Lemuel A. “Tony” Braunagel, 80, a longtime businessman of the Lake Region passed away on Monday evening, December 9, 2013 at the Heartland Care Center in the loving care of his family and friends.
Funeral services for Tony will be held on Saturday, December 14 at 1 p.m. at Our Saviors Lutheran Church, Devils Lake with Pastor Kevin Kaufmann officiating, Pastor of Westminster Presbyterian Church, and Devils Lake. Visitation will be held on Friday, December 13 from 4 p.m. until 9 p.m. at the Gilbertson Funeral Home, Devils Lake. Visitation on Friday will be at the church one hour prior to the funeral service. Burial will be in the Devils Lake Cemetery with Military Honors accorded by the Neathery-Simensen Post #756, Devils Lake Veterans of Foreign Wars and the North Dakota Military Funeral Honors Team.
Casket bearers for Tony will be his godson, Wade Olson, Trent Tarvestad, Tom Traynor, Dick Prozinski, Tony Nordine, Kevin Frith, Al Freidig and Lori Frith. Music will be provided by Rick Senger and Lynda Pearson, pianist.
Lemuel Anton, son of Nick and Margaret (Gatch) Braunagel was born on June 15, 1933 in Spartanburg, S.C. His grandparents from the Baden-Baden area of Russia homesteaded in the Harvey area and that is how Tony came to be reared and educated in both South Carolina and North Dakota. He graduated from Devils Lake Central High School with the class of 1952. Furthering his education at Jamestown College, he graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Physics and Mathematics.
Tony began working for Boeing shortly after he graduated and as an engineer with the company, this afforded many years of travel within the United States and also overseas. His career with Boeing would extend to over 20 years.
Tony married Myrna Dickinson in 1956 and they were the proud parents of two children, Mindy and Drew. They established their home in Florida but eventually moved to Devils Lake where he made his home until his death.
While work definitely kept Tony in the air or on the road, he also farmed the Maherwood Farm in Ramsey County. This was a job that many times had to be done on the weekends, but one he treasured. Tony also earned his Real Estate License and was the owner and operator of Dakota Prairie Real Estate. Tony also found time to serve as a substitute teacher of geometry at Devils Lake High School.
Tony was always involved in a project somewhere and even up until three months before his death, he was keeping up with all the challenges of running a business and farming.
Tony was always very active in the community, serving on many boards, as an entrepreneur and as a mentor to many. He refurbished and remodeled to open the “End of the Line” and operated it with his son Drew and Dick Regan. He was involved in the formation of many housing subdivisions in the Devils Lake area including an early partnership in Eagle Bend with Allan Thompson and Larry Heit, and later the Elk Horn, Knuckles and Sky Hawk subdivisions.
Page 2 of 2 - He served on the Wheat Commission, Durum Growers, L.A.N.D., and the Water Board for many years. He proudly served as a City Commissioner and was a life member of Melbourne Lodge in Florida and the Devils Lake Elks Lodge, Masonic Lodge, Shrine and Lake Region Flag Corp. He served in the United States Army, stateside and later joined the American Legion and 40&8.
Anyone who knew Tony knew they could find him at most any auction sale held in the state if there was an anvil on the sale bill. He now had over 100 anvils in his collection.
Tony loved the outdoors, in the summer he loved sailing and in the winter he loved to snow ski and many other outdoor activities year round. He treasured the many trips he was able to take his grandchildren on through the years and this created a very special bond with them. He knew how harsh winters could be on the wildlife and made it a point to feed the birds and deer. He was an animal lover and he always had his faithful canine companions, Dixie and Savannah at his side.
Tony’s loving family include his daughter Mindy and her husband Merle Presler of Oakes, N.D. and her children and Tony’s grandchildren, Crystal (Joao Paulo) Casaroti of Baton Rouge, La. and Lawrence Whitaker of Fargo, N.D.; daughter-in-law, Judy Braunagel of Colorado Springs and her children and Tony’s grandchildren, Shannon Marie (Chris) Krakow, Ryan (Megan) Braunagel and Tyson (Sheri) Braunagel also all of Colorado Springs; his beloved Cheryl Strande of Devils Lake and her children who were very special to Tony, Cherilyn (Clint Devier) Strande also Devils Lake, Jay (Jenn) Strande, Pine Island, Minn. and Shannon (Steve) Hanson of Fargo; grandchildren Amanda Anderson, Shelbi Bryl, Kaitlyn Bryl, Nathan Hanson, Heather (Cory) Grover, Tucker Strande and Harley Strande; great grandchildren Jaxon, Jonas, Avery, Everett and Cullin; mother, Margaret Braunagel of Devils Lake; brother, Patrick (JoAnn) Braunagel of Redding, Calif. and niece, Beth Gonzalez and nephew Brian (Julieana) Braunagel.
He was preceded in death by his father Nick and son Drew.
Friends may sign the online register book and share memories of Tony at www.gilbertsonfuneralhome.com
Gilbertson Funeral Home, Devils Lake, is in charge of arrangements.