Talented mechanic and Missouri Western family member Wayne Krause Jr. passed away in his home on Tuesday, Jan. 27.
The visitation was held Friday, Jan. 30, followed by a funeral service on Saturday, Jan. 31, at Heaton-Bowman-Smith.
Wayne was born on July 21, 1954, in Council Grove, Kansas. In 1972, he graduated from Elwood High School.
Krause worked for Western’s Physical Plant for 19 years as a mechanic, and was tasked with maintaining every vehicle in Western’s fleet. This includes buses, lawn mowers, trucks and any other vehicle that the campus might use. He had previously worked for Affiliated Foods.
Krause’s supervisor, Gregory George, who worked with him for six-and-a-half years, explained that Krause was an expert in automotive mechanics, welding, diagnostics and many other things.
“Wayne was well-respected as being very versatile in every mechanical field,” George said.
Electrician David Noah worked with Krause for 19 years and came to think of him as family.
“He was a good guy. He was one of the true good guys,” Noah said. “He would help anybody all he could.”
Noah explained that Krause fixed many things on campus and performed a wide range of tasks involving anything from fixing bleachers to welding.
Roger Adams, who also worked alongside Krause, explained that he was actually aware of Krause’s mechanical expertise before he even started working at Western.
One of Krause’s hobbies, aside from raising cattle, was Sprint Car racing. Adams met Krause through this hobby.
“I met him back in 1988. He used to do some dirt track racing, a friend of mine got into a little bit of racing so we’d go over there and make parts or get repairs,” Adams said. “If you needed something special done, Wayne and his dad’s was always the place to take it.”
Both Adams and Noah explained that working with Krause was both fun and a learning experience.
“Sometimes you’d get to working on a project and need a little help, pretty soon it was Wayne doing all the work,” Adams said.
“He was very knowledgable in his trade, and if you did it wrong he would tell you,” Noah said. “He’s going to be hard to replace.”
Krause leaves behind his wife, Mitzi Krause; father, Wayne H. Krause Sr.; brother, Mel Krause; sister, Jacqueline Russell; daughter, Tracy Parsley (Bruce); son, Jonathan Krause (Jen); seven grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.
He also leaves behind many friends and coworkers, and a campus full of thankful Missouri Western Griffons.