NORTHFIELD — Kenneth "Ken" J. Tuma, age 74, of Northfield, MN, passed away Sunday, November 21, 2021 after a courageous battle with cancer, surrounded by his loving family.
Kenneth James, the son of John and Angela (Pesta) Tuma, was born on November 14, 1947 in St. Paul, MN. Ken grew up in Montgomery, MN and graduated from Montgomery High School. After high school, Ken served in the U.S. Army, 25th Division (Tropic Lighting) and specialized as a Ranger & Airborne during the Vietnam War. He married the love of his life, Arlene Salaba on November 23, 1968 in Lonsdale, MN.
He retired from Mercury MN as an Industrial Maintenance Mechanic after 35 years. After retirement he enjoyed Thursday coffees and reminiscing with his comrades at the VFW and American Legion while having an occasional Bacardi coke (easy on the coke). He was part of the Faribo Area Pilots Association (FAPA) and the Elite Quietbird Men (QB) making lifelong friends. His hobbies included flying his beloved Piper Apache, hanging out at the airport in his hanger, cleaning his guns, sharpening his knifes, polishing his cars, and reloading ammo. He loved hunting, fishing, boating, and camping. He was a master mechanic with a passion and natural talent for fixing anything brought to him.
The most important and meaningful part of his life was spending time with his family and grandkids. He was a fierce protector of the family and was a wonderful role model to his kids, grandkids, nieces, and nephews. He was a great storyteller and jokester. He loved sitting around and having a beer while enjoying a good debate.
Ken survived by his wife of 53 years, Arlene; children, Robert (Tammy) Tuma, Jodi (Steve) Wojciak and Chris (Lynnette) Tuma; grandchildren, Rachel (Lucas) Jenson, Megan, Gage, Adam Tuma, Jacob, Matthew, Allison, and Abigail Boelman, Lauren and Mia Wojciak, and Colten, Landen, and Haven Tuma; siblings, Cheryl (Ivan) Woodard, David (Ruth) Tuma, and Denise Pinc; nieces, nephews, other relatives, and friends.
He is preceded in death by his parents and brother-in-law, Fran Pinc.
Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:30 A.M. on Monday, November 29, 2021 at the Church of St. Dominic in Northfield, MN with Father Gregory Abbott officiating. Interment with military honors will follow Mass at the Calvary Cemetery in Lonsdale, MN. For those unable to attend, the Mass will be livestreamed through a link found on Ken's obituary page.
Visitation will be held on Sunday, November 28, 2021 from 2:00 to 5:00 P.M. at the Parker Kohl Funeral Home in Faribault and will continue on Monday morning from 9:30 to 10:30 A.M. at church.
Funeral arrangements are being completed with the Parker Kohl Funeral Home of Faribault, MN.
For online condolences and further information please visit www.ParkerKohlFH.com.