Joey B. Mahlen, age 62 of Bloomington, passed away Wednesday, October 27, 2021.
A Celebration of Life Service will be held on Friday, November 5, 2021 at 11AM with a visitation beginning at 9:30AM all at Ballard-Sunder Funeral & Cremation (833 S Marschall Rd.) in Shakopee. Family and friends who can’t attend in-person are invited to stream the service at the following link: Joey B. Mahlen Service (Meeting ID: 830 6880 6718 / Passcode: 088984).
On August 18, 1959 in Williston, ND Joey Blaine Mahlen was born to parents Joel and Mabel (Vannatta) Mahlen. He was the youngest of six children to be raised in Bainville, MT. Growing up, the importance of family was instilled in Joe. After his father’s early passing, Joe was fortunate to have a loving extended family care for him. He spent countless hours helping his mom, aunts, and uncles canning vegetables, feeding the chickens, and doing farm work. He also worked for Carter Harmon, a local farmer. In his free time, Joe loved playing and watching basketball & football—a pastime that continued throughout his life.
Following his high school graduation, Joe began working on the oil rigs in eastern Montana and Wyoming. He eventually furthered his education and became a certified welder. Joe was especially proud to assist in the construction of the Laramie River Station, one of the country’s largest coal plants. Upon moving to Minnesota, Joe began a 40-year career with Republic Waste.
While working at a bar in Bainville, Joe met a young woman, Terry Fritsvold. Their relationship began with Joe writing his number on her hand. Joe and Terry were united in marriage in 1981 and were blessed with three children. The family settled in Minnesota. Although Joe and Terry parted ways, they continued a great friendship and kept their family close knit.
Joe was his children’s biggest supporter. He coached and attended countless games and school events. On weekends, Joe and the kids would spend time at the movies, Canterbury, Raceway Park, or Valleyfair. Some of their most memorable moments were road trips to visit family in North Dakota and family reunions hosted around the country. In later years, Joe was proud to earn the title of “grandpa.”
Joe’s life was enriched when he met Melody Vassoff online in 2011. After a rocky introduction and a fun evening at Cowboy Jacks, they were inseparable. With open arms, Melody and her children were welcomed into Joe’s family. He had a unique way of making everyone feel welcome.
Joe had a great sense of humor, delighted in embarrassing his children, and always asked for the “Norwegian Discount.” He was the worst backseat driver, never failing to proclaim his great driving record and numerous safety awards from work. Joe loved golfing, live music, dancing, and talking politics. A tough looking guy, Joe was a complete softie. After years of claiming to dislike cats, he became fast friends with Melody’s cat Baby. Joe will be remembered always for his kind heart and dedication to his family.
Joe is loved and missed by his fiancée: Melody M. Vassoff; children, Randy (Jade) Mahlen, Ryan (Jenna) Mahlen, Ashley (Matt Fox) Mahlen; step-children, Ben (Anna Flores) Vanderwaard, Nick (Lindsay Wheeler) Vanderwaard, Hans (Melissa) Vanderwaard, Joe (Emily) Vanderwaard; grandchildren: Levi, Hollie, Harrison, Henry, Arley, Mazie, Madison, Clara, Rose, Valen, Orin, another expected in December; siblings: Eunice Neshem, JoAnn (Paul) Picard, Donna (Gib) Elkins; sister-in-law, Eileen Mahlen; other loving relatives and friends.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Joel and Mabel (Vannatta) Mahlen; siblings: Arlene (Ken) Byre and Ralph Mahlen; brother-in-law, Gerald Neshem.Print Obituary & Condolences