American Veteran 01

Wendell Wayne Steffen

January 27, 1932 ~ May 31, 2021 (age 89)


Wendell Wayne Steffen passed away on Monday, May 31, 2021, at the age of 89, at his son’s home in Moose Lake, Minnesota.

Wendell was born on January 27, 1932, in Odessa, Minnesota to Otto and Jennie (Krier) Steffen.  He graduated from Odessa High School in 1950.  Wendell enlisted in the United States Air Force following high school where he proudly served his country for 27 years.  After retiring from the US Air Force, Wendell went to work for NASA as a part of their shuttle program in Houston, Texas. 

He was married to Shirley (Chayer) Steffen on December 22, 1955.  During their 40 years of marriage, they lived in multiple states and countries throughout the world and enjoyed traveling and learning the local culture.  Wendell and Shirley had two sons, Michael and Kendall.  Wendell married Karen (Pattison) Steffen on May 9, 1998.  They enjoyed spending their winters in Texas.  He was an excellent care giver to both of his wives and served all those he met. 

Wendell enjoyed spending his time fixing cars, reading, hunting, fishing, working on jigsaw puzzles, and vacationing with his grandchildren.  Wendell could always be found with a cribbage board nearby, ready to take on a new opponent.  He had a kindness and empathy like no other. 

Wendell will always be remembered for his silly smirk, his “oh golly” and his hat only half on his head. 

He is survived by his sons Michael (Ronna) Steffen and Kendall (Janice) Steffen; stepson Scott (Stephanie) Pattison; stepdaughters Jamie Pattison and Michelle (Craig) Fruth; sister Darlene Novak; brother Orville (Flora Jane) Steffen; brothers-in-law Roger Chayer, Carlton Chayer, Eddie (Lynda) Chayer; sisters-in-law Linda (Ray) Olson, Crystal (Alan) Nelson, Charlotte (David) Olerud and Janet Vipond; grandchildren, Sarah (Andy) Fredman, Joshua Steffen, Elizabeth (Tavis) Charles, Lacey Branch, Cagney Steffen, Joseph Steffen; step-grandchildren Darren Pattison, Derek Pattison, Rachael (Jake) Eckhardt, Brianna Pattison, Corey (Danielle) Sorenson, Lindsey Fruth, Lexi Fruth; great grandchildren Adrianna, Titus, Asher, Zeke, Silas, Eli, Elaina, Mekhi, Amyah, Cameren, Kaidyn, Londyn, Juniper, Olivette, Aaron and Austin.

Wendell is preceded in death by his parents Otto and Jennie Steffen, wives Shirley Steffen and Karen Steffen, and his brother Earl Steffen.

In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to the American Cancer Society. 

Memorial Service: 2PM Monday, June 7, 2021 at Peace Lutheran Church, Barrett with visitation one hour prior to the service.

Interment: Lincoln Lutheran Cemetery, Hoffman

Military Honors: Barrett American Legion Post 351

Funeral Home: Erickson-Smith Funeral Home of Hoffman



To send sympathy gifts to the family or plant a tree in memory of Wendell Wayne Steffen, please visit our tribute store.


June 7, 2021

1:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Peace Lutheran Church of Barrett
218 Church Street
Barrett, MN 56311

Memorial Service
June 7, 2021

2:00 PM
Peace Lutheran Church of Barrett
218 Church Street
Barrett, MN 56311


American Cancer Society
P.O. Box 22718, Oklahoma City OK 73123
Tel: 1-800-227-2345

© 2021 Erickson-Smith. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS & TA | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy