John Frederick Rossborough

February 7, 1932 ~ May 25, 2018 (age 86)

A Celebration of Life for John F. Rossborough of Baudette, MN will be held Saturday, June 16th from 4-6 PM at the Loyal Order of Moose Lodge #742 in Baudette, MN. He passed away May 25th at the Lakewood Health in Baudette at the age of 86.  Memorials preferred to donor's choice.

John Frederick Rossborough (86) passed away peacefully on Friday, May 25th, in Baudette, Minnesota. He was born in Rainy River, Ontario and was the only child of Frank and Hazel (Dowsett) Rossborough. John attended grades K-12 in Rainy River. As a youth, he spent summers on Cyclone Island on Lake of the Woods with his father.  His senior year, he was awarded a memorial trophy recognizing his performance and influence as a hockey player and gentlemen who promoted the cause of sportsmanship. During this time, John skated with the Warroad Lakers and lettered in Curling.

After high school, John enrolled at Bemidji State Teacher’s College, and graduated in 1958 with a Bachelor of Arts degree.  He began his teaching career in Waubun, MN, followed by a year at St. James Collegiate in Winnipeg, Manitoba. His summers were spent at Camp B’nai B’rith on Lake of the Woods where he served as Waterfront Director. In 1959, John met his future bride, Janet Cuddington, and they were married on February 20th, 1960.

In the Fall of 1960, John accepted a regional director position with the National Film Board of Canada.  He traveled by train and bush plane to northern Manitoba and into the Arctic regions of the NW Territories.

In 1964, the family, now including 3-year-old son Bobby, moved to Warroad, MN. That same year, John and Jan purchased the Nite Hawk Club in Roosevelt from his long-time friend Art Norman. He worked from opening to close at the Hawk. John was especially proud of his Nite Hawk fast-pitch ball team. Due to the loyalty and strong work ethic of his manager and staff, he was able to resume his teaching career as a sub in Warroad, Williams and Baudette. Later that year he accepted a full-time position at this alma mater in Rainy River, Ontario. John and Jan continued to own and operate the Hawk until they sold it in 1980. 

During his 25-year tenure at Rainy River, John served as the chief negotiator for the merger of the Fort Francis and Rainy River Boards of Education. He served on countless negotiating teams that encompassed schools in District 28, which covered Dryden, Kenora, Sioux Lookout, Ignace, Red Lake, Atikokan, Rainy River and Fort Francis. In 1988, John was recognized by the Secondary School Teacher’s Federation for his long-time service. He retired from teaching in 1989.

In 1970, the family, now including daughter Anne-Marie, moved to Baudette, MN. Over the next several years, John and Jan partnered with Keith and Rosie Ballard to build Ballross Lanes. They also formed a partnership with Jim and Gloria Bodahl to build Dana’s convenience store. John was also a part owner of Elmer’s in Baudette.

John wore many hats after his retirement. He was employed as a census taker, a gypsy moth trapper, and acted as a Meals-for-Wheels volunteer.  He also managed the Baudette Flying Service during the summer months.  John was a 50-year lifetime member of the Loyal Order of the Moose where he served as Charitable Gaming Manager for 25 years. He enjoyed the camaraderie of countless Moose bonspiels spanning several decades. John was a founding member of the Spooner Gold Card Club and a member of the Royal Canadian Legion.  He, along with his children, shared an avid love of the waters of Lake of the Woods. Winter months were most recently spent with Jan in Florida after discovering the Florida Keys in the mid-1970’s.

John is survived by his wife of 58 years, Jan of Baudette, MN; son, Bob Rossborough of Hopkins, MN; daughter, Anne-Marie Rossborough of Baudette, MN; grandsons, Alec & Evan Dahl of Baudette, MN; grandsons, Ryan and Eric Rossborough of Golden Valley, MN; brother-in-law, Bob (Verna) Cuddington of Erickson, Manitoba; niece, Leah (Tim) Figol of Brandon, Manitoba; nephew, Todd (Anne) Cuddington of Portage La Prairie, Manitoba; and great nieces Jules Figol, Freja and Sofia Cuddington. John was proceeded in death by his parents, Frank and Hazel Rossborough.

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