Dennis Darryl Klute

Klute Dennis obit e1568310398936

Dennis Darryl Klute of Litchfield Park, Arizona passed away quietly on September 4, 2019, with his sons Darryl and Robert and daughter Dee Dee by his side. He was 98.

Born February 28, 1921, in York County, Nebraska, Dennis enlisted in the US Army in 1941. He was stationed in San Francisco and it was there that he met his future wife Ardelle Brown of South Dakota. He was subsequently deployed to the Aleutian Islands where his division was training for the invasion of Japan should it be necessary.

After the war, Denny returned to Omaha and, in 1946, moved to Sioux City, Iowa to begin his career with Nu-Way Drug Service, Inc. Tenacious and hardworking, he advanced steadily through the ranks to vice-president and general manager of the Sioux City operation. Admired and respected by his peers, he was elected president of the Service Merchandisers of America. Denny was a member of the Kiwanis Club and served as a director of the Sioux City Boys Club. In 1977, Nu-Way Drug’s parent company Pamida, Inc consolidated its operations in Omaha. Denny served as a senior vice-president and was instrumental in the smooth transition of the satellite warehouses into a new distribution center.

In 1979, at the age of 58, Denny retired from Pamida and moved to Litchfield Park, Arizona. For the remainder of his life, he and Ardelle spent their winters in Litchfield Park, where Denny played golf with endless patience and great joy, and the other half of the year at their beloved summer home in Kenora, Ontario. They fell in love with Lake of the Woods in 1954 and, for the next 64 years, the thousands of islands and world-class walleye fishing became Denny’s breathtakingly beautiful slice of heaven. In 2007, Dennis downsized and moved to Good Shepherd Senior Living in Peoria, Arizona.

Denny was a huge sports enthusiast. He loved many kinds of hunting (he was especially proud of an expedition to Africa) and was an avid fisherman. He was impeccably well versed in the achievements and statistics of professional athletes, particularly football and baseball players. He coached little league baseball in the 1950’s and attended six World Series games through the years. His exuberance for baseball continued through many spring training games during his brother Don’s annual winter visit, right up through this past season.

An avid reader, Denny would commonly read two newspapers from cover to cover each day. He was always current in world and local events, politics, and of course, baseball and football. Many around him benefited from his views and opinions.

Denny was a life-long member of the Lutheran Church. Trinity Lutheran Church in Litchfield Park was his spiritual home for close to thirty years.

Denny was blessed to the end with an exceedingly sharp mind and a flawless memory. He awed us with the details he remembered. The joke to the very end was that if a room full of family and friends couldn’t remember something, they resorted to “let’s ask Dennis, he will know!”

At the age of 95, Denny was the proud recipient of an Honor Flight to Washington, DC.

Denny was deeply determined, strong-willed and quick-witted. He was proud and fiercely independent to the end. When someone asked, “Where is your cane, Dennis” the reply was always the same: “I don’t need a cane!”

Denny brightened many lives with his wide, infectious smile and generous spirit. In the eyes of his immediate family, and many who met him throughout his life, he was very nearly larger than life. He will be sorely missed.

Denny was preceded in death by his wife Ardelle, his brother Lowell and his sister Margaret George. He is survived by his brother Don of Bradshaw, Nebraska, and three children: Darryl of El Cajon, California, Robert (Bob) and his wife Bic of Grand Prairie, Texas, and daughter Dee Dee and husband Craig Evans of Redondo Beach, California. He leaves grandchildren Tracy, Bobbi Jo, Jason and Julie, and great-grandchildren Christopher, Cristian, Samantha, Tyler and Madison.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, October 5th at 9:00 AM at Trinity Lutheran Church, 830 Plaza Circle in Litchfield Park. All are welcome to a celebratory luncheon immediately following the service, in the Tuscany Falls Ballroom of the Pebble Creek Country Club at 16222 Clubhouse Drive.

Interment of Dennis and his Ardell will take place at 1:00 pm, Friday , October 4, 2019, at the National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona, 23029 N Cave Creek Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85024.

Those who wish to express their sympathy are asked to consider sending donations in memory of Dennis Klute to Trinity Lutheran Church Plaza Circle, Litchfield Park, AZ 85340.

8 Comments on “Dennis Darryl Klute

  1. Dennis was a great friend over 50 years spent at the lake. I loved his enthusiasm, humour and boy could he fish! So many happy memories, I will miss him terribly.

  2. Grandpa, I will always miss you. But I have so many wonderful memories to hang on to. I love you grandpa, until we meet again. Bobbi Jo

  3. Klute Family, Even in death, the patriarch of your family will continue to give…giving you stories to retell, memories to cherish, comfort on a tough day, the knowledge of how blessed you were to have him in your lives. May the depth of your faith comfort you in your sorrow.
    My heartfelt condolences.

  4. We had the pleasure of enjoying Mr.Klute on a few occasions. It took no time to appreciate that he was a man of great knowledge and kindness. He seemed so soft spoken and humble, yet could capture a room in seconds with his stories. God bless him, his family and friends. The mold that formed his entirety can never be duplicated. Much love, thoughts and prayers to those grieving. We were blessed to know him.

  5. Dennis was an incredible man. His intelligence, his quick wit, his strength and positivity were admired by so many. My relationship with Dee Dee spans over 50 years, and my heart goes out to Dee Dee, Daryl, and Bob in their loss of their father. The Waitt family considers DeeDee a part of our family as well, so I’m sending our prayers and our love from all the Waitts to all the Klute family.

  6. We’ll always remember Uncle Dennis with warm hearts. I can still see him behind the wheel of his boat on Lake of the Woods, weaving in and out of those islands with only the map in his mind. My favorite image is when he and Uncle Don came with the family to celebrate the life of their little sister, Marge George. Uncle Dennis was seated on the couch with our lanky German short hair, Jaeger, curled up in his lap like a super-size Shih Tzu. Dogs always recognize an honest soul and big heart. Love and prayers to all who loved and will miss him. Brad and Michelle George

  7. Mr. Klute was like my dad.Always had a smile on his face and was so kind. He will be missed by all I’m sure.
    Prayers are with your family.

  8. Denny was my good friend friend. We were both from Nebraska and lovers of their football team. We played many games of golf together and many times our foursome were invited to his house afterwards for refreshments. We attended the same church. I admired his great faith in Christ. We had a group of 13 people who enjoyed his company for breakfast after church. He will leave a big hole in our group. Wilmetta and I feel that our lives has been enriched because We knew Denny. God bless you good friend and I look forward to seeing you in paradise. Maury

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