Emmett John Pearson, 83, of Vasa, died Monday, Oct. 21, 2013, at his home.
He was born July 26, 1930, in Red Wing, to Emil and Edith (Swanson) Pearson. He grew up on the family farm, and until the age of six, only spoke Swedish. He attended Red Wing Central High School and was treasurer of his class. After high school, he continued his education at the University of Minnesota
. In 1955, he met the love of his life, Rosann Bergquist. On Sept. 7, 1957, they were united in marriage at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in St. Paul. They bought his uncle's farm in Vasa Township in 1958.
Emmett was very passionate about education, which was reflected in his 20-plus years he served on the Red Wing School Board. He was also involved with 4-H as a member and a leader. Farming was in his blood and something he deeply cared about, not only the farm itself, but the animals as well. Although farming responsibilities took time, he still had time to tend to his vegetable garden, golf, having played in the Vasa Open since it began in the 1950s, bowl and play softball.
A longtime member of Vasa Lutheran Church, not only did he sing in the church choir since he was 18, he also helped dig the church basement. Many will remember Emmett for his unforgettable beard, something that he's had since 1975 when the Vikings lost the Super Bowl to the Steelers. A staunch Vikings fan, the beard was not coming off until the Vikings won a Super Bowl. Needless to say, Emmett died having never shaved his beard. More than the Vikings, farming and education, his family was most important to Emmett and he loved them dearly.
He is survived by his wife, Rosann of Vasa; five children, Gayle (Robert) Myles of Richfield, Emmett (Liz) of Welch, Amy of Red Wing, Eric (Karen) of Red Wing and Chris (Kathi) of Vassar, Mich.; grandchildren, Rob (Mary), Brittany and Colton Myles, Melissa (Corey) McCann, Nicole (Ben) O'Connor, Samantha (Josh Wetzstein), Laurie and Katelyn Pearson, Kaleigh and Connor Mikolichek, Addison (Ashley), Amber (Jeff Nelsen) Pearson and Ezekiel Pearson; great-grandchildren, Sophia Myles, Madison, Morgan and Kennedy McCann, Jaysa O'Connor, Kyleigh Wetzstein, Garrett Pearson, one due in November; and Kaelie Nelsen; three brothers, Wesley (Rae) of Northfield, Merle (Rita) of Red Wing and Curt (Glennis) Pearson of Rochester; as well as nieces, nephews, cousins and other family.
He was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Miriam, a brother-in-law, Phil Johnston
and a granddaughter, Alison Pearson.
Funeral service will be 11 a.m. Friday, Oct. 25, at Vasa Lutheran Church, with the Rev. Kristi Mitchell officiating. Burial will be at the church cemetery.
Visitation will be 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 24, at the Mahn Family Funeral Home, Bodelson-Mahn Chapel in Red Wing, and for one hour prior to the church on Friday.
Memorials are preferred to the American Cancer Society, American Diabetes Association, The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, or Vasa Lutheran Church.
Online condolences may be sent to the family at mahnfamilyfuneralhome.com