HJ-ED-DHJ Obituaries

Dennis O. Payne

Dennis O. Payne, age 58, of Franklin Township, died at his home Thursday, Oct. 26, 2006, after a courageous battle against brain cancer.

He was born Nov. 1, 1947, in Parkers Prairie, Minn. Dennis grew up on a farm there with parents, Calvin and Thelma, who instilled in their children a strong work ethic, resourcefulness, and an undying optimism and faith that carried him through life.

Dennis graduated from Parkers Prairie High School in 1965, after which he served three years in the US Army 101st Airborne, stationed in Vietnam. He was awarded the Army Commendation Medal for Heroism for crossing open terrain repeatedly, unarmed, while under attack, to retrieve fallen comrades and help them to safety.

Dennis married childhood friend, Sherrie Halvorson of Henning, Minn. Aug. 8, 1970. They made their home in Richfield, while Dennis attended Hennepin VoTech to become an electrician.

After graduating with honors, he entered the electrical construction industry in 1973, and eventually became a member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 292.

He and his wife moved to 12 acres in Franklin Township in 1975, where their two children, Shannon and Levi were born.

Dennis loved the outdoors and enjoyed deer hunting on his in-law’s farm for 35 years. He enjoyed fishing, hiking, car trips, and playing cards.

Anyone who came to the Payne house would have to play Whist. He taught many co-workers the game of Cribbage and won the Methodist Church’s annual cribbage tournament more than once.

Dennis served on the church choir for many years, as well as various committees. He loved gardening and feeding the birds, and was active in his children’s lives in Boy Scouts, sports, and drama.

Dennis enjoyed all people. With his generous spirit and sense of humor, he had the knack to make anyone feel at ease.

He will be missed by his wife of 36 years, Sherrie; his son and family, Levi, Fiona, and granddaughter Brianna; his daughter and family, Shannon and Jeff Connaire and grandchildren Emma Grace, Logan and Martha Joy; his mother, Thelma Payne of Parkers Prairie; brother and wife, Eugene and Barbara Payne of Parkers Prairie; brother David Payne of Rexburg, Idaho; nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.

A memorial service took place Sunday, Nov. 5 at 3 p.m. at the United Methodist Church in Delano, preceded by visitation at 2 p.m.

Arrangements were by the Cremation Society of MN, Edina office.

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