Aug. 2, 1934-April 20, 2013
MANKATO – Services for Gayle Albert Stelter, 78, of Mankato will be at 2 p.m. Tuesday at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Mankato with Pastor Paul Nolting officiating. Visitation will be from 5-7 p.m. today at the Mankato Mortuary and will continue one hour before the service at church. Burial will be in Pilgrim’s Rest Cemetery in Mankato. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to Immanuel Lutheran Church’s Endowment Fund or an organization of the donor’s choice.
He died Saturday, April 20, 2013, at Laurel’s Edge in Mankato, after a three-plus year battle with pancreatic cancer.
Gayle Albert was born Aug. 2, 1934, on a farm in rural Lyon County to Gerhardt and Viola (Caldwell) Stelter. He was baptized at Zion Lutheran Church in Island Lake Township, and confirmed at Christ Lutheran Church in Marshall. Gayle attended country school near Milroy and graduated from Milroy High School in 1951. Gayle enlisted in the United States Air Force and spent three years from January 1954 to November 1956 in Germany as an Intercept Radio Operator. He returned home and attended Mankato State College to get a teaching degree in Business Education.
Gayle was united in marriage to Lois Ottjes in Austin on Aug. 16, 1959. They both taught at Mauston, Wis., from 1959-1962. Gayle also taught at Faribault High School from 1962-1964. He continued his education and eventually received a Doctorate’s Degree in Education (Ed. D.) from Northern Illinois University in 1968 while teaching at Northern Arizona University from 1964-1966, and Northern Illinois University from 1966-1968. Gayle was a Professor of Business Education at Mankato State University for 28 years before retiring in 1996. He served as Chairman of the department and was Director of the Master of Business Administration program for 4 years. During his career, he served as an officer of the following organizations: Minnesota Business Educators, Inc., Minnesota Vocational Assoc., Administrative Management Society (local and national), Delta Pi Epsilon Research Foundation, and Pi Omega Pi Honor Society National President.
Gayle was active in Immanuel Lutheran Church serving as the Congregation President and Financial Secretary. He enjoyed singing in the church choir. He also served on the Synod’s Board of Education for 20 years, eight of which as Chairman. Gayle organized several Squadron Reunions of his Air Force unit from 1999-2010 and produced a Profile Book of 300 men of the 6912th Radio Squadron Mobile. He was interested in genealogy, and did a lot of research on all sides of his and Lois’ family. He and Lois enjoyed growing flowers and flowering shrubs. Gayle also enjoyed spending time with his grandchildren and watching the Twins games on TV.
Gayle is survived by his beloved wife of 53 years, Lois; two children, Laurie (James) Lau of Eau Claire, Wis., and Craig (Paula) Stelter of Mankato; grandchildren, Marie and Katie Lau, Andrew, Philip, Hannah, Abigail and Ben Stelter; sister, Joyce (Neil) Erickson; sister-in-law, Jeaneen (Daryl) Nelson; and many nieces and nephews.
Gayle was preceded in death by his parents; step-mother, Linda Hansen Stelter; sister and bother-in-law, Gretchen (Gordon) Erickson; brother, Norman “Butch” Stelter; niece, Karen Stelter; and nephew, Steve Stelter.