Arleigh L. Hansen, age 85 of Argyle formerly of South Wayne passed away Monday, Dec. 21, 2015 at Azura Memory Care Center in Monroe. He was born Feb. 12, 1930 in Monroe the son of Arthur and Lena (Anderson) Hansen. Arleigh graduated from Argyle High School in 1949.
He was united in marriage to Mary Lou Lemberger on May 3, 1969 at St. James Lutheran Church in Verona. They shared over 46 years together watching their family grow. Their children include: Valerie Hansen and Gregory (Jennifer) Hansen both of Fitchburg; and Julie (Nick) Vande Hei of Wauwatosa. They were also blessed with five grandchildren: Jacob and Ella Hansen; Tillie, Mary Mae, and Raymond Vande Hei. Arleigh is also survived by his sister: Ruby Rygh of Wiota. He was preceded in death by his parents; one sister: Eleanor Hansen; and one brother-in-law: Ted Rygh.
Arleigh was a lifelong member of Wiota Lutheran Church and past Church Council President. He was also an active member of East Wiota Cemetery Association. Arleigh was a proud member of the Stephenson County Antique Engine Club in Freeport, Ill. for the past 40 years. He enjoyed showcasing his family’s 1922 Case 2240 Cross Motor Tractor and the 1923 Case Threshing Machine with a Sattley Straw Stacker.
Arleigh was a very devoted dairy farmer and lived his entire life on the 3rd generation 300-acre family farm until retiring in 2007. One of his favorite pastimes was holding many Thanksgivings in the “Old Log House” built by his great-grandfather in the 1860s. He loved living in the community of Argyle, South Wayne, Wiota, and Woodford. He was a frequent customer to many local restaurants, with Irma’s Kitchen in Argyle being one of his favorites.
He was also a proud full-blooded Norwegian and attended many lutefisk dinners in the surrounding areas. He was a Family and Community Historian and made many monthly contributions to “The Word,” Wiota Lutheran Church’s Newsletter. Arleigh took pride in ringing the church bells at both the East and West Wiota Lutheran Church cemeteries, tolling the bell during many funeral committals and also during celebrations for the sunrise Easter and Christmas Eve services.
He was a fun, caring man that loved to laugh and tell jokes. He was an excellent dancer and would polka or waltz with Mary Lou any chance he could. And finally, Arleigh’s pride and joy were his five grandchildren, always reading the book, “Billy Goats Gruff” to them during each visit.
A memorial service will be held Monday, Dec. 28, 2015 at 11:00 a.m. at East Wiota Lutheran Church (10311 Highway 78, Wiota Township, South Wayne 53587) with Rev. Mae Jean Zelle officiating. Burial will be in East Wiota Cemetery. A visitation will be held Sunday, Dec. 27, 2015 from 2:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. at Erickson Funeral Home (801 Milwaukee Street, Argyle). Online condolences may be expressed to the family at www.ericksonfuneralhome.com.
For those who prefer, a memorial fund has been established in Arleigh’s name.
The family would like to thank the doctors and nurses at the Monroe Clinic Hospital, Azura Memory Care and the New Glarus Home. “Dad is Farming the Fields in Heaven”