Edward “Ed” Otto Wendtland
PORTAGE – Edward “Ed” Otto Wendtland, 76, peacefully ascended to heaven on July 20, 2022.
Ed was born in Oxford, WI in October of 1945 to Theodore & Lillie Wendtland. He graduated from Oxford High School and went on to honorably serve his county in the Navy during the Vietnam War. Upon his return he married his beloved wife of 54 years, Mary Lou Nelson and earned a Bachelor and Master’s degree in Occupational Safety from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.
Ed and Mary Lou settled in Appleton, WI where they worked and raised their family. Throughout Ed’s life, he had various occupations that include his time at Chrysler, Fox River Paper, and owning his own landscaping business. He enjoyed being around family and friends, a glass of brandy and a cigarette, telling a funny story, fishing, tinkering in his garage and later in life loved going to watch his grandson, Miles, play baseball. There was nothing that would bring him more joy than a day at the ball field watching Miles play.
Ed was preceded in death by his parents, his brothers Theodore and Bernard Wendtland, sister Lois Crawford, niece Cheryl Wendtland, brothers-in-law, Rene Baylon and Bob Bungard along with close friends Al Mims and Steve Williams.
He is survived by his wife Mary Lou, son, Blaine, daughter, Heather (Romar) Nelson and grandson’s Miles Nelson and Joshua Wendtland along with his brother Charles (Betty) Wendtland, sisters Ellen Baylon and Mona (Ken) Spaanem, cousin Denise (John) Johanning, many nieces and nephews, the Nelson/Williams family, and he and Mary Lou’s lifelong friends, Gene Jorgeson, and Rod and Rosie Carlson.
Ed will forever be remembered for his love and loyalty to his family, giving nature, frequent words of encouragement to anyone who needed them, the ability to tell a great story (factual or otherwise), sense of humor, attempts at winning the lottery, handing someone a $20 bill just because and reminders to not take everything so serious. He always said the song we should remember him by is Frank Sinatra’s, “My Way” and those knew him knew he surely lived his life his way, so whenever you hear it, think of him to let him know how deeply he is missed by all those whose lives he touched.
We know that Ed is finally at peace and with his beloved friends and family eating his Mother’s apple pie, playing Euchre, hatching some preposterous plans with his brothers and brothers-in-law and God is sending in his Angels to try to reign them all in. Those who knew them all wish heaven the best of luck.
The family would like to thank the Doctors and staff of the Madison VA, Tomah VA and Hamilton Park Place for their kindness and patience.
Ed’s family is bringing Ed home for now and will announce a Celebration of Life for him in the upcoming weeks.
In honor of Ed, and in lieu of flowers, since we all know he would think that was a waste of money because they just die anyways, the family strongly requests you take that money, buy yourself some lottery tickets and let it ride. Who knows, maybe the ones of us he liked the most will get lucky and he can finally be part of winning the “big one,” however, if you would prefer to make a donation in Ed’s honor, the family requests donations be made to your county’s Veterans DAV Van Program.
Pflanz Mantey Mendrala Funeral Home in Portage is assisting the family.