Eugene “Gene”  Kauppila of Thief River Falls, MN, passed away on Tuesday, September 24, 2019 at Altru Hospital, Grand Forks, ND.

Funeral service will be held on Tuesday, October 8, 2019, at 2:00 PM at Zion Lutheran Church in Thief River Falls, MN with Reverend John Golv and Reverend Ale Tulu officiating. Burial will be held at the Finnish Cemetery at Plummer, MN.

Visitation will be held on Monday, October 7, 2019, 5 – 8 PM with a 7:00 prayer service at Johnson Funeral Service in Thief River Falls, MN and also one hour prior to the service on Tuesday at the church.

Eugene “Gene” Olaf Kauppila was born July 19, 1947, in Fergus Falls, MN, son of the late Olaf Jacob and Lila Vivian (Sironen) Kauppila. He was baptized in the Lutheran faith and confirmed at Zion Lutheran Church in Thief River Falls, MN. He attended Northrop Elementary and Lincoln High School graduating in 1965.

Gene entered the US Army on August 23, 1965, and served 2 tours in Vietnam until his honorable discharge on August 14, 1968. Following his discharge he returned to Thief River Falls before moving to Minneapolis where he worked for Federal Cartridge Corporation making ammunition. He moved to Wyoming in 1974 working on power plant construction and worked in road construction as a heavy equipment operator in Wyoming and Colorado. He also worked for oil companies keeping roads open in the winters for the drilling crews. He moved back to Minnesota working road construction and for pipeline companies until his retirement.

In 1977 he was united in marriage to Lynda Hofeldt in Rawlins, Wyoming. To this union 4 children were born: Bryan, Lisa, Jessica and Erica.

Gene enjoyed hunting and fishing, playing pinochle at the VFW, going to Prowler and Norskie hockey games and being a member of the VFW and American Legion Color Guard to honor our Veterans. He was a member of the Zion Lutheran Church, VFW Post 2793, American Legion Post 117, Eagles Aerie 2368, 49ers Labor Union and the Minnesota Deer Hunters Association.

 Gene is survived by his daughters Lisa (Lane) Patorti of Rutland, VT, and Jessica (Caden) Maggard of Central, UT; step-children Tyron and Amber; grandchildren Boston, Arikka, Beckett and Byron Patorti and Rylan, Ryder and Eriona Maggard; siblings Janice Rabideaux of Thief River Falls, MN, Gregory Kauppila of Lusby, MD, Gordon (Glenna) Kauppila of Rawlins, WY, Sharon (James) Baron of Thief River Falls, MN, and Gloria (Kevin) Malwitz of Thief River Falls, MN, along with several nieces, nephews and cousins.

He is preceded in death by his children Bryan and Erica, parents Olaf and Lila, brother Robert (Bob), brother-in-law Don Rabideaux and niece Julia Baron.

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