Family man, avid fisherman and card player Willard John Daschner, 93, a native of Madison Lake, Minn., died Tuesday, Dec. 24, 2013.
Willard was born on Sept. 10, 1920, the son of John and Theresa Daschner of Madison Lake, and the brother of Walt and Merle Daschner and Helen Daschner Hutcherson, all whom preceded him in death. He attended All Saints Catholic School in Madison Lake until the eighth grade, when he joined the family farm implement business.
In 1942, Willard enlisted in the Navy, serving as a gunner's mate during World War II on the USS White Squall and USS Brandy Station, among others. He made more than 40 trans-Atlantic crossings and received the Good Conduct Medal before he was honorably discharged in 1945. Upon his return to Madison Lake, Willard joined American Legion Post No. 269, and was a member for 68 years. He participated in the Post's Memorial Day parade in all but two of those years.
After the war, Willard farmed, worked as a mechanic and then joined the aircraft overhaul business in Rochester, Minn., as chief engine parts inspector. In 1966, he joined 3M Corp. in New Ulm, Minn., as a quality control technician and retired from there in 1982.
He is survived by his wife of 57 years, Donna Doran Daschner, their four children, Ann Anderson (Roy), Mary Daschner (Dan Chowen), Phillip (Adrianne Flynn), and Robert (Julie); five grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, December 28, 2013 at All Saints Catholic Church in Madison Lake with Rev. Robert Schneider officiating. Visitation will begin at 9:30 a.m. and continue until the time of the service at church. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery in Madison Lake. Mankato Mortuary is in charge of arrangements.
The family would like to thank Allina Hospice for its care and support. Memorials in lieu of flowers may be made to All Saints Church, 600 Third St., Madison Lake, MN 56063; Allina Hospice, 1055 Westgate Drive, Ste. 100, St. Paul, MN 55114; or St. Therese Foundation, 8000 Bass Lake Road, New Hope, MN 55428.