September 27, 2021
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Rodney (Rod) Wenzel. On September 27th, at the age of 75, Rod passed away unexpectedly at home into the arms of his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Rod is lovingly survived by his wife of 54 years, Dianne and two daughters, Shannon (Tony) Cheung of Mountlake Terrace, WA and Stacey (Aaron) Barker of Abbotsford, BC. He will be greatly missed by his grandchildren Avery, Micah, Gwen, and Gillian. Rod is also survived by his younger brothers Bert (Arlene) and Doug (Dori). He was predeceased by his parents, Erwin and Sidonia, and his siblings Melvin, Art, Merrel, Reuben and Jean. Sadly, Rod’s older sister Irene also passed way a couple of days after him.
Rod was raised on a wheat farm just outside of Leader, Saskatchewan. He was a grandson of prairie settlers and grew up during a time when there were still wooden grain elevators on the horizon and many families living on quarter sections. He loved telling and writing stories of all the fun he had growing up on the farm and his high school years in Mendham. He was a popular troublemaker and boasted about the good food his mother made the family of eleven.
When he was 18 he met his future wife Dianne. Unfortunately on their first date his car broke down and he ended up standing her up. She left without him, not knowing his distress. Thankfully, she gave him another chance. Rod followed Dianne to the West Coast of BC, where she was living with her parents in Port Coquitlam. They were married in 1967 and recently celebrated their 50th anniversary with family and friends.
Rod worked his entire career in the automotive service industry. In 1965 he worked at a warehouse in Vancouver for Goodyear, but quickly rose to be the Commercial Representative for BC and the ukon. He told many stories about his time traveling and the adventures of selling tires to various remote industries. His traveling days suddenly came to an end in 1976 when he came home and his young two year old daughter didn’t recognize him. He quit the next day and eventually opened up his own store in Abbotsford named W.H. Tire & Alignment Services. Later on he worked for an extended period of time at Canadian Tire.
Rod was a devoted member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Abbotsford. He talked with fondness about the difficult, but rewarding work as the Building Committee Chairman. Rod worked with the congregation to build its beautiful new church on Gladwin Road that opened in 1985.
Rod was a loving father and grandfather (Papa) who enthusiastically supported his children and grandchildren in all their activities and achievements. He could be found cheering for them on the sidelines of various sporting activities, or supporting them through changes and new adventures in life.
Rod was also hands down one of the biggest BC Lions fan ever! We all knew not to disturb him when he was watching their games on TV, the neighbourhood could hear his loud cheers and roars. He also loved hunting, gardening, and reading.
Due to current Covid restrictions, the family is planning a memorial service in 2022, with no set date. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the BC Children’s Hospital Foundation. Obituary
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