ROCK-INGEBRAND FUNERAL HOME – BRAHAM
Thomas Gnifkowski, of Cambridge, formerly of Stanchfield and St. Cloud, passed away on Monday, March 30, 2015 at GracePointe Crossing East Gables in Cambridge. He was 81 years old.
FUNERAL SERVICE will be held at 11:00 am on Monday, April 6, 2015 at the Saints Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Braham.
VISITATION will be held one hour prior to the service at the church.
INTERMENT will be in the Stanchfield Baptist Cemetery.
Thomas Joseph Gnifkowski, of Stanchfield, Mn, formerly of St. Stephen, passed away March 30, 2015 at GracePointe Crossing in Cambridge. He was 81 years old.
Thomas was born April 5, 1933 in St. Cloud, Minnesota to Albert and Catherine (Schroeder) Gnifkowski. He attended Holy Angels grade school and graduated from Cathedral High School as an “Honor Athlete”, lettering in football, basketball and baseball. He continued his love of sports, playing in amateur baseball leagues for nearly 16 years. After graduating from St. John’s University, MN, he served in the US Army assigned to the Finance Corp in Heidelberg, Germany. Upon his return, Tom worked as an office manager at Sunbeam Bakery in St. Cloud, MN for 3 years before taking a position at Fingerhut Corporation where, for 32 years, he held various mid-management positions. Here he met his wife, Dorothy Mae Anderson. They married November 6, 1963 at St. Mary’s Cathedral in St. Cloud, MN and had two daughters, Judith and Ruth. Upon marriage Tom and Dorothy built a home in St. Stephen, MN and lived there for thirty years. An active member of the St. Stephen Catholic Church, Tom was a Trustee for 10 years and also served as a lector and Eucharistic minister. Tom & Dorothy moved back to Dorothy’s birthplace in Stanchfield, MN when Tom retired at the age of 61. He continued service to the church as a lector and Eucharistic minister at Sts. Peter and Paul Parish in Braham until he was no longer able.
Tom gave of his time and energy to care for both his and Dorothy’s parents and their aging relatives. Throughout the years he had a special bond with the outdoors, working in the solitude of the woods, gardening and taking care of the lawn. As trees at his wooded home fell or had to be cut, Tom would split the wood and give it to people in need . He enjoyed reading and was a great jigsaw puzzle maker.
Thomas was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Dorothy; and daughter, Ruth.
He is survived by his daughter, Judy (Jeffery) Backer of Browns Valley, MN; granddaughter, Brittany Backer; sisters, Jeanne (James) Kuffel of Kenosha, WI and Kathleen (Michael) O’Keefe of Minneapolis, MN; many other relatives and friends.
A Funeral Service was held on Monday, April 6, 2015 at the Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic Church of Braham with Fr. John Paul Knopik officiating. Music was provided by Joni Nelson. Interment was in the Stanchfield Baptist Cemetery. Arrangements were by the Rock Ingebrand Funeral Home of Braham. wwww.aifuneralhome.com