Paul's Story

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Paul E. Wagner of Eighth Street, Selinsgrove, passed into eternity at his home on Aug. 2, 2016, after an extended period of declining health. He leaves behind a humble yet indelible legacy as a beloved husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, neighbor, and friend.

His loyal character and unyielding spirit were wrapped in a wry sense of humor that will always be celebrated and reminisced. His reputation for fixing any broken object brought to him for rescue was well known by all who knew him. More often than not he found success, but even in a seemingly hopeless cause he strived to leave everything in a better condition than how he found it.

In his final days he concluded his purpose in this life was simply to make people smile and laugh. He unquestionably achieved all of his goals in a life well-lived.

Born on March 27, 1931 in Shamokin, he was the son of the late David H. and Myrtle I. (Lake) Wagner, and brother to the late Nancy Kissinger of Lansdale. He graduated from Shamokin High School and proudly served in the Navy as a machinist on the destroyer USS Steinaker. As he was completing his distinguished 4-year service as a petty officer and veteran of the Korean War, he married his loving wife of 64 years, the former Joan L. Bartlett, also a native of Shamokin.

From his early days Paul displayed a gift and passion in working with his hands. A skilled woodworker and woodcarver, he was as adept at remodeling his home and building a piece of furniture as he was coaxing a songbird, Santa, or old boot out of a modest block of wood. He took a special pride in raising roses that filled his home with beautiful scent and color throughout the warm summer months.

Upon retiring from AMP, Inc. in 1989 after 34-year tenure as machinist, manager, and quality control specialist, he enjoyed an unexpected second career working at the V.L. Seebold Funeral Home and endeavored in a woodworking business that sprung from his natural gifts. As a man of quiet and strong faith he shared his many talents as a decades-old member of St. Paul's United Church of Christ in Selinsgrove.

Undoubtedly his greatest joy and pride was expressed in his family. Holidays, family gatherings, attending his children's activities, weekends at the Finger Lakes, and an annual journey to the Outer Banks highlighted the times he especially enjoyed.

He is survived by his wife Joan and four children, David W., of Selinsgrove, Tracey Wagner Wolfe and husband Randy, of Selinsgrove, Michael Paul and wife Linda, of Harleysville, and Andrew T. and wife Cindy, of Selinsgrove; five grandchildren, Adam T. Wolfe and wife Jill, of Mechanicsburg, Mallory N. Baker and husband Nevin, of Greensburg, Ryan S. and Grace O., of Selinsgrove, and Joanna L., of Harleysville; three great-grandchildren, Lillian L. and Vivian R. Baker, and Declan T. Wolfe.

A celebration of life will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday at the V.L. Seebold Funeral Home, 601 N. High St., Selinsgrove. The family will be there to greet visitors at 10 a.m. The service will be followed by a reception at St. Paul's UCC in Selinsgrove.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to St. Paul's UCC, 400 Market St., Selinsgrove.
Published on August 3, 2016
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