MAHOMET – Wayne Marcel Wendland was born on Aug. 9, 1934, in Beaver Dam, Wis., and died on Sunday (Feb. 16, 2014). He was the only son of Mildred Luedtke Wendland, deceased, and Howard Frederick Wendland, deceased.
Wayne attended St. Stephen's Lutheran School through eighth grade and graduated from Horicon High School in Horicon, Wis. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in chemistry from Lawrence College in Appleton, Wis.
While in active duty with the U.S. Air Force in Oklahoma, he attended Oklahoma State University in the master's program for meteorology. He finished his master's degree at the University of Wisconsin at Madison in June 1965; his thesis was titled "Aerial survey of Hudson Bay surface temperatures." He completed his Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin at Madison in September 1971; his thesis was titled "Dating the Temporal Limits of Climatic Episodes During the Holocene."
While in the Air Force from 1956 through 1964, Wendland served in Oklahoma, Nebraska, Newfoundland, Canada and Missouri. From 1970 through 1976, he served as assistant professor in the meteorology and geography departments at the University of Wisconsin at Madison.
He left Madison to become an associate professor in the Department of Geography at the University of Illinois-UC and was there from 1976 through 1979.
He was the Illinois State Climatologist at the Illinois State Water Survey at Champaign from 1980 until he retired in 1996. During his career he had over 75 published professional papers.
Wayne was a member of Grace Lutheran Church in Champaign for 38 years. He built furniture and electronics, made wine, gardened, sang in the choir, hunted, loved the outdoors, was funny and sometimes goofy (especially with his grandchildren), loved to entertain, whistled regularly, played cards, loved the Bach group, traveling with his wife of 58 years, and beach time. He was always very curious, well-read and amazing at keeping in touch with the people he met throughout his life.
He is survived by his wife, Betty Willis Wendland of Mahomet; daughter, Marci (Speckhard) and husband Tom of Cottage Grove, Minn.; son, Mark and wife Terry of Springbrook, Wis.; son, Scott and partner Martin Sunday of Houston, Texas; and daughter, Lisa (Davenport) and husband Roger of Madison, Wis. Fourteen grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren also survive him.
A visitation will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday at Morgan Memorial Home, 1304 Regency Drive West in Savoy.
A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday at Grace Lutheran Church, 313 S. Prospect Ave., Champaign.