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Obituaries » Wendell Mendenhall

Wendell Mendenhall

January 24, 1933 - July 28, 2023

U.S. Veteran
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Wendell Wells Mendenhall formerly of Bondurant, Iowa, passed away on July 28, 2023, at his Mill Pond Ankeny apartment that he shared with Barbara, his wife of 67 years.

Wendell was born in Des Moines, Iowa (Saylorville) on January 24, 1933, to Guy and Florence Mendenhall of Bondurant.  He attended and graduated from Bondurant High School in 1952.

Following graduation, he enlisted in the United States Coast Guard where he served aboard the USCG Winona and attained the title of Boatswain’s Mate First Class, a rank of Petty Officer First Class.  He was the first seaman in District 13 history to achieve that position in four years of service.

While stationed in Port Angeles, Washington, he met his future wife Barbara Bailey whom he married on October 20, 1956.  Following his discharge, the couple moved to Bondurant where he worked at a lumber yard until he got the opportunity to pursue a life of farming near Maxwell, Iowa.  Wendell and Barbara moved back to Bondurant in 1980 when Wendell began working for the City of Bondurant.

They had two children, Brett (Cheryl) Mendenhall of Des Moines and Karen (Brad) Rees of Bondurant.

Throughout his life, Wendell loved country western music, and enjoyed fishing, particularly on annual family vacations to Leech Lake, Minnesota.  He was an ardent sports fan, having played football, basketball, and baseball in high school, and developed a life-long passion for the Iowa Hawkeyes. He was a member of the Bondurant American Legion and a past president of the Lions Club. After retirement, he spent time traveling and model building.

Wendell is survived by his wife, Barbara; son, Brett; his grandchildren, Kristina (Alex) Sittsworth and Bryan (Haleigh) Rees; his great-grandchildren, Joshua Sittsworth, Derek Rees, and Tyler Rees; and nieces, Lori Mally, and Judi Mendenhall.

He was preceded in death by his parents; daughter, Karen Rees; and brother, Gale Mendenhall.

A Celebration of Life will be held at the Bondurant American Legion (315 2nd Street NW) on Saturday, August 12, 2023, from 2:00 – 4:00 p.m.

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