Mark Fisher, 98, of Winton, dies

Mark Fisher, 98, of Winton, died on December 5, 2018, in Ely at the Carefree Living facility, where he had been living for the past several months. Mark was born in Philadelphia in 1920 and moved some years later to Chicago, where he lived with his parents and five siblings, all of whom preceded him in death.
Mark was never married but he has several generations of surviving nieces and nephews. He would have been 99 years old next month.
Mark was educated at St. John’s Military Academy in Wisconsin and then the University of Chicago. He served in WWII, working as a radio operator and in the Signal Corps in Panama and on several assignments stateside. After the war he worked in Chicago for United Press International as a reporter, where he often covered the local police beat. It was in the early ’50s that Mark traveled to northern Minnesota to fish, where he discovered the stunning beauty of the area. He soon moved to Ely.
He worked for the US Forest Service and various outfitters before he bought Border Lakes Outfitting in Winton with a partner. They kept Border Lakes for several years in the ’60s and ’70s.
Mark was a talented photographer and printed his own photos. He established Packsack Press and published several items which included his photos, over the next few years.
Mark kept up with the news of the world and technology, reading daily multiple newspapers and books. Although he first discovered Minnesota when he was an eager fisherman, he spent his time in a canoe appreciating the beauty of the area, taking photos, and later on harvesting wild rice.
Mark’s father had been a big band leader in Chicago and was a song writer as well. Mark loved the music of those big band days and only needed a word or two to bring a song to mind. And then he would drift into the melody, often off-key but true to the song, remembering all of the lyrics. Our favorite, of course, was When You’re Smiling.
Mark had a quick wit, a great memory, and a wonderful laugh. He lived in Winton on his own for six decades, appreciating the quiet charm of his environment. He had many friends in Ely and Winton who will miss him dearly as well as many other folks around the country.
In addition to his biological family and local friends, Mark became part of the extended Pattullo family, which began from a friendship he had early on in Chicago. The Pattullos, four generations worth, fondly called him Uncle Mark and visited him many times in the Ely area, as well as wanting him to be at all of their holiday gatherings, which he frequently did.
As a benefit to the area, a Mark Fisher memorial fund to the Ely Public Library will be established, as he was always a great fan of their commitment to the community. Family arrangements have been entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.