Gene 'Red' Russell Gelhaye | Bemidji Pioneer
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Gene 'Red' Russell Gelhaye

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Gene "Red" Russell Gelhaye, 81, of Osage, died Saturday, July 18 at the Veterans Administration Hospital, Fargo, N.D.

He was born Feb. 25, 1928 in Minneapolis to Roy and Stella (Olson) Gelhaye. He was raised and educated in Minneapolis. At the age of 16 1/2 he enlisted in the U.S. Navy where he was a member of the Seebees, serving in the South Pacific. He was also a member of the Blue Jacket Chorus, which sang for many important military events. He received his discharge in 1946 and returned to Minneapolis. He was recalled to active duty where he was assigned to the weather station in Greenland.

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He married Iris Steenson May 4, 1949 in Minneapolis. Following his second discharge from the Navy they lived in Minneapolis where he completed his high school education and attended the University of Minnesota for two years. He was the hardware manager for Mound Hardware in Mound. He was also a member of musical groups "Red and Lil Iris" and "The Country Redheads" which sang at Twin Cities area night clubs and the Fort Snelling NCO Club. They later divorced. He moved to Fargo, N.D. where he worked for Knox Lumber Co. from 1974-1993.

He married Virginia Stainbrook Feb. 3, 2007 in Detroit Lakes. They made their home on Bass Lake near Osage. He was a 33-year member of AA and was a strong advocate of the AA community.

He is survived by his wife, of Osage; a son, Geno Galhaye, of Columbia Heights; four daughters: Kathy (Gary) Bodick, of Coon Rapids, Karen Fowler, of Columbia Heights, Kristi Herzog, of Anoka, and Jean Marie Gelhaye, of North Dakota; a stepson, Dale (Pam) Stainbrook, of Crookston; four stepdaughters: Deb (Michael) Radi, of Champlin, Denise (Rob) Collins, of Bloomington, Donna (David) Larson, of Crookston, and Darla (Darrin) Tucker, of Glyndon; five grandchildren; 14 stepgrandchildren; four great-grandchildren; and a brother, Bob Gelhaye, of Minneapolis.

He was preceded in death by his brother, Richard.

Funeral service: Friday, July 24 at Shell L ake Immanuel Lutheran Church in rural Osage with Revs. Phil Johnson and Bob Ford officiating.

Interment: 11:45 a.m. Monday, July 27 at Fort Snelling National Cemetery, Minneapolis.

Online condolences may be left at www.daviddonehower.com.

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