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Kenneth Gruenhagen, 86, of Glencoe

Kenneth Gruenhagen
Kenneth “Ken” Otto Gruenhagen, 86, of Glencoe, died Saturday, Dec. 12, 2015, at Glencoe Regional Health Services Long Term Care.
 
Funeral services were held Tuesday, Dec. 15, at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Glencoe with the Rev. Robert Nowak officiating.
 
Marjorie Hemmann was the organist. Soloist Julie Stiles sang “Children of the Heavenly Father.” Congregational hymns were “Abide With Me” and Just As I Am.” Special music by Lee Gruenhagen was a concertina tribute, “Amazing Grace.”
 
Casket bearers were Mr. Gruenhagen’s grandchildren. Military honors were provided by Glencoe VFW Post 5102. Interment was in the Glencoe City Cemetery.
 
Kenneth “Ken” Otto Gruenhagen was born Sept. 2, 1929, in Helen Township, McLeod County, to Albert and Ella (Tanke) Gruenhagen. He was baptized as an infant on Sept. 15, 1929, by the Rev. H.J. Bouman at Emanuel Lutheran Church in Hamburg, and was confirmed in his faith as a youth on April 18, 1943, by the Rev. Alfred Streufert at First Evangelical Lutheran Church in Glencoe. His confirmation verse was Psalms 143:10. He attended kindergarten and first grade at Glencoe Public School, second through sixth grade at First Evangelical Parochial School, and ninth grade at Glencoe Public High School, all in Glencoe.
 
Mr. Gruenhagen entered active military service in the U.S. Army on March 23, 1951, at Minneapolis, and served in Germany during the Korean War with Battery D, 45th Anti-Aircraft Artillery Gun Battalion as a corporal. He was awarded the Army of Occupation and National Defense Service medals, and was honorably discharged at Fort Custer, Michigan, on March 5, 1953.
 
On Aug. 20, 1953, he was united in marriage to Helen Fruetel by the Rev. Walter Fischer at Evangelical United Church of Christ in Lester Prairie. The made their home in Glencoe, and moved to Hutchinson in 1968. Their marriage was blessed with four children, Lynn, Lee, Susan and Steven. They shared over 53 years of marriage until Mrs. Gruenhagen’s death on April 30, 2007.
 
Mr. Gruenhagen held various jobs over his lifetime. He worked at Green Giant and Glencoe Butter and Produce, both in Glencoe, and Holsum Bread Company. He and his wife also owned and operated the Hutch Motel in Hutchinson. He sold real estate, worked at AAL Insurance and Glencoe Ford. On Jan. 1, 2003, he retired and worked part time at Lutheran Digest. He was a charter member of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Glencoe and Abiding Savior Lutheran Church in Zapata, Texas. He also was a member of Glencoe VFW Post 5102 and served as a councilman in Hutchinson.
 
Mr. Gruenhagen enjoyed politics, woodworking, reading, fishing and traveling in his motor home throughout the states. He cherished the time spent with his friends and family, especially his grandchildren.
 
He is survived by his children, Lynn (Steve) Richardson of Maplewood, Lee (Sharon) Gruenhagen of Hutchinson, Susan (Wes) Olson of Glencoe and Steven Gruenhagen of Omaha, Nebraska; grandchildren, Seth (Ellen) Olson, Vanessa (Kyle) Kimball, Angela (Mark) Leyk, Justine (Jake) Launert, Ami (Chase) Rickson, Dylan (Haley) Olson, Aleesha Gruenhagen and Ben Olson; great-grandchildren, Harvey, June, Alex, Isaac, Henrik, Liam and Emmett; stepgreat-grandchildren, Jacob, Zac and Sadie; sister, Jeanette Brinkman of Glencoe; brothers, Don (Jean) Gruenhagen and Al Gruenhagen, both of Glencoe; brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Harold and Lois (Fruetel) Hoof of Hawaii; nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and many friends.
 
He was preceded in death by his parents, Albert and Ella (Tanke) Gruenhagen; wife, Helen (Fruetel) Gruenhagen; sisters, Carol Gruenhagen and Mavis Gruenhagen; brother, Orville Gruenhagen; brother-in-law, Earl Brinkman; and sisters-in-law, Geraldine Gruenhagen and Jan Gruenhagen.
 
Arrangements were with the Johnson-McBride Funeral Chapel in Glencoe. Online obituaries and guest book are available at www.hantge.com.