Wayne D Pederson, 72 of Fergus Falls MN, passed away among family on June 22, 2020 at Essentia Hospital in Fargo, ND. He was born to Walter Pederson and June (Sandberg) Pederson on September 23, 1947 in Pelican Rapids MN.
Wayne went to school in Detroit Lakes MN where he loved to play football, hockey and baseball. Wayne also was a great wrestler having wrestled at the Minnesota state tournament on several occasions. He would always say his best matches were against an equally fierce wrestler from Frazee. He was always busy with sports, farm help with the uncles or spending time with friends. Upon graduation from DLHS, Wayne enlisted in the United States Navy in San Diego, CA. While he was stationed on several ships, his best stories were from his time on the USS Enterprise – the flagship of the naval fleet during the Vietnam war. He was in the Carrier Communication Division One Department – fleet communications. He often spoke of his good and entertaining experiences with friends in different countries – Vietnam, Japan and Thailand. Along with his buddies Jimmy Cruz and C. Ray Dosey, these three made for a triple threat when on shore leave.
In 1973, Wayne married Debbie Egan and had two children, Jackoline and Christopher. Wayne finished up his service to the navy in 1974. Wayne lived in a few towns to include Detroit Lakes, Fargo ND and Libral KS before moving to Fergus Falls MN and starting his career as a boiler engineer first class at Lake Region Hospital. Wayne was a legendary prankster, story teller, comedian and friend to many in the hospital. The terrible twosome of Wayne and his best friend, Floyd Paler, were always good for a joke, laugh or a prank on a select special few targets! Above all else, Wayne loved to play Santa Clause for the employee kids during the holiday party season! In the later years – he even grew out a Santa beard and dyed it white for the kids!
Wayne was a member of the VFW, Eagles and American Legion. He was a fixture along with his step father, Jack Wood, setting up veteran flags at the Oak Grove cemetery for the ever growing Avenue of Flags each year. He was a lifelong fan of the Green Bay Packers and the Washington Redskins. His daughter Jackoline is a devout Minnesota Vikings fan making Sunday afternoons watching football very interesting in the Pederson house! He was also a huge fan of NDSU bison football and enjoyed every chance to see the bison play in the Fargo Dome.
Wayne went to heaven to once again see his parents, June and Walter, his baby brother, his step father Jack and many Aunts and Uncles. Surviving are his wife Debbie, kids Christopher Pederson and Jackoline Driggers and her husband Steve, sisters Cathy Paulson and Jeanine Syverson and her husband, Wayne. Wayne also has 5 grandkids…Matthew Pederson, Sloan Pederson, Nicky Pederson, Gabriella Pederson and Logan Driggers.
A celebration of Life memorial service will be held at 2 pm on Saturday July 18th at the David Donehower Funeral Home in Detroit Lakes. For those not able to attend, it will also be live streamed on the Donehower website.