Chester Walsh, 91, of Park Rapids, died on Sunday, Jan. 18, 2009, at his home.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday at St. Peter, the Apostle Catholic Church with the Rev. Thomas Friedl officiating. Burial will be in St. Peter, the Apostle Catholic Cemetery next to his wife, Anna. Military honors will be conducted by the Star of the North Marine Corps League. A luncheon will be held after the funeral service.
The pallbearers will be his grandchildren, John Walsh, Dan Walsh, Amy Christensen, Katie Hanson, Joe Hollister, Abe Hollister, Dylan Walsh and Kody Walsh.
Honorary pallbearers will be his great-grandchildren, Bethany Schneider, Caleb Christensen, Wyatt Hanson, Joshua Christensen, Noah Hanson, Tristan Walsh, Gideon Hollister, Levi Hanson, Koleman Walsh, Adelynn Hollister, Isaac Hanson and Mae Hollister.
He was born on March 8, 1917, to Edmund and Essie (Kimball) Walsh, at their home in Arago Township, north of Park Rapids. He attended country school near Dinner Lake. As a young man, he cut firewood and sold it in Park Rapids. Later, drove truck for Nash Finch Grocery Wholesalers in Fargo, N.D., delivering groceries to stores throughout North Dakota. On Feb. 22, 1941, he married Anna Mabel Eischens at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Two Inlets, Minn. They had four children. Shortly after their marriage, Pearl Harbor was attacked, and he was called into military service. He proudly served in the U.S. Army as an amphibious engineer in the Pacific Theatre of World War II. After his honorable discharge, he returned home to see his 3-year-old son, Billy, who was born while he had been away at war. He resumed logging in the pine and hardwood forests near Park Rapids. His career spanned more than 60 years and brought him into numerous timber tracts throughout this area. He skillfully operated heavy equipment in the woods and especially enjoyed building roads to his logging operations with his John Deere 350 Caterpillar. Throughout the years, he enjoyed the solid relationship he had forged with the Potlatch Corporation and the many friends he had made in the industry. He was proud to have formed a partnership with his son, Mike, in 1985. He worked daily in the business until well after his 75th birthday. He enjoyed outings at the family hunting shack in Clover Township. He enjoyed hunting, snowmobiling, spending time with his family and dancing. He was a long time member of St. Peter, the Apostle Catholic Church in Park Rapids. He was a long time member of the Park Rapids Lions Club, The Otto Hendrickson American Legion Post No. 212 in Park Rapids and the Guy L. McDermeit VFW Post of Menahga, Minn.
He is survived by his children, Bill (Bonnie) Walsh of Bismarck, N.D., Sue (Dave) Kordell of Nisswa, Minn., Coleen Walsh of Park Rapids and Mike (Shelli) Walsh of Park Rapids; eight grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren; sister, Delores Elam of Dayton, Ohio; nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife in 2007; sisters, Carrie Malm and Mabel Gulbrandson; and brother, Harris Walsh.