Gettysburg, SD

Jay L. Duenwald

Jay Duenwald squareJay Leo Duenwald, surrounded by his family, died at his home on the farm southwest of Hoven, SD on Aug. 31, 2013, due to complications from Parkinson’s disease. Mass of Christian Burial  was held Friday, Sept. 6, at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Hoven with Father Kevin Doyle, celebrant. Interment followed at St. Anthony’s Cemetery with military graveside rites by the John J. Peters American Legion Post No 159, Hoven.
Jay was born Feb. 26, 1937, to Leo A. and M. Frances (Sons) Duenwald in Bowdle. He graduated from Hoven High School with the Class of 1955, and went on to earn a B.S. degree in agricultural engineering at South Dakota State University, where he met the love of his life, Agnes Mack of Kranzburg. They were married on June 25, 1962, at Holy Rosary Church in Kranzburg. Jay was then drafted and served in the U.S. Army for two years. He returned to farm with his brother, Bill, and parents on the family farm. Together, he and Agnes raised eight children; his highest earthly consideration was his family.
A Fourth Degree member of the Knights of Columbus (KCs), Jay served as Grand Knight, District Deputy and also as the KCs’ highest state officer, State Deputy. He was South Dakota’s delegate to the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) from 1988-2011 and held the vice-chairman position on the NRLC board of directors. He was also vice-president, president and regional director of the South Dakota Right to Life (SDRTL) board and served as president of the S.D. Pro-Life Committee PAC. SDRTL honored Jay in 2011 with its Humanitarian of the Year Award.
In 1996, Jay was elected into the S.D. House of Representatives, where he served for six years. He was then elected in 2002 to the S.D. Senate where he served six more years until declining health kept him from serving. He was the House Majority Whip from 1999-2002 and Senate Majority Whip from 2005-2006.
Jay was a member of St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Hoven, where he was a lector, extraordinary Eucharistic minister, CCD teacher and served on the Parish Council and St. Anthony’s School Board. He served as the Holy Infant Hospital Board Chairman and volunteered as its administrator for several years. He was a member of the Hoven Service Club, which named him Citizen of the Year in 1997. Jay was an outdoorsman who enjoyed hunting and was a hunter safety instructor for many years. Music was a large part of his life; through the years he sang lead tenor with various barbershop quartets, was a National FFA chorus member, and sang for numerous weddings and funerals.
Jay is survived by his wife, Agnes (Mack) Duenwald of Hoven; sons Ernest (Jan) Duenwald of Mitchell and Eric (Alicia) Duenwald of Hoven; daughters Peggy (Tom) Kapusta of Sioux Falls, Valerie (Rick) Johnson of Mitchell, Katie Duenwald of Pierre, Susan (Mike) Gutenkauf of Aberdeen, Betsy (Scott) Madsen of Aberdeen, and Karen (Mike) Rickert of Pierre; and 17 grandchildren. He is also survived by siblings Bill (Gloria) Duenwald and Mary Lou (Bob) Keller of Hoven, and Nancy Duenwald of Aberdeen; in-laws Paul Mack of New Richmond, Wisc., David (Lou Ann) Mack of Springfield, Ill., and Jeanette Mack of Watertown, S.D., as well as numerous nieces and nephews and aunt Agnes (Sons) Krogman.
Jay was preceded in death by his father on Jan. 12, 1997, his mother on  Oct. 15, 1996, and siblings Royal (Bonnie) Duenwald, Eileen (Al) Weber and Cleo (Leo) Sabota.
Memorials are preferred to South Dakota Right to Life (SDRTL), PO Box 1032, Pierre, SD 57501 and St. Anthony’s Church, PO Box 98, Hoven, SD 57450.
To leave an online condolence or to view the tribute video, please visit
Lien Funeral Home, Bowdle, is in charge of arrangements.

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