John Bongaarts
November 18, 2021

John Phillip Bongaarts age 82 of Delano passed away on Thursday, November 18, 2021. He was born January 14, 1939 to Phillip A. and Josephine (Gehlen) Bongaarts in Glencoe, Minnesota. He was an only son surrounded by five sisters on the family farm. He attended Kimball High School where he played clarinet and was crowned Prom King his senior year.

In his early years, he worked at Univac as a technician and sold Conklin products on the side. John and Donna met on a blind date, married in 1964, and lived in south Minneapolis. He started Wheels Westward in 1976 and moved the family to Delano. He was an active member in Delano’s business community and is still known as the go to for people needing RV repairs.

John was a loving husband, father, stepfather, grandfather, brother, uncle, and friend. John enjoyed spending time with family and was a thoughtful, friendly spirit that always had time for conversation. He looked forward to his yearly fishing trips to Trout Lake, family camping trips, and loved to play 500 and read. John was an active member of St. Peter’s Church and Cursillo; his faith was an important part of his life.

After Donna passed away, John met Judy and they married in 2012. As a couple they enjoyed trips to Florida, Arizona and Branson, Missouri. They spent many nights with friends and family playing their favorite game, Pegs and Jokers.

John was preceded in death by his wife Donna (Erickson); stepson Kenneth Waddell; step-son-in-law Joe Kvasnicka; his parents Phillip and Josephine Bongaarts; sisters Phillis (Francis) Bruns, Beatrice (Robert) Kurkowski, Bernice (Joe) Masberg, Mary Jo (Francis) Logeais.

He is survived by his wife Judy Waddell; children Rebecca (Dan) Saad, Phillip (Kristi), Karen (Shannon) Dullum, Sheri Bongaarts; stepdaughters Kim Curtis, Kelly Higgins, Kari Kvasnicka; 11 grandchildren; 7 step grandchildren; sister Janice (Jim) Dircks.

Mass of Christian Burial was held at 11 a.m. on Wednesday. Dec. 1, 2021 at St. Peter’s Catholic Church of St. Maximilian Kolbe Parish in Delano, Minnesota. Visitation took place from 4 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, November 30, 2021 with a 3:30 p.m. rosary service and an 8 p.m. prayer service in St. Martha Hall of St. Peter’s Campus. Visitation continued on Wednesday from 10 to 11 a.m. in St. Martha Hall prior to the Mass.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Wounded Warrior Project.

The Mass was live-streamed through the link provided below: