Roger Clifford Olson, age 73, died peacefully on November 5th at Marie Steiner Kelting Hospice house in Victoria, MN. Roger and wife, Elaine, were born and raised in the Chokio, MN area, raised their family in Blue Earth, MN and currently reside on Bass Lake near Winnebago, MN.
Roger was born March 31st, 1939 in Morris, MN to Clifford Henry Olson and Anna Marie Wade Olson. Roger was baptized and confirmed at Zion Lutheran Church in Chokio and graduated from Chokio High School in 1957. Roger enlisted in the Army and served in Germany until 1959.
Roger married Elaine Esther Quackenbush on October 18th, 1964 at Our Savior's Lutheran Church in Chokio. Roger began his love of the grocery business as a young man and eventually co-owned Red Owl stores in Blue Earth, Albert Lea, Wells, and Waseca, operating as Rog and El's. He loved the daily interaction with the people of the community and truly valued his employees, their hard work and fellowship. He retired in 2011 from Carlson Craft – keeping his co-workers honest and laughing along the way.
Roger and family were long time, faithful members of Trinity Lutheran Church in Blue Earth, celebrating many proud family moments there through the years. Roger enjoyed being an active member in his community through involvement in the Trinity Lutheran Congregation Council, the Lions Club, the Jaycees, Chamber of Commerce, Basswood Park Association and Delavan Township Board.
Roger is survived by Elaine, his wife of 48 years. Daughters, Anne (Pete) Voas, Cynthia (Chris) Crayne, and Jennifer Olson (Jon Colby). Grandchildren Erinn Voas, Abbie Voas, Sean Crayne, Nicholas Crayne, Claire Crayne, Madeline Jagerson, and Marley Jagerson. He was preceded in death by his parents and half-brothers, Russell Olson and Kenneth Olson.
Roger will be remembered by a large extended family with many cousins, nieces, nephews, and the Quackenbush in-laws. Rog and Elaine's circle of friends extend in many directions from Chokio to their current 'home on the lake' in Basswood Park, where books detailing the exploits of Ole and Lena are never far from reach.
Visitation will be held at Patton Funeral Home (400 East 14th Street) in Blue Earth on Thursday, November 8th from 5 to 7pm. Funeral services will take place at Trinity Lutheran Church in Blue Earth on Friday, November 9th at 3pm, with visitation one hour before the service. Interment of ashes will take place at Chokio Lutheran Cemetery in a private ceremony at a later date.
Instead of flowers, the family requests memorials be directed to Trinity Lutheran Church Building Fund (235 E. 7th Street, Blue Earth, MN 56013) OR Blue Earth Area Mentors (BEAM) – (125 N. Main Street, Blue Earth, MN 56013). In addition, they invite all to perform random acts of kindness (or practical jokes).
Roger will be remembered by all for his love of family, his faith, and his commitment to his community.
Go Twins! Vikes! Gophers! & Bucs!