Dennis Hayden — Rochester
Dennis Wesley Hayden, 72, died Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2015, at Saint Marys Hospital from chronic lung disease.
Dennis was born on Sept. 18, 1943, to Wesley and Marie (Gathje) Hayden in Douglas. The family moved to Stewartville, where Dennis graduated high school in 1961.
He joined the Navy and sailed the seven seas at the age of 17, was honorably discharged at age 21, and went to work for his father at Silver Lake Phillips 66 as a mechanic for a few years. He worked for the city of Rochester, and owned Skelly Gas Station on North Broadway, the Point After Bar, the Old Francis Hotel, and the Dairy Freeze, and earned a Realtor license; but his favorite job was head maintenance at Jefferson Elementary.
Dennis never met a walleye he didn't like — a passionate fisherman who made annual trips to Mahkwa, Canada, and to Lake of the Woods with all his buddies. His Alaska fishing trip with nephew, Cory, was a highlight, and he hoped to go again.
Dennis was a family man, fisherman, hunter, coin collector, carpenter, handyman, fixer-upper and high school sports star ("Hi fans"); had a ribald sense of humor, with his son-in-law, Jerry, ordering lots of late-night TV ad stuff; a card player, Yahtzee, Vikings and Twins fan (if they won); and loved going to Christ Community Church and Sunday night family dinners. He was a crazy driver on his jazzy motorized chair!
He battled his cancer valiantly and will be sadly missed. Sorrow on Sorrow. Our family is grateful for the Mayo Clinic doctors (especially Dr. Jacobson); nurses; caretakers, Jennifer and Jesse; PCA's; and all who helped care for him.
Dennis is survived by his wife of 50 years, Sheri; daughter, Kimberly (Jerry) Rishavy; sister, Sherry Hayden; four grandchildren, Courtney (Jake) Rishavy-Shones, Jordan (Ashley) Rishavy, Madeleine Fiksdal and Grace Perrone; nephew, Cory (Renee) Maile; niece, Kristi (Kirk) Rubado and Heather (Dale) Hauschildt; and nephews, Edward (Marcelle) and Eric (Lien) Abel.
Dennis is preceded in death by his daughter in 2003, Kathryn May Hayden-Perrone, and his parents.
A funeral service will be at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 9, at Christ Community Church, with the Rev. Ken White officiating. Visitation will take place at the church from 5 p.m. until the time of service. Burial will take place at Oakwood Cemetery on Monday, Oct. 12, at 11 a.m., with military honors provided by American Legion Post No. 92.
Ranfranz & Vine Funeral Homes 5421 Royal Place NW, Rochester, www.ranfranzandvinefh.com.