Fillmore Spillman, 91Fillmore "Fillie" Albert Valentine Spillman, age 91, formerly of Stanton, Minn., passed away peacefully on Friday afternoon, Feb. 18, at Three Links Care Center in Northfield, Minn.
Fillmore "Fillie" Albert Valentine Spillman, age 91, formerly of Stanton, Minn., passed away peacefully on Friday afternoon, Feb. 18, at Three Links Care Center in Northfield, Minn.
He was born on May 15, 1919, the third of four children, to Henry H. and Anna K. (Goebel) Spillman in Stanton Township, Goodhue County, Minn.
He was a lifetime member of First English Lutheran Church in Cannon Falls, Minn. He attended and graduated from Randolph Public School in 1936.
Fillie joined the U.S. Army in July 1941 and was stationed in Kansas City, expecting to serve for one year. The advancement of WWII changed his plans and he was one of the first men, along with Bill Daniels, from Goodhue County inducted in 1942. He was advanced to the position of sergeant as a tank and jeep mechanic in the 776th Amphibious Tank Battalion in the Pacific, including the Marshall Islands, Philippines, and Okinawa. He received an honorable discharge on Dec. 19, 1945. He remained active in the local VFW organization until the mid-1990s.
Fillie was a dairy farmer by trade, but his great love was mechanics. If he wasn't in the field or the barn, you could find him under a tractor or other piece of machinery. If it didn't need repairing, then he was figuring out how it worked or how to make it more efficient! He and his brother Roger farmed side by side, day by day, until Roger's retirement in 1995. Fillie sold his farming business to his son, Gary, in 1986, but he continued as chief mechanic on the farms because his love for mechanics and metal works never ended.
In the early 1950s, Fillie met Ruth Gesme at Coates Pavilion. They were married June 11, 1955, at St. Ansgar's Lutheran Church in Cannon Falls. They made their home on a farm just east on Stanton on Hwy 19. Together, they raised their children with strong family and Christian values. Ruth passed away Dec. 9, 1990.
When not farming, Fillie enjoyed attending gatherings with family and friends, reading, and dancing.
Fillmore is survived by his three children, Cynthia (Donald) Davis of Farmington, Minn., Karen (Marc) Slininger of Randolph, Minn., and Gary (Penny) Spillman of Stanton; eight grandchildren, Jennifer (James) Garrett, Diana Schaffer (fiancé, Mike Waltman), Lisa (Jonis) Chavis, Philip Slininger, Kelly (Lucas) Kramer, Douglas Spillman, Anne Spillman (fiancé, Matt Shoemaker), and Michael Spillman; two great-granddaughters, Lillian Garrett and Jaelyn Chavis; and many nieces, nephews, and other loving family and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Henry and Anna; his wife, Ruth; two brothers, Roland and Roger (Rose) Spillman; sister, Verona (George) Radke; and special cousin, Elsie (Wesley) Jenson.
Funeral service will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 23, at the First English Lutheran Church in Cannon Falls with Pastor Phillip Ruud officiating. Interment with military honors will follow at the Cannon Falls Cemetery. Visitation will be held from 5-8 p.m. Tuesday at Lundberg Funeral Home in Cannon Falls. There will also be visitation at the church for 1 hour prior to services at church on Wednesday.
Arrangements by Lundberg Funeral Home in Cannon Falls. Online condolences may be directed to www.lundbergfuneral.com.