|Birth: ||May 2, 1924|
|Death: ||May 3, 2004|
Winona Daily News - May 7, 2004
Gordon B. Lofquist
May 2, 1924 ? May 3, 2004
Gordon Bates Lofquist, 80, of Winona, peacefully left us Monday, May 3, 2004, at Lake Winona Manor in Winona.
He was born in Fitchburg, Mass., on May 2, 1924, to Werner and Chloe (Bates) Lofquist and was raised there, graduating from the Fitchburg High School with the class of 1942.
With the outbreak of World War II, Gordon enlisted and was sworn into the Naval V-5 program in July 1942. He attended MIT, then preflight school at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, and he was sent to Chicago for naval flight training. It was around this time that he met his bride-to-be, Vicky Crews.
He also served in the Army Air Corps, which was a precursor to the Air Force, where he became a second lieutenant and went on to navigation school for the B-17 Flying Fortress.
In 1944, he was assigned to the 360th bomb squadron of the 303rd bomb group, 8th Air Force stationed in Molesworth, England.
He flew 35 combat missions, mostly over Nazi Germany as the Navigator for B-17 bombers. He was awarded the Air Medal with five oak leaf clusters, the European and Mediterranean Theater ribbon, and the bronze star for the Rhineland campaign and the air offensive over Europe.
Upon returning to the United States in 1945, he married Vicky in River Forest, Ill., and enrolled at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. He graduated in 1948 with a bachelor of science in business administration. He loved his Michigan Wolverines!
Gordon and his family lived in Ann Arbor, Mich., Port Huron, Mich., Waukegan, Ill., Bluffton, Ind., Arlington Heights, Ill., and Freeport, Ill. They settled in Winona in 1964 to open and operate Lofquist Variety Store and Sidewalk Cafe, where he was the proud owner of Sam, the talking Mynah bird. The store had a large tropical fish selection and a large collection of record albums. Gordon sponsored "Lofquist's Inside Edge" on local nightly radio, a show for teenagers and young adults in the late 1960s and early 1970s. He also was featured in a weekly newspaper column, "Variety Is The Spice of Life." Gordon was a very versatile man and an entrepreneur, ending his career as office manager at Winona Insurance Agency.
He had an avid love for blues and jazz music, was an expert on late 1960s pop music and was an enthusiastic piano player. He could be found fondly playing his guitar for his children. He was a member of the American Legion and with his wife, Vicky, actively participated in the 303rd 8th Air Force bomb group annual reunions held around the United States. He had a true love for all cars but had a particular fondness for his 1939 Ford.
A pleasure he enjoyed daily was the friendships he exchanged at Hardee's with his "coffee club" friends.
Gordon will be deeply missed by his loving wife, Vicky Lofquist; his seven children/spouses, Suzanne (George) Gaitas, Karin (Michael) Rostance, Gordy (Cary) Lofquist, Jr., Les (Miriam) Lofquist, Patty (Les) Lofquist, Thom (Maria) Lofquist and Sandy (Willie) Bluth; his 16 grandchildren, Teddie, Angela and Justin Gaitas, Nate and Chuck Rostance, Sam and Hayley Lofquist, Chris, Anna, Paul, Amy and Emily Lofquist, Chloe, Noah, Andrew and Collin Bluth; and one great-grandchild, Kira Rostance.
There will be an informal gathering of family and friends from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, May 7, at Fawcett-Junker Funeral Home, ending with the American Legion Leon J. Wetzel Post No. 9 providing Honor Guard and Taps at sunset. There will be a family memorial service at a later date.
Services entrusted to the Fawcett-Junker Funeral Home and Cremation Services of Winona.
Virginia Lee 'Vicky' Crews Lofquist (1924 - 2007)*
2ND LT US ARMY AIR FORCES
WORLD WAR II
Created by: Annie in Minnesota
Record added: Jun 15, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 71376332
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