The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Rev. H. Eugene 'Gene' Cedarholm


July 28, 2018

ROCHESTER, Minn. - Rev. H. Eugene "Gene" Cedarholm, 88, passed away peacefully on July 12, 2018, surrounded by his family at River Bend Senior Living in Rochester, Minn.

Gene is survived by his three daughters, Lori (Craig) Hilmer of St. Charles, Minn., Beth Cedarholm of River Falls, Wis., and Jan (Sean) Moore of Mount Vernon, Iowa; grandchildren, Alexandra Forbes (Oketekyie Dakwa-Agyekum), Abigail Forbes, Caleb Forbes, Sofia Carlson, Lena Carlson, Britta Carlson, Sam Moore and Anna Moore; step-granddaughter, Doren Hilmer; a Swedish exchange daughter, Karin Kaberger; a sister-in-law, Rozann Cedarholm; a brother and sister-in-law Paul and Cynthia Hanson, and his best friend of over 40 years, Rev. Fritz Kramer. Gene is also uncle to numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Delores, in January 2016; his parents, Dora and Albert; brother, Vincent Cedarholm; and sisters, Doris Christianson and Lenora Claypool.

H. Eugene was born March 14, 1930, in Marquette, Kan., the son of Albert and Dora Cedarholm. He was a graduate of the class of 1948 at Marquette High School. Following high school, he served in the U.S. Navy from 1948-1952. He was a veteran of the Korean Conflict. He attended Bethany College in Lindsborg, Kan., graduating in 1956. He attended Augustana Theological Seminary in Rock Island, Ill. where he received a Master of Divinity degree. (The seminary later became part of Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago). While at Augustana Seminary, he met his future wife, Delores Hanson, who was secretary to the dean of students and registrar at the seminary. He married Delores on June 7, 1958, in Wakefield, Mich.

H. Eugene was ordained on June 6, 1960, in Rock Island, Ill. He served as a pastor at Trinity Lutheran Church in Spencer, Iowa, from July 1960 to July 1969 and at First Lutheran in Newton, Iowa, from July 1969 until his retirement in June 1992. Following his retirement, he served as interim pastor at Trinity in Marshalltown, Iowa; Holy Trinity in Newton, Iowa; St. Johns in Tama, Iowa; Trinity in Malcom, Iowa; and Our Savior in Marshalltown, Iowa. He also served as a supply pastor in many churches in Iowa.

Gene was active in his community following his retirement. He was also involved in his church, including St. Andrew's Lutheran Church, Sully, Iowa; First Lutheran, Newton, Iowa and was a member of Faith Lutheran in St. Charles, Minn., at the time of his death.

He served as a volunteer driver, volunteered at the Jasper County Historical Society, volunteered at the Newton Work Release Center, was involved in community theater and was on the board of Grandview College, in Des Moines, Iowa. He was active in the Southeastern Iowa Synod continuing after retirement.

Gene loved to garden and was always proud of his tomato plants and beautiful flowers. He loved to bake and was well known for his fruit cake at Christmas, as well as his homemade Swedish rye bread. He was a skilled craftsman and built each of his daughters and his wife a grandfather clock, as well as a harp for his wife. He did the work on additions to the family home and was always interested in helping out with a project.

He was very interested in his Swedish heritage and traveled to Sweden twice, tracing ancestry and studying the Swedish language. Gene loved spending time with his family, especially time spent at Christmas Mountain Village in the Wisconsin Dells and family camping trips. Gene and Delores were generous people and enriched the lives of so many through their generous gifts of time and resources.

Services will be held at 2 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 31 at First Lutheran Church in Newton, Iowa. Friends may call from 1 p.m. until the time of services at the church. A graveside service will be held for both H. Eugene and Delores at Freemont Cemetery in Marquette, Kan., at 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 2, with a luncheon following.

Memorial donations can be made in H. Eugene's name to First Lutheran Church in Newton, Iowa, Faith Lutheran Church in St. Charles, Minn., or to ELCA World Hunger.

The family wishes to extend a heartfelt thank you to River Bend Senior Living and their incredible staff, Pastor Steve McGinley and Heartland Hospice for their compassionate care for Gene. They also wish to extend a special thank you to the Mayo Clinic audiology department which assisted so much in the last few years with Gene's cochlear implants.

Hoff Funeral and Cremation Services of St. Charles, Minn., is assisting the family with arrangements.


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