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Daniel J. Formato Jr., 78

Daniel J. Formato Jr., age 78, of Monticello passed away on Sunday, April 11, 2021 at Centra Care Hospital in Monticello.

Memorial Service will be held at 1:00 P.M. on Saturday, April 17, 2021 at Minnetrista Baptist Church (8325 Kennedy Memorial Drive) in St. Bonifacius with Rev. John McNabb as officiant. Gathering of family and friends held at the church from 11:00 AM until the time of the service.

Daniel James Formato Jr. was born October 17, 1942 in Oak Park, IL, the son of Daniel Sr. and Blanche (Horak) Formato.

Daniel grew up in Riverside/Brookfield IL.  After graduating high school, at the age of 17, he enlisted in the United States Air Force on December 28, 1960.  He met the love of his life, Maxine while stationed in Grand Forks, ND.  On April 20, 1966 Daniel was united in marriage to Maxine Johnson in Sisseton, SD.  After his Honorable Discharge on February 6, 1968 the couple lived in Chicago from 1968-1970 where Daniel worked for the Fire Department and in die casting.  They then moved to Watertown, MN where Daniel worked for Char-Lynn.  In 1971 the couple moved to Grand Forks, ND.  Daniel then began his long career with the East Grand Forks Fire Dept in 1972.  He served as the Fire Chief for 21 years beginning in 1976.  Daniel was the Civil Defense Director for the city of East Grand Forks and for Polk County.  He served as Vice President and President of the Minnesota State Fire Chiefs Association from 1992 – 1995 and as a Chairman of the Board from 1996 – 1997. When not working he enjoyed old cars and traveling.

Daniel led an active and prestigious life, serving his country and community but he always found time for family and friends.  They were his treasure.  He was a great story-teller who loved to socialize and took time to talk to everyone.  He adored his grandchildren and great-grandchildren especially, who affectionately called him “Big Grandpa”.  He delighted in watching them play sports.  He was a joy to all and will be dearly missed.

Daniel was preceded in death by his parents Daniel Sr. and Blanche Formato; father-in-law and mother-in-law Vernon and Gladys Johnson; great-grandchild Demare; brothers-in-law Kenneth Johnson, Larry Johnson, Tony Girlando.

Daniel is survived by his loving family: wife Maxine; daughter Jennifer (Fred) McCray of Cheyenne, WY; son Matthew (Melissa) Formato of Monticello; grandchildren Dominique, D’Antae, and D’Andre McCray, Brett Mastin; great-grandchildren Kyrie, Kehlani and Khalil; brother David (Deb) Formato; sister Debbie Formato; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law Ronald and Laurel Johnson, Clayton (Susan) Johnson, Karen and Jack Johnson-Atkinson, Sharon Johnson; nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

Arrangements are with the Johnson Funeral Home in Waconia, MN.  952-442-2121

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