Frank Rendahl was born in Austin, Minnesota, to parents (Joel) Raymond
Rendahl and Merle (Graskamp) Rendahl. He was baptized on April 11,
1954 at Our Savior's Lutheran Church in Austin, and he attended
Banfield Elementary School.
In the summer of 1966, Dave's family
moved from Austin to Winona, Minnesota, where Dave graduated, in 1972,
from Winona Senior High School.
Dave's childhood and teenage
years were filled with baseball. Playing left field, bunting, stealing
bases, and running super-fast were his specialties. Dave's family's
most-treasured moments of togetherness were spent at Gabrych Park,
watching the LeJetz baseball games. Dave also loved watching Minnesota
Dave attended Winona State University, taking
classes in political science, business, and marketing. Dave was always
an entrepreneur, independent, and adventurous. He bought his first car
at age 13 (with paper route money), was an amateur radio operator
(WAØVDG) with fast Morse code skills, worked at J.C. Penney grocery,
sold real estate through Century 21, and co-owned a bar, while living
in Winona. With his brother, Roy, he started a company called
In the late '70s, Dave moved out to Fresno, California and
worked for many years at various Foodland markets.
29, 1984, Dave married Alison Egger of Paso Robles, daughter of Joe and
Maisie Egger, and they made their home in Clovis. Children blessed the
couple and completed their family: Ryan in 1995 and Matthew in 1999.
life really changed when he decided to attend San Joaquin College of
Law. As he graduated and then passed the bar, Dave knew that becoming a
defense lawyer was the perfect career for him. After working for a
couple years at a law office in Clovis, Dave became a Public Defender
for Tulare County, and the family moved to Visalia. Dave loved his
calling and felt so fortunate that he could be a knowledgeable,
compassionate attorney to represent people going through tough times.
He really wanted to help his clients move forward with their lives in a
positive way, knowing that they are supported and listened to and are
sincerely cared for.
Dave came up with a brilliant idea: why not
start a yearly gathering of public defenders? Together they could all
learn how to be even more effective in their work. And why couldn't
this yearly gathering be held in Las Vegas (Dave's favorite city)? In
2001, with a total of 50 attorneys attending, the first Public Defender
Retreat was born. These Retreats, totally run by Dave, happened every
year through 2017. The peak number of participants was 450, with
attorneys coming from all over America, lots coming from Canada, and a
few coming from foreign countries. Dave's saying was “'Public Defender
Attitude.' If you have to ask what that is... you probably don't have one!”
was stricken with pancreatic cancer, but, because of an unusual early
diagnosis (in Jan. 2014), surgery (in Feb. 2014), and chemo, he did
well after that. The cancer did come back a couple years ago but was
small and slow-growing, and he continued doing well with stronger
chemo. In the past few years, Dave, Alison, brother Roy, and son Ryan remodeled two houses. They also
loved to go on RV trips all around the U.S.A. Dave has taken several
trips around the world with his younger son, Matthew, often to the Far
East; and back to Minnesota with his older son, Ryan. Dave even played in the World Series of Poker at the Rio Hotel in
Las Vegas in early June. We noticed that Alison became the very best
care provider Dave would ever need — right up until the end.
Dave died Saturday evening, July 6, 2019, at home.
said that he has no regrets. He thanks God for all the blessings he has
in his life, especially his family. He was just happy to be here!
was preceded in death by his parents. He is survived by his wife,
Alison Rendahl; son, Ryan Rendahl; son, Matthew Rendahl; brother, Roy
Rendahl (of Las Vegas, NV); and sister, Ann Aakre (and husband, Dave,
of Selma, CA).
A Celebration of Life Service will be held to
praise God and honor Dave at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, August 17, 2019,
at Christ Lutheran Church in Visalia, California. (Dave was hoping
people would not wear black to this service!)
requests that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made to something dear
to Dave's heart... baseball. If interested, please send donations to
Visalia Youth Baseball, PO Box 8064, Visalia, CA 93290, attention:
Claude Atkins. Be sure to reference that this is a gift given in memory
of Dave Rendahl.
— written by Ann Aakre, Dave's sister and Retreat helper. — with help from Roy Rendahl, Dave's brother and Retreat webmaster, A/V tech, and helper.
gatherings of public and private criminal defense
staff, law students, spouses,
or anyone with a "Public
you have to
ask what that is... you probably don't have one!
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MCLE/CLE/CPD Credit Including Ethics!
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