James Jerome Grabau, 60, of Preston died Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014, at the Golden Age Living Center in St. Charles.

He was born to Joe and Flora (Anderson) Grabau on April 6, 1953, in Preston. He was baptized and confirmed at St. John Evangelical Lutheran Church in Wykoff.

He was a 1971 graduate of Preston-Fountain High School. He then attended the University of Minnesota and graduated with a Bachelor's degree in electrical engineering. He then received his Master's degree in electrical engineering from the University of Minnesota.

He worked for a summer at Kodak in Rochester, N.Y. on computer voice recognition. He then worked at 3M and Honeywell and taught electrical engineering at the University of Minnesota - Duluth. He had been a resident of the Golden Age Living Center for the past two years where he was President of the Residential Council.

His hobbies included word comparisons, "which would you rather" questions, phone contact with family, index card lists and telling interesting anecdotes.

He is survived by his mother, Flora Grabau of Preston; brothers, Larry (Mary Jo) Grabau of Lexington, Ky., and Russell (Hope) Grabau of Waterville, Minn.; sisters, Mary Emma (Charles) Stackhouse of Preston and Trudy (Terry) Wendorff of Winthrop, Minn.; nephews, Craig (Mary) Stackhouse, Chad (Leigha) Stackhouse, Joseph and Jonathan Grabau, Zane, Ezra and Ezekiel Grabau and Carl, Bjorn, Aaron and Izaak Wendorff; nieces, Bonnie (Nate) Rindels, Brenda (Chris) Peterson, Cathy Stackhouse, Laura Grabau, Lora Joy and Lydia Grabau and Emma Wendorff; nine great-nieces and nephews; uncles and aunts, Everett Grabau, Beatrice (Everett) Eickhoff, Mary (Wayne) Richardson, Paul Anderson, Bob (Joan) Anderson, David (Betty) Anderson, Paula Anderson and LaVona Anderson and many cousins, both in Minnesota and Arkansas.

He was preceded in death by his father, Joseph Jerome Grabau, four uncles and three aunts.

A Celebration of Life was held on Saturday, Feb. 1, at the Preston United Methodist Church with the Rev. Michael Smith officiating. Spring burial of his ashes will be in the Watson Creek Cemetery in rural Preston.

The family prefers memorials to mental health organizations.

Thauwald Funeral Home in Preston is assisting the family with arrangements.