Lorrel was born on October 21, 1931 in Grainfield, Kansas. His parents, Albert and Mabel Popp, were farmers and both came from big Christian families. The family moved to Studley, KS and became active members of Mount Pleasant Baptist Church. The Popp children all attended 1 room schools and worked on their dad’s farm when just very small. Lorrel was attending sheep when only 5 years old.
After graduating from high school Lorrel stayed on the farm for three years but decided that farming was not his life’s work and he went off to college at Ottawa University in Ottawa, KS, graduating with a degree in Mathematics. He then served two years in the U.S. Army, in Virginia. He then moved to MPLS, MN to work for General Mills. He started attending Elim Baptist Church where he met his future wife, Ruth Lundh. They were married on August 20, 1960. General Mills went out of the computer building business and Lorrel was offered a position with NASA at Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, MD, where he spent 32 years planning and building control centers for various satellites. During that time they added three sons to their family, Bruce, Robert, and Eugene. He retired from NASA in 1995 and planned their move back to the Midwest, building a home in Star Prairie Township and moving here in September 1997. He also loved music and when he moved to WI, he joined The Croix Chordsmen Barbershop Chorus in Stillwater, MN, and sang in that until Parkinson’s disease forced him to quit. Lorrel passed away in the early morning of May 2, 2015 at Westfields Hospital from Pneumonia.
Lorrel is survived by his wife, Ruth; 3 sons, Bruce (Linda), of Port Republic, MD, Robert (Brenda) of Somerset, WI, and Eugene (Erica), of St. Louis, MO, eight grandchildren, Erik, Jacob, Nikolas, Tori, Isaac, Christine, Josiah and Will. Also survived by 6 siblings, Dorothy Cunningham, Dave Popp, Jim Popp, Mary Beaver, Conrad Popp and Alberta Bittel.
A Funeral Service was held on Saturday, May 9, 2015 at 2 pm at First Bapist Church 341 North Shore Drive New Richmond, WI. Visitation was Friday, May 8, 2015 from 5-8 pm at the church and also on Saturday from 1-2 pm. Interment was in the New Richmond Cemetery. Arrangements are with Bakken-Young Funeral & Cremation Services Beebe Chapel of New Richmond.