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John Paul Strei

John Paul Strei, age 89, of Lester Prairie, died Tuesday, Dec. 16, 2008, at St. Mary’s Care Center in Winsted.

He was born Feb. 26, 1919, in Winsted Township, the son of Robert and Agnes (Schumacker) Strei. John was baptized March 16, 1919, at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Hollywood Township by the Rev. W. L. Ernst, and was later confirmed into the faith by the same April 9, 1933.

John attended St. John’s Lutheran School in Hollywood Township.

He was united in marriage with Aurelia Lampher Sept. 9, 1946, at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Lester Prairie by the Rev. Reitz. The couple made their home in Lester Prairie, and were blessed with four children.

John worked for over 30 years with the Minnesota Breeders Association, and also worked part time for Lester’s Inc. for several years. He was a lifelong resident of Lester Prairie, and a longtime member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church.

He enjoyed hunting, fishing, gardening, and baseball. After his retirement, John especially enjoyed making maple syrup at the Sugar Shack in Lester Prairie, volunteering to help others, and spending time with his family.

He was preceded in death by his parents; son Gordon Strei; and siblings Hilda Westermann, Walter Strei, Erna Ristow, Roland Strei, Alvin Strei, and Dorothy Dangers.

John is survived by his wife, Aurelia of Lester Prairie; children Gary Strei (wife Linda) of Wayzata, Susan Thiel (husband Jim) of Bloomington, and Shirley Antonson (husband Skip) of Lester Prairie; grandchildren Nick Strei (wife Jamie), Tom Strei (wife Kayla), David Strei, Kim Behning, Kris Fisch, Katie Smith, Heather Norwood (husband John), Melissa Antonson, and Megan Antonson; five great-grandchildren; sisters-in-law Evelyn Strei and Dorothy Strei; as well as many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

Funeral services celebrating John’s life were Friday, Dec. 19 at 1:30 p.m. at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Lester Prairie with the Rev. Eric Nelson officiating. The organist was Marsha Christenson, and the congregational hymns included “Hark, The Voice of Jesus Cry,” “I Know That My Redeemer Lives,” and “What A Friend We Have In Jesus.” Interment was in the church cemetery.

Visitation took place prior to the services at the church.

Serving as casket bearers were Nick Strei, Tom Strei, David Strei, Carl Behning, Jeff Fisch, and Dan Smith. Honorary casket bearers were Kim Behning, Kris Fisch, Katie Smith, Heather Norwood, Melissa Antonson, and Megan Antonson.

Arrangements were with the Paul-McBride Funeral Chapel in Lester Prairie. For an online guest book, please visit www.mcbridefuneralchapels.com