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1915 Paul 2018

Paul Rootkie

January 21, 1915 — April 18, 2018

Paul Rootkie of Pine City passed away Wednesday, April 18, 2018 at Fairview Lakes Hospital in Wyoming at the age of 103.

Paul was born on the family farm in Mission Creek Township, Pine County, Minnesota on January 21, 1915 to Steve and Mary (Buckna) Rootkie.  He was the 5th of 13 children.  As a young man he played baseball on the Mission Creek team.

He met Gertrude Wilebski while she was visiting her married sister across the road.  When deciding to marry her he went to Lancaster, Minnesota to ask for her hand.  Gert's 7 brothers said that they had to have a family vote to admit Paul into the family.  They made him sit outside while they held the vote and had a few libations.  It took 5 votes and a number of bottles before he was allowed to marry Gert.

Paul left the farm to look for work in the cities.  He went to Spencer Kellogg, an oil processing company, and ended up working for them for 45 years.  Even though he only had a 6th grade education, he attended night school and earned his first class steam engineers license.

In 1951, Paul and Gert purchased a cabin on Cross Lake.  Many family gatherings were held there over the years.  In 1973, they decided to start building their retirement home on the lake.  It took 4 years to build it.  And in 1977, it was ready for their retirement.  Paul kept busy with a huge garden, canning, fishing and raising Polish chickens.  At age 80, he needed a knee replacement and the surgeon asked if they could use his excess bone for transplants.  He also bought a 4-wheeler.  After filling out the papers the dealer said, "I just sold a 4-wheeler to an 80 year old."

Paul and Gert sent Cary and Gail to Catholic grade school and high school even though he was not Catholic himself.  One day Paul said to Cary, "Mom and you kids are Catholic, where will I be buried when I die?"  Jokingly Cary said, "you may have to become a Catholic."  Paul replied, "you know I have been thinking about that for awhile."  So at age 80, Paul took RCIA classes and was baptized Catholic.  In the last 41 years of retirement there have been many quarts of pickles, sauerkraut, banana bread, strawberries, cookies and Sunday football with "Hazel" in control.

One last thought, I wonder if those 7 brothers are standing at the Pearly Gates to take a vote to let Paul in or not.

Paul is survived by his son Cary (Janet) Rootkie of Pine City; daughter Gail (Charles) Hanson of Danbury, Wisconsin; grandchildren: Bridget Ausmus, Brenda (Duwayne) Dahl, Paul Rootkie, Todd Hanson (Kate Pauly), Melanie Wallwork, Patrick (Alexandria) Rootkie, Matthew (Tami) Rootkie; 13 great-grandchildren; many great-great-grandchildren; sister Elaine Valvoda of Pine City; sister-in-law Violet Rootkie of Minneapolis; many other relatives and friends.

Paul is preceded in death by his parents Steve and Mary Rootkie; wife Gertrude Rootkie; grandson Christopher Rootkie; great-grandson Derek Rootkie and 11 siblings.

Monsignor Aleksander Suchan will celebrate Mass of Christian Burial for Paul: 10:30 AM Thursday (4/26) at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Pine City.  A time of visitation and reviewal is planned for Wednesday evening (4/25) from 5-8 PM at the Swanson Funeral Chapel and also 1 hour prior to the service in St. Anthony's Commons at the church.

Funeral arrangements are entrusted to: Funeral and Cremation Service of Pine City ~ Swanson Chapel

www.FuneralAndCremationService.com

 

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Paul Rootkie, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

5:00 - 8:00 pm (Central time)

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Visitation

Thursday, April 26, 2018

9:30 - 10:30 am (Central time)

St. Anthony's Commons, Immaculate Conception Catholic Church

535 8th St SW, Pine City, MN 55063

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Mass of Christian Burial

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Starts at 10:30 am (Central time)

Immaculate Conception Catholic Church

535 8th St SW, Pine City, MN 55063

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