Calvin Larson Profile Photo
1930 Calvin 2024

Calvin Larson

August 10, 1930 — April 1, 2024

Calvin R. Larson, age 93, of Pelican Rapids, MN, passed away on April 1, 2024, at The Cottage in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota. Born in Glyndon on August 10, 1930 to parents Clarence and Pearl (Krogen) Larson, he grew up in Great Northern Railroad depots in northeastern Minnesota where his father was the depot agent. He graduated from Badger High School and then Concordia College, where he was known more for his friendships, sports and curiosity than his academics. At Concordia he lettered in multiple sports, and most importantly met his beloved wife, Loretta. He was a committed supporter of the college and later chaired its Board of Regents.

After graduation Cal joined the Navy, serving at the Naval Station in Norfolk, VA. Cal and Loretta were married in Enderlin, North Dakota on August 28, 1955, enjoying nearly 68 years of married life together. They enjoyed brief times in Norfolk, Bismarck, ND and St. Cloud, MN before making their home in Fergus Falls and their cottage on Lake Crystal near Pelican Rapids in 1960. Cal quickly immersed himself into the tight-knit Fergus community, named the 1964 Young Man of the Year for the mark he had already made in the business community and his church and for his youth work. He was especially proud of his role in founding the Fergus Falls Hockey Association and coaching hockey for many years.

Cal was elected to the Minnesota House of Representatives in 1966, serving 8 years before retiring to focus on family and his independent insurance agency. He reentered politics, serving as a state senator from 1986 to 2006. Cal first ran for the State Legislature when candidates ran without a party designation for the general election -- the original No Labels - which he wished would return for today's elections. He worked with Republicans and Democrats to improve the lives of his constituents and the citizens of Minnesota. His colleagues from St. Paul considered Cal their "extra senator" for his support of the Capitol city, and one of his Iron Range colleagues called Cal his favorite Republican. He was a conservative at heart, working to keep a lid on the state budget while traveling to St. Paul in the late 1960s in his Volkswagen Beetle and later his first of many Toyota Prius cars when they first rolled off the assembly line, proudly touting the MPG he achieved.

Cal was a patriot for the country, his state, his region, and his local community. He knew the fabric of the state and his community, was a friend to many and proudly did his best to serve them all. He served with six governors and 500 legislators and served on the Great Lakes Commission, the Seaway Port Authority of Duluth, and the Minnesota Amateur Sports Commission. His long list of legislative achievements ranged from establishing the Fergus Falls Veterans Home, improving the local community college and establishing Glendalough State Park to his education committee work in the 1960's that helped open the door for the first Minnesota State High School League girls' sports.

Throughout his busy life, family was Cal's greatest priority. He was a loving husband to Loretta and a supportive and loving father to Laura and Peder. His greatest joy was being "Buckin" to six grandsons, providing them laughter, boundless love and unwavering support.

Cal is survived by daughter Laura (Tommy) Merickel, son Peder (Jill) Larson and grandsons Harry (Katie) Merickel, Duke (Abby) Merickel, T.C. Merickel, Pete (Kristine) Merickel, Calvin Larson and Robbie Larson and great-grandchildren William, Emmie and Heath (with two more arriving this summer). He is preceded in death by his wife Loretta, his parents, brothers Allen Larson and Wayne Larson and sister Geraldine Smith. After his beloved wife Loretta died, Cal spent time at Hadley House in Perham and at The Cottage in Detroit Lakes. The staff at each place took good care of him and he was pleased when they remembered his days representing them in St. Paul.

Memorials preferred to Concordia College and Zion Lutheran Church on Franklin Lake, Pelican Rapids, MN.

Memorial service will be held on June 7, 2024 at 1:00 pm with visitation one-hour prior to the service, and an ice cream social to follow the service at Zion Lutheran Church on Franklin Lake, Pelican Rapids, MN.

Arrangements provided by Olson Funeral and Cremation in Fergus Falls.

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Service Schedule

Upcoming Services

Cremation Memorial Service

Friday, June 7, 2024

1:00 - 2:00 pm (Central time)

Zion Lutheran Church on Franklin Lake

24876 Franklin Lake Road, Pelican Rapids, MN 56572

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