Dean L. Ekern, 96, of Flandreau, SD, passed away Monday, September 7, 2020 at Riverview Healthcare Community.
Dean was born on November 27, 1923 to Carl J. and Emma (Ellefson) Ekern. Dean was baptized, confirmed, and actively served at Our Saviors Lutheran of Flandreau. He received his education at Flandreau Public School, graduating in 1941. He then attended the University of SD for one year. In June in 1942 through Oct. 1943, Dean was a studio control operator at WNAX, Yankton, SD. During WWII, Dean entered the US Navy (EM2C) from October 1943 and was honorably discharged March 1946. His main duty station was Pearl Harbor Hawaii. He was a member of the American Radio Relay League, Inc. from Sept. 1941-August 1948. Dean returned to the family farm near Flandreau to run the operation of cropland and raising cattle. His hobbies included working in his workshop.
Dean married Dorothy Frick at Redeemer Free Lutheran in Canton on March 25, 1989. This union was a blessing to all of us.
Dean is survived by his four children through marriage: Donna Smith, Flandreau; Warren (Judy) Frick, Alpharetta, GA; Kathy (David) Holter, Canton and Lanny (Kathy) Frick, Rogers, AR; nine grandchildren: Jon C. Smith, Chad Holter, Daniel Frick, Darin Frick, Todd Holter, Michael Smith, Lisa Shaurette, Amber Ball, Darcy Richard and a number of great and great great grandchildren and many cousins.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Dorothy in 2018, parents, sister Eleanor Wheeler, infant siblings Elliot and Maxine, and numerous relatives.
Funeral service was held September 12, 2020, at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, Flandreau with burial at Dalesburg Lutheran Cemetery, rural Vermillion.