We are deeply sorry for your loss - the staff at First Avenue
Rev. John F. Wreford, age 98, of Menomonie, passed away Tuesday, August 24, 2021, at his home surrounded by his family.
Pastor John was born in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, Southern Africa on August 20, 1923. John died at home at the age of 98, August. 24, 2021. His parents managed an agricultural business. John had four older sisters and one younger brother. His family preceded him in death. John was also preceded in death by his daughter, Winifred Gibson, daughter-in-law, Pam Wreford, and his grandson, Paul Mullen.
Following his graduation from high school, John was conscripted in January 1941, into the British Army. He was a lieutenant in the Infantry and served in North Africa, Italy, Greece, and Israel during World War 2. When in rookie training, John went to church in Mutari, Zimbabwe, where he met Dorothy. He saw Dorothy, the pastor's daughter playing the piano and THAT WAS IT. They dated for 2-months before he was ordered to active service. Upon honorable discharge in 1945, John opened a florist business, which he operated for four years. Dorothy and John were married in 1948, and a highlight was that as a florist, John prepared all the flowers for their wedding.
Their first child Raymond was born in 1949. Shortly after this John experienced a call to the ministry. They came to the USA where John attended college in Ohio, where he also served 2 student churches. They moved to Wisconsin in 1953, where he pastored 3 churches while studying at Seminary in Evanston, Illinois. In 1957, they moved to Dodgeville where he was appointed to the United Methodist Church. In 1958 John became a US Citizen. John was assigned District Superintendent of the Southwest District from 1972-1978. He continued his ministry throughout Wisconsin and served the United Methodist Church for 72 years.
John and Dorothy have been married for 73 years. John is survived by his wife, Dorothy, son Ray (Karen), son-in-law Craig Gibson, son David, and daughter Joanne (Dan) Wilson. Grandchildren Mark Mullen, Anwen Mullen, Dennis (Briana) Bauer, Dinah (Jeffery) Kotthoff, Josh (Kim) Gibson, Annie Gibson, Lucas (Jamie) Wilson, Jacob (Eva) Wilson. John loved his great grandchildren: Marlie Gibson, Lewis, Willem, and Freja Mullen, Lloyd Bauer, Jake Kotthoff, John and Wynne Gibson, Ainsley Reeder, Whitney, and Greta Wilson.
John lived in Menomonie at White Pine Village. His hobbies included reading, swimming, golfing, watching football, cycling, and walking. Christian faith has been important for John as well as his service in Christ.
John's family wants to thank St. Croix Hospice for their loving care over the last 2-months.
The family will be holding a private Celebration of Life gathering to remember John's life.
Memorials in lieu of flowers: United Methodist Church, Menomonie, Wisconsin or UW-Eau Claire, Winnie Gibson Teacher Scholarship Fund.
Lenmark-Gomsrud-Linn Funeral & Cremation Services is assisting the family. To express online condolences, please visit www.lenmarkfh.com