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John H. Atkins, 71

John Henry Atkins, age 71, of Anoka, formerly of Dassel, died Thursday, Sept. 19, 2013, in Denver, CO.

Funeral services will take place Saturday, Oct. 5 at 11 a.m. at Mount Olive Lutheran Church in Anoka, followed by interment at the Forest Hill Cemetery.

John was born April 22, 1942, in Anoka, the third child born to the late Clarence E. and Viola Burger Atkins.

He graduated from Anoka Senior High School in 1961, and went on to study agriculture at the University of Minnesota.

John married Carol Sorenson, of Anoka, May 20, 1967, and they lived in Anoka before relocating to Dassel in 1973.

A jack-of-all-trades, John worked for Metropolitan Mosquito Control in his youth, and was in the four-year apprentice program for International Harvestor, where he remained for 17 years.

He made beautiful cabinets for Barberg Cabinetry, and was a diesel mechanic for Hartman Coaches of Victoria, and Richfield Bus Company.

Between 1992 and 1997, John was driven by his need to help people through work with FEMA. During that time, he built homes for natural disaster victims in Grand Forks, KS, and Florida. Throughout this time, John also maintained an active farm and a love of horses.

He was a member of the Evangelical Covenant Church of Dassel for 36 years, and helped with the youth group.

John loved to travel with his family in their custom motor home, which he built. He loved to garden, play the organ, sing hymns, work in his shop, and build things big and small.

A humble and generous man, John helped anyone in need without question. His quick wit and smile made him loved by all who knew him.

John is survived by his wife, Carol Atkins, of Brighton, CO; children, Robert and Beth Atkins of Corpus Christi, TX, Christine and Joey Sandal of Commerce City, CO, Patrick and Kimberly Atkins of Dassel, Steven Atkins of Westby, MT, and Amy Atkins of Austin, TX; eight grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.