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1929 Merlyn 2022

Merlyn LaVern Bohlen

October 11, 1929 — December 24, 2022

New Richland


Merlyn Lavern Bohlen passed away peacefully at his home in New Richland, MN on December 24, 2022 at the age of 93.

Merlyn was born on October 11, 1929 to Richard and Hazel (Bonewitz) Bohlen in Rudd, Iowa. He attended school in Colwell, Iowa and then at a young age, went to work to help support his family. He enlisted in the United States Air Force and served as an airplane engine mechanic instructor.

While stationed in Texas, Merlyn met a gal name Cecilia Detten. They married on June 11, 1955 and eventually made their way to the Minnesota Iron Range. He worked with his father’s concrete step company and did welding at an iron works company. They had three sons and soon moved their family to New Richland, MN.

In New Richland, Merlyn worked for a plumbing contractor and also owned a bowling alley for a period of time. It was then that he started his own company, Bohlen Plumbing & Heating. Merlyn’s mechanical knowledge served him well throughout his career. He worked hard to make this company a success and brought all three of their boys up alongside him. He taught them hard work, persistence, and doing things the right way.  To date, all three boys’ careers are a result of dad’s teaching.

Merlyn shared his love of restoring old cars and trucks with his family and always welcomed the friends that would stop by to visit. He loved to talk about the details of the restoration. He also loved his morning breakfasts and tours of the town with his good friends, John and Richy.

Merlyn lost his wife, Celia, in January 2001. They are now celebrating Christmas together in 2022.

Merlyn is survived by his three sons: Michael (Sandy) Bohlen of New Braunfels, TX, their children and grandchildren; Stephen Bohlen, Jeffrey (Shannon) Bohlen, Conner, Cameron, Isla, Axel, Gregory (Devon) Bohlen; Richard (Mary) Bohlen of New Richland, MN, their children and grandchildren; Holly (Travis) Heidebrink, Brooklyn, Noah, Amy Bohlen, Erin (Dave) Streefland, Max, Weston, Emily (Jacob) Zanon; James (Vianna) Bohlen of Owatonna, MN, their children and grandchildren; Anthony (Tiffany) Bohlen, Lukas, Tate, Afton (Derek) Breezer, Quinn. Merlyn is also survived by his brother Randy Bohlen of Charles City, Iowa and many nieces, nephews, cousins, and good friends. He was preceded in death by his wife, Celia, and his parents.

Memorials are preferred to Trinity Lutheran Church, New Richland, MN or the Meals On Wheels program through the New Richland Care Center.

Services will take place at Trinity Lutheran Church in New Richland, MN on Wednesday, January 4, 2023 at 2:00pm; Pastor Mary Iverson and Pastor Paul Andree will be the officiants. Friends may greet the family from 11:30am – 2:00pm prior to the service. Military honors will be at the church following the service, interment at St Olaf Cemetery in New Richland, MN.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Merlyn LaVern Bohlen, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Wednesday, January 4, 2023

11:30am - 2:00 pm (Central time)

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Funeral Service

Wednesday, January 4, 2023

Starts at 2:00 pm (Central time)

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Wednesday, January 4, 2023

Starts at 3:00 pm (Central time)

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