Anchorage resident, John Stephen Hagge, 66, died May 26, 2013.
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No funeral services are planned. A family memorial service at Pokegama Lake near Grand Rapids, Minnesota will take place in early fall.
John was born December 17, 1946 in Hibbing, Minnesota, to Lauren and Doris Hagge. He grew up in Hibbing, graduating with honors and lettered in football, from Hibbing High School in 1965. He graduated from Hibbing Junior College in 1967 and the University of Minnesota-Duluth in 1974. In 1979, John drove the Alcan Highway with friends, Jim and Karen Jordan; John decided to make Alaska his home, eventually followed by two of his brothers. John resided in Eagle River from 1979 until 1989, when he moved to Anchorage. He worked for various sign companies in Minnesota and Alaska. He was the proud owner of Alaska Neon in Anchorage.
A life member of the Alaska Curling Club; with his rink, competed in multiple national tournaments. He was the famed pilot of the "Fish Boat" on the Kenai River. He enjoyed hunting, fishing and was an avid golfer. He was a diehard Minnesota Vikings and Twins fan, with multiple TVs set up in his living room as to not miss a game. He was a very talented artist who enjoyed doing acrylic paintings of Alaskan scenes and sculpting neon art.
John was lovingly referred to as "Grandpa Fish" by his two granddaughters because of all the photos they had of him either holding a king salmon or standing next to a giant halibut. One of their favorite memories is their trip to Alaska with "Grandpa Fish" teaching them (and their parents) how to land a BIG catch and dig for clams on the shore. Breakfast was always his signature "big pancake" made in a cast iron skillet with the Weber grill at the cabin.
John is survived by his loving daughter, Elizabeth Reynolds, St Louis Park, MN; granddaughters, Madeline Reynolds, Chicago, IL; Abigail Reynolds, Minneapolis, MN; stepmother, Bonnie Hagge, Heron Lake, MN; brothers, Jeff (Kathy), Anchorage, AK; Hal, Eagle River, AK and Bob (Jill), Bemidji, MN, nieces and nephews and his former wife and ongoing friend, Pat Hagge, Minneapolis, MN.
John is preceded in death by his parents. He will be missed by all of us who knew and loved him.
Arrangements were entrusted to the Cremation Society of Alaska. Words of comfort can be shared at www.alaskacremation.com.
Published in adn.com from June 23 to June 24, 2013