Paul Bernard Brekken Jr.Paul Bernard Brekken Jr., 70, of Crookston, MN, died Thursday morning, October 13, 2011, at the University of Minnesota-Fairview Hospital in Minneapolis. Paul's wife, Shirley, and all of his family were at his side.
Paul Bernard Brekken Jr.
Paul Bernard Brekken Jr., 70, of Crookston, MN, died Thursday morning, October 13, 2011, at the University of Minnesota-Fairview Hospital in Minneapolis. Paul's wife, Shirley, and all of his family were at his side.
Paul was born in Duluth, MN on March 10, 1941, one of five children of the union of Paul and Vivian (Berg) Brekken Sr. He was baptized in the Catholic faith and moved with his family to Crookston at the age of 4. Paul was confirmed in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Crookston and was a 1959 graduate of Cathedral High School. On June 8, 1959 he was united in marriage to Shirley Mae Swift in a ceremony that took place in the Cathedral. Their farmstead in Fairfax Township was home to Paul and Shirley all their married lives and together they raised 6 children on the farm: Cynthia, Allen, Phyllis, Kevin, Steven, and Bradley. Paul farmed with his father until Paul Sr.'s retirement in 1978. In 1984 he was joined by his son, Allen, who farmed with him until 1998. During his farming years Paul was also employed during the campaign season at American Crystal from 1961 until 1972 and served on the Crookston Police Reserve during the 1960's and 1970's. He was also the ticket manager for the Red River Valley Winter Shows for many years. Paul retired from a long and very successful farming career in 2000. While he and Shirley still found time to do some traveling, semi-retirement found Paul doing planting and harvesting for area farmers, and also being employed by Agsco for several years, and then with Crookston Valley Co-op until the present time. He was a longtime member of the Cathedral parish, and had also been a member of the Knights of Columbus. He held membership in the Red River Valley Sugarbeet Growers' Association, and served for 22 years as chairman of the Fairfax Township Board. Paul enjoyed life to the fullest; whether it was coffee and story-telling at RBJ's in the morning; cards at the Legion later on; or a round of golf with friends on a nice day. However, the best times over the years were spent with Shirley, the kids, and their families. He never missed an event one of his kids was involved in, even if it meant the occasional speeding ticket to get there. He was a great husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather; and will be remembered by all for his kindness and caring. May God bless the memory of Paul Bernard "Paulie" Brekken Jr.
Paul leaves his wife, Shirley, with whom he shared 52 wonderful years of marriage; and his 6 children: Cynthia Kay Spehn (Steven) of Kilkenny, MN, Allen Paul Brekken (Anita Radi) of Crookston, Phyllis Brekken Conway of Bakersfield, CA, Kevin Mark Brekken (special friend, Michelle Egeland) of Crookston, Steven John Brekken (special friend, Stacy Lucken) of Crookston, and Bradley James Brekken (Laura McConnell) of Crookston. He is also survived by 15 grandchildren: Emily Kay Spehn Krein (Michael), Kellie Elizabeth Spehn Nightingale (Mark), Roman Steven Spehn, SPC Eric Donald Spehn, Jeffrey Ryan Brekken (Angie), Tyler Paul Brekken, Cody Allen Brekken, Jordan Lee Brekken, Kirby Jill Conway, Cassidey Leigh Conway, Elliot Manley Brekken, Danica Sophee Brekken, Ryan John Brekken (special friend, Ashley Leas), Marcus James Brekken, and Blake Albert Brekken; 4 great-grandchildren: Layne and Levi Brekken, Jocelyn Leas, and Ava Conway; 2 sisters and brothers-in-law: Jan and Ron Jordan of Menomonie, WI and Judy and Mark Finger of Austin, TX; as well as, several nieces, nephews, and other relatives. Paul was preceded in death by his parents, Paul Sr. and Vivian; 2 infant daughters, Elizabeth Maureen and Colleen Ann; a sister, Joan Elaine Brekken; and an infant brother, Donald.
A Mass of Christian Burial celebrating the life of Paul Bernard Brekken Jr. will be held at 2:00 p.m., Tues, October 18, 2011, in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Crookston, MN.
Visitation will be in the Cathedral on Monday from 5-7:00 p.m., with a 7:00 p.m. prayer service, and also for one hour prior to the funeral Tuesday.
Interment will be in the Calvary Cemetery in Crookston.
In lieu of flowers the family requests that memorials be given in Paul's name to the RiverView Hospital's Cardiac Care Program in Crookston. The Stenshoel-Houske Funeral Home is assisting with funeral arrangements.