Jerry “Forker” Olsen

CALUMET – Jerry “Forker” Olsen, 73, a resident of Calumet, passed away peacefully at his home with family by his side on Monday, January 23, 2017, after fighting a courageous battle with cancer.

He was born in Hancock on September 13, 1943, to Jack and Lena (Luttinen) Kinnunen.

He attended and graduated from Hancock High School.

On August 1, 1964, he married Delores “DeDe” Mauno at the Laurium Apostolic Lutheran Church, where he was also a member.

Jerry worked in several bakeries in Milwaukee and Chicago, finishing up his baking career at Thurner’s Bakery in Calumet. Since then, he still loved baking and cooking and did so often.

The majority of Jerry’s career was spent working hard in the copper mines. He began his mining career at Calumet & Hecla Mining Company, where he worked for several years. He then went on to work for 26 years with Copper Range Mining Company at the White Pine Mine, retiring in 1998.

Following his retirement, Jerry continued to work for several years at Fort Wilkins State Park and McLain State Park.

Jerry had a passion for music. He was a very talented musician and touched the hearts of many. He loved to sing and play the guitar and was a member of several local bands throughout the years.

He was also an avid sports fan. He loved watching and playing baseball, hockey, basketball and football. He was a die-hard Green Bay Packer fan, almost never missing a game!

Jerry loved being outdoors and was always camping with friends and family. He also enjoyed spending time at the various lakes in the area. He would often relax on his swing in the backyard and always invited others to join him.

For the past several years, Jerry and DeDe enjoyed spending time at the casino, sometimes having a weekend away together at various casinos, most frequently in Watersmeet.

Jerry loved to spend time with his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Along with his wife, DeDe, they were his whole world. He was always smiling and full of laughter and loved to tell jokes, often making up several of his own. He was a real comedian and enjoyed making people laugh. He was an amazing husband, dad, grandpa and great-grandpa.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Jack and Lena; brothers and sister-in-law, Russell Olsen and Gary (Judy) Olsen; sister and brother-in-law, Starlett (John) Paavilainen; brothers-in-law, Milton, Jake and Clayton Mauno and Dibba Manninen; sister-in-law, Marion Luttinen; and nephew, Bobby Sweeney.

Jerry is survived by his loving wife of 52 years, DeDe Olsen of Calumet; sons, Ken “K.O.” (Terri) Olsen of Calumet, Kevin Olsen of Calumet; daughters, Debbie (Kim) Wiitala of Calumet, Brenda Olsen and Joe of Hancock, Lisa Tracey of Calumet; four grandchildren, Amanda, Synthia, Steven and Christopher; two great-grandchildren, Mason and Madison; brother, Reuben Luttinen of Laurium; sisters-in-law, Janet Mauno, Jean Massoglia and Joan Manninen; and numerous special nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.

Friends may call at the Erickson Crowley Peterson Funeral Home on Friday, January 27, 2017, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. A funeral service will be held at 7 p.m. on Friday, January 27, 2017, at the Erickson Crowley Peterson Funeral Home in Calumet with Pastor Soren Schmidt to officiate.

Burial will take place in the spring at the Waasa Cemetery.

Online condolences for the family may be left at ericksoncrowleypeterson .com.

The Erickson Crowley Peterson Funeral Home in Calumet is assisting the family with the arrangements.