Gene Birkholz of Howard Lake, passed away at Good Samaritan Center on 5/11/2016.
Funeral Service: 1 PM Tuesday, May 17, 2016 at St. Johns Lutheran Church of Howard Lake
Visitation: 4-8 PM Monday at Swanson-Peterson Funeral Home of Howard Lake, and 1hr prior to service at church on Tuesday
Prayer Service: 7:30 PM Monday at the Funeral Home
Interment St. Paul’s Cemetery of Lester Prairie.
Gene David Birkholz, age 68, of Howard Lake, MN, loving husband, father, and grandfather, passed away peacefully Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at The Good Samaritan Society of Howard Lake.
Gene was born on November 10,1947 at home in Lester Prairie during an early winter snowstorm to Herman and Esther Birkholz. Gene was baptized and confirmed at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church of Lester Prairie and graduated from Lester Prairie high School in 1965.
After graduation Gene proudly served his country in the United States Army. He was stationed in Germany where he attained the rank of SP5 and was awarded the Army Commendation Medal.
Gene had many occupations. From mechanic, to inside sales, to bookkeeping, but his most rewarding occupation was as a van driver for HLWW School where he transported his special students with kindness and compassion.
Gene loved all sports. He was a four sport athlete in high school playing football, basketball, baseball and track. He then played basketball and baseball for the US Army in Germany. After returning from the service, he played on many amateur baseball and softball teams. He was also an avid golfer and coached several softball and baseball teams, the most recent being the Winsted Wildcats. He also loved watching sports; his favorite teams being Gophers, Twins, Yankees, Vikings and Wild. Gene was a walking talking sports encyclopedia. He always wished he could have been a sports announcer but his aversion to pronouncing names correctly may have gotten him in trouble.
Gene was an active member of American Legion Post 145 where he served in various capacities.
Gene was preceded in death by his grandparents, parents, sister Marjal Prehn, and niece Tricia Dammann. He is survived by: his loving wife of 17 years Teri Doering. Children; Terrese (Chad) Norman, Rebecca Birkholz, Tammy (Wayne) Thompson, Jessica (Joe) Keating, and Josh Doering. Grandchildren: Jessica (Karl), Jordan, Joscelyn, DeJuan, Courtney, Mason, Olivia, Ivy, Arianna, and Noah. He is also survived by his brothers and sisters: Betty (Lowell) Wolff, Gordon (Doreen) Birkholz, Doris (Chester) Dammann, Joyce (Larry) Heuer, Robert (Nancy) Birkholz and brother-in-law Glenn Prehn, as well as many nieces and nephews and friends.