John Keith Fredrickson, 54, of Silver Bay died in his home on May 18. The son of Dick and Gale Fredrickson of Silver Bay, he was born in Bemidji, Minn., on Sept. 3, 1958.
John graduated from William Kelley High School in 1976. He attended college at Rainy River Community College in International Falls, where he worked several part-time jobs, and managed to attend a few classes. He returned to Silver Bay and worked for Bay Construction and Rob’s Repair. In 1981, he bought the local Standard gas station and auto shop and he was self-employed for the rest of his working life. In 1984, he bought his first garbage business and continued to expand John’s Sanitary Removal for the next 28 years.
John was active in the community of Silver Bay. He was a member of the Silver Bay Fire Department for 34 years, and served as Chief for 24 years until his retirement on Dec. 31, 2012. He was honored to be named Minnesota State Fire Chief’s Association’s 2012 Fire Officer of the Year (for cities of less than 10,000 people). He was also an active member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, where he served on the finance council.
Although John was known for working long hours, he enjoyed shooting trap, hunting, camping and spending time with his family. He loved being the “jelly bean grandpa” and was very proud to be Grandpa John or Papa to “seven under seven.”
John was preceded in death by his father, Dick Fredrickson. He is survived by his wife of 33 years, Shelley; his son Timothy (Megan), of Brainerd, their children Grace, John and Lucas; daughter Shawn (Stefan) Pagnucci, of Superior, their boys, Paolo, Aiden and Marc; daughter Carrie (Brian) Pfeifer, of Duluth, and their son Michael. He is also survived by his mother, Gale Fredrickson,; brothers Tom (Mary Nilles-Fredrickson); Joseph (Paula), of Silver Bay; sisters Monica (Jerry) Pybas, of Duluth; Anita (Brad) Hove, of St. Paul; Mary (Ken) Lundgren, of Shafer, several nieces and nephews, and his grandmother Elsye McGuire, of Bemidji.
The visitation was held at Cavallin Funeral Home in Two Harbors on Monday, May 20 from 5-7 p.m. A memorial mass was held at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Silver Bay at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, May 21, with visitation one hour prior. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred and will be given to American Cancer Society Hope Lodge, Silver Bay Fire Department, and St. Mary’s Catholic Church. To sign the online guestbook please visit www.cavallinfuneralhome.com.