John's Story

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John Lewis Harkins, age 84, of Amboy died, Sunday, February 5, 2017 at Mayo Clinic Health System - Mankato.
A Celebration of John's Life will be held at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, February 18, 2017 at Grace United Methodist Church, Vernon Center. Visitation will be held one hour before service at the church on Saturday. Interment with military honors will be in Vernon Center Cemetery. In lieu of flowers memorials may be given to Grace United Methodist Church or the donor's choice. Mankato Mortuary is in charge of arrangements.
John Lewis Harkins, the son of Merton and Myrtle (Kienholz) Harkins, was born December 26, 1932 in Vernon Center, MN. He spent his childhood and attended school at Vernon Center and Garden City, MN, graduating from Garden City High School in 1951. He enlisted in the U.S. Army on August 18, 1952 and served during the Korean Conflict. Following his honorable discharge on June 17, 1955 he attended Mankato State University, graduating in 1958. He began his teaching career in secondary education at Rapidan, MN from 1958 - 1960 and from 1960 until 1988 he was an elementary teacher and elementary administrator at Rapidan, Garden City, and Vernon Center consolidated schools, retiring July 1, 1988.
John was a member of Grace United Methodist Church, Vernon Center, where he served as a Lay Leader, a Methodist Youth Fellowship (MYF) Leader, a communion steward and an usher. He was a Boy Scout Leader, a Civil Defense Director, a member of the Amboy American Legion, 25 Year Club for Elementary Administrators, the Minnesota and National School Principal's Associations, the Retired Association of Elementary School Principal's, the Minnesota Education Association, and was involved in numerous other civic and community activities. John loved the outdoors, golfing, bowling, and is an inductee into the Minnesota Bowling Hall of Fame. He loved his past school children and visiting with and helping family and friends.
John is survived by a brother, Roger (Sandy) Harkins of Wasilla, Alaska; sister-in-law, Elaine Harkins of North Mankato; nieces and nephews, Rhonda Harkins of Campbell, MN, Scott (Tracie) Harkins of Parker, CO, Lori Hodapp of New Prague, Sherri (Dennis) Lyons of Waukon, IA, Randy Harkins, Brian Harkins, and Greg Harkins all of Anchorage, Alaska; several great-nieces and nephews; cousins, and other relatives and friends.
John was preceded in death by his parents; brother, M. Milan Harkins in 1993; and a niece, Debra Pollack in 2005.
Published on February 14, 2017
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