Merle Edgar Bany, 87, of Rochester and formerly of rural Elgin, passed away on Sunday, July 11, 2021, at Seasons Hospice House in Rochester. He was born to Milton and Elan (Koepsell) in a farmhouse where he grew up, in rural Elgin, Minnesota on February 15, 1934. He attended Country School #85 in Elgin Township for three years, then the Lutheran School in Elgin for four years and Elgin High School graduating in 1952. He was active in 4-H and farmed with his dad. After volunteering for the US Army, he attended basic training at Ft. Leonard Wood and was shipped to Korea and served with the Explosive Ordinance Disposal (EOD) detachment. Upon his honorable discharge on February 28, 1957, he returned to the family farm and farmed with his dad. On January 2, 1960, he married Claryce Kuhlmann, they were later divorced.
Merle was a dairy and hog farmer, in 1971 he quit farming and worked as a sales representative for NFO, for Wonderlife Fertilizer, for American Grain & Cattle out of Fargo, for Central Livestock of St. Paul and for A. L. Williams Insurance and Investments. In 1989 he drove over the road for about five years.
On August 7, 1993, he married Joan (Ginkel) Haimes. He retired in 2000 and enjoyed yard work and traveling. They did several road trips throughout the US and Canada, cruise trips, and international travel. He was a member of the Calvary Evangelical Free Church in Rochester, had been in the choir, a leader of a mini-congregation (Oasis), and PEP. Merle also enjoyed participating in the Plainview Community Theater productions
Merle is survived by his wife, Joan Bany of Eyota; his children, Monte (Mary) Bany of Lake City, Colleen (Mark) Szymanski of Lakeville, Michelle Mulvihill of New Prague, Chrisette Bany of Minneapolis, Melanie Glynn of Dover, Crystal Bany of Eyota, and Cherise (Joe) Rauter of Muskego, WI; stepsons, Scott (Theresa) Haimes of Australia, Kit Hames of St. Charles, Anthony (Patty Ann) Haimes of Rochester, and Brent Haimes of Elgin; stepdaughter, Amber Kern of Minneapolis; four sisters, Gladys Olson of Eden Prairie, Lois Kreofsky of Eagan, Dorothy (Logan) Holst of Maple Grove, and LaDon (Loren) Wilshusen of Freemont, NE and a brother, Dale Bany of Eustis FL. He was preceded in death by his parents, a daughter Collette, and one sister, Corrine.
The funeral service will be at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, July 16 at Calvary Evangelical Free Church in Rochester with Pastor Larry Orth officiating. Burial will be in the Greenwood Cemetery in Plainview. Friends and family may visit from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, July 15 at Ranfranz & Vine Funeral Homes in Rochester, and one hour prior to the service at the church on Friday.
Arrangements entrusted to Schleicher Funeral Homes, Plainview Chapel, the guest register may be signed at www.schleicherfuneralhomes.com