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Gary Mapes, 1938-2020

Gary George Mapes was born July 23, 1938, in Farmington to parents George and La Vona (Walch) Mapes. Gary graduated high school in Howard Lake.

Gary Mapes

Gary spent most of his life on the road, working as an over the road truck driver for 50 years. His most recent employer was American Central Transport. Gary was very proud to receive the “Million Miler,” where he was awarded for driving over one million miles, all while being accident free! After his retirement, he amassed more than three million miles — all accident free! As you can imagine, Gary saw this country many times over, traveling from Alaska to Florida, and everywhere in between.

When he wasn’t traveling, he enjoyed being in the outdoors, liked to tinker on equipment and other household tools. He liked doing yard work like mowing his lawn, and he also enjoyed watching action movies.

On Aug. 26, 2006, Gary married Carolyn (Swenson) in Albert Lea, and the couple had 13 wonderful years together.

Gary died Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020, at Thorne Crest Senior Living Community. He was 81 years old.

He is preceded in death by both parents, George Mapes and La Vona Glencross; first spouse, Lois (Berg); second spouse, Dyann (Taasaas); daughter, Terri Wise; son, Robert Taasaas; brother, Keith Mapes; and a sister, LeNein Semento.

Gary is survived by his wife, Carolyn Mapes, of Albert Lea; children JD (Debbie) Mapes of Polo, Missouri, Jeff Mapes of Litchfield, Joe (Gwen) Mapes of Howard Lake, Jason (Wendy) Mapes of Monticello, Jon Mapes of Honolulu, Hawaii, Dana Bamuakis of Odessa, Missouri, Deanna Jones of Overland Park, Kansas, and Jayne (Glenn) Schmandt of Dassel; stepdaughter, Lisa (Jason) Kvam, of Burnsville; stepson, Eric (Elinore) Bublitz, of Georgia; many grandchildren and great-grandchildren; sister, Pam (Rex) Perry, of North Cove, Washington; his ACT Mafia, Ernie, Lloyd, Frank, Mike and Alvin; along with many other extended relatives and friends.

Per Gary’s wishes, no services will be held.

“I’m going home now — over and out.”