Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Brian John Oberg

WAKEFIELD, Mich. - Brian John Oberg, 81, of Wakefield, died on Monday, Feb. 27, 2023, at Aspirus Ironwood Hospital.

Brian was born on May 26, 1941, in Wakefield, a son of Paul Julius and Bernice Evelyn (Champagne) Oberg. He attended Wakefield High School and graduated in 1959.

After graduation, Brian enlisted in the U.S. Air Force. He proudly served his country for four years and was stationed in Korea where he was in the security service.

Brian learned the carpet trade when working at his uncle's, Herman Weiss, carpet store in Minneapolis.

On May 20, 1978, he married Janice Koppang in Rockford, Minnesota. In 1982, they returned to Michigan to settle in Brian's hometown of Wakefield.

Together with his wife, Jan, they owned and operated The Rug Merchant floor covering business until their retirement.

Brian was active in community affairs. He was a Cub Scout Webelos leader for many years. His memberships included the Wakefield Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 9084, Wakefield Fourth of July Committee, Wakefield Historical Society, Wakefield Chamber of Commerce and Wakefield Revitalization Committee.

Brian was a sincere Christian who lived out his faith in his church. He taught Sunday school for many years at Living Water Missionary Assembly in Ironwood. Brian also served as a volunteer chaplain at the Ojibway Correctional Facility in Marenisco for many years.

He enjoyed hunting, fishing, collecting firearms, picking berries and making homemade jam, and spending time in their yard and in the garden.

Brian is survived by his wife, Jan; two daughters, Deanna Valnes, Ramsey, Minnesota, and Lynette (Fred) Schultz, Fort Myers, Florida; three grandchildren, Joshua (Chelsea) Garrison, Forest Lake, Minnesota, and Boden (Taryn) Valnes and Natalia Valnes, both of Ramsey, Minnesota; seven great-grandchildren, Tyler, Olivia, Elijah, Elianna, Isaiah, Aliyah and Ezra, all of Forest Lake; three brothers-in-law, Roger (Lois) Koppang, Moorhead, Minnesota, Terry Koppang, Fargo, North Dakota, and Miles (Kerry) Koppang, Litchfield, Minnesota; a niece, Tammy Oberg-Duerr, Wakefield; and other nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers and a sister-in-law, Russell and Paul (Faye); a sister, Barbara; his son-in-law, Travis Valnes; and his father-in-law and mother-in-law, Talbert and Mabel Koppang.

Brian was an exceptional man - virtuous, hardworking, generous, wise, strong and loving. He was a wonderful example of Christian living to his family. We will miss him.

2 Timothy 4:7 "I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith."

The Oberg family will greet relatives and friends on Saturday, March 11, from 1 to 2 p.m., at the Cornerstone Church, N10344 Mill St., in Ramsay, with the honor guard beginning at 1:15 p.m. Military rites will take place at the church at 1:45 p.m., accorded by the Wakefield American Legion Geroux Post 11 and Wakefield VFW Post 9084 Honor Guard.

A memorial service will follow with the Rev. Todd Winkler officiating.

Following the service, a lunch will be served in the church fellowship hall.

In lieu of flowers, send memorials to Cornerstone Church, P.O. Box 457, Ramsay, MI 49959, for Birch Haven Bible Camp.

Jerald Rocco, owner and manager of Lakeside Memorial Chapel Inc., in Wakefield, is assisting the family with arrangements. To send online condolences or to share a memory, please go to

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