David Wiley, age 94 of Alexandria, MN passed away on Friday, June 12, 2015 at the Douglas County Hospital in Alexandria, MN.
Memorial services are planned for Saturday, July 18, 2015 at 10:30 am at the Bethesda Lutheran Church in Alexandria with Rev. Jerry Lanes officiating. Visitation begins at the church one hour prior to the service. Inurnment is at the Evergreen Cemetery in Alexandria, MN.
David was born to Hilda Kristine Twedten Wiley and John Franklin Deane Wiley on July 21, 1920. They lived on a ranch west of Dickinson, North Dakota. About a year later, they moved to a log cabin on a ranch a few miles north of South Hart, North Dakota. In 1923, David's father quit ranching and the family moved to Grand Forks, where his father completed his teacher education at the University of North Dakota. While there, David won the "Best Boy Baby" contest and was awarded a silver "Loving Cup." David's parents first moved to Crookston and then Nielsville, MN, where his father was the superintendent/principal of the school.
In the fall of 1939, David enrolled in Concordia College (Moorhead, MN). In 1942, he enlisted in the Navy's V7 program, which allowed him to graduate from Concordia College and then enter the Navy in 1943. He went to Mellville, Rhode Island, for PT Boat training in 1943 and graduated from Midshipman School as an Ensign. From there, he served on Green Island in the South Pacific. In 1944, he was sent to Luzon in the Philippines. He was state-side for reassignment when VJ Day occurred in 1945 and was released from activity duty that same year. David went back to school for Forestry, then transferred to Wildlife Management at the University of Minnesota. While attending the U of M, he met Louise, the love of his life. They were married on June 10, 1948, in St. Paul, MN, by Louise's maternal grandfather, Dr. Albert J. Northrup.
David and Louise lived in Marshall, MN, before moving to Willmar, MN, in 1951. He served as Area Game Manager in Willmar, MN, for 16 years before being appointed Project Biologist for the West Central Minnesota Resource Conservation and Development (RC&D). In August of 1971, he moved his family to Alexandria, MN, and in 1982 he retired from the State of Minnesota. In 1972, David played a significant role in developing and implementing the 220 miles of trail that became known as the Glacial Ridge Trail, which still exists today. David also received an award at the 50th Anniversary of "Save the Wetlands 1951 - 2001" for his significant contribution to the Wildlife Management Area Program.
David was active in Bethesda Lutheran Church, where he was President (1972), lector, usher and greeter for many years. From 1993 to 2008, David and Louise were winter-Texans, living in Donna, TX, where they enjoyed birding, building churches in Rio Bravo, MX; teaching English to members of the Hispanic community; and attending Love of Christ Lutheran Church in Weslaco, TX, where he was head usher. While in Minnesota and also Texas, David taught 55 Alive classes for 20+ years.
David was a loving, devoted husband and an incredible father, leaving a legacy of service to others and humbly walking with the Lord. He was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Ardis Ziebeck (Zeke) Tacoma, WA; and one step-grandchild (Scott Martin).
David is survived by his beloved wife of 67 years, Louise; four children - Paul Wiley (Linda) of Kingston, WA; Diane Wiley (Julio Mandojana) of Mankato, MN; Bruce Wiley (Loren Allen) of Houston, TX; and Karen Martin (Kenn) of Rapid City, SD; 6 grandchildren - Emily Nemer (Marc); Jennifer Wiley; David Martin; Peter Ovrebo (Emily); Patrick Wiley; and Andrea Martin; his 2 step-grandchildren Kyli Martin (Heidi) and Shannon Martin; 1 great grandchild Evan Ovrebo; and 3 step-great grandchildren Sam Martin, Ella Martin, and Simon Martin.
July 18, 2015
July 18, 2015