Loran Henry Eickhoff, age 82, Pequot Lakes, MN, passed away at the Senior Class Care in Pequot Lakes on Saturday, April 13, after a lengthy struggle with Parkinson’s. Loran was born at home in Graceton, MN, on April 22, 1930, to Henry and Blodwen Eickhoff. He was twenty minutes older than his twin brother, Luvern. Loran attended grade school in Graceton, then graduated from Williams High School, Williams, MN, in 1949. He continued his education at Bemidji State Teachers College (now Bemidji State University) graduating in 1953 with a major in Industrial Technology and a minor in Physical Education. In 1962, he received his Master’s Degree in Industrial Technology from the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks, ND. In July of 1953, Loran married his high school sweetheart, Joanne Griggs. Three children were born to this union: Jeff Eickhoff, Mounds View, MN, Lynda Wilson, Pequot Lakes, MN, Jan Eickhoff, Pequot Lakes, MN. In September of 1953, Loran was inducted into the U.S. Army and served his military time at Fort Riley, Kansas, and Fort Sill, Oklahoma, receiving his honorable discharge in 1955. Loran’s 32 year teaching career began with one year in Mentor, MN, five years in Argyle, MN, and he rounded out his career with 26 years at Brooklyn Center High School in Brooklyn Center, MN, Along with teaching Industrial Technology, including aviation, architectural drafting, cabinet and furniture making, industrial plastics, basic electricity, metal working and graphic arts, Loran coached several sports. Basketball was his favorite and he coached his 1973 Brooklyn Center team to 4th place in the Minnesota State High School Basketball Tournament. In 1988, he was inducted into the Minnesota State High School Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame. He developed and taught the state of Minnesota’s first high school Aviation class. Loran was one of ten Minnesota finalists for NASA’s Teacher in Space Project. During his professional career, he was highly respected by students and peers alike.
Loran had many interests and pursued each of them during his lifetime. Sports, of course, were always a big part of his life. He also enjoyed building custom furniture and his family has several pieces that he designed and built. He also designed and built the family cabin on Lake Ossawinnamakee in Crow Wing County, MN. This cabin was enjoyed by Loran and his family for 45 years. He was an avid old car collector and also collected quantities of parts for collector cars. He was a Chevy man. He had a lifelong interest in aviation and earned his private pilot’s license along with his commercial license and instrument rating. He taught ground school at the Crystal Airport in Crystal, MN. After retiring from teaching, Loran pursued his interest in music and learned to play the acoustic, electric and pedal steel guitars.
Loran is survived by his wife, Joanne; son, Jeffrey Eickhoff; daughters: Lynda (Pete) Wilson, Jan Eickhoff; twin brother, Luvern (Avis) with whom he shared a lifelong special relationship; sister, Eileen (Harvey) Wilmer; brothers-in-law: Robert W. (Nona) Griggs of Torrance, CA, Donald (DiAnn) Griggs of Bloomington, MN; sister-in-law, Janet Eickhoff; numerous nieces and nephews and great nieces and nephews and a host of friends.
Loran was preceded in death by his parents, Henry and Blodwen Eickhoff, and two brothers, Lawrence and Lyle.
Loran was both a gentleman and a gentle man who truly loved his family and treasured his friends. He is at peace. He will be missed so very much.
Services will be 11 AM on Friday, April 19, at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, Pequot Lakes. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service. Arrangements are with Kline Funeral Home, Pequot Lakes.