Norman K. Jensen
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Norman was born January 9th 1932, in Wausau, the son of the late Lawrence C. and Greta J. (Pekkala) Jensen. Upon graduating high school, he earned his bachelor's of science, majoring in mechanical engineering, at Michigan Tech. There, Norman was active in the ROTC, which was a starting point to his 24 year career in the U.S. Air Force, which began in March 1956. On March 17th 1956, Norman was united in marriage to Sharon Belle McCarthy, at Zion Lutheran Church, Wausau.
During his career, Norman flew KC-97 and KC-135 tankers, C-130 Hercules, and T-39 Sabreliners. He proudly served his country during the Vietnam War. Norman was considered a hero of the Battle of Khe Sanh and during his time in Vietnam, earned the Distinguished Flying Cross. Norman earned the rank of Colonel and retired from service on June 1st 1980.
He then began an 18 year career at Valparaiso University in Indiana, where he taught mechanical engineering. Norman founded and developed the first Co-op Program, at Valparaiso, which assisted students in advancing their careers in the engineering field. Upon retirement from Valparaiso, Norman and Sharon returned to Rothschild, where they have lived for 13 years. Throughout the years, one of Norman's favorite volunteer activities was spending time performing vision checks the young children, at area schools, through the Lions Club. He enjoyed being a part of the Bible study group at Trinity and was a member of the American Legion and Rothschild-Schofield area Lions Club.
Norman will be remembered as a humble, quiet man, who served God, his family, and country with a gentle strength. He was thankful for his blessings, was a hard worker, and touched countless lives throughout his 81 years. His family and friends will remember his love of skiing, golfing, and sharing memories and moments.
On May 1st 2013, Norman K. Jensen went home to be with his Lord. He died at the Aspirus Hospice House, with his family by his side.
His legacy will live on in the hearts of his beloved wife of 57 years, Sharon, Rothschild; three sons, Russell N. (Maria), Schaumburg, IL, Karl F. (Kathryn), Tolono, IL, and Michael C. (Patricia), Houston, TX; four grandchildren, Paul, Georgina, Nathan, and Daniel; mother-in-law, Lillabelle "Belle" McCarthy; a nephew; and four nieces.
Along with his parents, Norman was preceded in death by his brother and sister-in-law, Kenneth and Rosemary Jensen.
A service honoring Norman will be held at 11 a.m., Monday, May 6th, at Trinity Lutheran Church, Wausau. Reverend Zach Holdorf will officiate. Interment will follow in Pine Grove Cemetery, with full military honors provided by the American Legion Montgomery Plant Post #10, Wausau. Family will receive guests Monday, at church, beginning at 9:30 a.m. until the time of service. You may sign our family guestbook at www.helke.com.
Memorial donations may be directed to Trinity Church and School, Rothschild-Schofield Lions Club, or Aspirus Hospice House.
The family would like to extend a special thank you to all the staff at Stonecrest Residence and Aspirus Hospice House for the excellent care provided to Norman and his family.
Helke Funeral Home and Cremation Service
302 Spruce St Wausau, WI 54401
Published in the Wausau Daily Herald from May 3 to May 5, 2013