Arve A. Grimsmo, 77, Monticello, Minn., passed away Monday Jan. 20, 2014, at Centra Care Health-Monticello. Visitation will be Sunday, Jan. 26, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Peterson-Grimsmo Chapel, 250 E. Broadway, Monticello. There will be a prayer service Sunday at 7:30 p.m. Further visitation will be one hour prior to the funeral at the church. Funeral services will be Monday, Jan. 27, at 11 a.m. at Riverside Church, 20314 County Road 14 N.W., Big Lake, Minn. The Rev. Steve Hammer will officiate. Interment will be at Lakewood Cemetery of Minneapolis. Funeral arrangements are with the Peterson-Grimsmo Chapel of Monticello.
Arve was born on Nov.3, 1936 in Vinjeora, Norway, to Arne and Ingeborg (Sorli) Grimsmo. Growing up in World War II Nazi-occupied Norway, conditions were poor. Arve’s uncle in Minneapolis offered to give him a fresh start in America, and Arve’s father reluctantly agreed it would be for the best. So Arve immigrated to America alone as a 14-year-old and began a new life in the United States. He attended Roosevelt High School, where he learned English quickly, and was allowed to skip a grade, and graduated in 1954. Because of his leadership of the Roosevelt ski team and advanced skiing ability, he was offered a four- year scholarship to Dartmouth College, but his uncle felt it would be better to stay closer to home, and so he attended the University of Minnesota. He met his future bride Jean Peterson, and they were married in 1957. Arve began working along side his father-in-law, Harold Peterson at the funeral home in Monticello. He graduated from the U of M, Mortuary Science Program and joined the family business.
Arve was very active in civic organizations and served as president of the Monticello PTA, Monticello Chamber of Commerce, Jaycees, and the Monticello Rotary Club. For over 30 years, he served as the Youth Exchange Officer of Norway for Rotary District 5950/5960, serving Minnesota and Wisconsin. He was also a member of the Norwegian-American Chamber of Commerce, and the Sons of Norway. Arve served on the Monticello City Council for two years, and as mayor of Monticello from 1978-1988. Arve also served on the Minnesota Funeral Directors Association Board of Directors from 1999-2002.
Arve greatly enjoyed visiting his native Norway, and made several trips to Norway with family and friends. He was also able to lead several tour groups to see his homeland. A highlight was when he was able to take his family back to Norway for Christmas in 1988. His grandchildren were his crowning glory and he invested his life into being the best Papa to them. He was a man of God, who leaves a legacy of faith for this family and friends.
Arve was preceded in death by his parents, Arne and Ingeborg. He is survived by his wife, Jean; daughters Sonja (Roger) Carlson of Monticello, Sarah Kisling of Monticello; grandchildren Meredith Carlson, Joanna (Daved) Lundeen, Ben Kisling, Dan Kisling; sister Edit (Ludvik) Raanes of Norway; nieces Ingrid Raanes and Eli (Kjell Gunnar) Vassdal; and nephew Leif (Jorunn) Raanes.