Robert J. Becker, 97, of Blooming Prairie, died Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2013, at Prairie Manor Care Center in Blooming Prairie.
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He was born March 23, 1916, in Walcott Township, (rural Medford), to Jacob and Anna (Preeshl) Becker. A 1933 graduate of Medford High School, Robert enlisted in the United States Army, serving his country in World War II. He was seriously wounded in April 1945 and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart. Following his military service, he returned home and attended St. Thomas University where he received a degree in English. He later received a master's degree in education from Mankato State University. On July 29, 1950, Robert married Marian Welte at Nativity Catholic Church in St. Paul. He then started teaching in Preston, moving to Blooming Prairie in 1953, where he taught high school English until his retirement in 1981. He was a finalist for Minnesota Teacher of the Year in 1968. Bob was the Blooming Prairie City Clerk from May 1965 until December 1985.
In his leisure time, Bob enjoyed fishing, reading, bowling and playing poker. He was a pheasant and duck hunter as well, and enjoyed his family trips up north. Bob was a big Minnesota Twins and Minnesota Vikings fan. He was a member of the V.F.W. and the American Legion, and he attended St. Columbanus Catholic Church where he served as a lector and usher.
Survivors include his wife, Marian Becker of Blooming Prairie; his children, Lawrence "Larry" Becker of Hampton, Va., Tom Becker of Edmond, Okla., John (Karen) Becker of Oakdale, Mary (Jon) Lilliquist of Caledonia, Catherine "Cathy" (Ron) Schroeder of Mapleton, Barbara "Barb" (Dan) Hartmann of Sioux Falls, S.D., Fr. William Becker of Plainview, Patricia "Patty" (Pete) Marsnik of Eau Claire, Wis., and James "Jim" Becker of Tuscon, Ariz.; 11 grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Jacob and Anna Becker, two sisters, Alice and Leona, one brother, Frank, and his son-in-law, Paul Kofoed.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:30 a.m. Monday, Dec. 23, at St. Columbanus Catholic Church in Blooming Prairie, with the Very Rev. Steve Peterson and the Rev. William Becker co-officiating, the Most Rev. John Quinn presiding, and priests of the Winona Diocese concelebrating.
There will be a 2 p.m. CCW Rosary service, with visitation following until 5 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 22, at Worlein Blooming Prairie Funeral Home. The family will also greet friends one hour prior to the service at the church on Monday. Interment will be in St. Lawrence Cemetery, Faribault.
In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to the Blooming Prairie Library, Blooming Prairie Education Foundation, St. Columbanus Catholic Church or Prairie Manor Care Center.
Services prearranged and performed by Worlein Blooming Prairie Funeral Home.
Condolences may be expressed to the family online at worlein.com.
Blooming Prairie Funeral Home
418 Hwy Ave S
Blooming Prairie, MN 55917
Published in The Post-Bulletin on Dec. 20, 2013