Dean F. Kuklinski, age 82, of Wabasha, died Tuesday, August 13, 2019 at St. Elizabeth’s Nursing Home in Wabasha after a brief illness. He was born June 2, 1937 at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Wabasha, to Frank and Amelia (Kennebeck) Kuklinski. He graduated from Kellogg High School in 1955, one of five students in his class and its last surviving member. He honorably served his country in Korea as a member of the United States Army. Dean spent 42 years working on the Milwaukee Railroad, the Soo Line Railroad and the Canadian Pacific Railroad, working from 1955 until his retirement on June 30, 1997. He married Janet Huber Averbeck November 25, 1995 at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital Chapel.
Dean was a member of St. Felix Catholic Church in Wabasha and a member of the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees Union.
Dean was proud of the fact that he was able to attend the first Super Bowl in Los Angles in 1967 and the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. During the 1970’s he traveled all of the European countries and all of the Communist countries including Russia and China. He was an avid fan of both the Minnesota Twins and the Minnesota Vikings. He also attended the College World Series in Omaha for 14 years with his good friends Harold Wolfe and Dave Deniger. He also enjoyed stock car racing and fishing.
He is survived by his wife, Janet Kuklinski, Wabasha, MN; step-children, Jeffrey Averbeck, Owatonna, MN, Jill (Peter) Blegen, St. Bonifacius, MN; step-grandchildren, Jennifer Geier, Jacob Averbeck, Zachary Fimon, Michelle Kottke, Kirsten Church and Angela Blegen; step-great-grandchildren, Tristan Isla, Esme and Grayson Geier, Kendra and Leona Kottke, Case Church and Jack Fimon. He was preceded in death by his parents.
A funeral Mass will be celebrated on Saturday, August 17, 2019 at 11:00am at St. Felix Catholic Church in Wabasha with the Reverend Father Gregory Parrott and Deacon John Hust officiating. Interment will follow at St. Felix Cemetery. Casket bearers will be Jacob Averbeck, Zach Fimon, David Kuklinski, Howard Ludwigson, Mike McGrath, and Dave Konkel. Honorary bearers will be his co-workers on the railroad. Military rites will be performed by the Wabasha American Legion Post #50, the Burkhardt-Roemer VFW Post #4086 and the MNARNG Honor Guard. Family and friends may call at the church on Saturday from 9:00am until the time of service. Memorials are preferred to St. Felix School, 130 3rd St. E., Wabasha, MN 55981 or to St. Elizabeth’s Community Development Foundation, 1200 5th Grant Blvd. W., Wabasha, MN 55981.