Steven Earl Hanke, age 74 of Park Rapids, Minnesota peacefully entered eternity in Heaven, on October 8, 2022, during a beautiful sunrise over the lake at his beloved family cabin.
Steve was born on February 9, 1948 in Des Moines, Iowa to Earl and Marie (Cottrall) Hanke. He grew up on Walnut Hill in West Des Moines, where as a youth he started his work career delivering newspapers and working in the family businesses, which included, Dairyland, Dairy Queen & hauling Christmas trees. His favorite memories of childhood are coming to Park Rapids to spend the summer at the family cabin, along with camping trips his family took, and the special bond he had with his grandpa, Raymond. During his high school years, he went to Washington state and worked as a logger for Greenleaf Logging. He graduated from North High School, in Des Moines, IA.
He united in marriage to Sharon Johnson, with whom they were blessed with son, Steven. They moved to Washington state where he got his Associates Degree from Everett Community College. They returned to Iowa, where they were blessed with daughter, Samantha. He moved his family to Palmer, Alaska where he ran a chain of tire stores in Anchorage and was blessed with daughter, Stacia and son, Solomon. Steve purchased a fish camp in Ontario, Canada and moved the family to a small farm in Park Rapids, where they were blessed with daughter, Suzanna.
Steve loved the outdoors and nature, saying that is where he felt closest to his Lord and Savior, and he loved sharing that with his children and grandchildren through skiing, sledding, boating, biking, hunting and fishing. He loved to travel and took many trips through his life by himself, and with his kids and grandkids. He loved and adored his family and cherished all the time he could with them, watching their activities of choir, drama, graduations, and cheering them on in their sports activities and barrel racing. He truly was each child’s biggest fan!
He will lovingly be missed and remembered by his son: Steven (Kate) Hanke of Grand Rapids, MN; his three daughters: Samantha (Scott) Pickett of Park Rapids, Stacia (Kris) Martin of Nisswa, and Suzanna (Matthew) Kieselbach of Noblesville, IN; 23 grandchildren: Chris (Rachel), Franki (Julian), Trey, Fletcher, Adrianna, RJ (April), Drew, Madeline, Isaac, Vivian, Scotty, Arron, Sage, Brianna, Selvin, Damion, Chase, MacKenzie, Emmalin, Elijah, Isaiah, Alayna, and Josiah; twostep-grandchildren: Tanner and Kaitlynn; three great grandchildren: Harper, Greyson, and Grace; two brothers: Ted Hanke of Cummings, IA, and Chris Hanke of Akeley; sister: Barbara (Gary) Riggs, of Akeley; as well as many nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.
He was preceded in death by his son, Solomon, parents, grandparents, and sister-in-law, Corinne Hanke.
A celebration of life was held on Tuesday, October 11, 2022 at his family cabin at 2:00 PM with visitation one hour prior. Interment will be at Greenwood Cemetery of Park Rapids. In lieu of flowers, please donate to Audrey’s Purple Dream http://www.audreyspurpledream.com
Arrangements were entrusted to Jones Pearson Funeral Home. To view online video tribute or to leave on line condolences, please visit www.jonespearson.com.