Elmer J. Hennen, age 89

Elmer J. Hennen

April 17, 1932 – December 6, 2021

Mass of Christian Burial will be 11:00 a.m. on Monday, December 13, 2021, at Sts. Peter & Paul Catholic Church in Richmond, MN for Elmer Hennen, age 89.  Burial will be in the parish cemetery.

A visitation will be Monday from 9:00 a.m.-10:45 a.m. at Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic church.

Elmer died on December 6, the feast of St. Nicholas, at Cherrywood in Richmond. As is Luxembourg tradition, over the years, Elmer observed and celebrated the feast of St. Nicholas. Elmer’s father, Martin, also died on December 6, in 1985.  

Elmer was born April 17, 1932, on his parents, Martin and Delphine (Berger) Hennen’s, Luxemburg Township family farm. German was spoken at home, which at the time was quite common in Stearns County. Elmer was unable to speak a word of English when he began attending country school. He often told the harrowing story of his father coming with a team of horses during the raging Armistice Day Blizzard in 1940 to pick him and his brother Ralph up from school. Elmer said that his father later shared that without the horses and the occasional telephone pole he wasn’t sure they would have found their way home.  

Elmer was drafted into the Army. While serving, his mother suddenly and unexpectedly died at the young age of 41 from injuries resulting from a fall. He also worked at Franklin Manufacturing and Northern States Power before taking over the family farm.

On May 7, 1957, he married Cecelia Lahr in St. Nicholas and together they raised a family of five on the same farm. In the early years they, along with his father, raised tobacco and other crops. He enjoyed farming and took pride in well maintained buildings, neat and tidy fields, healthy livestock, and good crops. He was proud to be the third-generation owner of the “Hennen home place” homesteaded by his grandfather and now farmed by son Gary.

Elmer had a sweet tooth, enjoyed visiting, fishing, playing cards and baseball. Over the years, he was a friend and neighbor to many and was always willing to lend a helping hand.

He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Cecelia; children, Doris, Ron, Gary, Linda Bakker, and Cathy; brothers, Ralph and Ray; sister, Eileen Fink; grandsons, Adam, Alex, and Andrew Bakker; seven great-grandchildren and an eighth on the way. Elmer and his oldest great-grandchild, Brynn Bakker, share an April 17th birthday.

He was preceded in death by his son-in-law, Gordon Bakker (2019); parents Martin (1985) and Delphine (1953); and brother, Richard (2016).

In parting, Elmer would often use the German expression “Mach's gut” (Have a good one)!

Arrangements are with the Wenner Funeral Home in Richmond, MN.