James “Jim” Goehring, age 73, of Glenwood, MN, died peacefully on Saturday, August 6, 2022, at home. A memorial service, officiated by Rev. Krista Lee, will be held at 2:00 P.M. on Friday, August 12th at Glenwood Lutheran Church. The service will also be livestreamed at glenwoodlutheran.com for those who are unable to attend. Visitation will be at the church, one hour prior to the service. Inurnment will be in Glenwood Lutheran Cemetery. Arrangements are with Hoplin-Hitchcock Funeral Home of Glenwood.
James Richard Goehring, son of Ervin and Dorothy (Ekblad) Goehring, was born on January 22, 1949, at Willmar, MN. He was the third of the couple’s six children, and the only son. Not long after Jim’s birth, his family moved from Willmar to Colorado where they lived for five years before returning to Minnesota; residing first in Forada and then Glenwood, where his father worked for Schroeder Construction. Jim attended Glenwood High School prior to enlisting in the United States Army at the age of 18. After receiving training at Ft. McClellan in Alabama, he was deployed to Vietnam where he served with the 196th Infantry as a machine gun squad leader. Upon returning to the states he was stationed at Ft. Dix in New Jersey, where he provided training to new troops in the use of machine guns and other artillery.
Following his honorable discharge in 1969, Jim returned home to Glenwood where he reunited with his high school girlfriend, Jean Holten of Starbuck, with whom he had exchanged countless letters during his time in the Army. On January 17, 1970, the two wed at Jean’s sister’s church in Minneapolis. They made their home in Glenwood, where Jim worked with his father doing construction. In 1971, while working a side job at Glenwood Potlach for extra money, Jim’s left leg became caught in an auger and he ended up losing his leg below the knee. This incident, while horrific at the time, later came to be viewed by both Jim and Jean as a blessing in disguise in that it propelled Jim down a positive path that he otherwise may never have found. With manual labor no longer a career option, Jim enrolled in the Aviation Electronics program at Alexandria Technical College. After completing that course of study he went on to earn an additional certification in Electronic Technology. After graduating in 1975, Jim was hired by Norstan Communications (later known as Black Box Communications) in Plymouth. Jim and Jean relocated to Fridley to pursue his new career and it was there that they raised their two children, Chad and Rachel. Jim’s career with Norstan spanned more than 35 years.
In 1983, Jim and Jean purchased a cabin on Lake Minnewaska which enabled them and their children to enjoy recreational time with family. An avid fisherman, Jim especially appreciated the opportunity to spend more time on the water. Ultimately, Jim and Jean decided they wanted to retire on the lake so in 2006 they tore down the cabin and built their retirement home, where they have resided since 2009.
Jim was an active member of the VFW, where he participated in the honor guard. He also enjoyed volunteering at Hearts and Hands Food Shelf of Pope County and the Let’s Go Fishing Program which serves seniors, veterans, and the disabled. He was a long time member of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and a meeting facilitator, with 14 years of sobriety. In his spare time he enjoyed tinkering with electronics.
Jim will be remembered as a loving husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle and friend. He was admired by those who knew him for his ability to take things in stride and his determination to overcome obstacles in spite of the physical challenges he faced.
In recent months, Jim suffered with pancreatitis and other complications that developed following gallstone surgery. After spending months in the hospital, he passed away peacefully at home on the morning of Saturday, August 6, 2022, surrounded by family. Jean, Chad and Rachel are so very grateful for those family members and dear friends who, with the support of Glacial Ridge Hospice and EMS, made it possible for them to care for Jim at home in his last days.
Jim is survived by his wife, Jean of Glenwood; their children, Chad (Heidi) Goehring of Lindstrom and Rachel (Scott Beck) Goehring of Eagan; seven grandchildren, Ryan Munson, Ayda Goehring, Judah Goehring, RaeAnn Goehring, Gwenyth Bodnar, Levi Goehring and Charlie Bodnar; three sisters, Patricia Zaffke, Donna (Gary) Martin, and Tammy (Jerry Haviland) Goehring, all of Glenwood; nieces, nephews, other relatives and many friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Ervin and Dorothy; two sisters, Pamela Goehring and Katherine Gilbertson; and three brothers-in-law, Larry Gilbertson, Ray Holten and Otto Holten.