Dr. Bernie Krenzke, 63, of Caledonia

What a character! Bernie will fondly be remembered for his chiropractic skills, his passion for farming, his hunting escapades, being a kid magnet, ALWAYS running late, his bear hugs, his trademark laugh, and his tender soul.

He passed away May 11, 2019. He was born June 21, 1955.

Bernie grew up on the Krenzke farm in Pfeffer Valley of rural La Crescent, the fifth child of seven for Ed and Florine. 

He attended St. Pete’s in Hokah, and La Crescent High School where he loved wrestling, football, and girls. He graduated in 1973, and told the story many times: yes, it was him who lit the firecracker on stage during graduation. 

He played softball for many local leagues. He continued wrestling for Winona State University before transferring to Palmer College of Chiropractic in Davenport, Iowa, and fulfilled one of his life dreams by becoming a terrific chiropractor at his practice of 38 years, Caledonia Chiropractic Center, helping many people over his lifetime (although it was his secretary Anna Marie McCormick who really ran his practice). 

He joked that being a chiropractor was a great part time job that supported his farming habit. 

He wanted to make sure to express his appreciation and thank his wonderful friends and family who helped him farm when it was becoming difficult for him to do so. 

He was passionate about hunting and fishing, and took many hunting trips for elk, deer, pheasant, bear, and lately, prairie dogs. 

Bernie didn’t get older — he just got “Bernier”.

Bernie was welcomed in heaven by his parents Ed and Florine and his sister Eileen (Steve Wiste). 

He is survived by his daughters Rachel and Nicole, his estranged wife Cheryl, siblings Dr. Jim Krenzke (Jean Carlson); his adopted brother Denny Langen; Mary Grosskopf (John); his new sister Lori Wiste (Steve); Tim Krenzke (Debbie); Steve Krenzke (Paula); and Diane Sillman (Therese Wagner). 

This was in reverse order because Bernie never followed a straight line. 

He earned the “Favorite Uncle” award from nieces and nephews Jeff and Jamie; Chase, Caitlin, Haley and Christopher; Sophia, Kelsey, and Cole; Sophie, Sam and Megan; Andrew, Anthony, Nathan and Brandon; Genna, Philip, John, and Kate; Jenn and Josh; and all of their young families. 

He has many Godchildren and tons of cousins on the Petke and Schneider sides, and has more friends than one could ever hope for. He is further survived by his blue tractor, and his dogs Susie and Lucy.

A huge thank you to the wonderful staff at Mayo Health. You made him feel like a king at the end of his life.

Bernie specifically requested no church services or visitation; instead he wanted a big “Why We Love Bernie Party”, which will be held at the The Four Seasons Community Center in Caledonia, MN, on Saturday, May 18, from 1-5 p.m. 

When asked what he wanted his family and friends to know, he answered, “I love them.” We know, Bernie – it was always so evident. Always. We love you, too. Forever.

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