Stanley L. Diesch (1925 - 2017)

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Stanley L. Diesch DVM, MPH
Professor Emeritus
University of Minn.
College of Veterinary Medicine

May 16, 1925 - May 10, 2017

ST PAUL, Minn. – Stan was born in Blooming Prairie Minn., May 16, 1925, to John and Emma (Erickson) Diesch. Stan died at home surrounded by family, just short of his 92nd birthday. Survived by his beloved wife Darlene of nearly 61 years; two daughters: Lauren (Mike) Falkner, Fargo, N.D. and Stephanie (Rick) Wagner, rural Taylors Falls, Minn.; grandchildren: John (Blythe) Riske and great-grandson, August, Oakland, Calif, Kelly Riske, Fargo; USAF Staff Sgt. Andrew (Dr Laura) Wagner, Sauk City, Wis., and Steven (fiancé Libby Storlie) Wagner, Forest Lake; two step-grandsons: Eric and Jon Falkner and their families; his sister, Lucille (Erling) Lee, of rural Zumbro Falls, Minn. and his nieces and nephews; and by his sister-in-law, Milly Neidt Diesch. Preceeded in death by his parents; and recently his brother Gordon, age 96, who was laid to rest on April 22, 2017.
Stan was raised on the family livestock farm. He graduated from Blooming Prairie High School as salutatorian in 1943. Before beginning college he spent nearly a year in Los Angeles with his brother and cousin working at Douglas Aircraft. He began Luther College, Decorah, Iowa and after two years, transferred to the University of Minnesota, College of Agriculture in the pre-veterinary program. He received his BS degree with distinction in Animal Industry and Agricultural Economics. He was a proud member of the Farmhouse Fraternity and is known for playing in his fraternity band around campus. Stan worked for one year in Belle Plaine, Minn. teaching Veteran's Agriculture, returned to the U of Minn. to attend the College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) where he graduated in 1956.
Following graduation, in July 1956 he married Darlene Witty in Noonan N.D., her home area of Burke and Divide Counties. They met on a blind date arranged by a good veterinary friend whose wife worked with Darlene. By now Stan was 30 years old, and his friends were on a mission to marry him off!
Stan and Darlene moved to Freeport, Ill., where he worked in a mixed veterinary practice, moving within year to a practice in Winthrop, Iowa, which he purchased (mainly swine, beef and dairy cattle) in Winthrop. While Stan and Darlene ran the practice for 6 1/2 years, he was active in the community, having served on its school board and he was proud of the fact that he had managed to introduce chemistry into the local high school curriculum. Stan was a member of the Winthrop Lions Club and he was one of three businessmen who developed the Buffalo Creek Golf Course and Country Club on donated farmland. Their two daughters were born in Iowa in 1957 and 1960.
Stan had the urge to move on in 1962 and returned to the U of Minn. where he received a Masters in Public Health in 1963. He joined the Medical School at the University of Iowa, Iowa City, at its Institute for Agricultural Medicine. This was the beginning of his long and illustrious career in veterinary public health. Stan worked diligently in research, teaching, and writing.
Stan continued these same ground breaking endeavors after returning to join the faculty of the University of Minnesota, College of Veterinary Medicine and the School of Public Health in 1966, where he then worked for more than 30 years. He was a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine. He also co-built and operated the small animal Apache Animal Hospital in NE Minneapolis.
In his career Stan has served university, state, national, and international organizations and committees in many capacities and received many honors. He received the Public Service Award from both his state and national veterinary associations, and the International Veterinary Congress Prize from the American Veterinary Medical Association. He served as a consultant to the World Health Organization, the Pan American Health Organization in animal/human related diseases, and to many developing countries, as representative of the University of Minnesota. He served as Director of International Programs for the College of Veterinary Medicine for last 10 years.
In 2014 Stan was honored by his school with the Distinguished Service Award from the Blooming Prairie High School Education Foundation. An additional highlight for him was representing his school and award in the town's July 4th parade.
A profound award in 2015 was the Siehl Prize for the Excellence in Agriculture from the College of Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Sciences, in the "Knowledge" category, in 2015.
Dr. Diesch was a leader in the Minnesota-Uruguay Partners of the Americas program, a Western Hemisphere NGO, serving as president and chairman of the board for many years. He was asked by the president of the country of Uruguay to serve as Honorary Consul in Minnesota, which he served for 6 years, and became and remained a member of the Minnesota Consular Corps. His many accomplishes with Partners of the Americas, along with his wife Darlene, resulted in their receiving a joint award, "The Lifetime Achievement Award" from Partners of the Americas, Washington, DC, presented at an international meeting in Quito, Ecuador in 2002. He served many years as a board member, then president for 3 years of the International Society for Animal Hygiene, initially a western and eastern European organization, which Dr. Diesch further developed in the U.S., Mexico and So. America. He brought the international congress to St Paul, Minn. with 36 countries sending representatives.
His career was an important part of his life, but he lived life to the fullest with his family and friends. He was a man of God, his faith was built on the solid rock. His love of the outdoors with projects at his Chisago County land where he developed conservation programs and reclaimed wetlands. He received the Chisago Co Conservationist of the Year award as a result his projects. In younger years he enjoyed camping with his family. He had many hobbies, including wine making, participating in the MN State Fair wine competition. He loved outdoor sports and tramping through the woods. He enjoyed having his grandsons along. He enjoyed the lake living on Lake Owasso. He enjoyed music of all kinds, particularly enjoyed playing his concertina, to the enjoyment and amusement of family and friends. He had a unique sense of humor.
Thank you to Stan's pastors and his many wonderful caregivers through Allina health services.
Stan's Funeral Service will be held 11 a.m. Saturday, May 20 at ROSEVILLE LUTHERAN CHURCH (1215 Roselawn Ave., Roseville) with visitation beginning at 10 a.m. Interment Roselawn Cemetery.

Memorials preferred to the following: Univ of Minn. Foundation, (for Veterinary Public Health programs); Minnesota Veterinary Medical Association (MVMA) Foundation (for student scholarships); Roseville Lutheran Church Foundation, Farmhouse Fraternity, or personal choice.
Funeral Home
O'Halloran & Murphy Cremation & Funeral Services, Roseville Memorial Chapel
2245 North Hamline Avenue
Roseville, MN 55113
(651) 631-2727
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Published in Independence Bulletin-Journal from May 15 to May 20, 2017