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Gordon "Ginny" ChristianNovember 21, 1927 ~ June 2, 2017 (age 89)
A funeral service for Gordon Gene “Ginny” Christian of Warroad, MN, will be held on Thursday, June 8, at 10:00 a.m. at Zion Lutheran Church in Warroad. A visitation will be held on Wednesday from 5-7 PM, followed by a prayer service at the Helgeson Funeral Home in Warroad.
Gordon passed away on Friday, June 2, 2017, at the age of 89
Gordon Gene “Ginny” Christian was born on November 21, 1927 in Warroad, MN to Edward and Effie (Keeler) Christian.
Gordon graduated from Warroad High School in 1947. He then attended the University of North Dakota and played on the 1948 team that upset national powerhouse Michigan 6-5 which vaulted UND to national prominence. Gordon led UND in goals in 1948-49 and scoring in 1947-48 and 1948-49. He was named the team’s Most Valuable Player in 1948-49. Gordon finished his career with 62 goals and 105 points in 59 games played. He then played semi-pro hockey in San Bernardino with several UND teammates, including Ralph Englestad.
Gordon was called up by the US Army National Guard in 1951 and was stationed in Camp Rucker, AL.
In 1955 Gordon, played for the US National Team at the World Hockey Championship in West Germany, where they finished in 4th Place. In 1956, he played for the USA in the Winter Olympics in Cortina, Italy, where they won a Silver Medal. Gordon was the 10th leading scorer in the tournament. In 1958, he played for the US National Team at the World Hockey Championship in Oslo, Norway. His brothers Roger and Bill were also on the team. Gordon continued playing hockey with the Hibbing Flyers and the Warroad Lakers senior hockey teams. He also coached the Hibbing Flyers and in 1969 they placed second in the U.S. National Junior Tournament.
Gordon was an excellent carpenter and he worked for his father’s construction company in Warroad and for Erickson Lumber, in Hibbing, MN.
On December 27, 1958, Gordon married Emma Marie Vytlacil in Warroad.
He worked with his brothers and father building U.S. Customs stations along the US-Canada border in the early 1960’s. Gordon moved back to Hibbing in 1965 to raise his family and building taconite plants across the Iron Range and Upper Michigan with ABI Construction from Virginia, MN. The family moved to Beulah, ND in 1982, where he worked on building a coal gasification plant. They moved back to Warroad in 1985, where Gordon supervised construction of building #7 at Marvin Windows and the new Warroad Gardens hockey arena. He and Emma built their dream house on the banks of the Warroad River.
Gordon was inducted into the UND Athletic Hall of Fame in 1980, the Warroad High School Athletic Hall of Fame in 1996, and the Minnesota Olympic Wall of Fame in 1990. In 2006, Gordon was listed in the “UND Legends” area at Ralph Engelstad Arena.
Gordon is survived by wife Emma, children Gordon (Jodee) of Eagan, MN, Steven (Stephanie) of Grand Forks, ND.; five grandchildren, Peter (Laura), Emily (Kyle), Samuel, Abigail (Jace), Nicholas; brother William of Naples, FL and sister Sharon of Seattle, WA.
Gordon is preceded in death by; his parents, sisters Ramona and Theone and brother Roger.