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Vernon Gnahn


FERGUS FALLS — Vernon Lee Gnahn, 87, of Fergus Falls, passed away Dec. 12, 2012 at Pioneer Care Center in Fergus Falls, Minn., surrounded by family.


Vernon was born Sept. 17, 1925, the first of two sons to John and Alma (Meyer) Gnahn in Aitkin. He graduated from Aitkin High School in 1943 and then entered the US Navy during WWII. Most of his Navy career was spent in the Aleutian Islands on the USS Niblack. He then attended the Dunwoody Institute in Minneapolis.

He married Edith (Edie) Fuhrman April 20, 1948 at St. John’s Catholic Church in Lastrup, Minn. Seven children were born to this union.

The family lived in Crosby where Vernon worked as a blaster for the Mahnomen Mines on the Cuyuna Range until they closed, and then in construction before the family moved to Fergus Falls in 1966. Vernon worked 23 years at the Fergus Falls State Hospital as a steam boiler engineer, retiring in 1987.

Vernon was a member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles Aerie #2339, the American Legion Post 0030 and the VFW Post 612 of Fergus Falls where he served as Post Commander from 2000-01. Including his commandership he was proud to serve on the Honor Guard for numerous years, bringing well deserved military honors to many veterans and their families. Vernon enjoyed hunting, fishing, gardening, watching the Vikings and Twins. His biggest joy came from woodworking, creating many memorable keepsakes and helping his children with home building projects. Above all he will be remembered as a devoted husband, loving father, grandfather and great papa.

Vernon is survived by his seven children, Kathy (Sam) Wolvert of Sartell MN, Tom (Mary) Gnahn of Fargo, N.D., Pat Wallrich of Fergus Falls, Jim (Linda) Gnahn of Fergus Falls, Janet (Steve) Buchholz of Cambridge, Minn., Charlie (Chris) Gnahn of Hewitt, Minn., Mark Gnahn of Sartell, Minn.; 19 grandchildren and 17 ½ great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 64 years, Edie (3-3-12), his parents, brother Clifford and son-in-law Dean Wallrich.

Visitation will be 4-7 p.m. on Sunday, with a prayer service at 6:30 p.m. at Glende-Nilson Funeral Home, Fergus Falls. Mass of Christian Burial will be at 11 a.m. on Monday at Our Lady of Victory Catholic Church, Fergus Falls, with visitation continuing one hour prior to the service at the church.

Clergy: Father Greg Paffel and Deacon Chuck Kampa.

Burial: St. Otto’s Catholic Cemetary, Fergus Falls.