Gerald “Gerry” Franklin Ensign, age 75 of Litchfield, MN passed away on Sunday, April 18, 2021 at Harmony River Senior Living in Hutchinson, Minnesota. A walk through visitation held from 4-7 PM on Friday April 23, 2021 at Johnson Hagglund Funeral and Cremation in Litchfield, MN. Military Honors will be provided by the Litchfield Military Honor Guard at 3:30 PM at Johnson Hagglund. Interment will be held at the Minnesota State Veterans Cemetery in Little Falls, MN at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to the V.F.W. Post 2818.
He was born April 14, 1946 in Alexandria, Minnesota to Percy and Wanda (Franklin) Ensign. He grew up in Alexandria and graduated from Alexandria High School in 1964. On December 1, 1964, Gerry enlisted in the U.S. Navy. After boot camp in San Diego, CA, he went to school at Balboa Naval Hospital in San Diego and became a Hospital Corpsman. His first duty station out of school was at the Naval Hospital in Yokosuka, Japan. Gerry arrived in Vietnam in November 1966 and was assigned to 1st Battalion 26th Marines, Bravo Company, 3rd Platoon. For the next twelve months, he would be at various locations including Da Nang, Hill 55, Liberty Bridge, Hill 881 South, Khe Sanh and Phu Bai. His last year in the navy was spent at the Naval Air Station in Corpus Christi, Texas. Gerry was honorably discharged from the Navy on November 31, 1968.
On December 28, 1968, Gerry married Elaine Krick in Bisbee, North Dakota. In August 1969, Gerry and Elaine moved to Litchfield, Minnesota where they had two sons. Gerry attended Willmar Junior College and St. Cloud State University but never received a degree due to illness. In 1975, Gerry began a twenty-six year career as a carrier for the US Postal Service in Litchfield, Gerry and Elaine separated and Gerry remarried Kathy Mellgren in 1981 where they had one son together. Gerry separated from Kathy and went on to retire from the Postal Service in June 2001. Gerry was a life member of the VFW and former All-State VFW Post commander. He was a member of the USS Meeker Co Navy Club, Khe Sanh Veterans Organization, Vietnam Veterans of American and Vietnam Vets Last Mans Club. Since retirement, Gerry has enjoyed traveling, throwing darts in league, fishing, deer hunting, golf and visiting casinos. He also called BINGO at the VFW in Litchfield.
Gerry is survived by sons Joshua (Tammy) Ensign of Buxton, ND; Zachary (Melissa) Ensign of Sartell, MN, Dustin (Jennifer) Ensign of Watertown, MN; eight grandchildren, Kaitlin, Lora, Megan, Beretta, Benelli, Hoyt, Landon and Winter. He is also survived by two sisters Arlene Bergemann of La Luz, NM and Sue Nolan of Alexandria, MN. Gerry was preceded in death by his parents, infant daughter, and brother, Roger Ensign.
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