Duane Leonard "Finner" Osness, 74, of Wausau, formerly of Merrill died Saturday, August 28, 2010 at Colonial Manor in Wausau. Finner was born July 25, 1936 to the late Henry and Bernice (Duranceau) Osness in Merrill.
Finner was a 1954 graduate of Merrill Senior High School. After graduating, he joined the U.S. Navy & served at Great Lakes Naval Station for 2 years traveling the United States playing baseball, basketball and football for the Navy Team. Finner joined the Navy to see the world but only got as far as Hawaii where he spent 2 years playing ball and where he also got his fill of pineapple for the rest of his life. He later played semi-pro baseball for the Merrill Rangers and had also tried out for the New York Giants. Finner played ball in the Lincoln County League where he threw his last pitch, breaking his arm, thus ending his baseball career. He was a foreman at Weinbrenner Shoe Company and later was a counselor at Lincoln Hills Boy's School until he became disabled and was forced to retire. Finner was involved in forming the Merrill Commission on Aging and was Past-President of the Merrill Softball League. He was an avid sports fan as well as an avid hunter & fisherman. Finner was also a member of Our Saviour's Lutheran Church and the Golden "M" Club.
Survivors include three daughters: Connie Osness, Teri (Mark) Kolosso, both of Appleton, and Lori Van Gompel, of Kimberly; one sister: Judy (Alfred) Elliott, of Merrill; five grandchildren: Sheyanne, Shawn, Lieah, Karie and Tony; one great-grand daughter: Alexis; and one nephew: Tom (Shelly) Rahlf, of Merrill.
He was preceded in death by his parents and girlfriend, Pat Freeman.
The family would like to thank the staff at Colonial Manor for the wonderful compassionate care they showed Finner and his family during his illness. Also Dr. Kris Lahren and his staff at Aspirus Wausau Hospital, Dr. Kay Gruling and Pastor Jeff Martinson for his frequent visits and the Our Saviour's Lutheran Church prayer chain.
Services will be held on Tuesday, August 31, 2010 at 2:00 PM at Our Saviour's Lutheran Church. The Rev. Jeff Martinson will officiate. Friends may call from 12:00 – 2:00 PM also at the church. Burial will follow at Merrill Memorial Park. The Waid Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.