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Edward 'Pete' C. Polley

Edward "Pete" C. Polley passed away Monday, Feb. 1, 2016, just days shy of his 93rd birthday, at home surrounded by his family. He was born Feb. 14, 1923, to Irvin and Eva (LeBreche) Polley in Cloquet, Minn., where he later graduated from high school in 1942 with a letter in "chicken judging." He was then drafted into the U.S. Army during World War II and proudly served in Italy with the U.S. 1st Armored Division before returning home and marrying Theresa Irene Gleason in August 1949. He was employed at Potlatch for 38 years until he retired as a paper machine foreman in 1985. Pete and Irene enjoyed their retirement together traveling the world; his favorite trips being a river cruise through Europe, and his travels to Germany, Ireland, Italy, England, Australia and New Zealand. He and Irene also spent many lovely years wintering with friends in Yuma, Ariz.

While not an accomplished cook, he could flip a mean beer pancake during family camping trips and dabbled in carpentry, including building his family home - although Irene would say he should have built a bigger kitchen. Always the one to teach by example, Pete could layer the love with a caustic comment, a devilish grin and the unexpected whisker rub. Yet there was nothing Pete took more pleasure in than having his family together, whether it was a traditional holiday celebration or an impromptu Jay Cooke State Park cook-out.

Pete was preceded in death by his three sisters, Helen (Norman) Sjoblad, Carol (Roger) Peterson and Lois (Arne) Erickson; and many loved ones and friends including his especially close friend and brother-in-law, Roger Peterson.

Pete will be greatly missed by his wife of 66 years, Irene Gleason Polley, and their six children ("one of you damn kids"), Wayne Polley, Rita (Fred) Erickson, Anne (Ron) Anderson, Keith (Janet) Polley, Judith Polley and Jason (Tammie) Polley; six grandchildren, Glen (Lynette) Anderson, Jennifer Collelo, Greg Anderson, Michael Anderson, Seth Polley and Shannon Polley; eight great-grandchildren and one great-great-granddaughter; and many nieces and nephews who all adored "Grampa/Uncle Pete." "Here's to you..."

Please join us in celebrating this good-natured, devoted family man.

Visitation: Friday, Feb. 5, from 5-7 p.m. at Nelson Funeral Care, Cloquet, with a rosary service at 6:30 p.m., and Saturday, Feb. 6, from 10 a.m. until the 11 a.m. Mass of Christian Burial at Queen of Peace Catholic Church, Cloquet, with interment service at New Calvary Cemetery featuring military honors presented by the Cloquet Honor Guard, and followed by a luncheon in the church social hall.

See the family online guestbook at

February 11, 2016 ~ Pine Journal, Cloquet, Minn.