MAYNARD W. ANTILLAMaynard W. Antilla, 92, of Duluth, passed away Monday, Feb. 11, 2013.
Maynard W. Antilla, 92, of Duluth, passed away Monday, Feb. 11, 2013.
Maynard was born on July 13, 1920 in Lawton, North Dakota.
He was the oldest of eight children. The family moved to the Minnesota Iron Range in 1925. Maynard started school in Hibbing and spent a memorable childhood in Ely, Minn. The family moved again in 1931 to Kalevala Township near Kettle River, Minn. He attended Kalevala and Barnum Schools.
Times were hard and Maynard had the necessary adventure of hopping a freight train with his father to find work during the North Dakota grain harvest season of 1935 (He repeated this type of event with a friend in 1937). In 1938 Maynard was eligible for the Civilian Conservation Corps. He served two years at camps at Gooseberry Falls, the Gunflint Trail, and Side Lake (near Hibbing). He always fondly remembered those two years.
Maynard married Helen Kivi in 1941 and worked in the Twin Cities until getting employment on the ore boats of the Great Lakes. He entered the U.S. army in 1944 and served in the Pacific during World War II. He was wounded on the Island of Okinawa in April, 1945. He recuperated in military hospitals until December when he was discharged having earned a Purple Heart.
Maynard worked briefly in Duluth after the war before beginning to farm near Kettle River, Minn. In 1950 he obtained work at the Moose Lake State Hospital becoming a stationary engineer at the power plant there in 1951. Maynard thoroughly enjoyed working there for over 30 years and retired in 1982.
Maynard married his soul mate, Kaarina Puhakka, in 1990 and began life anew. The couple took great pleasure in trailer camping and traveled all of the western United States including Alaska for many years. They would often spend part of the winter in Arizona. Traveling also included several trips to Finland. Following the death of his wife Kaarina in 2008, Maynard’s home was with his son Jim (Kathy) Antilla in Duluth.
Maynard was an avid reader (primarily non-fiction) and held a substantial library of books. He had a love of the outdoors. Maynard built a very remote log cabin in Ontario with a friend in 1971. He made many fishing trips to the cabin over the decades. The family still enjoys the Canada cabin. Maynard also built a log hunting cabin near Kettle River in 1975 and enjoyed his stays there until selling it in 1991. He was also an amateur radio operator for many years (KA0MSC) and enjoyed many friends involved with that hobby.
Maynard was preceded in death by his parents, Walter and Anna Antilla; his wife Kaarina; three brothers, Donald, Wayne, and Robert; one sister, Mildred Johnson; brothers-in-law Harry Johnson and Ed Swanson; sister-in-law Elaine Antilla; and his daughter Jane Paulson.
Maynard is survived by his son and daughter-in-law Jim and Kathy Antilla, Duluth and son Jeff Antilla, Barnum; stepson Sauli (Leena) Solhagen, Espoo, Finland; two sisters, Verna Holman and Carol Swanson, and brother Jerry Antilla, all of Wyoming, Minn.; sister-in-law, Delores Antilla of Maple Grove, Minn.; three grandchildren, one great-grandchild; and son-in-law and good friend Bruce Benson.
The most important thing in Maynard’s life was his family. He has a large extended family who loved him dearly. He is in our hearts and will be greatly missed. His wisdom and wit were especially appreciated. To the very end his humor shone through.
SERVICES: will not be held at Maynard's request. Cremation as pre-planned by the Cremation Society of Minnesota. Burial will be at a later date at Leonard Cemetery, Kettle River, Minn.