Ernest Fred Zeise Jr., beloved father and grandfather, passed away on March 27, 2024, at the age of 87.

Ernie, as he was affectionately known, was born on March 26, 1937, in Owatonna to Ernest and Amelia Zeise. He grew up in Owatonna, MN, where he developed a deep love for sports and the great outdoors.

Ernie was a devoted family man. He married the love of his life, Patricia Ann Wabeke, on April 5, 1975, and together, they built a life filled with love, laughter, and cherished memories. He was a loving father to Michele (Nick) Wigern and a doting grandfather to Kade and Carter Wigern.

Ernie will be remembered for his love of sports, including fast-pitch softball, bowling, golf, hunting, and fishing. Ernie was a lifelong San Francisco 49ers fan and proudly sported team gear every chance he got. After retirement from Owatonna Tool Company, Ernie was a regular member of the card group at Wegner’s Pool Hall. In recent years, he was often found in the stands cheering on his grandsons at their sporting events. Ernie was always the life of the party and ready with a quick one-liner to fill a room with laughter.  His family often teased him about being a man who never aged or grew up.

Ernie was involved in many different organizations through the years, and his unwavering kindness and generosity towards others has created a multitude of cherished memories. He touched the lives of many and will be deeply missed by all who knew him.

Ernie is survived by his daughter Michele (Nick) Wigern, his grandsons, Kade and Carter Wigern, brother Eugene (Judy) Zeise, multiple nieces and nephews, and a host of extended family members and friends who will carry his memory in their hearts forever.

He was preceded in death by his loving wife Patricia (Patty), parents Ernest and Amelia, and sister Janet (Maynard) Blume.

A visitation to celebrate Ernie's life will be held at Michaelson Funeral Home in Owatonna on Monday, April 1, 2024 from 4:00 - 7:00 PM.

In Lieu of flowers, the family kindly requests donations to Wolfhounds 2nd27th at