School 29
Official Obituary of

Calvin "Cal" Carl Wurpts

March 13, 1945 ~ March 7, 2024 (age 78) 78 Years Old

Calvin "Cal" Wurpts Obituary

In Loving Memory of

Calvin “Cal” Carl Wurpts

Calvin (Cal) Carl Wurpts, 78, of Slayton, MN passed away unexpectedly on March 7th, 2024, after a brief illness.  Cal was born March 13th, 1945, in Ellsworth, MN the son of Albert and Jennie (DeBoer) Wurpts. He was baptized and confirmed at Zion Presbyterian Church in Ellsworth, MN. Cal graduated from Ellsworth High School in 1963. He attended Mankato State College, earning his bachelor’s degree with majors in Science and History, with a minor in Mathematics.  Cal married Kathleen “Kathy” Hegler on August 16th, 1969, in Sioux Falls, SD. Married 55 years this August, they shared a lifetime of love, friendship, and (mostly) laughter as they built a life and a family together.  Cal dedicated his career to education. After teaching two years in Rock Rapids, IA, he moved to Slayton, MN in 1970.  There, he dedicated 43 years teaching science, chemistry, and physics at Slayton High School and Murray County Central. He also taught college chemistry courses through Southwest Minnesota State University. While these are not typically funny subjects, Cal found a way to use science humor to help capture his student’s attention, even if he was only funny “periodically” (get it?). He helped students build confidence with difficult subjects. He built routines around his teaching, which his students looked forward to each year, including his annual “eat lots of turkey” Thanksgiving break homework assignment and his infamous “Chemis-tree” at Christmas time. He went to school early and always ended his days grading papers at the kitchen table.  He retired from teaching in 2012. He was a gifted teacher and was recognized with many awards, including Slayton High School Teacher of the Year in 1987, Murray County Central Teacher of the year in 2003 and Retired Educator of the Year in 2015. He was inducted into the MCC Wall of Fame in 2018. He was a lifetime member of the National Education Association. Beyond his retirement, Cal continued to support MCC arts and athletics, attending countless sporting events, concerts, plays and any fundraiser that included a hamburger.  Cal had a love for carpentry and spent summers building homes alongside other teachers. He built his own home in Slayton, perfecting it throughout the years with remodels and additions. He enjoyed woodworking, building furniture, cabinets, and special projects for his church.  Cal also helped build his community. He believed to build a community to be proud of, you must participate.  So, he did. He served as Mayor of Slayton from 1995-2007. One of his proudest accomplishments during his tenure was the completion of Slaytona Beach West. He was active in community organizations, serving as president of Slayton Kiwanis. He was a member and chair of the Economic Development Authority and a Southwest Regional Development Commissioner. He loved Slayton and was proud to call it home.  Cal was an active member of Christ Lutheran Church. Throughout the years, he served as church president and treasurer. He participated in various committees and was active in bible study.  He was instrumental in developing the faith chest ministry.  Despite his many accomplishments in teaching and community, Cal’s proudest achievement were his children and grandchildren. He loved his grandchildren and attending all their activities. The time he spent with his grandchildren brought him so much joy. He simply loved being a grandpa.

Cal is survived by his wife Kathy Wurpts of Slayton, MN, Jeremy (Kathy) Wurpts of New Hope, MN,  Amy (Lloyd) Sanderson of Aberdeen, SD, Sally Loeffler of Fargo, ND, Nathan (Kaley) Wurpts of Slayton, MN; grandchildren Olivia and Noah Wurpts, Alison Serfling, Bennett Sanderson, Roya, Ezmae and Vaeda Wurpts, and step-granddaughters, Jaida and Sydnie Sanderson; brothers, Dale (Mary) Wurpts, Denis Wurpts, Paul (Nancy) Wurpts, David (Glenda) Wurpts, sister, Marlene Anderson, sister-in-law, Rosie Wurpts, and brother-in-law Robert (Kathy) Hegler.  Preceding Cal in death are his parents and brother, John.

Funeral Services

Christ Lutheran Church in Slayton, Mn on Wednesday, March 13, 2024, at 10:30 a.m. with Rev. Chad Duffy officiating.  The organist is Sherri Isder.  The pallbearers are Joe Meyer, Nick Obermoller, Dominick Damm, Denny Spartz, Duane Spartz, and Denny Lickness. Interment is at Slayton Memorial Gardens, Slayton, MN.   

Visitation will be Tuesday, March 12, 2024, at Christ Lutheran Church in Slayton from 4-6 pm and one hour prior to the services at the church on Wednesday.  Totzke Funeral Home of Slayton is entrusted with arrangements.  To view online obituary and send condolences visit

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March 12, 2024

4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Christ Lutheran Church
2959 Queen Ave.
Slayton, Minnesota 56172

Funeral Service
March 13, 2024

10:30 AM
Christ Lutheran Church
2959 Queen Ave.
Slayton, Minnesota 56172


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