Donald Joseph WAGNER(1930 - 2014)

Born November 14, 1930 Died February 17, 2014 after 83 years of joyful life. Don grew up in St. Paul, the son of James G. and Lola G. Wagner. Attended Groveland Elementary and Monroe High School and graduated from the University of Minnesota with degrees in recreation and elementary education. Don met his wife, Mary, at the U of M, and they married on June 18, 1955. Don held a wide variety of jobs during his youth: soda jerk, groundskeeper, dynamiter's assistant, caller and dance instructor. He served in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War. He taught at Sidney Pratt Elementary School in Minneapolis. In 1959 he was hired by the Robbinsdale School District as an elementary school teacher. He then became an instructional assistant and in 1963, an elementary school principal. From 1963 to1983, he served as principal at Lincoln, Thorson, New Hope, Lee, Zachery Lane and Meadow Lake schools and as director of elementary education from 1983 to 1991. A beloved husband, father, grandfather and friend, Don was a consummate teacher who touched many lives. Preceded in death by his brothers, John Lincoln Wagner and James Gilbreath Wagner. Survived by wife, Mary, sons, Todd (Meredith McNab), Pete (Anh Nguyen), Kent (Holly), Karl (Mary Alice) and grandchildren, Austin, Cullen, Kane, Kash, Kai, Kirby, Noel, T.C. and Molly. It is Don's request there be no memorial service. Instead of memorials, Don asks each of his friends to perform a kind act or lend a helping hand to someone. Don's family wishes to express profound gratitude to all who have been a part of his life, as you gave his life joy and meaning.

Published in Pioneer Press on Feb. 23, 2014