American Veteran 01

Earl Wayne Kruse

July 3, 1948 ~ July 17, 2020 (age 72)

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Earl Wayne Kruse, 72, of Aberdeen, SD, passed away Friday, July 17, 2020, at Aberdeen Health and Rehab following a courageous seven-month battle with Glioblastoma.

Mass of Christian burial will be 10:30 a.m., Monday, July 27, 2020, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 409 2nd Ave NE, Aberdeen, with Father Andrew Thuringer officiating.

Burial, with military rites, will take place at 10:30 a.m., Tuesday, July 28, 2020, at St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery.

Schriver’s Memorial Mortuary & Crematory, 414 5th Avenue NW, Aberdeen, is handling arrangements.

Visitation will be 3-5 p.m., Sunday, at the mortuary, with family present for outdoor greetings respecting social distancing.  Visitation continues one hour before Mass at the church on Monday.  Earl’s family respectfully requests the use of masks and social distancing at the Funeral Mass and visitation. 

Family and friends may sign Earl’s online guestbook and view his service via the live stream service link at

In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to Northern State University Foundation or Feeding South Dakota.

Earl Wayne Kruse was born in Aberdeen, SD on July 3, 1948, to Earl C. and Lorene (Werdin) Kruse.  He grew up in Wetonka, SD and graduated from Barnard High School in 1966.  Earl went on to attend Northern State College, graduating with a degree in math education and economics.  During his time at Barnard High School and Northern State, Earl was an impressive track athlete running the 300 and 440 as well as the mile relay.  His speed led to several records held at Northern for many years.

Following college, Earl enlisted in the United States Army.  He proudly served his country from 1970 to 1973 with much of his service occurring overseas in Germany.

Earl was united in marriage to LaVonne Rausch on August 12, 1978, in Hoven, SD.  Their union was blessed with two children, Brent and Lauri.  They made their home in Aberdeen where Earl spent 43 years as a Letter Carrier in Aberdeen.  He enjoyed his work and taking care of the neighborhoods where he delivered.  He retired in 2016.

Earl was a loyal husband, father, grandfather, son, brother, uncle, cousin and friend.  His grandchildren were his true joy.  He loved spending time with them and felt blessed to watch them grow.  Earl enjoyed going for walks, fishing, hunting, playing cribbage and watching Jeopardy.  He had a thirst for knowledge and enjoyed math problems.  He was a member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church.  Earl supported his children’s interest in many ways including as a scout leader and supporter of the Aberdeen Community Theatre. He advocated for his fellow letter carriers as Past President of the National Association of Letter Carrier State Association.  He was an avid fan of Northern State University, the Minnesota Vikings and Twins and NASCAR.

Blessed to have shared Earl’s life is his wife of nearly 42 years, LaVonne Kruse of Aberdeen; their children, Brent (Kellee) Kruse of Silver Spring, MD and Lauri (Mike) Finnegan of Sioux Falls, SD; grandchildren:  Benjamin and William Finnegan and Marcus and Sarah Kruse; sisters, Janet Hilgemann of Aberdeen, SD and Charlene Fleeger of Rochester, MN; as well as many cousins, nieces, nephews and wonderful friends.  

Earl is preceded in death by his parents, his brother, Don McShane; and brothers-in-law:  Andy Van Well, Skip Fleeger, Dale Hilgemann, and Reynold Rausch.




To send flowers to Earl's family, please visit our floral store.


July 26, 2020

3:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Schriver's Memorial Mortuary
414 5th Avenue NW
Aberdeen, SD 57401

Mass of Christian Burial
July 27, 2020

10:30 AM
St. Mary's Catholic Church
409 2nd Avenue NE
Aberdeen, SD 57401


Northern State University Foundation
620 15th Avenue SE, Aberdeen SD 57401
Tel: 1-605-626-2550

Feeding South Dakota
4701 N Westport Avenue, Sioux Falls SD 57107
Tel: 1-605-335-0364

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