Merlyn "Mert" Wrage, 68, of Waterloo, formerly of Traer and Reinbeck, passed away on Tuesday, October 12, 2010 at the Covenant Medical Center in Waterloo. A funeral service was held on Saturday, October 16 at St. Timothy's United Methodist Church, 3220 Terrace Dr., Cedar Falls, with Pastor Linda Butler officiating. Interment was held at the Reinbeck Cemetery in Reinbeck. To leave a message of condolence for the family, please visit our website at www.abelsfuneralhomes.com
Mert was born on January 1, 1942 in Reinbeck, the only child of Henry and Lucile (Horstman) Wrage. He was raised on a farm in Gladbrook and attended school there, graduating from Gladbrook High School in 1959. On August 25, 1962, he was united in marriage to Connie Joan Marks at St. Timothy United Methodist Church. Mert and Connie welcomed three children. The couple lived south of Reinbeck from 1963 where Mert farmed with his father. The family later relocated to Dinsdale and lived there from 1970 to 1978, while continuing to farm and was also employed at John Deere in Waterloo. The couple later moved to Traer and eventually made their home in Waterloo in 1991 and have remained there ever since. Mert retired from John Deere in June 2004.
He was a member of St. Timothy's United Methodist Church in Cedar Falls and a volunteer service worker at Covenant Hospital. Mert had a love of the outdoors. He completed his first RAGBRAI 5 years ago, which was a lifelong dream of his. He also loved spending time with his family, especially his grandchildren.
Mert is survived by his wife Connie of Waterloo; children Stacey (Dean) Helstrom of Litchfield, Minn., Sharri (Randy) Claassen of Parkersburg and Shane (Julie) Wrage of Polk City; grandchildren Taylor and Breanna Berry, Braden, Devin and Dylan Claassen and Sydnee, Micaela and Reece Wrage. He was preceded in death by his parents Henry and Lucile.