HJ-ED-DHJ Obituaries

Richard “R.T.” Joseph Traen

Richard “R.T.” Joseph Traen, age 70, of Delano, died Sunday, Oct. 15, 2006 at his home in Delano.

He was born March 13, 1936 to Joseph and Ellen (Syltie) Traen in Taunton, Minn.

R.T. attended Marshal U, prior to graduation from Rockford High School. He attended St. Thomas College, and graduated from St. Cloud State University.

A biology teacher at Delano High School for 33 years, R.T. served as athletic director for a period of years, as well as coaching boys basketball, football, baseball and for a period of years, girls softball. He was very active in Delano baseball history.

R.T. started and ran the Delano Summer Recreation program. His town team amateur baseball career spanned 28 years, along with coaching stints at the town team and Mickey Mantle levels.

His high school coaching career also spanned 33 years. He had the most wins of any school coach in Wright County Conference history.

R.T. won 12 conference titles, 11 district titles, four region runner-ups, and three region titles, leading his teams to three state tournament appearances.

In 1986, R.T. won the Dick Siebert Lifetime Achievement Award; and he was presented with the Mike Downs Amateur Baseball Lifetime Achievement Award in 1998. He was only the second high school coach in state history to receive both awards.

R.T. was a member of the Minnesota State High School Coaches Hall of Fame. He had an impact on helping to obtain three state tournaments in Delano; 1975, 1984, and 1997.

For 21 years, R.T. was, and currently served as, the president of the North Star Baseball League. He had been a member of the Fourth of July Committee for 20-plus years, and was a member of the Delano Athletic Club.

R.T. spent countless hours maintaining the Delano athletic baseball field. The trademark ivy surrounding the field was his personal creation.

R.T. passed away at the end of the baseball season and on the opener of the pheasant season; a time in which he and his family always enjoyed together.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Joe and Ellen Traen; brothers Bob and Don; and sister Sue Johnson.

He is survived by his “first wife,” Carol Jean; sons Tom and LaRae Traen, and Todd Traen; daughters Terri and Rich Pawelk, and Tracy and Tom Sangren; and grandchildren Reed, Paige, and Abby Pawelk, Tommy and Todd Traen, and Camryn Traen.

Mass of Christian Burial took place Friday, Oct. 20 at 11 a.m. at the St. Peter Catholic Church in Delano.

Visitation was Thursday, Oct. 19 from 4 to 9 p.m., and continued Friday from 10 to 11 a.m., all at the church.

Arrangements were by the Iten Funeral Home in Delano.

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