Donald Allen Sjelin of Duluth MN went to his heavenly home on June 25, 2022, at the age of 93.
Don, the 8th of 9 children, was the last surviving child of Carl and Alma Sjelin, immigrants from Sweden who settled in Monticello, MN. He moved to Duluth MN in 1957 as a masonry contractor. He owned Twin Lakes Masonry for many years, and was a hardworking, honest businessman, working well into his 80’s.
Most important to Don was his faith in Jesus. He was a quiet gentle man of deep faith--calm, steady, reliable, and full of integrity. He enjoyed retelling the stories of his dad being instrumental in starting the church in Monticello, MN, and Lake Geneva Bible Camp in Alexandria, MN. In the early 1970’s Don became a member of Full Gospel Businessmen, rising to the position of International Director. He faithfully served on the board and other positions at his church Glad Tidings (later renamed the River Church) for over 50 years. He supported Teen Challenge by helping remodel the current Duluth location, as well as attending their annual gala events. Some of his fondest memories were of mission trips (Honduras was one of the places special to him) he had taken to help build churches, using his masonry skills. He led by example with his patient, humble, kind demeanor; he was often a man of few words, respectfully listening to others, never holding a grudge.
Don loved his family and welcoming all the new babies into the ever-growing family (he had 43 direct descendants!). He missed his Maxine (m. 1954) who passed in 2018 but looked forward to the day they would meet again in heaven. He enjoyed reminiscing about the family times at the cabin on Briar Lake, big Sjelin family reunions for Thanksgiving, fishing, camping, driving up the north shore (which he did with his son on Father’s Day 2022), going to coffee with his friends, watching the birds on the third floor and doing puzzles on the second floor of Mount Royal Pines III.
Don was preceded in death by his wife Maxine, his son Gregg, his granddaughter Lindsay Miketin, his parents, and all his siblings. He is survived by his children Beth (Tim) of Winter Park, Florida, Mark (Gail) Sjelin of Duluth, MN, Carol Brigan of Duluth, MN, and Jill (Anton) Miketin of Esko, MN. In addition, he is survived by 14 grandchildren, 22 great grandchildren, 1 great-great grandchild: brother-in-law Dean Mastin, sisters-in-law Alta Sjelin, Linda Hoadley, Sally Strefling, many nieces and nephews, and many friends.
We will remember his love for the Lord, his kind heart, his funny stories and sense of humor, and the twinkle in his beautiful Swedish blue eyes.
The family would like to thank Dr. Long for his wonderful compassionate care of Don, the St. Luke’s Hospital Hospice team--especially Holly, RN, and Pat, HHA who lovingly took care of Don (and also Maxine) with such dignity and compassion--and the staff at Mount Royal Pines, where Don enjoyed his last four years with a “view of the lake”, meeting new and old friends.
Services will be held Saturday, July 2, 2022, at the River Church with visitation at 10 am, funeral service at 11am. Burial will be at Forest Hill Cemetery. Arrangements at Dougherty Funeral Home. (218) 727-3555. 600 E. 2nd St, Duluth, MN 55805.
Services will be live streamed from the River Church for those who are unable to attend in person. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Teen Challenge, or charity of your choice.