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1929 - 2016
Wayne C. WITTMAN Obituary
Age 86, of St. Paul died unexpectedly on February 24, 2016. Preceded in death by sister, Jeanne Christiansen; and granddaughter, Olivia. Survived by wife of 59 years, Joan; children, Bob (Nancy), Jeanne (Rich) Rothaupt, Mary Jo (Fernando) Partida, David (Cheryl), Susan (Dave) Mondry; grandchildren, Andrea, Lacy, Jenna, Michael, Kristin, Daniel, Luke, Grant, Allison, Tony; great-grandchildren, Callum, Grayson, Maya; sisters, Roberta (Harold) Nilles, and Verna (Jack) Nilles. Wayne was born in Humboldt, Iowa on September 11, 1929. At age 9, he lost his father due to an accident. He graduated from Humboldt HS and joined the US Navy during the Korean War. Upon his discharge, he went to Mankato State Teachers College where he graduated with a degree in political science. He later earned a Master's degree from the University of Minnesota in Counseling Psychology. He spent 37 years with the State of Minnesota as a vocational rehabilitation counselor for Services for the Blind and was a tireless advocate for persons with disabilities. He married Joan Spence in 1956, and raised their 5 children on the eastside of St. Paul. Wayne was both a man of faith and a lifelong community activist. He was an ordained Catholic Deacon and served at Sacred Heart Parish in St. Paul from 1984 until his death. His passion for social justice and world peace led him to Central and South America, where he took frequent trips to monitor free democratic elections and advocate for human rights. Wayne served on the St. Paul School Board and was a founding member and chair of the St. Paul Community Education Advisory Council. He was a respected leader for numerous local, state and national organizations including, but not limited to the DFL party, St. Paul Labor, Veterans for Peace, Labor's Community Services Committee, St. Paul's Police Civilian Review Commission and the United Way. Wayne's greatest passions included his love of family, his commitment to the labor movement and world peace. He held firm to his belief that one voice can make a difference. He was unapologetic and consistent to his causes, regardless of popular opinion. He touched many lives and made a true difference in his community. He will be greatly missed. Celebration of Life 4-7pm Sunday February 28 at the St. Paul Labor Federation Hall, 353 W 7th St., St. Paul (note corrected address from Friday's notice). Funeral Mass 10am Monday February 29 at Our Lady of the Presentation Chapel, 1884 Randolph Ave., St. Paul with visitation 1 hour prior and 9am. Interment at Ft. Snelling National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to Veterans for Peace-Chapter 27 or LSRC Wayne Wittman EA Fund.
Published in Pioneer Press from Feb. 26 to Feb. 28, 2016
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