Gerald Daniel Riggs, 74, of Lake Itasca, Minnesota passed away Wednesday, May 20, 2020 at Sanford Hospital in Fargo, ND after a four-year battle with COPD.
Jerry was born to Daniel and Marlys Riggs on August 26, 1945, in Bagley, MN and was raised on the family farm with his four siblings by Zerkel. He attended the Minerva Country School, followed by Bagley High School, graduating as a member of the class of 1963. Jerry joined the Air Force in January 1966, serving as a photo specialist with the 15th TAC Mobile Recon Unit while stationed at the Kadena Air Force Base in Okinawa. After he was discharged from the Air Force, Jerry worked various jobs, including driving semi, road construction, and working at Itasca State Park. As a result of his job at Itasca, he met the love of his life, Lynn Sletten, whom he married on December 6, 1975. They lived in Park Rapids, and were blessed with three children, Tracy, Tom, and Trisha. During their years in Park Rapids, Jerry started his business, Riggs Logging, and in 1985, the family moved to their home by Itasca Park. Jerry continued logging until 2011, when he began working for MasTec and worked there until he retired. Jerry enjoyed hunting, fishing, gardening, and making his slightly famous pickles that he was always willing to share, as long as you brought the jars back! After retirement, Jerry enjoyed watching and betting on all the sports, cheering for the Bison football team, and spending time with his family.
Jerry is survived by his wife of 44 years, Lynn; daughter, Tracy (Mike) of Detroit Lakes; son, Tom (Karla), of Lake Itasca; and daughter, Trish (Dusty) of Prior Lake; one grandson, Kale; three granddaughters, Erinn, Megan, and Tenley, and one great-granddaughter, Audrey; as well as his siblings, Kathy (Spencer), Mark (Sonia), Karen (Ted), and Jim (Geri), his mother-in-law, Lois Sletten; and brothers and sisters-in-law Rick, Sharon (Judd), Cindy (Bob), Ann (Mark), and Brian (Molly), as well as many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Dan and Marlys, his father-in-law, Jim Sletten, and brother-in-laws, Jimmy Sletten and Huck Durant.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, services for immediate family will be held on Sunday, May 24, 2020 at 11:00 am with inurnment to follow in Pine Grove Cemetery at Shevlin, MN.
Jerry’s care has been entrusted to Northern Peace Funeral Home of Walker, MN. Online condolences for the family may be left at www.northernpeace.com
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