Leo James Degenstein, the son of James and Phyllis (Tuchscherer) Degenstein, was born Dec. 23, 1928, in Chicago, Ill. He died at the age of 84 years on Wednesday, May 8, 2013, at the Trinity Medical Center in Minot, N.D.
Leo spent his young years in Chicago for a short time before his parents moved him along with his brother and sister to the Rugby area in 1931 and to the Barton area in 1935, where the family made their home. After completing his education he enlisted in the U.S. Army on Jan. 13, 1951. He was stationed in Fort Sherman, Panama Canal Zone for two terms and in Greenland for two terms. He was Honorably Discharged on Jan. 12, 1954. Leo returned to the Barton area to farm and ranch.
On June 19, 1956, he was united in marriage to Magdalena Kuntz at Little Flower Catholic Church in Rugby, N.D. To this union four children were born. Leo and Maggie remained in the Barton area until retiring and moving to Rugby in 1990.
He was a loving husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather. He was a member of the American Legion, VFW, Little Flower Catholic Church in Rugby, a charter member of the Rugby Eagles and was on the Rural Fire Department Board since 1978. He leaves many relatives and friends and will be missed everyday.
Leo is survived by: his wife, Maggie, of 56 years; children, Leo Jay (Julie), of Westminster, Colo., Gary, of Rugby, Delores (Jasper Jr.) Kleinjan, of Horace, and Brenda (Bill) Muffenbier, of Fargo; seven grandchildren, Amanda (Jay Loughman), of Rugby, James R. Degenstein, of Valley City, Alexandrea, Rachel and Leo John, all of Westminster, Colo., Jasper Kleinjan III, of Horace, and Jacob Kleinjan, of Bismarck; four great-grandchildren, Brittany, Christian, Emma and Hayley Loughman, all of Rugby; a brother, Kenneth, of Rugby; sisters-in-law, Eva Wylie, of Arizona, Cecilia (Marvin) Heil, of Grand Forks, Theresa (Leonard) Wangler, of Balta; brothers-in-law, Anton (Jane) Kuntz, of Rugby, Ray (Lois) Kuntz, of Lake Shore, Minn.; many nieces; nephews; other relatives and friends.
He was preceded in death by a sister, Delores Neigum; a grandchild, Cyrus Degenstein; his in-laws, Julius and Mary Kuntz; and his parents.
Mass of Christian Burial: Will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, May 15, 2013, at the Little Flower Catholic Church in Rugby, with burial in the church cemetery. Father Tom Graner will be the Celebrant.
Visitation: Tuesday, May 14, from 4 to 7 p.m. and Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at the Anderson Funeral Home in Rugby.
There will be no reviewal in the Church.
Rosary and Vigil prayers: Will begin at 7 p.m. on Tuesday in the funeral home.
The Casket Bearers: Jasper Kleinjan Jr, Jasper Kleinjan III, Jacob Kleinjan, Bill Muffenbier, Leo John Degenstein, James Degenstein
Arrangements with the Anderson Funeral Home of Rugby.
Online registry: (www.funeralsbyanderson.com).