On Thursday, October 27, Lester James (Jim) Tanner passed away at CHI St. Joseph Hospital in Park Rapids, MN at the age of 93. Jim was born to Lester and Phyllis Tanner on June 1, 1929, in St. Paul, MN. The family later moved to Glencoe, MN where he graduated from high school, excelling in both football and baseball. He attended Hamline University for two years, pursuing a degree in Business Administration, before being called to serve on active duty in Korea. As a strong leader, Jim earned two bronze stars and the rank of Technical Sergeant. Following his time in service, he returned to Hamline where he met his future wife, Pat Turner. They were married on August 7, 1954, and lived in Glencoe for 10 years where he joined his father and brother in the Tanner Implement business. During that time, they were blessed with four children. They later moved to Morris, MN where he worked for the Minnesota Petroleum Tax Division until his retirement in 1994. Jim’s love of sports kept him active coaching Little League, Babe Ruth, and amateur baseball. He was also a football official, and along with his wife, Pat, earned an induction into the Hall of Fame at the University of Minnesota, Morris, for many years of running the clock and announcing for both football and basketball games. The Tanners had a cabin on the 10th Crow Wing Lake where they spent their summers for 40 years. Jim loved spending time out in nature, hunting, and fishing, and sharing that passion with his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.
Jim was also known for his gift of optimism, his infectious smile, and the many ways he let people know that they were important to him.
Jim is survived by his wife of 68 years, Pat of Park Rapids; Jeff (Robin) Tanner of Atwater, MN, Jenny (Paul) Seaton of Foley, MN; Terry (Mark) Mehr of Aitkin, MN; Tim (Roxie) Tanner of Renville, MN; 11 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
Jim is preceded in death by his parents and siblings, Jeanne Drange, Joy Smith, and Barry Tanner.
A memorial service will be held at 11:00am on Saturday, June 3rd, 2023, at Hubbard United Methodist Church in Hubbard, MN with visitation one hour prior to the service. Arrangements by Jones Pearson Funeral Home. Memorials preferred to Hubbard United Methodist Church.