As received from the Memorial Chapel & Plowe Funeral Homes:
Timothy Laine Halkola, age 69 passed away on August 5, 2020 at UP Health System in Marquette following a brief illness. He was born on October 25, 1950 to David T. and Viola E. Halkola. Tim was the last baby born at the original St. Joseph Hospital on Hancock Street. He was intrigued by the ongoing connection with this hospital when years later he worked at the “new” St. Joseph’s Hospital, now part of Finlandia University, and was there when the name was changed to Portage View. When the new hospital was built and became part of UP Health System, he had transitioned from employee to patient. Tim’s earlier work in the lab was highly respected. He was skilled in the art of drawing blood and was often called upon when his expertise was needed. Tim studied nursing at MTU and kicked off a long line of health care providers in the Halkola and extended families.
Tim described his childhood as “pretty darn good.” He and big brother Mark had endless hours of fun at the Suomi College gym. It was easy to do when your dad was the college president. He was a graduate of Hancock Central High School class of 1968. Tim was involved in sports; choir and his creativity was showcased in two class plays. He remained close to several classmates throughout the years.
He was a veteran of the Vietnam War having served two tours of duty while a sailor on the USS Goldsborough from 1970-1972. While in the service, Tim grew his moustache which became part of his stylish signature look. He kept it groomed with the comb he always carried in his pocket.
He married Marilyn Swift on August 21, 1993 at the log cabin and this month they would have celebrated their 27th anniversary.
Tim worked in a variety of sales positions all of which highlighted his unique skills. This included Copper Country Ford, The Daily Mining Gazette, The Douglass Agency, Swift Hardware and Lite Rock 102 FM where he served as general manager. He enjoyed conversation and meeting with people. He was articulate and appreciated speaking with others who shared his same pride in having “command of the English language.” Tim enjoyed sharing a meal with family at the farm and looked forward to seeing the friends he’d made at the Miscowaubik Club. Being with people, reminiscing and making new memories were important to him. He was compassionate and empathetic. He would ask after your well being by asking, “How are you feeling my dear?”
Tim loved his family, his friends, the Milwaukee zoo, nature and of course “The Farm.” Cutting the grass, gardening, raising chickens and keeping his wood stove stoked created a warm and welcoming destination. He provided the greatest place for his beloved dogs to run. His nieces and nephews were treated to four-wheel rides, bonfires on the “beach” and an enviable collection of antique toys and games. Tim would give new life to old and discarded toys.
Tim fancied himself to be a “picker” and appreciated history. He not only loved to watch any WW II programming; he embraced the treasures of the past. He loved old stuff, neat stuff and weird stuff. He had an extensive collection of cookie jars, rolling pins, transistor radios, motorcycles and his father’s books. He had an eye for decorating and successfully blended the old with new. This led to his opening of Penny Laine in Houghton in the 1980’s. The shop provided an outlet for area crafters, woodworkers and artists. Further support of his community was evident in his coordination of Bridgefest.
Sports had a large impact on his life. He cheered for the Packers, was a fan of college basketball and he and Marilyn were thrilled to attend the 1996 summer Olympics in Atlanta. You may remember his radio play by play for high school sports which earned him the nickname “Golden Throat.” He skillfully described the action and provided the color commentary all while managing the technical aspects of the broadcast.
Tim was a member of Gloria Dei Lutheran church and proudly accepted his father’s invitation to serve on the Halkola ushering team. He carried candy in his pockets for his great niece and nephews on Sunday mornings and was only too happy to spoil them. Faith was important to Tim and played an essential role in his journey toward sobriety. When he was ready to begin, he was confident “a miracle was waiting” and this year he celebrated 12 years of sobriety. He was strengthened through the support of his fellow friends of Bill W. He in turn supported countless others who faced the same challenges he struggled with.
Tim is survived by his wife Marilyn, step-daughter Jessica Saari-Ogden (Dan), his step-son James Saari and grandchildren Grace and Jackson.
He is further survived by his mother Viola, brother Mark, sisters Chris (Joe) Harkness, Laurel Roehm (Fred Bishop) Lisa (Christian) Shank, his aunts Kathleen Halkola and Helen Laine, numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and countless friends.
He was preceded in death by his father David T. Halkola, his grandparents, his uncle Paul, sister-in-law Karen Halkola, father-in- law, Paul Swift, mother-in-law Betty Swift, mother-in- law Joanne Mackey and brother-in law Jerry Guy. His Laine relatives, Ray and Linda, Archie and Donald and Carol also preceded him.
Tim had a genuine connection with the Hancock Veteran’s CBOC and the VA. They were like family to him. We would like to extend our gratitude to his doctors, nurses and all staff for their compassionate care and concern.
We will miss him dearly and find comfort in knowing he has found peace. Rest well Timmy. You’re home now.
A celebration of Tim’s life will be held at a later date. Details will be provided when available.
Memorials may be made to the Copper Country Humane Society, Gloria Dei Lutheran Church or the charity of your choice.
To view Tim’s obituary or to send condolences to the family please visit www.memorialchapel.net.
The Memorial Chapel & Plowe Funeral Homes of Hancock are assisting the family with the arrangements.