Cover photo for Emil Wingenbach's Obituary
Emil Wingenbach Profile Photo
1934 Emil 2016

Emil Wingenbach

August 13, 1934 — June 13, 2016

** VIDEO TRIBUTE CAN BE VIEWED BELOW ** Emil Wingenbach, age 81 of Spearfish, died Monday, June 13, 2016 at the Garden Hills Assisted Living Center in Spearfish. Mass of Christian Burial will be held 10:30 am Monday, June 20th, 2016 at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Spearfish. Inurnment will take place in the Holy Cross Cemetery, in Lead. Funeral arrangements are with Leverington Funeral Home of the Northern Hills in Belle Fourche. Emil Wingenbach was born August 13, 1934 on the family farm near Raleigh, North Dakota. He was the son of John and Katherine (Benagosti) Wingenbach. His father was an immigrant from Russia, and his mother was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Emil was the third child out of six children in the family. He grew up on the farm until his father’s death in 1954 when the farm was sold. Forced to start a new life, he eventually settled in Lead and began working at the Homestake Mine in May of 1958. He worked more than 35 years with most of it being located underground. In 1959, Emil was united in marriage to Elaine Ruffatto. Together they enjoyed over 51 years of marriage, before Elaine’s death in 2010. In 1987 the couple moved into Spearfish and Emil retired in 1992. Following, he worked at Lookout Memorial Hospital for four years. In 1998 he retired fully due to heath issues and since that time he has spent countless hours refining his talent as a woodcrafter extraordinaire and offering a helping hand to any and all. Emil had an incredible talent at working with wood and creating wooden replicas of moving vehicles such as: trucks, airplanes, antique cars, fire engines, and many more. He was truly gifted. Emil is survived by his son, Jim of Billings, MT; daughters, Janet (Paul) Barnard of Rapid City, Julie Potter of Merrill WI; 4 grandchildren, Aaron, Jared, Halsey, Parker; 1 great granddaughter, Emerson; and brothers, Tony (Joni) Wingenbach of Las Vegas, NV and Mike (Cathy) Wingenbach of San Diego, CA. He was preceded in death by his parents; and wife, Elaine; and son, Joseph.
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