Odin Raymond JohnsonOdin celebrated his 100th birthday in fine style: a Walleye dinner and friends coming from near and far to mark the monumental occasion.
Odin Raymond Johnson celebrated his 100th birthday in fine style: a Walleye dinner and friends coming from near and far to mark the monumental occasion. One month later, July 14, 2013, he died peacefully from just plain growing old.
Odin was born in Hibbing, Friday, June 13, 1913, speaking Norwegian until he started school. He attended Hibbing High school and lived 98 years of his life in Hibbing with a brief two years in Washington, DC, where he married his Hibbing born wife, Marie Forslund, in 1937.
Odin, of Hibbing, was a very special person. Not because he lived 100 years, but because of the way he lived that century; he was kind, fun, very friendly, a leader, volunteer, wonderful husband and a loving, responsible father.
Odin was a hard worker with a flare for life. As an employee at Andrew Gohres Grocery, he worked long hours to support his Mother and siblings, taking this full-time job after his father passed away when he was just 16 1/2 years old. From 1938 until he retired in 1975, he worked as a Keebler Cookie Salesman, traveling from store to store throughout the Iron Range and up to International Falls selling cookies and charming his customers with interesting and lively stories. He loved his job and even after retiring, you could find his cupboard stocked with his preferred Keebler cookies.
His favorite pastimes included hunting and fishing at Lake Kabetogama and curling. With woodworking skills inherited from his Hibbing house-building father and carpenter grandfather, he was always willing to help his family with home-building and house projects, and his wood crafted gifts were a delight at annual family gatherings. He was also a great singer and was on stage at the "Little Theater" in the Hibbing Memorial Building.
He spent hundreds of hours volunteering for Our Savior's Lutheran Church in Hibbing where his wife worked. Odin was a parent and elder who was always there when needed. After a fall last year he moved to an assisted living apartment in Wyoming, MN to be closer to his family.
He was preceded in death by his wife; parents Adolph (A.B.) and Olga (Hansen) Johnson; brother Arnold; sisters Laura, Eleanor and Ruth; his grandson Tyler Odin Johnson; his daughter-in-law Senator Janet Johnson; and his great grandson-in-law Tim Martin.
He is survived by three sons, Larry (Patricia) Johnson of St. Cloud, Minn., Dennis (Tessa Hill) Johnson of North Branch, Minn., Richard (Claire) Johnson of North Oaks, Minn.; nine grandchildren, Carrie (Mike) Oehrlein, Todd Johnson, Erik (Melissa) Johnson, Jessica Roe, Jennifer (Shannon) King, Karina (Jacob Taintor) Hill, Genine (Bill) Osher, Ryan (Alisha) Johnson, Brittany (Craig) Brand; 16 great-grandchildren; Alissa, Neil, Kevin, Kyle, Sarah, Soren, Ethan, Rachel, Adam, Anna, Alexandra, Camden, Teagan, Emma, Taylor, and Drew; and six great great-grandchildren, Seth, Layla, Ellie, Kamryn, Sunny and Alec.
VISITATION: 6:30 p.m. until 9 p.m. Friday, July 19, 2013, in the Anderson-Daniel's Funeral Home Chapel. The funeral service will be at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, July 20, 2013 in Our Savior's Lutheran Church in Hibbing. Pastor Susan Smith will officiate. Internment will be at Maple Hill Cemetery.
Memorials to the Odin Johnson Memorial Fund to be distributed to his favorite charities including Our Saviors Lutheran Church. Mail to: Richard Johnson, 21 Hill Farm Circle, North Oaks, MN 55127. To express condolences on-line please go to: www.baumanfuneralhome.com. Services provided by Anderson-Daniels, a Bauman Family Funeral Home, in Hibbing.
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