Cover photo for Charles Jerome Kovala's Obituary
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1938 Charles 2020

Charles Jerome Kovala

October 10, 1938 — August 10, 2020

Charles “Chuck” J. Kovala, age 81, of Winona, MN, passed away of natural causes while fishing on the Gallatin River in Big Sky, MT on August 10, 2020. He was born on October 10, 1938 in Ashland, WI, the son of Arne and Pearl (Pintamo) Kovala. He grew up in Richmond, CA and graduated from Ashland High School. He attended Northern Michigan University graduating with a Masters of Physical Education.

Chuck was united in marriage to Kathleen Ann Prusi on April 29, 1961 in Negaunee, MI.

Chuck was a teacher and avid coach in Saxon and Mellen, WI, then started a career in investments in Stambaugh and Iron River, MI. He retired in Rhinelander, WI and also lived in Brainerd & Winona, MN.

Chuck was very involved with youth sports as a coach and referee and community education. Chuck loved hunting, fishing, golf, travel, and sports of all kinds. He is remembered most for his spirit, enthusiasm, passion for his family and how much he enjoyed people.

He was a member of the Finnish Independent Apostolic Lutheran Church in Marengo, WI.

He is preceded in death by his parents and brother James Kovala.

He is survived by his wife Kathleen Ann “Punkin” of 60 years; five children Wendy (Brian) Tuominen of Ramsey, MN, Bridget (John) Hietala of Kenosha, WI, Janice Kovala of St. Louis Park, MN, Steven (LaDawn) Kovala of Winona, MN and Michael (Kalee) Kovala of Duluth, MN; nine grandchildren Christopher (Christy) Tuominen & Taylor Tuominen, Ivan, Aden, Kai & Kasja Kovala, Lula, Charlie, & Livi Kovala; two great-grandchildren Lottie & Felix Tuominen; siblings June (Howard) Niska, Richard (Connie) Kovala, Merry (Gary) Nuutinen and many relatives & friends.

An outdoor Visitation will be held Friday, August 21st from 2-3:30pm with a Funeral Service to immediately follow at Meadow Hills Cemetery (near the Minneapolis Independent Apostolic Lutheran Church, 14000 129th Avenue North, Dayton, MN 55442. Please note there is road construction near the cemetery.

A remote call-in has been set up for those not able to attend in person. The dial-in number is (516) 259-9850 (US) with no password needed. The call-in will begin at 3pm.

Condolences can be sent to Kathleen Kovala at her Winona, MN address. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation for the benefit of Youth Sports, Attn: Steven Kovala, c/o Merchants Bank, 102 E. 3rd Street, Winona, MN 55987.

A church service is scheduled for 7pm at the Minneapolis Independence Apostolic Lutheran Church. All are welcome to attend.

Since personal contact is likely, the family would appreciate those attending to wear face masks according to Minnesota Department of Health recommendations.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Charles Jerome Kovala, please visit our flower store.


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