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Wanda Engels


Wanda Mae (Gysbers) Engels passed away at her home on June 3, 2018. She was born January 22, 1932, to Johanna and Harold Gysbers, in Hinckley, Minnesota. Starting out in a two room country school house, skipping two grades and eventually graduating from Hinckley High School with honors, she soon found herself working as secretary for the Pine County Social Services office.

Wanda was married to William (Bill) Ervin Engels in 1950, and the couple soon moved to St. Paul, where again her skills landed her an executive secretary position with Remington Co., soon to be Remington Rand, and later providing the start for Univac and Control Data. Starting a family required more space, hence a move to Circle Pines, then later to a farm near Cambridge, and eventually to a resort and home on Second Crow Wing Lake. The resort was a challenge that Wanda and Bill took on for nine years until only one child was still at home. They were happy meeting all the new people and some became good friends.

Wanda loved the outdoors, from her childhood, running a trap line with her older brother, to deer hunting and particularly fishing. After selling the resort, she and her husband did contracting for a number of years, building and remodeling cabins and homes throughout the area while Wanda did all the painting and extra details. After Bill could no longer work construction, he started carving wild life with Wanda providing the detail to the many carvings. She had a passion for gardening and raising flowers in particular, Orchids. Canning and baking occupied her time right up until her death.

Wanda was preceded in death by her husband, son William John Engels, her parents and older brother Leonard Gysbers. She is survived by her sisters: Joan Knight and Eleanor Malone of Arizona; brothers: Jack and Blaine Gysbers of the Twin Cities; her son, David Engels of Menahga; daughter, Judith Meyer of Chanhassen, and daughter, Linda Willeford of Menahga, as well as 16 grandchildren, 31 great-grandchildren and one great-great-granddaughter.

Wanda’s memorial will be held July 14, 2018 at the Hubbard United Methodist Church in Hubbard at 1 p.m. with visitation commencing at noon. In lieu of flowers the family request donations to be made to a cancer society of your choice. Our mother was a three time cancer survivor.

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