member of numerous Veterans groups and until, health issues several years ago, was on the board of a few of them in Alaska.
One of John's final prayers was that all of his family and extended family be watched over here on earth; family, relatives and friends in heaven are resting peacefully; that our veterans, law enforcement, fire fighters and medical personnel, and our government continue to be watched over and protected under God. He stated in the Holy Name I pray, Amen.
John is survived by his wife, Wanda Jeanne Nowka Echternacht of Wasilla; daughters, Linda and John Combs of Palmer, Alaska, and Judy and Don Urbatsch of Welch, Okla.; sons, Donald and Mary Echternacht of Palmer, and Douglas and Lisa Echternacht of Anchorage, Alaska; brother, Dr. Fred and Marcy Echternacht; six grandsons; three granddaughters; five great-grandsons; four great-granddaughters; three nieces; and one nephew.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Paul V. Echternacht and Alma E. Savage Echternacht; in-laws, Herman Nowka and Blanche Cranston Nowka; sister, Betty Echternacht Porter and brother-in-law, Dale Porter; and son, John David Echternacht.
Arrangements were under the direction of Valley Funeral Home, Wasilla Chapel.
Please visits John's online guestbook and Obituary at

Funeral Home
Valley Funeral Home & Crematory
151 East Herning Avenue
Wasilla, AK 99654
(907) 373-3344
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Published in Anchorage Daily News on Aug. 9, 2017
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