Eugene William 'Gene' Korfhage — Austin

Eugene William "Gene" Korfhage, 82, died Friday, March 29, 2013, at his home.

Gene was born Sept. 23, 1930, in Austin, to Earl Wesley and Rae Sabrina (Irvine) Korfhage. He knew the Lord as his Savior as a young man, was baptized at First Baptist, and served as a trustee at Grace Baptist Church. Gene's faith and family were his life's priorities.

After attending Franklin Grade School kindergarten together with their teacher "Miss Beach," the Lord brought them back together a decade and a half later. Gene married Lonapearl Christopherson on June 16, 1952, at First Baptist Church, the Rev. Leo Sandgren, Sr. presiding. The lifetime commitment was celebrated this year with their 60th wedding anniversary.

Gene graduated from Austin High School in 1948, and went to work for the Geo. A. Hormel Co. After being drafted and proudly serving his country as a corporal in the U.S. Army in occupied Germany during the Korean War from 1952-1954, Gene returned to Hormel for a career spanning 44 years as both a plant worker and foreman. Gene was a very proud and loyal Hormel Man. After retirement, Gene and Lonapearl enjoyed 20 years, including a European Reformation History tour, Caribbean cruises, multiple bus tours of Washington D.C., New York City, the East Coast and Branson, Mo., as well as time with friends and family.

Gene and Lonapearl raised four children, Frantz Irvine, Jason Mentor, Tyler Arndt, and Jayda Leone. Memories include: many trailer camping trips, fishing outings, Sunday afternoon walks exploring woods, Saturday morning breakfast and shopping excursions, and countless car trips to "see whats over the next hill…"

Gene was preceded in death by his parents, two sisters, Margaret Baker and Dorothy Roseth, and a baby brother.

Survivors include his loving wife, Lonapearl; sons, Frantz Korfhage (Sally Hardy), Austin, Jason (Sue) Korfhage, Austin, and Tyler (Terri) Korfhage, Grand Rapids, Mich.; daughter Jayda (Eric) Wood, Austin; grandchildren, Jarrett, Peter, Channi, Levi, Austin, Ashleigh, Chase, Dakota, Alayna, Logan, Alexa and Braeden; great-grandchildren, Banning, Bo, Claire, and Warren; and nieces and nephews.

The family gives a heartfelt thanks to Dr. Carole Warnes of Rochester, a special friend and caregiver of 26 years.

Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, April 6, at Faith Evangelical Free Church, with Pastor Mike Sager officiating. Interment will be at Fairview Cemetery in Oakland, with Austin Post #91 American Legion and Olaf B. Damm Post #1216 Veterans of Foreign Wars in charge of military rites.

Visitation will be held from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday at the Clasen-Jordan Mortuary in Austin, and at the church for one hour before the service on Saturday.

Memorials are encouraged to the Hollandale Christian School.