James Mireault, age 80, of Fosston, MN, passed away on Monday, March 18th, at Sanford Hospital in Fargo, ND. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, March 23rd, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Fosston with Father JohnMelkies Suvakeen and Father Vincent Miller Concelebrating. Interment will be in St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery, Fosston. Visitation will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. with a 6:45 p.m. Rosary followed by a 7:00 p.m. prayer service on Friday, March 22nd. There will also be reviewal for one hour prior to the service on Saturday morning at the church. All visitation will be held at St. Mary’s Catholic Church. Arrangements are with the Carlin Funeral Home of Fosston and messages of condolence may be sent at www.carlinfuneral.com.
James Cyril Mireault was born on July 9, 1938 in Crookston, Minnesota to parents Mose and Lily Casavant Mireault. He was baptized and confirmed at St. Dorothy’s Catholic Church in Dorothy, Minnesota. He attended country school (beginning at the age of four) and then in Red Lake Falls where he graduated from Lafayette High School in 1955. Jim was honored to be offered the chance to play football for the University of Minnesota following high school. Due to financial reasons, he was unable to attend the University and began work for area farmers on their fields. He also worked at American Crystal Sugar in Crookston and in the Alfalfa Plant. While buying pies at a local Crookston grocery store, he met the love of his life.
James was united in marriage to Madonna Rose Bougie on May 6, 1957 at St. Anne’s Catholic Church in Crookston. After their marriage, they moved to Minneapolis where Jim worked for Ford Motor Company. They returned to Crookston and Jim again started employment at American Crystal, this time for the next 10 years. As a young man, Jim always had a passion for the grocery business. He began driving truck for the Sweetheart Bread Company and later Holsum Bread Company, at which time they moved to Fargo, North Dakota.
As time went on, Jim and Rose wanted to purchase their own grocery store. During the search for a store to buy, Jim ran across an advertisement for an appliance and electric store for sale in Fosston, Minnesota. After seeing the store and the town, Jim and Rose saw this place as a perfect fit for their family. In 1971, they purchased Halvorson’s Electric from Bennie and Belle Halvorson and moved their growing family of six children to Fosston. At that time, they changed the name of the store to Mireault’s Appliance. Through the years, Mireault’s sold a variety of merchandise, including Honda, Ski-Doo, Crestliner boats, motors, fabric and appliances.
As the economy took a downturn in the late 1970’s, they restructured their business and brought in home decorating; stocking carpet, wallpaper and more appliances in 1980. Jim and Rose also sold and installed draperies for over 25 years.
In May of 1994, they purchased the Carlin Furniture Store buildings and expanded the business by adding the fire hall in between the stores and renovated the Carlin store to form what is now Mireault’s Home Furnishings. Due to health concerns, Jim retired in 1996 and sold the entire existing business to his son, Greg.
Jim was a member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church where he was a Trustee for 17 years and was an active part of other church committees. He also was a dedicated member of the Fosston community and supported the town to this day. He was on the Fosston Hospital Board, Fosston Community Club (past President), and was a participant in many other town activities and events through the years.
After their retirement, Jim and Rose spent 17 winters in Mesa, Arizona. During the summer months, a great joy for them was spending weekends at the lake in Warroad, fishing and spending time with family. A dream trip for Jim was an Alaskan fishing trip with his brothers and also fly-in trips in Canada with family and friends. Most important for both Jim and Rose was faith and family. Jim dearly loved his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. They were honored by the Diocese of Crookston by receiving the Bishop’s Medal of the Diocese of Crookston.
James passed away on Monday, March 18, 2019 at Sanford Hospital in Fargo, North Dakota at the age of 80 years.
Survivors include five children, Renee (husband, Jon) Rustad of Fosston, Cynthia Mireault (husband, Paul Rasmussen) of Bagley, MN, Greg (wife, Keri) Mireault of Fosston, Mary (husband, Scott) Blotske of Bemidji, MN, and Al (wife, Wendy) Mireault of Dallas, TX; daughter-in-law, Robin (husband, Chris) Butirro of Hoffman Estates, IL; 19 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren and one more due in April; three siblings, Dorothy Roi of Granite Falls, MN, Gerald (wife, Joan) Mireault of Crookston, MN, and Richard (wife, Donna) Mireault of Hugo, MN. Many nieces, nephews, and cousins also survive.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Lily and Mose Mireault; son, Timothy James Mireault, in 2003; brother, Frenchie and wife, Donna Mireault; infant brother, Gerard; and brother-in-law, Wilfred Roi.