Matt James Kellner, Jr. died peacefully on January 28, 2013 after a short stay at the Benedictine Health Center.
He was born on the family farm in Meadowlands, Minnesota on October 17, 1925 to Mary Elsie and Matt James Kellner, Sr.
Matt started Meadowlands School speaking fluent Czech. He mastered English quickly but left school before graduation to volunteer for service in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II. Matt served honorably, making countless landings and rescues as an amphibious assault vehicle driver in the Pacific Theater.
After returning from war, Matt met the love of his life, Harriet Miller, at a dance at the Kelsey Town Hall. After a long courtship, and many proposals, Matt convinced Harriet to marry him. They were wed in a service in the Cotton High School gymnasium on July 8, 1956. For 56 years Matt and Harriet enjoyed the adventure of life together, raising a daughter, helping to raise two grandchildren, farming, gardening, laughing, hunting, fishing and having delightfully engaging arguments. Matt could build anything, wire anything, and fix anything mechanical - he made an art and science of keeping things running at work and on the farm.
Matt was the manager of the Neal Slate Company in Minneapolis when the newly married couple lived in the Twin Cities. After moving to Cotton to take over Harriet’s family’s farm, Matt also worked for the St. Louis County rural school district as a custodian at the school and substitute bus driver. He loved working with those considered “troubled” youth through various afterschool and summer work programs, and delighted in seeing “his kids” go on to succeed in life. Matt also enjoyed his work as a steward on behalf of the union of Operating Engineers. Matt was also a Cotton Township supervisor for many years.
Matt was preceded in death by his parents, and his sister Mary Good. He is survived by his wife Harriet, daughter Juli, grandchildren Dane and Maja, brother Edward, and many nieces and nephews.
Matt will be deeply missed and lovingly remembered. Special thanks to Sister Susan DeWitt OSB for loving and timely help, and to the wonderful and caring staff of the Benedictine Health Center.
No services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
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February 1, 2013
Dads are so very special! A dads' love remains, lingering, possessing, reminding, teaching, and supporting.
Mark & Carol Overfors
January 31, 2013
Our thoughts and prayers are with you. God's peace and comfort to you.
2Co 1:3 . He is the Father who is full of mercy, the God of all comfort.