James Robert Larsen of Oronoco passed away on January 4th, 2018 at Rochester Methodist Hospital at the age of 82 years old. He was born on December 28, 1935 to Robert and Ruth (Rueber) Larsen, long time dairy farmers. He attended rural schools and graduated from Rochester Public High School in 1953. He married Sally Cuffel in 1957. They had four children were later divorced. On June 12, 1971 he married Judith Anne Hess of Northfield, MN. They welcomed three more children. In addition to helping his father on the farm, Jim spent his early career years operating a mounted corn sheller, custom shelling corn for area farmers. He also worked for Gopher welding and was a garage mechanic. He soon began dairy and crop farming full-time, a process he continued until his death due to cancer. He was a dedicated farmer serving on the Rock Dell Creamery Board, DHIA Board and the Pine Island Elevator Board through its merger to Farm Country Coop. He was the first secretary for the Olmsted County Corn Growers Association. He and his wife Judy were Olmsted County Farm Family of the year in 1994. He thought the land should be preserved for future generations. He crop farmed and was in a dairy partnership with his son, Lance, at the time of his death. He enjoyed tractor pulling in his younger years and watching his sons tractor pull later in life. He also enjoyed displaying his antique tractor collection at the History Center and driving in the annual Pine Island Antique Tractor Drive. He hunted and enjoyed camping and fishing with his children and grandchildren. When he could take time away from the farm, he enjoyed traveling with his wife. Duluth and Branson were his favorite destinations. His death leaves a void in the hearts of many.
In addition to his wife, he is survived by children, Lance (Debra) Larsen of Oronoco, Jo (Steve) Raechke of Ellsworth, WI, Lydia (Robert) Gammell of Rochester, Chuck (Karla) Larsen of Byron, Greg (Amy) Larsen of Byron and Carrie (Mark) Ostman of Rochester, twenty-three grandchildren, fifteen great-grandchildren, sister Ardith (Don) Ottman of Oronoco, one niece, one nephew, foster brother Jerry (Sandy) Clausen of Rochester and sister-in-law Kathy (Ken) Betzold of Farmington. He was preceded in death by his parents, son Scott, a granddaughter, two brother-in-laws and one sister-in-law.
A visitation will be held at Ranfranz and Vine in Rochester on Sunday January 7th from 4-7pm. A memorial service will be held on Monday, January 8th at 11 a.m. at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in Rochester. Friends may call one hour prior to the service. Burial will be in Pleasant Prairie Cemetery following the service and lunch at the church. In lieu of flowers memorials are suggested to Gloria Dei Lutheran Church.
To leave a special memory or condolence please visit www.ranfranzandvinefh.com
Ranfranz and Vine Funeral Homes 5421 Royal Place NW Rochester, MN 55901
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