Kenny Thiesen, 55, rural Minot, passed away Monday, Dec. 30, 2013, in his home.
Kenneth Eldon Thiesen Jr. was born April 22, 1958, the son of Linda (Jansen) and Kenneth Thiesen Sr., in Redfield, S.D. He was raised on the family farm near Doland, S.D., and was educated in Doland. He graduated from Doland High School in 1976. He then attended North Dakota State School of Science in Wahpeton where he graduated with an associate's degree in diesel mechanics.
Kenny was united in marriage to Lona Jo Eisenzimmer on Sept. 15, 1979, at St. Leo's Catholic Church in Minot. They made their home in Minot, where Kenny worked as a diesel mechanic for Cummings Diesel and later for CENEX/Enerbase.
He was a member of St. Leo's Catholic Church in Minot, the Moose Lodge in Minot and the Minot Gun Club.
Kenny was a loving and caring husband, father and grandfather. His time was fairly managed between his family and his love of "wrenching" everything from tractors, semis and his hobby of working on his dream truck (1977 Chevy side step). Kenny was known for always getting things done, no matter the task: from fixing the family's vehicles or even as simple as when the monsoon season hit Doland and he went to go re-shingle Grandma Thiesen's roof, helping a dear family friend set up his shop or teaching his grandkids how to shoot hoops and a time-honored family tradition of wheel barrow rides for the grandkids through the backyard. Throughout his 34-year marriage with his loving wife, Lona, not only did they enjoy watching their two children grow and make families of their own, but they also enjoyed the freedom of traveling the open road together as they watched their five grandchildren grow up. Whether it was hopping on the Gold Wing for a trip to Rapid City or going on a scoot around town. Kenny loved his freedom of the open road and having Lona right behind him to enjoy the ride. His love of travel did not end there as he and Lona also enjoyed two different Caribbean cruises and several memorable trips including Missouri, Las Vegas and New York. Kenny gave his children the most wonderful gift of all, the love and will to share everything they have in life with their own children. His strength and courage to continue through all of the pain and struggles yet still have the time to stop for a firm handshake and hug for his son, or a heartfelt hug and kiss for his little girl gave his children the core meaning of family. Kenny found five amazing reasons in life to smile and laugh every day. He cherished his five grandkids; they meant the world to him you didn't even need to ask, from the smile on his face when one of them would walk through the door, it was obvious to anyone that he lived and breathed each moment for them all.
His loving family includes: wife of 34 years, Lona, rural Minot; son, Michael (Amber) Thiesen, Minot; daughter, Heidi (Mathew) Wiese, Burlington; grandchildren, Noah and Aiden Thiesen, and Alex, Mia, and Sammy Wiese; mother, Linda Thiesen, Redfield; brothers, David Thiesen, Redfield, Danny Thiesen, Watertown, S.D., and Jon Thiesen, Sioux Falls, S.D.; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Bob and Shirley Koble, Minot; brother-in-law, Gary Eisenzimmer (Peggy), Minot; three nieces; one nephew; and numerous cousins.
Kenny was preceded in death by: his father, Kenneth Thiesen Sr.; sister, Julie Ann Thiesen; and father-in-law, Leonard "Ike" Eisenzimmer.
Mass of Christian Burial: Friday, Jan. 3, at 11 a.m. at St. Leo's Catholic Church in Minot.
Interment: Rosehill Memorial Park, Minot.
Visitation: Today, Thursday, from 4 to 7 p.m. at Thompson-Larson Funeral Home, Minot.
Vigil Prayer Service: Today, Thursday, at 7 p.m. at Thompson-Larson Funeral Home, Minot.
Memorials: In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred.
Those wishing to sign the online register and share memories may access the online obituaries section at (www.thompsonlarson.com).