“Mel died,” is the extent of the obit Mel Boehland wanted. Mel’s simple request was consistent with his lifestyle. However, he is worth so much more and deserves being shared with others. Mel was born in Bertha Minnesota to a farm family on April 21, 1943, the first of three boys. He died on October 7, 2021, from complications of the Covid-19 virus. He is survived by his beloved wife of 28 years, Pat, his three daughters, Juanita (Mark Appleton), Sarah (Andy Wilke), Suzanne Boehland, stepsons Jason Maltzen (Tess Snyder), Andrew (Kirsten) Maltzen, 9 grandchildren, brothers Virgil (Lila) Boehland, Lyle Boehland (Marie Englebrecht) and many nieces and nephews. Mel attended Bertha-Hewitt School where he was a star basketball and football player. He was recruited by the University of North Dakota where he played on an award-winning football team. He signed with the Minnesota Vikings where he played on the defensive line for 3 years. He also played football for the Calgary Stampeders and the Chicago Owls. After his professional football career, he became an elementary school physical education teacher in Iowa where he encouraged kids of all abilities to enjoy physical activity. He continued to coach many sports, but his first love was football. He moved from Iowa to the Twin Cities to start the football program at Northwestern College (now University of Northwestern St. Paul) where he coached for 15 years and was active in Fellowship of Christian Athletes. He spent one year coaching football at North Park College in Chicago. After leaving football behind, Mel became an insurance agent; first with Allstate and then as an independent agent. He never treated this as selling insurance, but rather helping people however he could. Mel had a love for life and a never-ending desire to create new things. He held a patent for a women’s athletic jersey, invented the Power Climber wall climber, worked diligently at creating the perfect white tomato and loved his pure-bred Simmental cattle. He loved traveling with his loving wife, friend and kindred adventurous-spirit, Pat, in exploring new places around the world. Throughout, he held an unfailing belief in and love for Jesus Christ, his Lord and Savior. A celebration of life will be held on Tuesday, October 12 at 7:00 PM at North Heights Lutheran Church, 1700 W. Hwy. 96, Arden Hills, MN. Visitation will be held 1 hour prior to the service. Mel’s desire is that people dress in bright colors and wear masks. Memorials preferred to Bertha-Hewitt School Entrepreneur Program.
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