John Samuel Carlson, 98 of Cambridge, Minn., was granted his wish to go to heaven to be with Jesus Saturday, December 14, 2013.
John was born to Anna and Gotfrid Carlson of Maple Ridge, Minn. Nov. 29, 1915, the youngest of 10 children. His parents had emigrated from Sweden in 1902. John attended country school in Maple Ridge but had to leave his formal education aspirations and take over his parents farm due to his fathers illness and death.
John met Annette Ruth Vegsund at Stanchfield Baptist Church and they were married March 23, 1940 at the Gospel Hall in North Minneapolis. Three children were born and lovingly raised by John and Annette, Lee, Paulette, and Sheldon.
For a short time John and Annette lived in Maple Ridge but soon purchased and operated a farm east of Stanchfield. During that time they suffered the devastating complete loss of their home by fire, but soon rebuilt a new brick home. They moved to Braham in 1947 after purchasing what became the Carlson Furniture and Appliance Store. They added a bulk petroleum business in 1954 and also purchased the Braham Oil Company providing fuel for a great part of east central Minnesota. In 1967 they purchased the Lewis Department Store in Cambridge and later purchased the Inn Town Apartments. They moved to Cambridge in 1974 and later built a home there. January 27, 2001, Johns life changed dramatically with the death of his loving wife and partner, Annette.
During the last few years John has lived at the Mill Ridge Apartments and GracePointe Commons.
John was a very active member of the Braham Business Community. He was a part of the Braham Civic and Commerce promoting the Braham Community, served on the Braham City Council starting in 1957, and was elected the Mayor of Braham. John was one of the founders of Grandview Christian Home in Cambridge and served on their Board and as President for several years. John is listed in the Whos Who in the 1969 History of Minnesota.
John loved the Lord and served him as a strong leader in the Stanchfield Baptist Church where he had been a member for 84 years. He served on the Deacon Board and as Vice Chairman. He was a Bible Study Teacher for over 50 years and started the radio ministry of the church, which continues to this day. John was a member of the Gideons since 1955 often speaking at Churches in the area and also served as President of the Minnesota Baptist Brotherhood Association. Always a strong support of his pastors, at the age of 80, John went with Pastor Dale Cope on a mission trip to Russia.
John and Annette worked together in their stores and enjoyed their large community of friends and family. They enjoyed traveling to Europe, Sweden and Norway, visiting their former exchange student, Yrjo Salorinne, in Finland, and frequent trips to visit Johns family in California and Florida. Their summer cabin in Northern Minnesota became a place of respite and family fun. John water skied there into his 80s.
John was preceded in death by his parents, all nine siblings: Helfrid, Linnea, Magnhild, Gunhild, David, Paul, Gunnard, Margaret, and Helga, and his loving wife, Annette, and son-in-law, Conrad Nelson. He is survived by son Lee (Fern) of Andover and children Becky (Dave) Johnson, and Brent (Heather) Carlson, daughter Paulette Nelson of Stanchfield and children Ryan (Rebecca) Nelson, and Kristina (Joshua) Kirsch, and son Sheldon (Anne) of Milaca and children April, Skip, Casey (Josh) Ewert, Jesse (Jennifer), and Brooke. He leaves 11 great-grandchildren, Emily, Linnea, Jacob, Matthew, Anna Grace, Kyla, Madeline, Andrew John, Noah, Juliet, and baby boy Ewert. John will be dearly missed by a host of relatives and friends.
Funeral services will be held at Stanchfield Baptist Church on Friday, Dec. 20 at 11 a.m. with visitation prior to the service beginning at 9:30 a.m.
Arrangements are with Roberts Family Funeral Home of Forest Lake, Minn. You may give Johns family online condolences on the funeral homes website: RobertsFamilyFH.com