Lowell "Fred" Wagner

1938 - 2023


Lowell “Fred” Wagner, 85, of Wellman, passed away Nov. 20, 2023, at the University of Iowa Hospital following a brief illness. A funeral service will be held Saturday, Nov. 25, 2023, at 10 a.m., at Lower Deer Creek Church in rural Kalona. Burial will follow at Pleasant Hill Cemetery in Joetown. Visitation will be held Friday, Nov. 24, 2023, from 3 – 7 p.m., at the Peterseim Funeral Home in Kalona. A memorial fund has been established for Hospice of Washington County.

Lowell Fredrick Wagner was born Nov. 14, 1938, north of Wellman, the son of Ivan and Dorothy (Miller) Wagner. He attended Pacific #9 rural school and graduated from Wellman High School. Fred served in the United States Army from 1961 to 1967.  He attended Muscatine Community College and graduated from the University of Northern Iowa with an education degree. He attained his master’s in industrial safety from Central Missouri State College.

Fred was united in marriage to Judy Whetstine on Aug. 31, 1958, at the Asbury United Methodist Church in Wellman. In 1972 Fred started the driver’s education and industrial safety programs at the University of Dubuque. In 1986 he retired from the University of Dubuque and moved to Joetown, then Wellman. In retirement he taught Intro to Industrial Safety at the University of Iowa and was a substitute teacher and taught driver’s education for many area schools. He was a member of the Amish Circuit United Methodist Church at Pleasant Hill in Joetown, the Washington Township Optimist Club, Wellman Lions Club, Iowa and Illinois National Safety Council, Iowa Harness and Horse Racing Association, Iowa Thoroughbred Association and served on the board at Prairie Meadows and Dubuque Greyhound Racetrack and Hospice of Washington County.

Fred was dedicated to educating young people, and truly cared about their lives. He loved his family and especially his grandchildren. Fred developed a love for horses as a child, was a jockey and traveled with county fair pony rides. Thoroughbred and harness racing was a big part of his life, and he had two harness “Horse of The Year” Horses in Iowa. Fred always enjoyed taking part in the Old Threshers Reunion in Mt. Pleasant, showing old gas engines. Fred was a huge supporter of women’s athletics at the University of Iowa. He was a fixture at the Kalona Sales Barn and a great friend of the Amish community.  He will be greatly missed by everyone he met, for he never met a stranger.

Survivors include two children: Robert D. (Jeannie) Wagner of North Liberty and Marsha Ferring of Boynton Beach, Florida; four grandchildren: Cody, Megan, Luke and Carly; and three siblings: Carolyn (Richard) Bond of Richland, Iowa, Lorna (Bob) Luther of Vista, California, and Jon (Marylin) Wagner of Parker, Colorado.

Preceding Fred in death were his parents; his wife: Judith; two sisters: Connie Floyd and Kathy Wagner; and his uncle: Don Wagner.