Denise Alane Scheel, age 70, was born in Wharton on May 3, 1951 to George L. and Jane Novosad Scheel.  She is actually named after Dr. Dennis Voulgaris, who delivered Denise at Rugeley Blasingame Hospital.  Denise attended Holy Family Catholic School for 8 years and graduated from Wharton High School in 1969.  During that time, she worked part-time at Wharton Bank and Trust in the bookkeeping department which inspired her interest in banking and insurance.  She went on to earn a business degree at the University of Houston, where she graduated in 1973.

   After college, she took a job in the insurance department at Oiltanking of Texas, working for Mr. Merrill Dieken.  Mr. Dieken remained a friend and mentor to Denise until his death in 2010.        

   Denise suffered a stroke 10 years ago and has been at Avalon Nursing Home in Wharton for 6 years.  This was a great loss, because Denise was well known for her love of cooking and everyone enjoyed her wonderful birthday cakes.

   Denise is preceded in death by her only child, John William VanOsdel, in 1984.  She is also preceded by her parents, Jane and George Scheel, her brother Kevin Scheel, her grandparents George and Julia Scheel of Wharton and Rudolph and Adela Novosad of Needville and many loving Aunts, Uncles and cousins.

   Denise is survived by her Uncle, Monsignor Dan Scheel of St. Jerome’s Catholic Church in Houston.  Fr. Dan was a very important part of Denise’s childhood.  Even though he was her uncle, he was only six years older than Denise.  He was actually more of a brother to Denise and her siblings.  Fr. Dan’s brother, George L. Scheel was 21 years older than his little brother, Danny.

   She is also survived by her sister, Cynthia Scheel Gentry and her husband, Ben Gentry of Houston, her Niece Courtney Gentry Rangel and her husband Jaime along with their children Harper and Georgia of San Antonio, her nephew Bubba Gentry and his wife Jessica along with their children Olivia and James III of Houston and many wonderful Aunts and Cousins.

   After 37 long years, Denise can now find comfort by being in the arms of her precious four year old son, “Baby John” whom she lost in a tragic drowning accident on May 3, 1984.

   Relatives and friends are invited to call on the family on Wednesday July 14th after 9:00 a.m. at Holy Family Catholic Church, Wharton.  Funeral Mass will begin at 10:00 a,m.  Interment to follow at Evergreen Memorial Park Cemetery, Wharton.

    Condolences may be left for the family at

   Services under the direction of Wharton Funeral Home 515 E. Boling Hwy.  Wharton, TX 77488.   (979) 532-3410

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