Gene Lokken, born on September 17, 1931 in the Town of Bradley, Wisconsin, died on Saturday July 15, 2023 at Thorne Crest Senior Living Community in Albert Lea, Minnesota. Gene passed peacefully in his sleep and will be missed deeply by all who knew and loved him.
On October 27, 1956, Gene married Carol Rietz of Athens, Wisconsin. Gene is survived by his beloved wife Carol; his children Pamela (Andy Sobel) Lokken, Nancy (Jim) Lageson, Jeff (Jo) Lokken, Doug (Krysia Rozanska) Lokken, Eric (Tracy) Lokken, and his brother Leslie (Lolita) Lokken. He adored his 12 grandchildren and 4 great grandchildren. Gene was preceded in death by his parents, Herman and Elsie Lokken, and over time by his brothers and sisters -Terrance Lokken, James Lokken, Ione Rosek, Patricia Dotter, Everett Lokken and Joyce Bentley.
Gene graduated from Tomahawk High School and worked in the local paper mill in Tomahawk before going on to serve in the US Marine Corp. as a radio operator during the Korean War. He obtained an engineering degree from the Milwaukee School of Engineering. Gene worked as an engineer his entire professional career and was awarded numerous patents for his design work.
Upon retirement, Gene and Carol moved to the forty acres of land where Gene was born in the Town of Bradley, Wisconsin. He had strong ties to the property in Bradley which had been purchased by his Grandpa Henry in 1913 upon immigrating from Norway.
Gene enjoyed fishing, hunting, gardening, woodworking, and our many family vacations. He loved children and drove the local school bus for several years. He was never at a loss for a funny or heartfelt story to share. He was a lifelong builder and fixer. This included constructing many of the family’s homes and cabins. He made furniture from the trees harvested on their land and the children and grandchildren showcase his beautiful handmade furniture in their homes.
Gene and Carol moved to Minnesota in 2022 to be closer to family. Per his wishes, Gene will be cremated. His remains will rest in an oak urn he and Carol designed and crafted for that purpose from an oak tree on their property. He said he wanted Carol to be able to continue kissing him each morning — as was their daily routine—until she joins him once again, after which they will be interred in the family grave site at the Prairie Rapids Cemetery.