Russel James LaChance, 81, of Crookston, MN, passed away at the Altru Hospital in Grand Forks on Tuesday morning, November 24, 2020 after a brief illness.
Russel was born at Red Lake Falls, MN on June 28, 1939, the son of Emery and Maebelle (Mercil) LaChance. He was baptized and confirmed in the Catholic faith and attended school in Red Lake Falls, MN, where he graduated from Lafayette High School in 1957. On August 5, 1959 Russel enlisted in the US Air Force, serving until his honorable discharge on July 8, 1963. He married Mavis Anderson and two sons were born to their union, James and John. Russel began working for the Minnesota Highway Department, which would later become known as MNDOT. On June 28, 1984 he was united in marriage to Barbara Lentsch. Russel was a very talented carpenter and did most of the renovation work done on their Jackson Avenue home. He retired from a long career with MNDOT on August 5, 1999.
Russel was a longtime member of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. Russel enjoyed woodworking and built many bird houses including those he especially made for his grandchildren. Russel loved to be outdoors, especially fishing and hunting with friends and family. He enjoyed sports and was passionate about the Minnesota Vikings and Twins, rarely ever missing a chance to watch their games.
Russel is survived by Barbara, his beloved wife of 36 years; 2 sons and 4 grandchildren: James and Terra LaChance and their children, Henry and Owen, of Northfield, MN, and John and Amanda LaChance and their children, Ella and Otto, of Fargo, ND; 2 step-children, Angela Stewart of Moorhead, MN and Brian Midderigh of Crookston; and 5 step-grandchildren: Breanna (Christopher) Volk of Fargo, Garrett Query of Phoenix, AZ, Aaron Stewart of Moorhead, and Kyra and Derek Midderigh, both of Crookston. He also leaves 2 sisters, Donna Lindwick of Moorhead and Patricia (Charles) Wilson of Lincoln, CA; a sister-in-law, Jean LaChance of Minneapolis, MN; 2 aunts, Elaine LaChance of Minneapolis and Maria Reopelle of Thief River Falls, MN; and many nieces, nephews, and extended family. Russel was preceded in death by his parents, Emery and Maebelle LaChance; step-son, Paul Midderigh; step-daughter, Peggy Koosmann; 3 brothers: Richard, Ronnie, and Bernard LaChance; and brother-in-law, Leighton “Butch” Lindwick. Blessed be the memory of Russel James LaChance.
The Mass of Christian Burial for Russel LaChance will be held at 10:30 a.m., Saturday, May 22, 2021, in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Crookston with The Very Rev. Vincent Miller, presiding. Visitation with the family will be for one hour prior to the funeral. Masks will be required and social distancing observed. The Funeral will be livestreamed by logging on to www.crookstoncathedral.com, going to funerals/burials and clicking on the prompt to view Russel’s service. Military Honors will be provided by the U.S. Air Force Honors Team and inurnment will take place in the Calvary Cemetery, Crookston.
Online registry and messages of condolence may be made at www.stenshoelhouske.com