Joseph “Joe” E. Gemlo, 75, Aitkin and formerly of Spring Lake Park, died Thursday, April 1, 2021 at his home in Aitkin.

A celebration of Joe’s life will be held from 1-6 p.m., Sunday, May 23, 2021 at Scott’s Barn. Arrangements have been entrusted to Brenny Family Funeral Chapel, Baxter.

Joe was born May 19, 1945 in Northeast Minneapolis to Joseph and Florence (Gagnon) Gemlo. He proudly served his country in the United States Army from 1963 until his honorable discharge in 1966.

Joe married the love of his life, Sandra Swenson, on Oct. 19, 1968 in Hennepin County. He was employed as a Corrosion Control Specialist through NSP (Xcel Energy) for 35 years until his retirement. Joe and Sandra made their home in Spring Lake Park where they raised their three children, until moving to the “Old Poops Resort” (the families’ cabin in Aitkin in 2001).

He walked strongly in his faith and found serenity working with his hands and surrounding himself with the great outdoors. Joe enjoyed golf, bowling, vegetable gardening, fishing, hunting and woodworking. He taught his family to never give up, fight for what you believe, and care for others. Joe always said it like it was, but would give anyone the shirt off of his back. He could make anyone laugh with his great sense of humor and prankster personality. He was a great conversationalist with everyone he met along life’s journey. Joe was very involved in his grandchildren’s lives and enjoyed supporting them in their many activities. He was a big loving, softy, “slightly” stubborn, and gave the best hugs. Joe will be dearly missed by all who knew him.

Joe is survived by his wife of 52 years, Sandra of Aitkin; children: Charissa (Zac), St. Francis; Kimberly (Bob), Andover; Damon (Tina), Blaine; grandchildren: Nathan, Nicholas, Austin, Mason, Elena, Spencer, Brodie; great-grandchildren: Rowan, Raena and Elijah.

He was preceded in death by his parents; and brothers: Robert, Roy and John.

In lieu of flowers memorials are preferred to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network.