On Monday, May 8th, 2023, at the age of 90, the Holy Spirit called Charles “Charlie” Ruesken of Nisswa, MN home to the halls of eternity. After several years of declining health, Charlie passed peacefully with his daughters Belinda and Gail by his side.
Charlie was born on 08/20/1932 in Effingham, IL to the late Joseph and Philomena Braun Ruesken. He is survived by his son, Crieg Ruesken, daughters, Belinda (Paul) Abrahamson, Gail (Terry) Oseland, grandsons, Brett, Erik, and Christopher, and granddaughters Kylie, Katie, Kendra. Great grandchildren Gizelle, Adley, Peyton and Emersyn.
Charlie is preceded in death by his wife Carolyn Mae Ruesken, son, Randal Ruesken, brothers, Arthur Ruesken, Louis Ruesken and James Ruesken, sisters, Madonna Renschen, Hilda Ruesken, Leona Dupree, and Marie Jones.
Born shortly after the Great Depression in an economically depressed area, Charlie overcame tremendous adversity that many would have folded in the face of. In his youth, he went on to join the Navy during the Korean War and sail the high seas. After his life as a sailor, he fell in love, married, and had four children. Having grown tired of the hustle and bustle of Chicago and pulled to the beauty and solitude of the Northwoods, Carol and Charlie headed north and purchased land in God’s Country, MN Shortly after arriving, Charlie started the incredibly successful Mid State Refrigeration, bowed to no man, and effectively lived a life completely on his (and his wife’s) terms.
Charlie was a loving husband, father, and grandfather, as well as the kind of guy who would give the shirt off his back to help a friend in need. His clever jokes, “tell it like it is” attitude, room-filling laughter, and general presence in the lives of those by whom he is survived will be deeply missed. He was an incredibly unique person who marched to the beat of his own drum. Those fortunate enough to have known him can truly attest that there will never again be another Charlie Ruesken.
He will be missed by his family and more so a loss from the greatest generation this country has known.
May his soul be eternally at peace with his wife and son in the halls of our ancestors; and may his brave and graceful transition to the next realm be an example to us all when we must begin our respective journeys.
Charlie’s family would like to give great thanks to the staff who cared for him at Hills Crossing in Nisswa and the wonderful compassionate team at Nisswa Good Samaritan Hospice. Charlie’s family also gives thanks to Dr. Li at Essentia Health for the superb care she gave him over the years.
A private burial was held for Charlie May 13, 2023 at Greenwood Cemetery in Nisswa, MN.