Gene Francis Anderson, of Mora, died on Wednesday, Dec. 8, 2021, at his home. He was 70 years old.
He was born on June 5, 1951, in Mora, to Frances (Robinson) and Robert Anderson. He graduated from Mora High School in 1969 and went on to receive a degree in mechanical drafting from Pine Technical College. While in school, he worked as a cook at Mr. Dee’s in Mora.
On Feb. 27, 1971, he was united in marriage to Janice Orstad at the Mora United Methodist Church. They made their home in Mora and raised two sons, Greg and Matt and welcomed two daughters-in-law and five grandchildren.
In 1973, he began his 37-year career with the City of Mora. In charge of street maintenance, he enjoyed the quiet early mornings of street sweeping, but not so much the middle of those cold nights snow plowing. He also oversaw the care of the Oakwood Cemetery and the Mora Airport. He retired in 2011.
He spent 31 years on the Mora Fire Department, serving as chief for his last 18 years, before retiring in 2008. He was the driving force in the building of the new fire station and securing the return of the department’s first pumper truck.
Never one to sit idle, he served as a Kanabec County Commissioner for 11 years and was currently the board chair. He was a lifetime member of the Mora United Methodist Church having served as trustee and was active with the men’s club and other committees.
He was involved with the Habitat for Humanity Blitz Builds in other states and also locally; as well as numerous other boards benefiting the community over the years.
A talented carpenter and wood worker, he enjoyed building projects that included a treehouse and playhouse for his kids and grandkids and a garden shed for his wife and was currently working on a bunk house for his place on Knife Lake. As part of the Studebaker club, he loved to travel to conventions across the country. He was always on the lookout for a good estate sale or rare vintage car parts along the way.
He will always be remembered as a hardworking man who made such a positive impact on his community. He will be deeply missed by his loving family and friends.
He was preceded in death by his father, Robert; infant son, Jeremy; and brother, Terry (Christine) Anderson.
He is survived by his mother, Frances; wife, Jan; sons, Greg (Christine) and Matt (Dana); grandchildren, Kallan, Sofia, Gillian, Ryan and Stella; brothers, Mike (Jody) and Lee Anderson (Barb); sisters and brothers-in-law, Margaret Woolery, Curt (Barb) Orstad, John (Darlene) Orstad and Steve (Donna) Orstad; many nieces, nephews, other relatives and countless friends.