Raymond Pepin, of Cambridge, MN passed away peacefully on Saturday, Feb. 20, 2021. He was 84 years old.
He was born to Earl and Alice (Shermer) Pepin of Osseo, MN, in 1936. Most of his school age life was spent in Osseo MN, and he spent many weekends at his favorite Grandmother Shermers in Pine City, where he met and married Gloria (Brown). They started their life together in Osseo, then moved to the farm in Cambridge where they raised their five children.
Although he grew up near the “city” he had always wanted to try his hand at farming, so he set out and found a nice family farm in Cambridge with 40 acres, a house big enough for his children, a big red barn, a grainery, and other out buildings. While looking for the perfect farm, as he was deciding between two, he said he picked the farm in Cambridge specifically so his kids wouldn’t have a long driveway to walk to the bus. That was dad, always providing for his family, this was most important to him. He worked long and hard hours, and most every decision he made, he was thinking of his family.
Next to the love of his family, he enjoyed spending time with his 80 head of Hereford cattle, and tilling the land for crops. Many days you could hear him singing all the way up by the house, while he was busy in the field driving his tractor. Ray was very proud of his registered bulls, Battlestand, Lars, and Ferdinand. He later expanded the farm by purchasing 100 more acres so the cattle could graze on the green grass.
And of course, we can’t forget, Ray was mostly known, for over 35 years, as Peppy the Singing Tower Crane Operator. His first job was as a potato picker, next a bowling pin setter, construction worker, and then he moved “up the ladder” and became a tower crane operator. So not only did he farm, he worked long hours as an operator in the metro and Duluth area building high-rises. Many thanks, especially to his dad, and cousin Lawrence Gardner for helping him land his first Kraus Anderson heavy equipment operator job.
Together, Ray and Gloria were able to do a lot of traveling. He made friends wherever he went. They went on cruises to the Bahamas and Alaska, fly in fishing trips, sailed 80 miles along the coast of Mexico to Belize and thanks to Kraus Anderson, enjoyed a retirement trip to Hawaii. They had snowmobile parties, dancing parties, card parties, Halloween parties in root cellars, and simply enjoyed family, and his many friends, both in MN and at their place in Arizona.
In addition to finding friends, he would be looking for music and dancing. He would often say he couldn’t sit still when a good song was playing. Music was important to dad, and it got him through many long and lonely days due to the changes with being able to gather. The Cambridge community allowed dad to enjoy wonderful friends, neighbors, family, and farming. We are very thankful, as we believe he is busy two-stepping his way around.
We ask that when you drive past a field of grazing Hereford cattle or when your toes start tapping because of a great song, or when you drive past a farm implement you think of dad.
He was preceded in death by his parents, and two infant grandsons. He is lovingly survived by his wife Gloria, children Robin (Darwin) Keocher, Pamela (Brad Bergin) Mix, Earl, Laurie, and Melody. He has 15 wonderful grandchildren, and 35 great grandchildren. Siblings LaVern Hruska, Carol Vandecar, and Kenneth Pepin, God Child Susan Sauter, and several extended family members, close friends and neighbors.
A Celebration of Life will be scheduled for mid-June 2021.