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Vernon Bau, 92

Vernon Bau, 92, of Truman, Minnesota, passed away on Easter Sunday, April 12, 2020, at Heartland Senior Living in Truman.

Vernon Bau was born on June 5, 1927, on a farm near Monango, North Dakota, to Peter and Esther (Farmer) Bau. He was raised in the farm life and attended country school through eighth grade near Frankfort, South Dakota. He started working and later joined the U.S. Army, serving in World War II for 16 months. Upon his return, he took his GED and enrolled at South Dakota State University in Brookings, South Dakota. He met Delores Anderson in the Summer of 1949 and they married on June 14, 1952, in Redfield, South Dakota. They became live-in house parents at the Methodist Student Center to help with expenses while in college. While as a member of the U.S. Army Reserve, his education was interrupted in 1950 when he served in Japan during the Korean War. Upon his discharge, Vernon graduated from SDSU in 1954, first in his class in the College of Agriculture, where he majored in agricultural economics and minored in agronomy. He appreciated the education he had received from SDSU. He followed college with a long career as a farm loan appraiser and loan manager for Equitable Life Assurance Society in Truman. He continued his education to earn a Masters of Science in 1958 with a major in economics while working for Equitable. He and Delores moved to Truman in 1957. He believed in community involvement and was the chairman of the Truman Planning and Zoning Board for many years. He was politically active and was a delegate for county and state caucuses for years. They were long time members of the Madelia United Methodist Church, where he served on many boards. He enjoyed playing cards, fishing, hunting and golfing. They were members at Interlaken Golf Club in Fairmont, Minnesota. He flew a private plane and was a member of the St. James Flying Club. He enjoyed taking friends and family for trips near and far to Mexico, Canada, Louisiana, New Mexico, California, South Dakota and many other states. After retirement, he and Delores, wintered in Mesa, Arizona. He was a lifetime VFW member and a 70-year American Legion member. He was active in the Truman Historical Society and Truman Museum. He provided financial scholarships to students at his alma mater, SDSU.

Vernon is survived by his wife, Delores; children, Gordon (Jane) Bau of Austin, Minnesota, Cindy (Greg) Graif of Sherburn, Minnesota, Connie (Elliot) Belgard of Truman and David (Sue) Bau of Slayton, Minnesota; 14 grandchildren, Stacy (Derek) Nelson, Tanya Ryan, Matt Bau, Josh (Angela) Bau, Melissa (Jeff) Paradis, Laura Urban, Jerrick (Jess) Urban, Foster (Alyssa) Graif, Brenna (Darren) Thate, Molly Markquart, Miranda Belgard (fiancé Chris Tulowetzke), Brian Bau, Mark Bau and Heidi Bau; 13 great-grandchildren, Raya, Meghan, Isla, Josselyn, Ryker, Alexis, Adalynn, Grayson, Kennedy, Finley, Dustin, Londyn and Madison; sister-in-law, Teresa Bau; and numerous other relatives and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers, Wesley and Arlan; and two sisters, Lena Paulson and Eva Masat.

Due to COVID-19 guidelines, services will occur at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please consider donations to the Truman Historical Museum or SDSU Foundation, Vernon Bau Scholarships: SDSU, PO Box 525 Brookings, SD  57006-9935, www.SDStateFoundation.org. Zaharia Family Funeral Home in Truman is entrusted with arrangements. Online condolences can be left at www.ZahariaFamilyFuneral.com.