- February 14, 2023
Clair Wagner, 86, of Lansing, Iowa, died peacefully on Feb, 11, 2023, in his home surrounded by family. Visitation will be 4 to 7 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 17, and 9:45 to 10:45 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 18.
A Scripture service is planned for 4 p.m. Friday and Funeral Mass at 11 a.m. on Saturday, all taking place at Immaculate Conception Church in Lansing.
Clair Francis Wagner was born in Waukon, Iowa, on April 1, 1936, the fourth son and eighth child in the Frank and Monica (Hogan) Wagner family. He graduated from Immaculate Conception High School in Lansing in 1954. Clair was a catcher on the IC baseball team and a key member of their 1954 Archdiocesan Championship Basketball squad.
Through his friend John Hawes, he met a beautiful young lady, Catherine Cerney, from Winona, Minn. Clair and Cathy exchanged wedding vows on Nov. 15, 1958, at St. John’s Catholic Church in Winona and were the proud parents of 10 children. They were devoted, hardworking people who raised their family in the Catholic faith. Family and faith were always first for the Wagners. Clair and Cathy were committed to and nurtured their faith throughout their life as evidenced by their taking part in the Cursillo program in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
Clair loved and cared for the land, diligently raising beef cattle. He greatly enjoyed the outdoors and learned to hunt from his father and passed that skill on to his children and grandchildren. Clair also worked as a Union carpenter. He began his career in the trades working in Cook County, Ill. Clair and his friend, Ralph Mettille, traveled to many carpenter jobs, mostly in LaCrosse and Waterloo. His coworkers regarded him as someone you could look up to and learn from.
Clair enjoyed sports. He grew up a Milwaukee Braves baseball fan and in later years avidly followed the Milwaukee Brewers. If the Iowa Hawkeye men’s or women’s basketball team were playing on radio or television Clair was sure to be tuned in. Following his grandchildren’s athletic endeavors was a source of joy for Clair.
Clair is survived by four sons, Patrick, Paul (Arla), Andrew (Erica), and Matthew (Ann), all of Lansing, and five daughters, Angela (Tom) Weighner and Rita (the late Dave) Newton, both of Waukon, Sara (Julian) Gonzales of Visalia, Calif., Mary (Jeff) Loeffelholz of Waukee, Iowa, and Beth (Jamie) Pursley of Wendell, N.C. He is also survived by 24 grandchildren, nine great-grandchildren, two sisters-in-law, Doris Wagner and Betty Drier, one brother-in-law, Bernard Drier, and dozens of nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Catherine; his parents, Frank and Monica, and his father and mother-in-law, Bernard and Elizabeth; a son, Peter Clair; three grandchildren, Katie Weighner, Elijah Wagner and Lilly Pursley; son-in-law, David (Newt) Newton; and all of his siblings, sisters Mildred Wagner, Leota (Dot) Pfiffner, Bernice Walleser, Dolores Walleser and Lucille Wesseln, and brothers Mel, Cletus (Bud), and Kenneth.
The Wagner family is appreciative of the compassionate care provided by Crossing Rivers Hospice and Veteran’s Memorial Hospital, the visits from local clergy, friends, and relatives, and the prayers of our community in his final days. God bless each one of you.