Virgil Thoner

Virgil Robert Thoner, age 94 and formerly of Ellsworth, WI was called to his Heavenly home on March 14, 2021 at Kinnic Health & Rehab in River Falls, WI. Virgil was born on December 11, 1926 in Montevideo, MN to Gilbert and Mabel (Peterson) Thoner.  He was the third of six children.

He graduated from Ellsworth High School in 1944.  Virgil married Lorraine Hjerpe on September 3, 1949 at Bethel Mission Covenant Church in rural Ellsworth.  He then took over the dairy farm from his parents, where he and Lorraine raised four children: Steven, Bryan, Jacquelyn, and Alan. He and Lorraine enjoyed 60 years of marriage before Lorraine passed away in 2010.

In 1972, Virgil obtained his real estate license and joined Kenall-Kruger Real Estate of River Falls who then opened an Ellsworth office. In 1978, after his son Bryan took over the dairy farm, Virgil started Thoner Real Estate.

Virgil served on the Pierce-Pepin Electric Co-op, serving as secretary on the board.  He also received many awards from Mid-America Dairymen, Inc. for Quality Milk. Virgil enjoyed bowling on leagues in Red Wing, MN for many years. He was a BIG Minnesota Vikings fan and loved to attend Ellsworth Panther sporting events, especially wrestling. He loved to travel, and some of his highlights brought him to Norway and Sweden.  At the age of 50, he started golfing and golfed as often as he could up until the age of 90.  Many of his trips lead him to places where he could golf and visit friends and family.

He was an active member of Zion Covenant Church in Ellsworth, WI where he loved serving his Lord and Savior as he sat on many boards and committees throughout the years. In 2019 after living in Red Wing a couple years, he moved to Wellhaven Senior Apartments and transferred his membership to First Covenant Church in River Falls, WI.

Virgil is survived by his four children: Steven (Roxanne) Thoner, Bryan (Kathleen) Thoner, Jacquelyn (Daniel) Wallace, and Alan (LuAnn) Thoner.  His eleven grandchildren: Anika (Andrew) Borner, MItchell (Ashley) Thoner, Katie (Todd) VanGuerrin, Karen Thoner, Jeffrey (Natasha) Thoner, Jeri Thoner, Nicholas (Cindy) Wallace, Janelle (Travis) Niebeling, Lindsay (Grant) Holzhueter, Amanda (Ryan) Dodge, and Dewey Thoner, and 15 great-grandchildren and 2 step-great-grandsons. He is also survived by two sisters; Phyllis Bostrom of River Falls, WI and Shirley (Ted) Place of Hager City, WI and sister-in-law Betty Thoner of Spring Valley, CA as well as many nieces, nephews and cousins.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife Lorraine; brother Rollin Thoner; two sisters, Lorraine Nelson and Joan Holmquist; and three brother-in-laws; Donald (Bud) Bostrom, Kenneth Nelson, and Charles Holmquist.

Virgil’s love of life was to live for his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  The family is comforted knowing that Virgil is fully healed, and now resides with his Father in Heaven.

Funeral Services for Virgil Thoner will be held at 11:00am on Saturday, March 20th at the First Covenant Church of River Falls, 1374 N. Main Street in River Falls, WI. Visitation will be held at the church on Saturday morning, beginning at 9:00am. Use of masks and social distancing will be practiced. Following services, Virgil will be brought to the Bethel Covenant Church Cemetery in rural Ellsworth, where a family burial will take place. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the Bethel Mission Cemetery Association.

Services were entrusted to the O’Connell-Benedict Family Funeral Homes of Ellsworth and River Falls, WI. 715-425-5644


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