Cover photo for James E. Pagel's Obituary
James E. Pagel Profile Photo
1936 James 2020

James E. Pagel

February 16, 1936 — October 31, 2020

James E. Pagel, 84, Mosinee, passed away peacefully at home on Saturday, Oct. 31, 2020, surrounded by family.

He was born Feb. 16, 1936, in Wausau, the son of the late Erwin and Margaret (Burns) Pagel.

Jim was a veteran of the United States Marine Corps and was stationed in Japan. Upon returning home he met and married the love of his life, Rita Marie Meyer at Saint Thomas Moore Catholic Church in La Crosse, Wis., on April 11, 1959. Throughout their 61-year marriage they were blessed with seven children, 17 grandchildren and 17 great-grandchildren.

As a youth he was a member of the Wausau Ski Club which competed in various ski jumping tournaments. One of which included the National Junior Jumping Championships at Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

In 1998, he retired from St. Mary’s Parish in Marathon City. Among his favorite pastimes, Jim enjoyed playing softball, horseshoes, hunting, fishing, playing cards and spending time with his family along with the deer on his deer farm.

Survivors, besides his wife, Rita, include four sons, James Pagel Jr., Merrill, Richard Pagel, Mosinee, and Michael (Judy) Pagel and Dennis (Stephanie) Pagel, both of Merrill; three daughters, Diana (Kevin) Behnke, Edgar, Patricia Mohr, Marathon, and Barbara (Todd) Valenta, Mosinee; 17 grandchildren; 17 great-grandchildren; three brothers, Lee (Ginny) Pagel, Ringle, Tom (Sue) Pagel, Kronenwetter, and Art Pagel, Wausau; three sisters, Ellen Bogen, Wausau, Kate (Dave) Mitchell, Kronenwetter, and Mary (Norman) Beilke, Wausau; and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by two brothers, John Pagel and David Pagel, and a sister, Margaret Pagel.

Memorial service will be at 11 a.m., Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020, at Beste Funeral Home, Mosinee. The Rev. Joseph Diermeier will officiate. The family will receive friends from 10 a.m. Saturday until time of services at the funeral home. Online condolences may be made at

In lieu of flowers, donations in Jim’s name can be directed to the family.The family would like to express a sincere thank you to all of Jim’s caregivers and a special thank you to Aspirus Comfort Care and Hospice Services for the support, care and kindness given to Jim and our family.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of James E. Pagel, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Saturday, November 7, 2020

10:00 - 11:00am (Central time)

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Saturday, November 7, 2020

Starts at 11:00am (Central time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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