Merrill Widmark

January 31, 2019

obit widmark 5809455_fbsAug. 19, 1934 – Dec. 15, 2018

Merrill John Widmark, age 84 of Grand Rapids, passed away peacefully Dec. 15, 2018 at Grand Itasca Hospital in Grand Rapids.
Visitation with the fam­ily was Friday, Dec. 28, 2018, 9:30 a.m. until the 11 a.m. Memorial Service at Zion Evangelical Lu­theran Church in Grand Rapids. Rev. Ben B. Bu­chanan officiated. Rowe Funeral Home of Grand Rapids was entrusted with arrangements.
Merrill was born Aug. 19, 1934 to John and Maren (Enga) Widmark on the farmstead in rural Ivanhoe. Merrill earned his Bachelor’s Degree from Gustavus Adolphus College and his Master’s Degree from the Univer­sity of South Dakota. He was united in marriage to Marlene Haugen on Dec. 17, 1955. They relocated to Hibbing in 1960, where he taught math and phys­ics at Hibbing Community College and operated the Adams House B&B. The couple retired to their lake home on WabanaLake in the Grand Rapids area in 1999.
He was an active sports enthusiast as an athlete, coach, official, announc­er for college and high school sports, as well as a great fan, especially of baseball. One of his great passions was singing and acting. He was in numer­ous theater productions, including “Showboat” in Grand Rapids, and was a long-time choir member at church.
He had many interests, including traveling all over the world; he loved the arts and entertain­ment, was active in the church and Sons of Nor­way, was a director and supporter of Camp Hia­watha, was an avid read­er, enjoyed being at the lake, volunteering, and was a generous donor.
He was always curi­ous and adventurous. His greatest passion was for family and friends with which he so enjoyed vis­iting and telling stories whenever he had the op­portunity.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his loving wife Marlene, and his brother Manley Wid­mark.
Merrill is survived by sons Scott Widmark and Stuart (Lisa) Widmark; daughters Carolyn (Mel) Maturi and Ellen (Mike Murphy) Widmark; sister Muriel Dorn; six grand­children and many great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, family and friends.
Merrill’s generous spirit, offbeat humor and enjoyment of life will be greatly missed by family and friends.
Memorials preferred to The Widmark Fam­ily Scholarship Fund at Gustavus Adolphus Col­lege, Voyageurs Lutheran Ministry in support of Camp Hiawatha, or Zion Lutheran Church in Grand Rapids, MN.