Kelly Oachs

Kelly Ryan (Bentson) Oachs passed away at the age of 60.  He was born January 18, 1963, in St Paul, MN.  A year later he moved to Barrett, MN and then to Herman as a young child.  He attended school in Herman and graduated in 1981.  Aside from living in Donnelly, MN, a couple years, he lived in Herman until his passing.  He was proud to live where his grandparents lived and enjoyed sharing family stories.

Kelly worked on grain farms for several of the Blume families for 40 years.  His most memorable semi to drive was the one he dubbed Baby D for its baby Detroit engine.

In 2000, Kelly married Christine (Chrissy) DeLong, at the High Cliffs above the Gunflint Lodge near Grand Marais, MN.  They resided in Herman, raising their daughter, Emily, and many beloved pets.

Family rides on snowmobiles and the golf cart were especially memorable. Kelly loved being outdoors – riding his 4-wheeler, snowmobile, motorcycle, golf cart, garden tractor (with a one-bottom plow behind it), snowplow or bicycle.  He enjoyed visiting with friends, family, neighhors and classmates.  He was always up for conversation and greeted everyone with his beautiful, friendly smile.

Kelly loved all things music and could often name the song & artist to most tunes on the radio (just like his father Bruce).  At Christmas time he especially loved Christmas songs sung by the original artists (while having the yulelog muted on the TV).  He would often joke that when asked if he played in high school band, he’d respond with – I played the radio.  Additionally, he was always willing to be our DJ for the Father-Daughter dances hosted by Girl Scouts. He shared his love of music with his daughter.

Kelly will be missed for his friendly, outgoing personality.  He was a kind man and always so proud of his daughter.  He loved his community and pets, too.

In December 2023, Kelly lost his father, Bruce, to cancer on December 5th.  Exactly one week later on December 12th, Kelly suffered a massive heart attack and passed away at Sanford Hospital in Fargo, ND, on December 14th, 2023.

Kelly is preceded in death by his father, Bruce Bentson; father-in-law Ben “Skip” DeLong, his grandparents, Bernice “Bea” Bentson, Alex and Leona Oachs and Cliff & Ione Tonsfeldt; step grandpa, Lornie Kloos.

Kelly is survived by his 14 year old daughter, Emily; wife, Chrissy; parents, Don & Joan Oachs; step mom, Solveig Bentson; mother-in-law Janet Hoernemann; siblings/step sibling/in-laws – Cathi, Brad, Aaron (Jessica), Alli (Dean), Ben, and Kim (Brent).

A gathering to remember Kelly was held on Sunday, December 17th, at the Herman Community Center.  

Memorials can be directed to Lake Region Vet Clinic’s Angel Fund (1210 MN Hwy 79, Elbow Lake MN 56531).  A trust account for Emily has been established at BMO BANK (14 Central Ave, Elbow Lake, MN  56531).