Dennis Lauritsen, 76, of Wood, SD passed away on Friday, Jan. 7, 2022 at the Avera Saint Mary’s Hospital in Pierre, SD.
Graveside service will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 12, 2022 at 1 p.m. at the Evergreen Cemetery in Wood, SD. A visitation will be held one hour prior to committal service at the cemetery.
Dennis Lauritsen was born Aug. 3, 1945 to Chris and Minnie (McCarthy) Lauritsen. He and his brother Richard were born later in Chris and Minnie’s life; therefore, they were referred to as the miracle babies. Dennis always considered himself so fortunate for having lived his entire life at the ranch where he was born.
Dennis attended all 12 years of school at the Wood Public School. Dennis graduated from Wood High School in May of 1964. He attended a six-week course in welding in Fargo N.D. He loved to weld and built many ranch items. It broke his heart when the Drs. put in a pacemaker, defibrillator and he could no longer practice his loved hobby. But being a man who loved to work with his hands, he turned to woodworking and built many very neat items. If you received one of those items, then that meant he really liked you. His kids and grandkids will forever treasure the ones they received.
In November of 1963 his father purchased a hereford bull from Herman and Zella Larsen. When they delivered the bull to the ranch, he met their daughter Sena. Dennis decided on that day that this woman who could break a bull to lead would be his wife. Dennis and Sena were married on Oct. 23, 1964. Making this their 56th year of marriage.
Dennis and Sena were blessed with two sons, Russell, born in Oct, 1966 and Ronald, born in Aug. of 1968. This truly completed his dream of someone to carry on his legacy and the ranch.
Dennis loved to tell a story or two. He certainly loved to visit about local history, old machinery, and couldn’t let you leave because he always had “One more story”. Dennis was well versed in local history and who lived where. Pair him up with Willis or George Dickson and it was pure entertainment to listen.
Dennis has always loved working on local projects. It just didn’t matter as long as it was for Wood, the Wood Community, or Mellette County. He was an active member of the Wood Alumni, Mellette County Historical Society, Mellette County Conservation District, Mellette County Centennial Celebrations, Evergreen Cemetery Association, Bulldog Booster Club or the 4-H club. He truly loved this community and the people in it. His one national organization was the Minneapolis Moline Collectors Club. He truly loved going to tractor shows and comparing notes with other collectors.
Dennis is survived by his wife, Sena, his family, sons, Russ and Gloria, Ron and Pam. Grandchildren Daniel, Sara, Alexis and Katelyn. Great grandchildren, Dennis, Camryn, Hudson, and Griffon. Brother Richard and Cyndi, and many nieces and nephews. Sister-in-laws Mary (Jerry) Fisher, and Evelyn Farley.
Dennis was preceded in death by his parents, Chris and Minnie, his Great Granddaughter Rebecca Mae Nelsen and many special Uncles, Aunts, and cousins. His sisters and brother-in laws, Guy Farley, Delbert and Phyllis Paulson, Pat and Glen Clausen, Beverly Larsen.