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Vernon Reino Koskela

Vernon Reino Koskela, 85 of Menahga, passed away Monday, April 20, 2009, at Green Pine Acres in Menahga.

He was born March 9, 1924, in Wolf Lake Township, west of Menahga, to John and Katie (Hillukka) Koskela.

He attended country school in District 72-2 near his home. As a young man, he helped on his family's dairy farm, taking over its operation and management after his father's death.

He married Helen A. Haverinen on May 28, 1952, in Blueberry Township, near Menahga. He and Helen dairy farmed, until they sold the farm in 1976, and moved to Menahga. He continued to crop farm on the Ponsford Prairie until 2001.

He served on the Menahga City Council for 20 years as council member and mayor. He was on the Green Pine Acres Board of Directors for 25 years. He also served on the Wolf Lake Township Board for several years.

He enjoyed carpentry as well as woodworking. He was a member of the Sebeka Apostolic Lutheran Church.

Funeral services were held Saturday, April 25, at the Sebeka Apostolic Lutheran Church with the Rev. Art Skoog officiating. Casketbearers were Ken Koskela, Duane Salmen, Leroy Koskela, Ed Frith, Gerald Koskela and Tim Salmen. Interment was in the Koskela family plot at the Balmi Cemetery near Wolf Lake. Arrangements were provided by the Cardini-Pearson Funeral Home serving Menahga and Sebeka. To leave online condolences, visit

Survivors include his wife of 56 years, Helen; nieces and nephews; other relatives and many friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents; an infant son; four sisters, Lena, Edith, Lydia and Jeannie; and his five brothers, Nestor, Bill, Walter, Richard and Edward.