John "Jack"'s Story

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John L. Jack Madsen died October 27, 2017, at Ecumen Pathstone Living care facility after a prolonged battle with cancer.
Funeral service will be held at the United Church in Mapleton, MN on November 2nd at 11:00am. Visitation will be the evening prior from 4:00pm until 7:00pm and continue one hour prior to service. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to Rapidan Heritage Society, Blue Earth County Historical Society, or the United Church of Mapleton. Mankato Mortuary is assisting the family.
Jack, 80, of Rapidan Township, was born in Mankato, MN on May 16, 1937. He was the son of Thorsten and Lois (Jaycox) Madsen and loving husband of Sharol (Marsh) Madsen. He is survived by his three siblings: Kären Madsen of North Mankato, Richard (Ann) Madsen of Garden City, and Steven (Mary) Madsen of Monroe, WI; one Brother-in-Law, Barry (Joy) Marsh of Winnebago, MN; two children: Timothy (Liz) Madsen of rural Mankato and Kristine (Jack Considine) Madsen of Mankato; two grandchildren: John (Mari) Considine III and Kourtney (Wes) McConville; and many cousins, nephews, nieces, and great grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his wife Sharol and son Jonathan, along with parents Thorsten and Lois Madsen and Parents-in-Law Bette and Raymond Marsh and Sister-in-Law, Kaye (Bill) Michel. Jack was particularly grateful to his family and all his friends for all the love and support he has been shown through the years.
Jack was born and lived most of his life near Mankato in Rapidan Township. He graduated from Rapidan High School, in 1955, and Jack still remembers his graduation speaker (Emmer Enberg) from Gustavus Adolphus who spoke of the value of imagination. Jack was united in marriage to Sharol Marsh of Winnebago, MN, on December 28, 1958. She was the love of his life and he missed her greatly when she, too, passed away from cancer early in life. He always spoke of their life and the many things they enjoyed together. She would play piano for him and he would sing at many different functions around the area. They were an amazing duo, if you ever had the opportunity to hear them together.
After graduating from Mankato State College, Jack worked as an English Teacher (with only a very brief hiatus) up until retirement, bringing his love of literature and English to our young people in Butterfield, Slayton, Mapleton, and Delavan area schools for over 30 years. He also loved music, singing as often as he could, [His doctor, Dr. Dahl, once said, He was actually born humming.] and photography, starting early in youth, with various analog & digital cameras virtually glued to his palm. At the height of his musical career, he sang the Baritone part of Dubois The Seven Last Words of Christ. Jack had many of his photos recognized in print in the Mankato Area. He loved sharing both his love of words and images with everyone he met. One of his favorite poems he wrote was the Little Brown Butterfly which he could recite from memory at a moments notice.
While basically an ecumenical, Jack was raised a Lutheran and a Methodist, but he has also been a Presbyterian and a Baptist depending on his location and need. He was currently a member of the United Church of Mapleton, MN. He served many times as pastoral supply and lay speaker for the United Church, as well as many other local churches in the region. One such pastorate was during a winter at the Bass Lake Baptist Church while Rev. Ralph Johnson was absent. He also was a long-time member of the United Church Choir in which he loved to share his voice with anyone and everyone.
Jack would like to especially thank the many wonderful caregivers at Pathstone Living who made his recent stays very special. He will also be greatly missed by his family and friends.
Published on October 29, 2017
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