John Lynn "Jack" Kleven, 69, Grand Forks and Minot, died peacefully at North Florida Regional Hospital in Gainesville, Fla., on Friday, Dec. 27, 2013.
He was born in Grand Forks on March 5, 1944, to John B. and Lillian N. Kleven. He graduated from Central High School in 1962. Apparently, he and his older sisters had a pretty fun upbringing, but he told only a handful of the stories!
Jack attended the University of North Dakota where he studied civil engineering. He married Andrea Fehr on Oct. 31, 1964, at Bethany Lutheran in St. Hilaire, Minn. He sometimes joked that he thought he was at a Halloween party.
Jack and Andrea moved from Grand Forks to Minot in 1968 where Jack was the office manager for Twin City Testing. He started and owned Dakota Testing Labs in 1972 and then Materials Testing Services in 1984. He ran the company until he sold it and retired in 1998. He remained active on various technical committees of the American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) throughout his retirement. Jack was proud of the standard procedures his companies developed and followed, and more proud that his dedicated employees were able to purchase Material Testing Services when he retired.
Jack and Andrea lived in Eastwood Park in Minot for 30-plus years, surrounded by wonderful neighbors and friends. He then moved to Grand Forks where he resided from 2004 until 2013. Most recently, he lived in Moody, Ala., where he could be in a warmer climate during the winter.
Jack was very active with hockey throughout his life. He served on the board of directors and as president of the North Dakota Amateur Hockey Association for many years, was actively involved in establishing the hockey program in Minot and later served on the board of directors of the Minot Hockey Boosters. Jack also helped plan and run the 2005 IIHF World Junior Tournament that was held in Grand Forks. He and Andrea were also active with Mouse River Players in Minot in the mid- to late 1970s. His most proud achievement was being inducted into the NDAHA and MHB Halls of Fame. He enjoyed attending all UND sports, especially hockey and volleyball, and watching his grandchildren participate in their activities.
Jack always made friends easily and always enjoyed the company of others. In the words from one Eastwood Park neighbor, "Jack was such a kind man. He was always smiling and so kind to others. He is probably in heaven telling bawdy jokes and laughing with Andrea and our other loved ones."
He is survived by: his children, Lise (Harold) Ciancio of Moody, Ala., Jay (Miranda) Kleven of Grand Forks, and Vera Kleven of Phoenix, Ariz.; six grandchildren, Bryce (Kristin) Ciancio, Kristen Ciancio, Norah Kleven, Madeline Kleven, Anne Kleven and Joseph Kleven; two great-grandchildren, Jack and Kaylea Ciancio; two sisters, Audrey (William) Barrett, and LaVonne Russell (Joseph) Hootman; one brother-in-law, Gerald Fehr; and several nieces, nephews, great-nieces, and great-nephews.
He was preceded in death by: his wife, Andrea; his parents, John and Lillian; his father-in-law, Jacob Fehr; two brothers-in-law, William Barrett and Maurice Russell.
The funeral will be held on Friday, Jan. 10, at 11 a.m. in Immanuel Lutheran Church, 1710 Cherry St., Grand Forks, with a luncheon reception to follow.
Interment will be at Bethany Lutheran Cemetery, East Grand Forks, Minn., next to his beloved wife Andrea.
Visitation will be on Thursday, Jan. 9, from 6 to 8 p.m., with a prayer service at 7:30 p.m., in Amundson Funeral Home, 2975 S. 42nd St., Grand Forks.
Arrangements are with Amundson Funeral Home of Grand Forks, (www.amundsonfuneralhome.com).
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to the Minot Area Youth Skaters Association (MAYSA), 2501 W. Burdick Expressway, Minot ND 58701 or to the UND Theatre Arts Department, c/o UND Alumni Foundation, Attn: Stephanie Peterson, 3501 University Ave, Stop 8157, Grand Forks, ND 58202.