Wayne Jacob Gregoire passed away peacefully on the evening of Dec. 19, 2022, at his home in Eden Prairie, surrounded by his loving family. Wayne was born on April 15, 1942, in Grand Forks, North Dakota, to George and Lillian Gregoire. He was baptized and confirmed at St Jude’s in Thompson, North Dakota.
He was preceded in death by his mother, father, sister Diane, brother Doug, three brothers-in-law, and two sisters-in-law. He is survived by his wife Carol, daughter Michelle and son David. He is also survived by two brothers-in-law, and three sisters-in-law and many nieces, nephews, great-nieces and nephews and great-great nieces and nephews.
Wayne grew up on a farm in Thompson, North Dakota, and spent many hours working in the fields. After graduating from high school, he went on to the University of North Dakota, graduating with a degree in chemistry. During that time, he joined the U.S. Army Reserve. He then moved to the Minneapolis area, where he met and married the love of his life, Carol, and they have been married for 51 wonderful years.
After working as a chemist, he turned his career path toward selling hospital laboratory equipment and diagnostic kits to hospitals, which he thoroughly enjoyed. This endeavor took them to Omaha, Nebraska, for a year and then on to Denver, Colorado, for 2-1/2 years. In 1979 they relocated with his job back to Minnesota and settled in Eden Prairie. There they were blessed with two wonderful children whom he loved dearly.
Wayne was an extremely creative guy that dabbled in all kinds of crafts, from painting pictures to working with stained glass. He loved to cook and, after his retirement, would always have dinner ready when Carol came home from work. He also loved cooking for friends and baking cakes when it was birthday time. He played Santa Claus at his brother-in-law and sister-in-law’s for many years, and with a great big “Ho Ho Ho,” he made it fun for all the little ones even into their adulthood.
He could fix anything, from a broken stove to a broken heart. He loved working with wood, and because of that love, he saw a need to invent items that could help cabinetmakers in their shops. He spent countless hours creating and making his equipment and starting his own company Wynmatic, Inc.
He and Carol, especially after her retirement, enjoyed many years traveling to trade shows and woodworking shops throughout the country. Mostly he cherished spending time with his family and friends that he loved dearly. In February of 2018, he became ill, and after several months in hospitals and rehabs, he was able to come home in the fall of 2018. Although he still struggled with health issues, he was happy to be home and near those he loved so much.
Wayne had a deep faith in God, and we know he is spending Christmas with his Lord and Savior. Services will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 4, at Pax Christi Catholic Church in Eden Prairie, with visitation from 10-11 a.m. If so wished, memorials can be made to the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center of Minnesota or Lightshine Canine.
Arrangements are being handled by Washburn-McReavy.
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