Neil K. Hanson, 60

St. Hilaire – Neil Hanson, of St Hilaire passed away on Sunday, July 15, 2018 surrounded by his loving family at his residence.
Funeral service will be held 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, July 21, 2018 at Zion Lutheran Church in Thief River Falls. Burial will be held at Community Cemetery at St. Hilaire.
Visitation will be held on Friday, July 20, 2018 from 5 – 8 p.m. with a prayer service at 6:00 p.m. at Johnson Funeral service in Thief River Falls, and also one hour prior to the service on Saturday at the church.
Neil Kevin Hanson was born January 22, 1958 in Thief River Falls to Clarence and Adeline (Erickson) Hanson. He was baptized and confirmed at Nazareth Lutheran Church in Hickory Township. Neil attended school at Little Oak Country School in Hickory Township and at Goodridge Public School in Goodridge. He graduated from Goodridge High School in 1976.
Neil was enlisted in the U. S. Army from July 20, 1976 to February 19, 1982. He was stationed in West Germany and served in the Eighth Division 2nd Battalion 28th Infantry Black Lions. Neil was a Petroleum Supply Specialist and earned exemplary service certification in his field. He was also awarded decorations as an Expert Marksman. He was very proud of his service to this great country. Neil’s commitment to the 2nd Amendment and his passion for guns led to his lifetime membership in the NRA.
Neil was united in marriage to Debra Sistad on July 19, 1980 in Thief River Falls. To this union two children, Angela and Stephanie were born.
Neil was re-united in marriage to DeAnne( Kopecky) Gregerson on August 16, 1997 at Zion Lutheran Church in Thief River Falls, where they are members. With this union he welcomed into his life two more children, Jeremiah and Jennifer. They made their home in rural Saint Hilaire.
Neil worked at John Deere Implement as a mechanic from 1980 to 1993. He then opened his own repair business at his home in rural Saint Hilaire. He operated Hanson’s Repair until 2008. Neil then took up employment for Hasnedl Farms as a mechanic and equipment operator where he continued to work until falling ill.
Neil enjoyed hunting, fishing, trap shooting, snowmobiling with his friends and four wheeler rides with his grandchildren. He had numerous outdoor pets that he loved watching and caring for. He liked music, watching westerns and talking with friends and family.
Neil was a happy person and fun to be around. His selflessness and willingness to help others is unmatched. When called upon by a friend or neighbor in need, Neil never said no. He was a deeply faithful person and was called upon to visit with and comfort others at the end of their life’s journey. He had a special gift and never hesitated to use it. Neil became a small town hero when he saved the life of a young neighbor girl on a cold winter day. He was loved and cared for by many and will be deeply missed.
Neil is survived by his wife DeAnne; his children Angela (Dave) Olson of East Grand Forks, Stephanie Hanson of Grand Forks, ND, Jeremiah (Rebecca) Gregerson and Jennifer Gregerson both of Thief River Falls; grandchildren Brooke and Ethan Olson, Kiera Smith, Sienna and Devin Gregerson, Kaylene and Lavian Olson, Trustin Wiseth, Aurora Thomas, Lionel Gregerson, McKynzie Breuer; brothers Grant (Judy) Hanson of Salol, Aaron (Marie) Hanson of Roseau, MN; sisters RaeAnn (Roger) Pittman of Goodridge, Vicki Lott of Nikiski, AK, Gwen Saurdiff of Grygla, and Carmen (Steve) Narverud of Thief River Falls along with many nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.
Neil is preceded in death by his parents Clarence and Adeline Hanson; grandparents Knute and Gladys Hanson, John and Emma Erickson
`Neil K. Hanson went to Jesus Sunday, July 15, 2018 at his home in rural Saint Hilaire surrounded by family and friends at the age of 60 years, 5 months and 23 days. May his memory be blessed.
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