Memorial Mass for Donald Joseph Purkat Sr, 94, life long resident of McKinley, will be 10:00am Friday, February 25, 2022 at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Gilbert with Fr. Justin Fish as celebrant. Friends may gather one hour prior to the mass at the church. Military honors will be accorded by the Gilbert VFW Post. Spring burial will be in the Minnesota State Veterans Cemetery in Duluth, Minnesota. Arrangements by Ziemer-Moeglein-Shatava Funeral Home in Gilbert.
Donald died Tuesday, February 1, 2022 at Essentia Health – Northern Pines in Aurora, Minnesota.
He was born November 2, 1927 in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin to Anton and Ann (Grahek) Purkat. Donald was salutatorian of the Gilbert High School Class of 1945. At age 17 he enlisted with the US Navy and served in the South Pacific during WWII.
Following his military service, he attended Virginia Jr. College and later worked for various mining companies. On January 12, 1952 he married Jane E. Spohn in Aurora, Minnesota. Donald retired from Erie Mining Company with 30 years of service. He also served as the local AMSOIL representative since 1974.
Donald was a member of the McKinley Volunteer Fire Department, and the American Legion. He was an avid deer hunter, woodworker and enjoyed visiting with fellow veterans about their time spent in military service. One of his best experiences was being a part of the Honor Flight to Washington DC.
Survivors include his children: Daniel (Sheila), David, Jarad, Dennis (Lisa), Michael, JaNeen and Joe; daughter-in-law, Patsy Purkat; numerous grandchildren and great grandchildren; sister, Marge Walling and several nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Anton and Ann; wife, Jane; son, Jan; granddaughter, Jennifer; granddaughter-in-law, Theresa; siblings: Cyril, Rosemary Prosen and Jeanette Korsman, numerous nephews and brothers and sisters-in-law.
Don’s family would like to thank the staff of Essentia Health – Northern Pines and the East Range Hospice for the excellent care given to him.