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Walter "Bill" William Pagel
October 4, 1949 ~ September 15, 2023 (age 73) 73 Years Old
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Walter “Bill” William Pagel, 73, of Bemidji, MN passed away on September 15, 2023 at Sanford Bemidji Medical Center.
Funeral Services will be at 2:00 p.m., Monday, September 25, 2023 at Eckles Community Center, Bemidji, MN. Visitation will be from 12:00 –2:00 p.m. at Eckles Community Center prior to the service. The Interment will be Tuesday September 26th at 11:00 in Minnesota State Veterans Cemetery, Camp Ripley, Little Falls MN.
Bill was born to Ben and Mary (deVries) Pagel on October 4, 1949 in Minneapolis, MN at the University of Minnesota due to his mother having polio during her pregnancy. He attended school in Bemidji and spent a high school year with his sister’s family on the farm in Prairie Farm, WI.
Bill was a veteran of the United States Army, SFC E-7. Bill retired from the 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne) at Fort Lewis, Washington. Bill’s military career spanned twenty two years of excellence, along the way earning the Meritorious Service Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, the Army Commendation Medal (1st oak leaf cluster), Army Good Conduct Medal (3 oak leaf cluster), Army Service ribbon/Overseas Service ribbon, and the Non-Commissioned Officer Professional Development ribbon, along with other lesser awards. Bill is also a Master Parachutist, Jumpmaster, Expert Rifleman, and earned jump wings/parachute certification from the United States, Belgium, and Germany, retiring Dec 31, 1989. After retirement, Bill was a supervisor with the United States Postal Service. Bill was the Honor Guard leader for the American Legion Post 14 Bemidji and Commander of The American Legion, 2018-2020. On February 18, 2023, he married his life partner of 24 years, Rachel Buttenhoff in Bemidji, MN.
Bill is survived by his wife, Rachel; daughters, Karen (Chris) Possemato and Tammy (Robert) Iverson; grandsons, Daniel and Justin Possemato and Tucker Iverson; step children, Jeremy (Krista) Payne and their children, Christopher and Parysh, Chrystal Payne and her son Ethan, Stephanie Ford and her children Aiden and Christian, Carrie (Chad) Lewis Kemper and her daughter Gemma; sister, Carol Hanson; nephews Jon, Keith and Brian Hanson. He was preceded in death by his parents and brother, David.