FAIRMONT - Mass of Christian Burial for Phillip J. Gunther, 72, of Fairmont, Minn., will be 10 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014, at the St. John Vianney Catholic Church in Fairmont. Military honors will be held following the service at the church by the Lee C. Prentice American Legion Post #36 and the Martin County VFW Post #1222. Burial will be at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014, at Ft. Snelling National Cemetery in Minneapolis, Minn. Visitation will be 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014, at the Lakeview Funeral Home in Fairmont and will continue one hour prior to the time of service Wednesday at the St. John Vianney Catholic Church. Phil passed away Saturday morning, Jan. 11, 2014, at the Mayo Clinic Health Systems in Fairmont. The Lakeview Funeral Home and Cremation Service of Fairmont is assisting the family with arrangements.
Phillip James Gunther was born on Sept. 11, 1941, in Le Mars, Iowa, the son of Claire and Mary Frances (Marx) Gunther. He attended school in Le Mars and graduated from Le Mars High School in 1960. Following his graduation, Phil enlisted in the U.S. Navy where he served his country proudly for four years. Upon receiving his honorable discharge, Phil enrolled at Emmetsburg Community College in Emmetsburg, Iowa, and received his degree in business.
On Nov. 4, 1967, Phil was united in marriage to Judy Whitney at the St. Thomas Catholic Church in Emmetsburg, Iowa. Together the couple made their home in Emmetsburg where they were blessed with two children, Rob and Renee.
Phil worked for many years as a meat cutter in Emmetsburg. The family would later move to Fairmont, Minn., and Phil worked as a meat cutter and meat manager for Gunther's until its closing in 2005.
The summer months for Phil were spent getting in as many rounds of golf as possible. He was an avid golfer and looked forward to Men's Day on Wednesday at Rose Lake Golf Course where he was a member. Phil was also a great bowler and in his younger years was a member of bowling league. He was also a member of St. John Vianney Catholic Church, the Knights of Columbus, and the Lee C. Prentice American Legion Post #36. Phil served on the board at Rose Lake Golf Club and was a past member of the St. John Vianney School Board.
Left to cherish his memory is his wife, Judy Gunther of Fairmont, Minn.; children, Rob (Natalie) Gunther of Mankato, Minn., and Renee (Lonnie) Fette of Waconia, Minn.; three grandchildren, Logan Gunther, Jocelyn Fette, and Megan Fette; brothers, Claire (Beverly) Gunther of Missouri, John (Janet) Gunther of Missouri, Jim (Sue) Gunther of Iowa, Mark (Barb) Gunther of Iowa, and Doug (Connie) Gunther of California; mother-in-law, Mary Schany of Iowa; two sisters-in-law, Sharon (Tom) Storey of Iowa and Barb (Paul) Thoreson of Iowa; brother-in-law, Bill (Bonnie) Whitney of Iowa; as well as many nieces, nephews, extended family and friends.
Phil was preceded in death by his parents, Claire and Mary Gunther; a sister, Molly Embernate; and father-in-law, Robert Whitney.