In Memory of Dr. Luther Wigdahl

Dr. Luther Wigdahl, age 82, of Naples, Florida and formerly of Isanti died September 25, 2012 at his son’s home in Isanti. Funeral services will be held at 11:00 A.M. Saturday, September 29th at Cambridge Lutheran Church with Rev. Andy Romstad officiating. A visitation will be held from 5:00-8:00 P.M. Friday, September 28th at Strike Funeral Home – Cambridge Chapel and also one hour prior to the service Saturday at the church. Interment will be in Isanti Union Cemetery.

Luther O. Wigdahl of Naples, FL and Isanti, MN, passed away on September 25, 2012 at his son’s home in Isanti, MN surrounded by his immediate family and the caring help of Fairview Lakes HomeCaring & Hospice.  His faith in God and the love of his family comforted Luther during his final hours.  Luther was born on July 12, 1930.  He was the last sibling born to Oliver and Galena and the only son.  He was adored by his four older sisters and perhaps spoiled a bit by them.  As a youth he was an avid photographer and enjoyed the outdoors, he worked on numerous farms while growing up in the heartland of America, and many summers was employed as a cement worker during the construction of the Fort Randall Dam on the Missouri River in South Dakota to earn money for school. Following his graduation from high school, he married LaVonne J. Nelson in Pickstown, SD on December 27, 1951.  Luther was the father to three children (Brian, Loren, and Jeanne).  He and LaVonne lived in Vermillion, SD; Chicago, IL; Duluth, MN; Tooele, UT; Ewa Beach, Hawaii; Oakland, CA; Richfield, MN; Golden Valley, MN; Isanti, MN; and most recently Naples, FL.  Early in life he had long wavy dark hair that he traded in on a crew cut which he sported the remainder of his life.  He eventually purchased his own hair clippers that he used for more than half a century to cut his own hair.  LaVonne would occasionally help him cut the back.  They were quite the team throughout their marriage. Throughout his life, Luther was dedicated to his wife of 60 years, and to their three children and their families.  He graduated from Augustana College and attended medical school at the University of South Dakota and graduated from University of Illinois School of Medicine.  Toward the end of his Army surgery residency at Tripler Army Hospital in Honolulu, Hawaii, Luther suffered the onset of insulin-dependent diabetes, a condition he conquered on a daily basis for more than 52 years with the help of his wife.  Despite this setback, Luther left the military and moved his family to Minneapolis MN and completed a radiology residency at the University of Minnesota.  After completion of his radiology training, he began his career with Suburban Radiologic Consultants and Head of Radiology at Unity Hospital where he held a number of leadership positions over the years until his retirement to the Isanti farm (The Ponderosa), the cabin at Green Lake, and the Condos in Naples FL.  Luther was a brilliant physician, loving husband, and the best dad ever, he was hard working and tried to instill this ethic in his children whenever possible (whether it was school work, sports, or bailing hay on the farm).  He supported our efforts whenever possible.  He was always there for us no matter what the difficulty was.  Perhaps our father’s greatest skill was his ability to fix anything.  We all benefitted from this attribute more than once.  Many projects gone awry were rescued by his endless skills.  Toward the end of his life, during his battle with prostate cancer, our Dad never lost his positive attitude and his concern for others.  He was always there for his family, friends, the needy, and many politicians of the republican persuasion.   Luther will be greatly missed by his family and all those he touched during his lifetime but he has given us the strength to go on in happiness for we know that he is in a better place and at peace with the love of his life, our Mom. We will now hear him singing from the heavens.  Our father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

Guestbook Entries:

  1. says

    Loren and Mary, I was sorry to hear of your dads passing. Know that he is in a better place and is no longer hurting. We will be praying for you and your families. Take care…we love you.

    Dan and Tammi

  2. says

    Dear Brian,

    I am very sorry to hear of your dad’s passing. He sounds like he was an amazing man and wonderful father, who lived a full, meaningful life. I know he will be greatly missed. I hope that you are doing well and are comforted by your memories, as well as the support of family and friends. You and Betty and your family are in my thoughts during this difficult time.



  3. says

    Dear Jeanne, Jim, Daniel & Sarah, and Paul,

    Luther and Lavonne were the very best neighbors and friends to our family, and a blessing to the Naples community! Every season, we looked forward to visiting with you and your wonderful family! Spring break was never complete wiithout their company.

    We will miss Luther very much. We loved his stories, his singing voice, and his friendship. He was a brilliant and compassionate man, and made this world a better place.

    May your memories of such a wonderful Dad and Grandfather, lift you up in times of sorrow and bring you joy and comfort.