Greg Hanninen, age 69, of Shakopee, MN, passed away peacefully surrounded by loving family on Friday, May 14, 2021, at St. Mary’s Clinic, in Rochester, MN.
A time of gathering will be held on Wednesday, May 19, 2021 starting at 9:30 AM, with a celebration of life service at 11:00 AM, all at Ballard-Sunder Funeral & Cremation (4565 Pleasant Street SE) in Prior Lake, MN. Guests may also join the celebration of life, by clicking on the following link: Greg Hanninen Funeral Service (Meeting ID: 975 8519 8201 / Passcode: 240460). Pastor Diana Hunstad will preside.
The world became brighter the day Gregory Lee was born on December 30, 1951, in Minneapolis, MN. He was the oldest of three children born to Arnold and Betty (Uchner) Hanninen. Greg grew up most of his life in Burnsville, MN, with his brother Gary and sister, Sandy. From early on, Greg was the leader of the pack and the dare devil! He was happiest going fast, experiencing life, and even finding a bit of mischief at times. Greg never sat idle, he could be found go carting down the steepest hill, climbing the tallest trees, working on engines, or playing hide and seek with the local police, while drag racing.
Graduating from Burnsville High School in 1970, Greg attended Cardinal Stritch University earning a bachelor’s degree in business and management. Taking this knowledge, he spent most of his 30 plus year career with ADC Telecommunications (now Commscope). Greg excelled at his job as a senior engineer. He designed models to manufacture parts for the government and companies all over the world. Greg traveled many times aboard solving problems for the company.
Life was the richest being a dad and husband. Greg loved being a father to Ryan, Jon, and Emily. He was an active dad and was so proud of them. Greg loved attending their sporting games and school activities. He welcomed any chance to share his love for the outdoors with them. On March 12th, 2008, life was blessed once again for Greg when he married Terry Fritsvold. With open arms, Greg’s family grew to include her children, Randy, Ryan, and Ashley.
Through the years, Greg and his family enjoyed many adventures at the cabin in Garrison, MN. They loved lake life of swimming, fishing, and bon fires. Greg and Terry enjoyed attending concerts, dancing, and listening to music. Avid Minnesota Viking fans, they were season ticket holders for many years. He enjoyed having deep conversations on all genre of music, rock, pop, country, etc.
Greg was a ‘motorhead.’ He loved muscle cars and motorcycles. Greg spent countless hours tinkering on engines. He especially was proud of his first car, a 1969 Mustang 428 and his last, the Shelby Mustang. Greg even took his love of speed and street raced, in his earlier years. He enjoyed reading the newspaper from front to back. Greg has always had a special love for animals. As a young boy, he raised pigeons and mourning doves. Later, the focus was on dogs and cats and an occasional bird. In Greg’s spare time, he enjoyed bird hunting and was even quite talented as a carpenter too.
Gregory Lee Hanninen was white collar guy with blue collar grit. He was a math whiz and extremely proud of his Finnish heritage. Greg was hardworking, dedicated, and loyal. He had this approachable and calming personality and instantly you were his friend. Greg was kind, generous and loving. A jokester, he had a great sense of humor and enjoyed life to the fullest.
The legacy of Greg will live on in those who will love and miss him forever, wife, Terry; children, Ryan Hanninen, Jon (Julia) Hanninen. Emily Hanninen, Randy (Jade) Mahlen, Ryan (Jenna) Mahlen, Ashley (Matt Fox) Mahlen; grandchildren, Levi; Hollie, Harrison, Henry; Arley, Mazie; mother, Betty Hanninen; siblings, Gary Hanninen, Sandy (Raymond) Lawver; niece, Natalie Johnson; lifelong friend Barry Smith; many other relatives and friends. Greeting Greg home in Heaven is his father, Arnold and nephew, Hunter Johnson.
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