Haedtke, David (Dave)

David (Dave) Haedtke, 78, passed away in Duluth, Minn., on September 8, 2021, having spent his last days enjoying his annual bear hunting trip in Northern Minnesota with family. He fell ill suddenly and quickly succumbed to his illness, surrounded by his loving family.

Dave retired early at age 55, having been a 33-year veteran of Xcel Energy (formerly NSP), although he went back briefly to consult and train his successor. Starting in the steam plant, he quickly became a lineman for many years and finished his career working at the substations. He described a sense of camaraderie with his fellow coworkers. With his early retirement, he was able to devote more time to his two passions — hunting and fishing. He derived such peaceful satisfaction from spending time in the woods and near the many lakes, sharing the experience with like-minded family and friends.  

He rarely found a pet dog or cat that he didn’t charm. Whether his own pet or those of his family members, they quickly recognized his big heart and would adopt him as their favorite. That soft heart wasn’t exclusive to the furry creatures.  

Dave’s family and faith were two constant places of joy and comfort in his life. He was a loving husband to his wife of 61 years, Betty, and a very hands-on and engaged father to his four children. When grandchildren arrived, he cherished every moment teaching and playing with them. His dry sense of humor and self-satisfied smirk were constant qualities, making his family playfully roll their eyes (and ultimately smirk back; who could resist?). He had a silent but strong presence, bringing such unity and stability to his family.  

As a devotee of his church and community, he was honored to serve as an elder for Grace Lutheran Church for many years. He and his wife were very active in church activities of all types. One of the principles he embraced was being willing to lend a helping hand. Despite his physical challenges later in life, he always had to participate in any family gathering or activity. With a broken heart, he will be missed for, among many things, his infectious smile, big heart, corny jokes and devotion to family, church, and community. Dave was baptized into the Lord Jesus Christ, so it gives his family peace knowing that he is now in heaven.  

With broken hearts, he is survived by his devoted wife, Betty; his four loving children, Steve Haedtke (Kristi), Jean Haedtke, Barbara Haedtke (Cyrus), and Lynn Snitker (Mark); and eight devoted grandchildren, TJ Bronk, John Richter III, Jenna Richter, Halle and Nicole Haedtke; and the youngest of the family, Brett, Peyton and Aiden Snitker.  

Visitation will be held from 1 p.m. until a funeral service at 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, September 16, 2021, at Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church in Stockton. The Reverend Mark Meier will officiate.

Online condolences or memories may be left for Dave’s family at www.watkowski-mulyck.com.

Watkowski-Mulyck Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.