Verlyn Arneson slipped quietly into eternity on Thursday, February 25th, 2021 after spending his life loving his family, serving people and leading them to the Jesus he loved. He died peacefully surrounded by his family who loved him so much.
Verlyn was born July 16th, 1935 in Janesville, WI. He spent his school years in Eau Claire around the Otter Creek area and attended Robbins School and Eau Claire High School before starting a long working history at places like John Deere, Eau Claire Rendering, Link Brother’s Foods, and Eau Claire County Adult Foster Care. He had an entrepreneurial bent and ran a farm, started A & B Auto Sales and Arneson Auto Body which created careers for two of his sons and two grandsons that continues to this day.
On February 26th, 1955 he married Loretta Wik and they spent the next 60 years together raising 8 children and then traveling to all 50 states. He worked a lot and was diligent about teaching his kids how to work. Most of his business ventures were to keep his kids working.
Both he and Loretta accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior in the Spring of 1960 at the Nazarene Church in Cedar Falls, Iowa. He would spend the rest of his life trying his best to introduce others to this Jesus who he loved so much. We are sure he was greeted in heaven by those who responded.
He was the primary church bus driver for the Eau Claire Wesleyan Church for over a decade. He would pick up more than 40 kids each week so they could come to English speaking Sunday School before their parents arrived for the Hmong service that met at the church.
He volunteered 20 hours/week for 10 years sorting and then delivering produce from Chaput Wholesale Produce to food giveaway locations and individuals in need all around Eau Claire. He was the recipient of the WQOW TV Jefferson Award in recognition for his service.
He served in jail ministry for many years, playing music, sometimes teaching a lesson, and always leading people to Jesus if they were open to it. Many were.
He and some friends started a music group called Gospel Sonshine which played bluegrass music at nursing homes and churches and any gig they could get. The group featured a banjo, mandolin, keyboard, a saw fiddle, and yodeling.
He kept a prayer journal for over 20 years with the names of hundreds of people he was praying for with the recording of the answers to those prayers. There were many many answers to his prayers. This book is now a treasured family heirloom of his recorded faith.
Verlyn is survived by 4 daughters and 4 sons: Randy (Colleen) Arneson, Debbie Arneson, Pamela (Orvin) Bystol, Rick (Rachael) Arneson, Todd (Kris) Arneson, Greg (Barb) Arneson, Cindy (Dallas) Lantz, Angela (Todd) Bautch; 26 grandchildren and 29 great-grandchildren. He is also survived by 2 sisters and a brother: Audrey Fimreite, Sonya (Bob) Elder and Arvid (Bonnie) Arneson, a glorious number of wonderful nieces/nephews and a friend who loved him to the very end, Millie Cruz.
He was preceded in death by his devoted wife of 60 years, Loretta; his parents, Palmer and Esther Arneson; and his sister, LaVonne Johnson.
Verlyn Arneson’s legacy of serving others and leading people to Jesus will live on in all of us for generations to come and will ripple on into eternity.
Funeral services will be Sunday, February 28, 2021 at 3:00 pm at Wesleyan Church. Visitation will be one hour prior to the services at church on Sunday. Burial will follow the service at Rest Haven Cemetery.