He was born March 5, 1943 in Pekin, Ill. to Loren and Vivian (Fisher) Erickson. Gary grew up in Cambridge, Minn. Gary met his future wife, Linda Samuelson, while in high school. He enjoyed blasting his trumpet into Linda’s ears as she sat directly in front of him with her French horn in band. Gary attended Gustavus Adolphus in St. Peter, Minn. and Linda went to U of M, Duluth. Even though they were miles apart they kept in constant touch with each other and married in 1964 at the Cambridge Lutheran Church. Gary graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Science Degree from Gustavus Adolphus in 1965. He taught chemistry to engineering students at a Jr. College for one semester for a professor who was out on medical leave. He was so pleased when the formulas he put on the blackboards turned out, and learned so much while teaching. For one year Gary worked at the State Crime Bureau in St. Paul as a chemical analyst while attending The William Mitchell School of Law in St. Paul. He then went to dental school at the U of M, Minneapolis campus where he received his DDS degree in 1970 and his Oral Surgery degree in 1973. Gary practiced oral surgery from 1973 – 2000. He and his fellow partners had the biggest oral surgery practice in the state of Minnesota.
For 21 years he and wife Linda owned and operated an Arabian horse farm in Dayton, Minn. Over the years they did extensive travel to Amsterdam, Spain, Greece, Australia, New Zealand, China, Africa, Italy, Venice, Scotland, Ireland and Hawaii. They imported several horses from Spain and flew them over on KLM. The horse breeding business included growing their own alfalfa hay, breeding outside mares, foaling, training and showing in breeding classes, riding and driving classes. They owned a Cessna 210 and both were experienced flyers. They would fly themselves to Utah, Jackson Hole, and Denver for ski trips. They both were certified scuba divers and dove in Hawaii and Miami. When Gary retired they moved to Sarasota, Fla. where they continued their golf from Hazeltine Golf Club in MN to TPC Players Club in Sarasota.
Gary had a beautiful tenor voice and over the years belonged to several singing groups. He loved music which was a blessing in Gary’s final days. Gary battled a dreadful disease for 10+ years. He was a gentle, thoughtful man with a great sense of humor and a large capacity for love. The gifts of creation are never final, even as we are not.
He is survived by his loving wife Linda, sister Vicki and husband Phil, brother Kory and wife Marie.
A Memorial Service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 18, 2013 at the Cambridge Lutheran Church with a visitation one hour before. Rev. David Everett will be officiating. Mary Falk, accompanied by Elaine Johnson will provide the special music. Lunch will be provided by the Cambridge Lutheran Church WELCA. Interment will be at the Cambridge Lutheran Cemetery. Arrangements are with the Carlson-Lillemoen Funeral Home and Cremation Services of Cambridge.