Dr. David C. Wedel departed this life on Wednesday (Jan. 13, 2010) at Bethesda Home in Goessel.
He was born March 16, 1908, in Goessel, the son of the Rev. and Mrs. C.C. Wedel.
His education included Bethel Academy, Bethel College, where he graduated with an A.B. degree, Colgate Rochester Divinity School in Rochester, N.Y., which awarded him a B.D. degree in 1936, and Iliff School of Theology in Denver, where he earned his doctorate of theology.
During 1927-28, Dave taught at Heimbaugh County School and coached Goessel High School basketball.
He was a member of the Alexanderwohl Mennonite Church at Goessel until receiving his ordination in 1936 when he took the pastorate of Halstead Mennonite Church.
That same year, he married Martha Quiring. Two daughters were born of that marriage, Eleanor (Mrs. Arnold) Heckendorn of Sun City, Ariz., and Judith (Mrs. Mark) Arthur of Russell, who survive.
His beloved Martha preceded him in death on July 26, 1998.
Dave served in Halstead until 1946, with a brief hiatus to be director of the Civilian Public Service Camp in Marietta, Ohio, in 1941.
In 1946, he commenced a long record of service to Bethel College in North Newton and became a member of Bethel College Mennonite Church. He served as an instructor and rose to become president from 1952 to ’59.
Southwestern College in Winfield subsequently benefited from his administrative skills from 1959 through 1967.
Dave and Martha returned to North Newton in 1967, where he rejoined his beloved Bethel College as associate director of development.
While most of his career was spent in college administration, he did not neglect his calling to the church and served as either interim or associate pastor at Buhler Mennonite Church, Zion Mennonite Church in Elbing, Zion Mennonite Church in Souderton, Pa., Alexanderwohl Mennonite Church and Ransom-Hamilton Mennonite Church in Ransom.
He wrote “The Story of Alexanderwohl (Centennial Celebration 1874-1974).”
He loved to sing both in English and Low German and sang with the Bethel College Men’s Quartet and Lake Avenue Baptist Church in Rochester. He sang the blessing at breakfast at Bethesda Home, and shortly before his death, he rallied long enough to sing for his great-grandchildren.
Dave was active in the General Conference of the Mennonite Church on many levels, and a list of his life-time accomplishments would be endless.
He was a man of rectitude, honor and faith. He was deeply loved by his family, including his daughters and their husbands, his six grandchildren and their spouses, and his 17 great-grandchildren.
A truly good man left this life on Wednesday to be with his God.
He is survived by his daughters, Judy (Wedel) Arthur of Russell and Eleanor Heckendorn of Phoenix; six grandchildren; and 17 great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his wife; parents; and sisters, Katie Wedel and Susie Reiger.
Visitation will be from 3 to 9 p.m. Friday at Petersen Funeral Home in Newton with family receiving friends from 6:30 to 8 p.m.
Funeral service will be at 3 p.m. Saturday at Bethel College Mennonite Church in North Newton with Pastor Ruth Harder of the church presiding.
A graveside service will be at 1:30 p.m. Saturday at Restlawn Gardens of Memory in rural Newton.
Memorials may be made to Bethel College in care of the funeral home.