Obituaries

Wed
15
Apr

Curtis Lynn Oelrich, 66

Beloved brother and friend, Curtis Lynn Oelrich, 66, passed away on April 13, 2020 in Coeur d' Alene, Idaho. He was born on April 17, 1953; the son of Leigh and Marjorie (Finckbone) Oelrich.
Private services will be held at a later date. Bell Tower Funeral Home and Crematory is entrusted with services.

Tue
14
Apr

Stanley "Stan" P. Cherne, 90, of Ely,

Stanley Peter Cherne, 90, of Ely, died April 14, 2020, at Ely Bloomenson Hospital following a stroke.
Born in Ely on June 10, 1929, he was the 10th of 11 children of Michael and Frances Cherne. Stan attended Ely schools and worked at logging camps and Basswood Lodge before being drafted into the US Army. A veteran of the Korean War, he served in the 3rd Infantry Division 15th Infantry Regiment.
In 1955 he married the love of his life Elizabeth (Betty) Cherne and they raised two children. Stan worked at Reserve Mining in Babbitt for 32 years retiring in 1986.
Stan and Betty built their house in Ely. With their sons they built their beloved cabin on the North Arm of Burntside Lake. He was an avid woodworker making cabinets and furniture for his family. He had a love of travel, seeing 48 of 50 states and all the Canadian provinces with Betty, until her passing in 1997.

Mon
13
Apr

Darryl Davey, 70, of Babbitt,

Darryl Davey, 70, of Babbitt, passed away April 7th quietly at home with his children by his side.
Darryl was a graduate of Babbitt High school. Shortly after, Darryl enlisted into the U.S. navy during the Vietnam War. He started working at Reserve Mining in Babbitt until its closure and went to work for LTV in Aurora until its closure. After Darryl retired, he enjoyed restoring classic cars, drag racing, car shows, fishing and spent countless hours tinkering around in the garage.
He was a member of the Babbitt VFW, NRA, NHRA and the Babbitt Conservation Club. Darryl was a devoted son to his his mother, who passed away just 6 months prior, and a devoted father and grandfather. Darryl always gave more than he ever took. He could always be found fixing something for somebody or lending a hand to anyone in need.

Mon
13
Apr

Ralph Leon Karlinski

Ralph Leon Karlinski
1936 - 2020

Age 83 of Centerville passed away peacefully at his home surrounded by his family on April 7th, 2020. Ralph, formerly a resident of Ely/Virginia, was a United States Marine Corps veteran and retired co-owner of Bass Gambling Supplies. He was a successful business man, who was loved by many.

Ralph is survived by his loving wife Donna Mae Karlinski of 39 years; five children, Marlene (Rick) Smith, David (Stephanie) Karlinski, Dr. Karen Karlinski, Donald (Barbara) Pasanen and Theresa Nelson; six grandchildren; six great grandchildren and one great-great grandchild.

Ralph was preceded in death by his parents Leo and Thelma Karlinski, and brother, Donald E (Gladys) Bonner.

A celebration of life will be held at a later date.

Fri
10
Apr

Kevin J. Kutsi, 56, of Ely

Kevin J. Kutsi, 56, of Ely and formerly of Hoyt Lakes passed away April 8th 2020 at St Mary’s hospital in Duluth. He was diagnosed with a thyroid cancer a month ago and passed away from complications.

Kevin was born May 11, 1963 in Duluth to Wesley and Connie (Germ) Kutsi. He graduated from Aurora-Hoyt Lakes high school in 1981 and following school, he received an AA degree from Range Technical College. Shortly after graduation, Kevin met life challenges which kept him from pursuing a job using his intelligence.

Kevin enjoyed his Finnish – Bohunk heritage. He was proud that he acquired a HAM radio operator license. He also enjoyed the quest of ripping apart electronics and repairing them. In addition, Kevin had a love for classic cars – especially the “Cougar” line and had a passion to restore one. He loved listening to music his entire life. He acquired a great collection of lp’s, cassettes and cd’s.

Thu
09
Apr

Derek Nathan Klingfus, age 35

Derek Nathan Klingfus, age 35, crossed over from medical complications on Monday, March 30th, 2020 at St Mary’s Medical Center in Duluth, MN.
He was born on June 7, 1984 at St. Olaf Hospital in Austin, MN the son of Deaune (Dehler) and David Klingfus Jr.

Thu
09
Apr

Betty “Betsy” Jean Polyner, 62

Betty Jean “Betsy” Polyner, age 62, passed away peacefully on April 9, 2020 at Essentia St. Mary’s Hospital in Duluth, Mn.
Betsy was born on May 21,1957 to John and Pauline Polyner in Ely, Mn.
She grew up in Ely, Mn. and graduated from Ely Memorial High School in 1975 and Vermilion Community College in 1977. Betsy was employed at the Ely Bloomenson Hospital until 1994. She then moved to Duluth, Minnesota and lived in the Kenwood area from 1995 through 2020.
Betsy was a member of St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Ely and St Benedict’s Catholic Church in Kenwood. She was an active member of the Minnesota Multiple Sclerosis chapter in Duluth, Mn. and her Duluth book club.
Betsy was blessed with many close friends and acquaintances. She is known for her positive, kind, happy and courageous spirit..
Betsy was preceded in death by her parents, John and Pauline Polyner.

Thu
02
Apr

Robert “Bob” Baier, Sr., 95, of Ely

Robert “Bob” Baier, Sr., 95, of Ely, passed away Tuesday, March 31, 2020, at Boundary Waters Care Center in Ely.
Bob was born on October 15, 1924 in Austin, Minnesota to Gust and Olga (Price) Baier. His father passed away when Bob was 9 years old so he began to work early in life. He worked on farms and the CC Camps prior to getting a job with the Hormel Corp. processing Spam.
He married Harriet “Elyce” Swatosh on November 15, 1942.
Bob served in the U.S. Navy during World War II on the USS South Dakota, which later became Battleship X. Upon returning stateside he went back to work for Hormel Corp and also owned the Dew Drop Inn hamburger stand in Brownsdale.

Tue
24
Mar

Richard W. Ivansek,87, of Babbitt

Richard W. Ivansek,87, of Babbitt, a proud U.S. Navy veteran, passed away on Sunday, March 23, 2020 at the Ely Bloomenson Community Hospital in Ely. Family arrangements have been entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.

Mon
23
Mar

Rudolph F. Semeja, 88

Rudolph F. Semeja, 88, died Friday March 6th at Morningside of Chesterfield, Springfield, MO.
He was born on November 11, 1931 in Gilbert, MN and graduated from Gilbert High School in 1949.
Rudy graduated from Gustavus Adolphus in 1953. He started his teaching and coaching career at high schools in Meadowlands and Babbitt for 15 years. He then moved to Vermilion Community College for 22 years. Rudy was also active in sports officiating, the Ely school board, Blandin Leadership Program, Ely Joint Powers Board, Iron Range Resources Partnership for Citizens Board, co-chairman of the Hwy 169 Task Force Committee, Northeast Service Cooperative Board and the St. Louis County Health and Human Services Board. He was elected into the first National Junior College Football Hall of Fame in 1995.

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