Dewey Arvid Bjork


Dewey Arvid Bjork, 94 died peacefully in his apartment at Northern Lakes Assisted Living in Baxter, MN on September 12, 2020, with family members at his side.

Dewey, also affectionately called Oof, Boompers and Arv, was born on May 16, 1926 in Crystal Falls, MI, to Dewey and Hildar Bjork. He was first born, followed by brother Jack and sister Peggy. He attended school in Ramsey and Bessemer MI. After serving in the Army Air Corps at the end of World War II, he went on to earn a degree in mining engineering from Michigan Tech University in Houghton, MI. He met his future wife Joyce Luther at a high school dance when he spotted her in a green dress and as he tells it, thought, “That’s for me.” She was – and they were married September 10, 1949. They continued to dance together the next 66 years until Joyce’s passing in 2015.

He worked briefly at a mine in Ironwood, MI before moving to northern Minnesota where he worked first at St. James Mine in Aurora and eventually became Foreman and Superintendent at Eveleth Taconite.

Dewey raised his family in Aurora where he shared his love of the outdoors with his children and as a Boy Scout leader where he received the Silver Beaver Award, the highest award in the BSA. Duck and bird hunting was a fall ritual he also shared with son Dewey for many years. Organized and disciplined, he exercised and walked almost every day. He was an active member of the Lions Clubs International, the Aurora United Methodist Church and the Park United Methodist Church in Brainerd. He retired at the age of 57, allowing many great years of travel with his wife Joyce, which included visits to all 50 states and an annual trip south with their fifth wheel. He volunteered at Essentia Health in Brainerd where he was known for his quick step, quick wit and quick smile. Direct, honest, funny and kind, he was devoted to his family and friends.

He is survived by his sister Peggy McCray in Cleveland, OH, son Dewey Bjork (Kay) Swan Lake, MT; daughters Bev Dunphy (Peter) East Gull Lake, MN; Gretchen Frederick (Tom) Monticello, MN and seven grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by parents Dewey and Hildar Bjork, brother Jack Bjork and his wife Joyce Bjork.

A memorial service is being planned for Spring 2021. Dewey donated his body to the University of Minnesota Medical School. In lieu of flowers a memorial fund is being established in his name. Memorials can be sent to Bev Dunphy: 11258 Birch Island Drive, East Gull Lake, MN  56401 or Gretchen Frederick: 12025 Blackwood Ave. NW, Monticello, MN 55362

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