Obit: Barager, Vernon P. #3 (1892 -  1955)


Contact: Stan



Surnames: Barager, Wood, Raymond, Salo


----Source: OWEN ENTERPRISE (Owen, Clark County, Wis.) 11/03/1955


Barager, Vernon P. #3 (21 NOV 1892 - 30 OCT 1955)


The hand of sudden death grasped that of Vernon P. Barager, owner and publisher of the Owen Enterprise, at 7:20 Sunday morning.


Although he had been hospitalized since the 12th of October, none of his immediate family, and much less himself, had any idea of what was to come.  On the 23th he complained of being ill when he awoke in the morning.  He remained at his home throughout the forenoon and at noon while visiting with his family, stated he felt much better as he had enjoyed a good nap after returning to bed.  At 1:50, however, his son James, was summoned home when he began to hemorrhage badly as the result of suffering from ulcers.  He was rushed immediately to Luther Hospital by his son where he responded most favorably to prescribed treatments.  Within the next three days he was up and about his room and corridors, visiting with his neighbor patients.  His long period of hospitalization continued however while doctors endeavored to build him up physically with blood transfusions and other medications.


Facing the threat of having future trouble with hemorrhages he accepted the recommendation of undergoing surgery with confidence believing he would enjoy a successful recovery that would enable him to make his annual trip to the south and west coast this next month.  This decision was also prompted by the fact that only 18 months ago he suffered shock and loss of strength from a similar hemorrhage while at Rochester, Minn.


It was most satisfying to his immediate family, his son, James, a daughter, Mrs. C. M. (Alberta) Wood, and brother, Irving of Eau Claire, who were with him in daily visitations during his hospitalization to know that he was in complete readiness, both mentally, physically and spiritually, when he submitted to surgery that necessitated the removal of fifty percent of his stomach on Tuesday morning of last week.


His recovery seemingly was satisfactory with post operative reports being sent to his daughter, Mrs. John (Joyce) Salo in California, and son, John, in Milwaukee, to that effect.


A week ago this evening his son, james, and daughter, Alberta, enjoyed bedside visitations with him until 9:25 p.m.  Then at 1:30 a.m. James was summoned to Eau Claire by his sister as she called saying the hospital had called her, asking that she and her brother appear as his temperature had soared to 106.4.  Bronchial pneumonia was the diagnosis.


His family remained with him throughout with Joyce and her husband arriving from California at noon Saturday, and John came in From Milwaukee on Friday.  It seemed that he had beat the pneumonia crisis on Saturday, but then at 4:40 that afternoon he began to fall rapidly.


Those that knew Vernon Barager were a fortunate lot in that they shared the friendship of a personality that exhibited the enviable traits of being liberal, understanding, sincere and genuine.  He was a thinker capable of having things running along on an "even keel."  He always figured if things weren’t going just right that they would straighten themselves out with a little time and he was always ready to wait rather than to fly off with some unpardonable emotional display.


Vernon Pritchard Barager was the oldest businessman in the city of Owen from the point of service, having observed his 41st anniversary as publisher of the Owen Enterprise on the 14th of February last year.


His parents, the late Mr. and Mrs. James A. Barager, pioneered newspapers at Cadott, where he was born on Nov. 21, 1892, Medford and Washburn before moving to Withee (Clark Co., Wis.).  Here he obtained his education in the Withee school system but the training was disrupted by the death of his father in 1903.  He became associated in the back shop of the plant, helping his mother until the paper was sold in 1912.  For awhile he worked as a compositor on the Chippewa Telegram and on several papers in North Dakota.  Two years later he and his mother, Annie Laurie Barager, entered into a partnership and purchased the Owen Enterprise on Feb. 14, 1914, from Mr. Sherry.


Since that time he had gave untiringly of his time, especially during the community’s pioneering days, contributing to its present day development.


Later that same year, on June 16, 1914, he was united in marriage to Maude Raymond of Withee, whose counsel and wisdom projected itself immeasurably into the success of the business after Mr. Barager’s mother passed away in 1929.  On June 17, 1946, his wife preceded him in death after a lingering illness.


The third generation of the family moved into the management of the business in 1937 when his son, James, joined him on the staff.  He has been with it continually except for five years of military serving, returning to Owen in January of 1946 to assume the editorship of the publication.


Funeral services were conducted Wednesday afternoon, Nov. 2, from St. Katherine’s Episcopal Church, Owen, with the Very Rev. Gordon Brant, Dean of Christ Cathedral of Eau Claire, officiating.  Burial was made along side of his wife at Riverside Cemetery where Masonic services were conducted.


Pallbearers were L. E. Bulgrin, Peter Madsen, E. R. Haselow, Harold Wendt, W. A. Fritz and Se. Grimes.  Honorary pallbearers were W. K. Doohan, W. J. Mahoney, Sr., Ted Roberson, L. W. Cattanach, Harvey Wedding, Owen; Judge O. W. Schoengarth and Walter Beilfuss, Neillsville.


Saddened by the loss of this dear one are two sons, James of Owen and John of Milwaukee; two daughters, Mrs. C. M. (Alberta) Wood, Eau Claire, and Mrs. John (Joyce) Salo of Granada Hills, Calif.; two brothers, Irving of Eau Claire and Miles of Seattle, Wash.; and nine grandchildren.


Relatives and friends from out of town that attended the services were from Eau Claire, Thorp, Medford, Neillsville, Abbotsford: Evanston, Ill.; Seattle, Wash.; Minneapolis, Minn.; Withee, Clintonville; Granada Hills, Calif.; Hayward, Beaver Dam and Rice Lake.


He was one of the first members to join St. Katherine’s Episcopal Church when it was founded here and has since remained an active communicant.  He was also a charter member of the Owen Kiwanis Club, the Masonic Lodge, Owen Businessmen’s Club, and the Meadowview Country Club, and for years held membership in the Wis. Press Association and National Editorial Association.



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