I lost my longtime cattle buddy -Dale Wernicke

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mark tenenbaum

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Mar 23, 2009
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Dale was out in the field-fell and hit his head-And one thing led to another.I met him at the Illinois State Fair in 1991-He was a big stoic imposing man-Who would subtly try you out-and in a lot of cases would quickly lose interest.Alot of people didnt realize that his mind moved at warp speed-and he had the uncanny ability to stir the pot with this and while never losing an ounce of composure: as the humor escalated -Wernicke had COOLNESS-and could retain that in ANY COMPANY  When I met him: he threw a dart-I threw one back-then a brickbat, then a hand grenade I guess he figured I could at least keep up-Because we drank beer and went back and forth over many subjects-from 1991 till 2018, I went by his place just about every time I could get to the Midwest  The most fun  was always dismantling  any hypocrites we could come up with. Sometimes in person-sometimes in conversation . He bred some of the really great cattle and the impact is deep in the breed-look at the bulls and females from Wernacres--- YATTTA YATTTA-He made it look easy but never went over the cliff with the "breed lemmings" if he didnt like what he saw-Nobody ever made his mind up for him Yea-I raised an et bull calf out of his great cow-Wernacres beauty that was a national champ-but my biggest feat involving Wernicke was the couple times I got him to laugh-He had me cracking up most of the time  O0O0
 

beebe

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Apr 29, 2014
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I never knew the man but it sounds like I would have liked to.
 

justintime

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May 26, 2007
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Location
Saskatchewan Canada
Dale's passing has hit me pretty hard. It seems like I have known him forever. I don't really remember when we first met, but I know I have known him for my entire adult life. In the 70s Dale used to come to some of our fall sales and I was always amazed how much he could eat. I remember after one sale, we went out and had steaks and all the trimmings, then went to a local watering hole and spent a few hours there. On the way back to the hotel, Dale said he was hungry, and I said we would be going right past a 24 hour restaurant on the way to the hotel. Dale ordered a dozen scrambled eggs, with 8 slices of crispy bacon, and 4 slices of toast. Trust me, when I say that 12 scrabbled eggs will not fit on a normal sized plate. They brought it all to him on a large platter, and ate every ounce of it.
Dale was one of those guys who loved his cattle, but he loved his farm and his family even more. If you mentioned his family, his eyes would light up. He was immensely proud of his son Ryan and his grandchildren. Dale was a straight shooter. If I asked him about something, I never once questioned his answer. His response was exactly what he thought. He was a breath of fresh air in this regard, as there are so many people who just try to tell you what you want to hear. Dale raised some very good cattle, and he never bragged them up to anything that they weren't. If I was talking with Dale on the phone and he told me he had a pretty good bull... I knew that the bull was definitely pretty good!  He had a great eye for cattle and he certainly didn't just follow the crowd.
He had a wicked sense of humor, which some people did not recognize. Just a few years ago, I was visiting with Dale and he asked me who was judging a certain show. When I told him, he said" you are kidding me aren't you?". I replied that this was who I had heard was judging it. Dale said " he wouldn't know the difference between hippo s**t and gum drops without having to do a taste test first". It turned out that Dale was pretty good at analysing judges as well. I have chuckled many times about this conversation when I have thought of it.
Anyone who knew Dale knew that he was having some health issues for quite awhile, but lately he had been doing pretty good. His death is still a shock and I will miss him. His son Ryan is like Dale in so many ways, so in some ways that is good. RIP my friend. I am sure you are straightening up a few of the cattlemen who have passed before you.
 

mark tenenbaum

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Mar 23, 2009
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5,671
Well phrased and right there-and Ryan is a chip off the block Saw him at the National Jr Show and we traded insults along with some beers-I text him politically incorrect unsavory humor on a regular basis  O0
 
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