Longtime Alaskan and Sterling resident, Mr. LaVern Franklin Wahl, 87, died Thursday, August 12, 2021, at his home in Sterling with his family by his side from Progressive Supranuclear Palsy.
No services will be planned at this time.
LaVern was born Nov. 21, 1933, in Viroqua, Wisconsin. He received a Bachelor of Science from the University of Michigan in East Landing. He also received his master's degree from Montana State University, Bozeman. He served in the U.S. Coast Guard for 4 years. He entered as a Seaman Recruit at Cape May CG Receiving Center, completed his Electricians Mate School and served in the CC Half Moon and CGC Hollyhock. Lavern moved to Alaska in 1965 first living in Fairbanks from 1965 to 1968 before moving to Kenai in 1968. He was a Jr. High Science Teacher in Fairbanks in 1965 to 1968 and worked for the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District from 1968 to 1984 until he retired. He was a longtime member of the Christ Lutheran Church in Soldotna and a member of the Soil Conservation. LaVern was an avid hunter and fisherman who enjoyed the outdoors such as cross-country skiing, biking, boating, running, and flying his planes. He also enjoyed Dutch Oven cooking, sewing, leather carving, gardening, reloading ammo, and shooting Black powder guns.
The family wrote, "As a science teacher if you wanted to distract him, just mention Mules and he'd tell you all about them. At one time he had five mules, hauling 2 sets of 2 mules up the Alaska Highway. LaVern and his wife Beverly traveled the Alaska Highway 42 times over the years, as well as international travel to Bolivia, Greece, Turkey, Mexico, Central America, New Zealand, and Australia 3 times.
"Not many men hunt bear alone, but Dad's weeklong solo brown bear hunt on the Alaska Peninsula when I was weed high, has called me into the wild ever since; stretching my legs to fill some really big boots," said Stephen.
He was the best ever husband, father, grandfather teaching his children and grandchildren, hunting, fishing, clamming, gardening, harvesting from the mushrooms, berries, fiddlehead ferns, living off the land, caring for the and appreciating, nature and wildlife.
"Dad was a kind man with a strong work ethic. One of my unique memories in my growing up with Dad was, hauling piglets down to the Russian Village in Anchor Point. Mucking through the mud, going door to door, and selling piglets to the Russian families." Said Kathy. He supplemented his income with his many entrepreneurial endeavors which helped provide for his family by whatever means necessary."
He was preceded in death by his mother, R. Pearl Withee, brother, Roger Wahl and Donny Wahl and Half-Brother, Clyde George, Jr.
He is survived by his wife of 65 years Beverly of Sterling; daughter, Kathy (Doug) Smith of Roosevelt, AZ; sons, Dr. Stephen (Linda and 8 children) Wahl all of Seward and Dr. Timothy (Deanna and 2 children) Wahl of Knoxville, Iowa; daughter, Rebecca (Joe and 9 Children) Obermann of Garner, IA; grandson, Benjamin Griess of Soldotna; granddaughter, Ruth (Mario and daughter Violet) Latona of Tucson, AZ; brother, Daniel L. Wahl of Hawaii and brother in-law, Dale (Pat) Schlough of Wisconsin.
Arrangements made by Peninsula Memorial Chapel & Crematory.
Published by Peninsula Clarion on Aug. 25, 2021.