William “Bill” A. Fenholt, a Charles City native and the son of Lee and Merle (Woodworth) Fenholt passed away on March 9, 2023 at the age of 93.
Bill graduated from Charles City High School in 1947. During college he married Doris Koeneke, his high school sweetheart. Doris passed away in 2018, following 70 years of marriage. They were the proud parents of one daughter, Karen Vander Lee. Karen passed away in 2022.
Bill earned a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Iowa and a Master’s Degree from the University of Minnesota. Bill’s entire 40 year career was devoted to education. He taught high school commercial subjects at Newton and Le Mars, where he was later appointed business manger. In 1965 he and his family moved to Orono, Minnesota, where he was hired as an Assistant Superintendent and business manager of the district. He was elected president of the Minnesota School Business Officials and served as president of the Long Lake Chamber of Commerce.
Upon returning to Charles City in their retirement in 1992, the Fenholts decided to become foster parents, providing care for over 15 years and 38 children from the ages of 5 to 21. Some, including Larry and Lucas Giambelluca, continue to maintain close contact to this day with the family. In later years they hosted college interns who needed a home in Charles City while completing their internships.
Bill served seven years on the Charles City School Board and five years on the Area Development Board. Bill was later inducted into the Comet Hall of Fame.
There will be a private family memorial service at a later date.
Bill is survived by grandsons Mike Vander Lee, Brian Vander Lee both of Minnesota; nieces Mindy Cogley of Ohio and Linda Klemesrud of Charles City and all their loving families.
The family suggests memorials to a charity of their choice in his name.