Max Blaufuss, 77, passed away unexpectedly on Sept. 1, 2021, at his home in Pine City.
Max was born Oct. 18, 1943, in Aitkin to Dr. Erich and Hope (Maeser) Blaufuss. He grew up in Aitkin until he moved with his mother to Tucson, Arizona, where he attended Catalina High School and graduated in 1962. He proudly served in the US Army from 1962 to 1964. Upon his discharge he attended the University of Minnesota. He returned to Aitkin to work at the family business, Gables Nursing Home, when his father’s health declined. In 1967, upon his father’s death, he became the sole proprietor of Aicota Nursing Home and Gables in Aitkin and Lakeside Nursing Home in Pine City. He expanded the business and in 1972 built a nursing home in Minneota.
Max met his wife Betsy in Aitkin when she was working at the bank in the summer following high school graduation. After her first year of college and some convincing, they started dating in the summer of 1968. They married in 1969 and were faced with a decision on whether to reside in Aitkin or move to Pine City to begin their married life and raise a family. After much consideration and with the completion of Interstate 35, Max and Betsy made the decision to move to Pine City. Max chose wisely and gave his whole heart to his community.
Max and Betsy worked together at Lakeside Medical Center for 28 years until Betsy retired in 1999. Betsy returned to work alongside Max at Lake Superior Laundry in 2016. Max continued to work at Lakeside Medical Center and Lake Superior Laundry until his death.
They raised 4 daughters, Ericka, Amy, Jennifer and Gretchen. He was very proud that they all pursued careers in the medical field. Max was his happiest when they were all working together at Lakeside when the medical center encompassed urgent care, surgery center and hospital along with the nursing home.
Max expanded the nursing home to a medical center in the late 1980s and brought new services to Pine City. When Lakeside needed laundry services, he purchased Lake Superior Laundry in Superior, Wisconsin. In 2007, he acquired land in the Industrial Park and brought Lake Superior Laundry to Pine City. Max also spent several years as a co-owner of a rock crushing business.
Max was generous with his time and was never without a project. He had a passion for work; when asked about his hobbies, he would respond “work.” Max enjoyed traveling over the years with his family. He had a tough exterior and a big heart which showed in his passion for helping people. This included the Work Release Program through the Pine County Jail at Lake Superior Laundry.
Max had a passion for education and intensely encouraged his family, along with countless employees, to pursue their college education, which he was unable to complete.
He served on the board for the Pine Technical and Community College Foundation, Pine City Council, Pine City Library Foundation, 50-plus-year member of the Masonic Lodge and other various projects, which included building a new library and fire hall. He was a humble man and was honored to be named Pine City Citizen of the Year in 2011.
Max is survived by his loving wife Betsy; daughters Ericka (Bill) Nelson, Amy (Scott) Saylor, Jennifer (Shaun) Alleman, and Gretchen Blaufuss (Tom Schloer); grandchildren: Avery, Chloe and Alex Alleman, and Charlie, Greta and Amelia Saylor; sister Isolda Day; and many other relatives and friends.
Max was preceded in death by his parents Erich and Hope Blaufuss; brother Arthur; and sister Irmgarde.
Monsignor Aleksander Suchan will celebrate a Mass of Christian Burial for Max at 11 a.m. Friday, Sept.10, at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Pine City. Visitation and reviewal for friends and family will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. Thursday at Swanson Funeral Chapel, with a 7 p.m. Prayer Service, and 1 hour prior to the Mass at St. Anthony Commons in the church.
Memorials in Max’s memory may be directed to: Immaculate Conception Catholic Church Building Fund, 535 8th St. SW, Pine City, MN 55063 or Pine City Foundation Library, 300 5th St. SE, Pine City, MN 55063.
Funeral arrangements for Max Blaufuss are entrusted to the Funeral and Cremation Service of Pine City, Swanson Chapel. www.FuneralAndCremationService.com