Ronald Erno, age 69, of Glenwood, MN, died Tuesday, September 27, 2011, at his home, surrounded by family, following a lengthy battle with cancer. A memorial service celebrating his life will be held at 11:00 A.M. on Saturday, October 1st, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Glenwood, MN, with Father Peter Kirchner officiating. Visitation will be from 4:00 - 7:00 P.M. on Friday AT THE CHURCH and will resume on Saturday at the church, one hour prior to the service. Inurnment will be at a later date. Hoplin-Hitchcock Funeral Home of Glenwood is assisting the family with arrangements.
In July of 2000, Ron was diagnosed with ampullary cancer and had Whipple surgery at Mayo September 11th. Through his positive attitude and prayers he was able to enjoy another nine years without additional treatment. The cancer metastasized to the liver and was discovered in August of 2009. At that time he retired from work, but continued to travel, golf, and do whatever he could to enjoy life to the fullest.
Ron was born in Milwaukee, WI and was the oldest of Al and Demerise Erno's eight children. Ron grew up in Superior, WI and Two Harbors, MN and graduated from Two Harbors High School in 1960. He was united in marriage to Linda Stenswick on June 26th, 1965, at Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Two Harbors. In 1974, Ron and Linda, along with their children, moved from Two Harbors to Glenwood.
In Glenwood Ron first worked within the airline industry as a purchasing agent for Clyde Machines. Ron then moved into sales with WASP and later returned to Clyde as a salesperson. Through these years he was active in SAE, a group of suppliers of airline ground support equipment. During these years he also co-owned Green Valley Resort and owned J & B Cafe, Phillipe's Pizza, and Franklin Street Diner.
Ron manifested his love of family and friends and his enthusiasm for his community in many ways throughout his life. In his community Ron was a Rotarian, serving as president; a Jaycee, serving as JCI Senator; Glenwood's mayor; a Hospice volunteer; a founder of the Minnewaska Warm Up; a Waterama volunteer, serving as Admiral, Parade Marshall, and a great button salesman; Knights of Columbus, serving as Grand Knight; a Charter member of Lions in Two Harbors; a driver for Post Prom Singing Valentines; a board member of Minnewaska Golf Club , Central Square and Lakeview Care Center.
In Sacred Heart Catholic Church Ron was active in church choir, as a lector, in Marriage Encounter, Couple to Couple, as an usher, and working with CCD for high school seniors. He extended his love to so many young people by becoming a foster parent, acting as Santa Claus for the Glenwood community for 25 years, and hosting exchange students.
Beyond his community, Ron loved to travel. His favorite destination was Florida and he encouraged many others to enjoy the warmth and sunshine of that state. Ron and Linda took numerous trips throughout the United States and overseas, visiting old friends and making new friends along the way.
Ron is survived by his wife of 46 years, Linda of Glenwood; children Coleen (Elliott) Anderson of Sanford, FL; Michele (Terry) Jones of Lowry, MN; Jason (Christa) Erno of Shenyang, China; Dawn (Jerry) Belko of Brooklyn Park, MN; brothers Jerry (Judy) Erno of Sewickly, PA and Danny Erno of Duluth, MN; sisters Joanne (Bob) Anderson of Lexington, KY, Judy Erno of Madison, WI, Joyce (Bill) Korpi of Two Harbors, MN, Lorrie (Bill) Forsyth of Duluth, MN, Mary (John) Hedin of Two Harbors, MN; brother-in-law Bruce Stenswick of Eden Prairie, MN; grandchildren Eliana, Isaiah, and Sariah Erno, Sam Jones, Amanda (Cody) Reimer, Alyssa Belko; and several nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Al and Demerise Erno.
Memorials preferred to Pope County Hospice or the American Cancer Society