Thomas Karas, of Pine City, formerly of Stanchfield, passed away on Friday, November 7, 2008. He was 94 years old.
FUNERAL SERVICE will be 2:00 P.M., Monday November 10, 2008 at Saints Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Braham. VISITATION will be from 2 to 4 P.M. on Sunday Nov. 9 at the Rock – Ingebrand Funeral Home in Braham and 1 hour prior to the service at the church on Monday. INTERMENT will be at the Saints Peter and Paul Church Cemetery.
Thomas L. Karas passed away on his birthday early in the morning November 7th, 2008. He was 94 years old.
Tom was born November 7, 1914 in Pine City, Minnesota to John and Anna (Spindler) Karas. He grew up on the family farm the second of five siblings. He went to country school through the 8th grade and then graduated Pine City High School. Continuing education was out of the question due to the great depression. Through high school he supported himself by raising and selling vegetables. After high school economic conditions made things a great struggle. For a time he farmed with his grandparents and then with a widowed aunt on the hogsback road in Chisago County. And then he attempted farming on his own, this proving unfruitful. He went to work as a hired man in western Minnesota and the Dakotas shocking, threshing grain and picking corn. To find work he eventually ended up in the potato fields of northern California. And from there he moved to the lumber industry in southern Oregon.
At 27 he was drafted into World War II and spent four years in the South Pacific. After the war was over he purchased a farm east of Pine City. In 1948 he married Pearl (Stevens) and raised four children. During this time in Pine County he served on many agricultural boards and served many years with the soil conservation district. In 1971 he married Winifred (Tauer) of South St. Paul.
In 1978 he retired from farming in Pine City and built a home near Stanchfield, Minnesota. They enjoyed many years of small farming, gardening, attending vegetable markets, maple syruping and hunting. In 1991 Tom took a trip of a life time back to his home country in the Czech Republic. Tom also enjoyed many Canadian fishing trips with his family and also a trip to Great Slave Lake and salmon fishing in Alaska.
For health reasons in 1998 he and Winnie moved to Elmhurst Commons in Braham where they were loved and cared for by many. In 2005 Winnie passed and Tom moved to Golden Horizons in Pine City for some comfortable years. In 2007 he moved to Sophie’s Manor in rural Pine City where he was greatly loved for his last days.
Tom had a very full life and passed away in peace. He was a founding member of Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Braham where he will be laid to rest in the church cemetery.
Tom is survived by his four children William John Karas of Pine City, Robert Thomas (Michele) Karas of Bloomington, Theresa (Charles) Davidson of Pine City, and Laura Ripka of Longville; five stepchildren David (Rosemary) Tauer of Braham, Donald (Joan) Tauer of Lake Elmo, Carol (Frank) Simon of Cambridge, Jane (Gary) Hepola, and Jean (George) Brisson of Duluth, 26 grandchildren and 50 great grandchildren; brother Elmer (Cecelia) Karas of Pine City; sister Viola Johnson of Pine City.
He is preceded in death by his wife Winifred, Sister Francis, Brother Leslie and grandson James Simon