James  Wambeke

James R. "Jim" Wambeke

Friday, July 17th, 1936 - Tuesday, June 2nd, 2020
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James Robert Wambeke was born on July 17, 1936, in Minneota, to Ferdinand and Margaret (DeCock) Wambeke. Jim graduated from Minneota High School. He enlisted and served in the U.S. Army from 1955 – 1958, with much of his time spent in Germany. After his honorable discharge, he returned to Minneota. On November 5, 1958, he was united in marriage to Jean Hamerlinck at St. Edward Catholic Church. Jim was a Master Plumber and owned and operated Wambeke’s Plumbing, Heating & Air Conditioning. He was very creative and talented, and patented several plumbing inventions. He served on the Minneota Fire Department as Fire Chief and volunteer fireman for many years. He belonged to the American Legion Post 199. He enjoyed gardening, bird watching, playing golf and following state and local sports. Jim was most passionate about his family and enjoyed their many gatherings.
Jim died on Tuesday, June 2, 2020, at the Avera Marshall Regional Medical Center in Marshall surrounded by family. He is survived by his wife, Jean, of Minneota, daughter Sandy (and Kevin) Minnehan, of Minneota, grandson Brad (and Robyn) Minnehan, their children Madison, Parker and Mason, granddaughter Brooke (and Trent) Hennen, their children Olivia and Oaklee, son Greg Wambeke (and Konitha and her children Andy and Mellie) of Jordan, daughter Sharon (and Paul) Claeys of Ghent, daughter Suzanne (and Matt) Claeys of Dallas, TX, siblings Dorothy Vlaminck, Marian Dau, Jeannie Miller, Gloria (and Joe) Lanners, Mary (and Leroy) Neuman, Bill (and Donna) Wambeke, Dennis (and Judy) Wambeke, in-laws Pauline Wambeke, Janet Wambeke, Hamerlinck in-laws Joyce Downing, Judy Hamerlinck (and Tom), Cletus (and Lorraine) Lanners, nieces, nephews, relatives and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, siblings Joe and Richard, in-laws Gaston Vlaminck, Gene Dau, Darrill Miller and Bob Hornstein, nephew Tom Vlaminck and great-nephew Shea O’Neil, Hamerlinck in-laws Alfonce and Elsie Hamerlinck, Ernie and Jane Louwagie, Joanne Lanners, Janet Collins, Fuzzy Downing, nieces Joyel Downing and Abby Satterfield.
Jim’s family would especially like to thank the staff at The Minneota Manor that cared for and helped make his quality of life so meaningful for the last 1½ years. The family is also thankful for the compassionate care Jim received in his final days at Avera Marshall.
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Friday, June 5th, 2020 | 4:00pm - 7:00pm
    Friday, June 5th, 2020 4:00pm - 7:00pm
    St. Edward Catholic Church
    409 N. Adams
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
    Walk Through Visitation
  • Service

    Saturday, June 6th, 2020 | 2:30pm
    Saturday, June 6th, 2020 2:30pm
    St. Edward Catholic Church
    409 N. Adams
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Interment

    St. Edward Catholic Cemetery
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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4 trees have been planted in memory of James R. "Jim" Wambeke

Janet and Tim Heady

Posted at 02:59pm
Suzanne, We are thinking of you and wishing you strength and beautiful memories of your father. Love,

3 trees were planted in the memory of James Wambeke

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Glen & Celeste Zirbes

Posted at 03:12pm
With heartfelt condolences to family of James Wambeke.
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Janet Widness

Posted at 08:46pm
Wow! I remember so many things with Jim as our neighbor and friend. He took George and me along to the “garden” near the farm west of Minneota, to “the Wambeke farm” where we had tons of fun with the pigs and “Sandy” The Crow plus all those asparagus road trip hunting. I also remember he had a”big” jar of green olives in the refrigerator and ... Sandy and I ate tons of them which he was not happy about that. Another trip was with dad elk hunting in Montana with his camper ... he yelled to dad “put the brakes” on as the camper was coming alongside the vehicle down the mountain and dad said “Jim, I have had the brakes on for several feet”. He also served as our Fire Chief for many years ... thanks for that. He will missed and our prayers with Jean,, Sandy, Greg, Sharon, Suzy and families ... We have so memories of our time shared with your family and your hearts are with you!

Crystal Benson

Posted at 05:53pm
Fly high with the angels Jimmy!!! I sure will miss you!! I can just imagine your big asparagus patch up in heaven!!

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