Eugene C. Tvrdik, age 97 of Glenwood, died Monday, March 27, 2017 at the Glenwood Retirement Village in Glenwood. A Memorial Mass will be held at 1:30 P.M. on Monday, April 10th at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Glenwood with Father Joe Vandeberg officiating. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service at the church. Inurnment will be in Calvary Cemetery in Glenwood. Arrangements are with the Hoplin-Hitchcock Funeral Home in Glenwood.
Eugene Carlos Tvrdik was born in Lake Mary Township, near Alexandria, MN, on September 24, 1919. He was one of six children born to parents Joseph and Antonia (Dynda) Tvrdik. He attended School District #13, a single room country school, through 8th grade before working with his brothers on multiple family farms. On August 24, 1942, he married Leona Ione Kvitek in the basement of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Glenwood, Minnesota while the main church was still being constructed. Gene passed away on March 27, 2017 at the Glenwood Retirement Village after living a full, rich 97 years.
Shortly after getting married, Eugene and Leona purchased a small farm south of Alexandria, where they raised their two daughters, Kathryn Jean (b. 1943) and Shirley Ann (b. 1944). Gene worked the family farm while his children grew up then he and Leona moved to Alexandria where he worked for Syvrud Ford as a mechanic for a short time. In 1959, the couple bought a small store with an attached house on the south shores of Lake Minnewaska. At that time, Gene went to work for Finke Ford in Glenwood where he stayed until his retirement. Many local Glenwood residents were helped by Gene - who operated Finke's wrecker service for many of his years as a mechanic.
Gene loved taking adventurous car trips with his growing family and traveled to all corners of Minnesota and neighboring states. His enjoyment of local travel continued with camping trips shared with his grandchildren - making regular visits to Minnesota State Parks, Wisconsin Dells, Black Hills, and annually going to the state fair. In 1964, Gene and Leona moved to a house on North Lakeshore Drive where Gene was able to enjoy fishing - especially winter ice fishing - as well as cutting and splitting wood during summer months. Gene found pleasure in spending time with and helping his nearby family and many close friends throughout the Glenwood area. He was a longtime member of Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Glenwood.
Gene is survived by his brother, Lawrence (Bud) of Alexandria; six grandsons; Tim and Sandy of St. Paul, Greg and Melanie of Hutchinson, Jeremy and Nancy of Minneapolis, Jason and Stefanie of Woodbury, Gary and Cheryl of Sartell, and Michael and Mandy of Kensington; and son-in-law, Bill Bailey of Burlington, IA; 13 great-grandchildren; and 2 great-great-grandchildren.
Gene was preceded in death by his parents, Joseph and Antonia; wife, Leona in 2002; daughters, Kathryn Braaten and Shirley Bailey; brothers, Daniel and Jerry; sisters, Adeline Kalina and Joan Ganske; and great-grandson, Joshua Braaten.