Thomas (Tom) E. Rupp, 71, of Side Lake, Minn., passed away on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021, with his wife by his side.
He was born May 1, 1949.
He graduated from Chisholm High School in 1967 and received his Associates degree from Hibbing Community College in 1969. He went on to complete his Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minn., (1971), where he met his wife, Sandra Torgersen. They were married in Bygland, Minn. on Dec. 20, 1970.
Tom is survived by his wife of 50 years, Sandra (Torgersen) Rupp; daughters, Kirsten (Paul) Vance of Cloquet, Minn.; Michelle (Tony) Scaringi of North Bend, Wash.; grandchildren, Joe (Clair Friedman) Deppa of Cloquet, Minn., James Deppa of St. Cloud, Minn.; Michael and Maki Scaringi of North Bend, Wash.; and great-grandson Dylan Deppa, Cloquet; siblings: James (Helen) Rupp, Chisholm, Robert (Nan) Rupp, Hibbing, Gwen (Bill) Stalker, Chisholm, and Paul (Janice) Rupp, Chisholm; along with many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his father, Glenn Rupp; mother, Joyce (Gregerson); and niece, Tearainy Rupp.
Tom began his career as a laboratory chemist at Sherwin Williams in Chicago, Ill. He and Sandy moved to Port Huron, Mich., (1973) where he worked for Acheson Colloids company as a product development chemist and then as product manager. He created and co-patented industrial chemical products and provided technical support for companies. Tom and Sandy moved to Prior Lake, Minn., (1979) where he began working in the industrial division for Ecolab Inc. in St. Paul, Minn., first as a technical support specialist and eventually as a program and technical services manager. In 1987, Tom returned to northern Minnesota with his family where they settled in Side Lake. He worked with his brothers and father, Glenn at the family-owned Rupp Furniture in Chisholm. He retired in 2013 but continued to teach MSHA/OSHA safety courses through Advance Minnesota at the Hibbing Community College. He also worked as a safety instructor at Northern Foundry in Hibbing and continued to serve as an industrial lubricant consultant for various industrial companies.
Tom loved fishing and could serve as your guide on any of his favorite spots on many lakes throughout the state. He loved visiting with people and was known for detailed and often long-winded fishing stories. Crane Lake was a favorite spot where Tom spent time camping with his family and friends. Tom and Sandy also enjoyed quality time cruising Perch Lake on the pontoon. He enjoyed many hobbies over the years. These included making custom fishing rods for family and friends, and making bar soap, lotions, and bug repellent. He was an avid reader, often reading two or more books at a time. Tom had a big laugh and enjoyed putting great effort into creating gag gifts for his friends over the years. He will be greatly missed by his family, friends, and colleagues.
A private invitation service is planned at Our Saviors Lutheran church in Hibbing, at 11 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 13. In maintaining Covid-19 protocol, a livestream through Our Savior’s Lutheran Church of the service will be provided for friends and family not in attendance at the service. (Livestream address: bit.ly/0213funeral)
A celebration of life will be held at the Rupp Funeral Home in June of 2021.
Memorials can be made in remembrance of Tom to Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Hibbing; Hope Springs Cancer Fund in Hibbing (www.hopesprings.kintera.org) or the American Heart Association.