Vernon Henry Lensing was born June 29, 1934, on the family farm outside of Bancroft, Iowa to Alphonse and Ida (Vaske) Lensing. He passed away Friday, September 28, 2018, in California.
A Funeral Mass was held at St. John's Catholic Church in Bancroft on Thursday, October 18, 2018 at 10:30 am with internment at St. John's Catholic Cemetery with military honors conducted.
Vern lived a very fulfilling life and was loved dearly by his family. He attended St. John's Catholic School where he participated in extracurricular activities to include sports (basketball and baseball) and held various parts in plays and musical productions. His favorite pastime was playing baseball where he excelled for the high school and local teams, earning an opportunity to pitch for the Brooklyn Dodger's farm-team. After returning to Bancroft, he continued to play in American Legion games in the Midwest.
Vern served in the United States Navy as a radar technician on the aircraft carrier USS Coral Sea. Upon completion of his military service he returned to Iowa and married the love of his life Diane Rose Welp, daughter of Joseph H. Welp II and Bernice (Wilhelm) Welp, on August 17, 1957. Vern and Diane relocated to Wisconsin where he completed a degree in Computer Science at the Milwaukee School of Engineering.
Vern was hired by Burroughs Corp and the family moved to Kalamazoo, Michigan and then on to Lansing, Michigan. He was employed at Burroughs/Unisys for more than 30 years, retiring in May 1989.
During retirement, Vern and Diane traveled the world, fully enjoying numerous river cruises, and camping throughout the United States, eventually settling in Vista, California in 1992. They would joke that all of their trips and vacations were determined by the food and wineries in the area, not necessarily the sites to-be-seen. Vern and Diane loved to have family and friends visit their hill-top home in Vista with views of the local mountains, and their fruit and avocado trees.
Diane passed away in November of 2011 after a long battle with Dementia and Parkinson's disease. Vern remained busy by volunteering to drive antique tractor/wagon tours at a neighboring flower growing operation, ushering at his parish, attending Dementia support groups, rebuilding his 1952 Ford tractor, playing cards with friends, and visiting his children and grandchildren.
Vern was famous for his ability to repair (aka "kluge") just about anything, thanks to his days growing up on the farms in Iowa. He built the family's first color TV set from a kit, soldering and installing all of the components, "built-out" their complete family-room basement, and kept the family's fleet of vehicles running smoothly.
Vernon is survived by his children and grandchildren to include: Bryan and Sherry (Stoddard) Lensing of Michigan and their three boys Justin and fiancé Carolyn, Tyler and wife Emily, and Jake. David and Karen (Bohland) Lensing of northern Virginia and their three children Cameron and fiancé Zoe, Andrew and wife Karen, and Hannah. Susan and Kevin Day of California, with their two children Aafje and Brogan. Sally and Dan Barberio of Michigan with two children Malinda and Vincent. Mary Clare and William Kimble of Michigan, with their two children Nathan and Audra. He is also survived by his sister Betty and Ken Frideres of Algona, brother Dick and Carol Lensing of Marion, and sister-in-law Marilyn Lensing of Algona.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife Diane; infant son Theodore; brother Tom Lensing, sister Jean Haas, and brother-in-law Jerry Haas.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Alzheimer's Association in Vernon's name.
Dear Lensing children, Bryan, David, Susan, Sally and Mary Clare,
Grief is such a personal thing that we often feel as if we are trespassers when we step into the space of a grieving person or family. However, in this case, we want to risk this moment and tell you about the special place your Dad held in our hearts. May his memory soon give way to all good memories you have stored up and may the goodness he lavished on his devotion to your Mom, his friends and his loved ones be multiplied in your lives. Fred and I have always felt blessed and honored to have met and developed such a close relationship as young couples sharing the same ages and circumstances in Milwaukee so many years ago. No doubt the good Lord had a fine hand in reuniting us as families in the East Lansing area for a time. Not only have we lost a loved one, the world has lost a good person and there is a valid reason to be sad. Please know our prayers are with you and we share your loss but rejoice that your Mom, Teddy and your Dad are together again. He was so patient with adversity but took strength from the deep love he had for our dear Diane and you, his family.
With warm wishes, Janet and Fred Geyser
Our hearts go out to the Lensing Families. May your fond memories of your Dad/Grandfather give you strength and carry you through your time of grief.
Matt and Jessica Stoddard
Thoughts and prayers to my cousins. Vern and Diane were always so gracious, and though the distance was always pretty great between our two families, I think we shared a closeness nonetheless.
Rest easy, Uncle Vern. Say hey to Dad.
Dick and Family, I am sorry to hear of your brother's passing. Please find peace in knowing you are in our thoughts and prayers. Will send donation to Alzheimer's Assoc in his name.
Jerry and Patty (Haupert) McGuire
My sympathy to the Lensing children. They don't me but I am your dad's first cousin, one of the Vaske's. Vern and I pretty much grew up together.
Rest in Heavenly peace dear cousin!
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