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Dennis John Korbel, 66, formerly of Boyceville, WI passed in his Merlin, OR home on January 8th, 2014.

He was preceded in death by his parents, John and Irene Korbel (Stancek) and his sister, Arlene Schalk (Korbel).

Dennis’ spirit lives on with nephew Walt Schalk III, nephew and Godson Wayne Schalk, niece Karen Hultsch (Schalk), and cousins in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, and Australia.

Born October 17th, 1947 in Glenwood, WI, Dennis grew up on farms in Downing and Wheeler before settling in downtown Boyceville, WI. The family moved to Chicago, IL where he attended Resin Orr Elementary and graduated from Luther High School (Class of 1965). Dennis began engineering studies at the University of Illinois but was called to service and enlisted in the United States Air Force. While stationed at Travis AFB, CA, he studied computer science and accounting at Solano Junior College. Dennis also received his Bachelor of Science degree from the California State University, Hayward in Geology, one of his true passions.

After his discharge from the Air Force, Dennis continued to proudly serve his country in the USAF Reserves and the California Air National Guard. During his service, he rebuilt many runways and assisted with the response to the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake in Northern California. With 22 ½ years of combined military service, Dennis retired with the rank of Senior Master Sergeant (SMSgt.).

Capitalizing on his schooling, Dennis was hired as a computer specialist for NASA at the Ames Research Center at Moffet Field, CA. He retired after over 30 years of services in 2004 and witnessed numerous milestones in the Space Shuttle Program.

He enjoyed hiking, camping, fishing and panning for gold and in retirement moved to Merlin, OR. He became fascinated with genealogy, enthusiastically tracing and recording his family roots from Czechoslovakia, US and Canada. Dennis shared his talent by volunteering to research family origins for others.

He will be lovingly remembered for his kind heart, warm smile, thoughtfulness, and generosity. Dennis may have left Boyceville 60 years ago, but the small town boy who fondly recalled his childhood is returning home.

A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, November 15th at Trinity Lutheran Church, Boyceville, WI. Interment will follow at Tiffany Cemetery. Donations in lieu of flowers may be made to the American Diabetes Association or Operation Homefront.