Edwin Arnold Penttinen, 81, passed away peacefully on Good Friday, April 2, 2021, in New Hope, MN. Ed was born in Becker County, Shell Lake Twp to William and Mary (Anderson) Penttinen at their small farm. Ed grew up there and went to country school Dist# 82, and graduated from High School in Frazee, MN, in 1956. Shortly after graduation he worked in the Twin Cities and then worked as a merchant marine on the Great Lakes doing iron ore shipping.
In 1958, Ed went to Alaska to join his friends, Robert and Art Latto. He went on to meet many interesting characters including, Walter Bulwinkle and Anti Havisto, and relocated to Fairbanks, AK. In 1968, he went to California and trained for under-water welding and qualified to weld up to depths of 180 feet. During the years of 1968 to 1974, he returned to Minneapolis to work as an iron worker and welder on larger projects including the IDS Center, Multi Foods Tower, and the Becker Power Plant. Ed returned to Alaska in 1974 and he went to work on the Alyeska Pipeline construction until 1980. He then worked as Welder/Mechanic at Pump Station Five and retired in 1996.
Ed purchased his North Pole, AK warehouse shed upon retirement in 1996, where he tinkered on projects. He was a very talented person who could create complex, practical tools and equipment. While in Alaska, one of Ed’s favorite pastimes was salmon fishing on the Kenai and Copper Rivers with his best friend, Robert Lotto.
Ed had an adventurous spirit throughout his lifetime and made many friends along the way. His last adventure took place two weeks prior to his passing. His brother, Richard Penttinen, joined him in Florida, where Ed had purchased a motorhome and helped him drive it back to Minnesota. One of the many highlights was an exciting drive through the Ozark Mountains in Arkansas. We are blessed that he was able to visit in person and over the phone with his sisters, Stella Arola and Edith Boos, and other family when he returned to Minneapolis, MN.
Ed was preceded in death by his parents, William and Mary Penttinen, brother-in-law Robert Boos, nephew David Arola, great-niece Tiffany Penttinen, aunts, uncles, and several good friends. Ed is survived by siblings Stella Arola (Harvey) of Crystal, MN, Edith Boos of Minneapolis, MN, and Richard Penttinen of Detroit Lakes, MN. Nephews, Bruce (Kerry) Arola of Carver, MN, Jeff (Rita) Arola of Detroit Lakes, MN, Craig Penttinen (Jennifer) of Chanhassen, MN and Nieces Mary Jo Thor (Mike Hofferber) of Alexandria, VA, Kirstin Saulsbury (Thomas) of Fargo, ND and Erin Pettigrew (Eric) of Moorhead, MN and many grandnephews and grandnieces. Ed never married.
A memorial service will be held Saturday, April 24 at 11:30 a.m. at Gethsemane Lutheran Church, Snellman, MN. Lunch following memorial service. In lieu of flowers or monetary gifts, please make a donation to your favorite charity in memory of Edwin.
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