Karl Vollstedt

VollstedtKarl Stecker Vollstedt was born on June 11, 1934 in New Holstein, WI. After graduating from high school he enrolled in college at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee to study music. He left Wisconsin to begin his teaching career in Greybull, WY to become a high school choir director and grade school music teacher. He met Lorraine Johnson while in Greybull and they married in August 1958. They settled in Onalaska, WI where he played the organ and directed the choir at a Methodist church along with his teaching duties. The first 4 of 5 children were born while the family lived in the Onalaska/LaCrosse area. Karl moved onto a purchasing job at Train Cooling and Heating Co. in LaCrosse, WI and 4 years later moved to St. Paul with 3M. The 5th and last child was born in New Ulm, MN while he was there helping to set-up the New Ulm 3M plant. Next stop was a 7 year stay in West Chicago, IL while he commuted to work at a 3M plant in downtown Chicago. In 1972 he was back to St. Paul to work at the 3M headquarters where he finished his 33 year career with 3M. His devotion to 3M was manifested in how he nurtured and mentored people just starting their careers with the company. Upon retirement in 1996, Karl and Lorraine enjoyed an active life filled with travel and his beloved family and friends.
Sadly, in April 2004 he was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma (MM); however, that did not stop his enthusiasm for life and he and Lorraine started a support group for MM sufferers and their care givers. The group has grown from a small group of 8 members to 70 + current members who meet monthly at Family Means in Stillwater. Since that time Karl has made it his mission to lend support to MM sufferers in spite of losing the majority of his sight to Macular Degeneration. Karl would be proud to know that his eyes have been donated for Macular Degeneration research. He was beloved and loved by his family and many friends and will be remembered as an unforgettable man who made all feel welcome.
He is survived by his wife Lorraine along with his children Kim (Kevin) Webster, Todd Vollstedt, Kris (Rob) Heimerman, Terri (Rod) Pratt and Lisa Koats (Tom Paulzine). In addition, he made an indelible print on the lives of his 6 grandchildren Jeff Webster (Laura and great grandson Bryson), Jason Webster (fiance Becky Brown), Erin and Megan Heimerman, Cassie Pratt and Tyler Koats.
A celebration of Karls life was held Wednesday, April 23, 2014 at HOUSE OF HOPE PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH, St. Paul. Memorials are appreciated in lieu of flowers to the International Myeloma Foundation, Mayo Medical Research Foundation and the House of Hope Presbyterian Church.

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