Gary Lessman

Gary Lessman

1938 - 2024

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Obituary of Gary Lessman

Gary Lessman passed away peacefully and went home with Jesus on June 28, 2024. Gary was born April 14, 1938, to Werner and Marion (Councilman) Lessman in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. He attended school in Bovey and Trout Lake and graduated from Grand Rapids High School in 1956. He graduated from Itasca Junior College in 1959 and started working for the Blandin Paper Company. Gary married Kathleen Sullivan from Hibbing on June 16, 1962, and the couple then spent two years in Syracuse, New York, where he studied pulp and paper science and engineering. They moved back to Grand Rapids in 1964 and Gary started working in Blandin’s research department as a clay prep and production specialist where he stayed until his retirement in 2000. His knowledge, expertise, honesty and integrity were recognized and respected not only by co-workers but also within the paper industry overseas as he was flown abroad several times for his advice. Gary had an incredible memory for details, his faith in the Lord was strong, and his ability to restore and paint old cars to better-than-original was second to none. He enjoyed ski-jumping, water skiing, a good chuckle and an occasional prank with friends, family gatherings, and watching activities of his children and grandchildren through the years. He was very proud that they are, as he deemed, “over achievers.” Gary was preceded in death by his parents, Werner and Marion, sister, Gail, and in-laws Irma and James Sullivan. He is survived by his wife, Kathleen, his sister Diane (Frank) Palmer, sisters-in-law Patricia Zoretic and Mary Jo Sullivan, daughter Tracy (Jeff) McGuire, sons Michael (Traci) and Timothy (Trish), daughter Jennifer (Matt) Theis, 10 grandchildren and three great grandchildren.



At Gary’s request, no service will occur but a celebration of his life will be scheduled at a future date. 

A Memorial Tree was planted for Gary
We are deeply sorry for your loss ~ the staff at Cremation Society of Minnesota