American Veteran 04

Vernon Francis Caroline

July 26, 1923 ~ January 28, 2022 (age 98)



Vernon Francis Caroline, 98, passed away peacefully on Friday, January 28, 2022, at the Ecumen Lakeside Commons Assisted Living facility in Maplewood, MN.  He was born on July 26, 1923 in Kenmare, North Dakota to Joseph and Theresa (Gleisner) Caroline.

Vernon graduated from John Marshall High School in St. Paul, MN in 1942.  Following graduation, he served his country during WWII with the US Army Air Force in Lavenham, England.  After the war, he attended St Thomas College in St. Paul, earning a degree in Economics/Business Administration.  On April 26, 1947, Vernon married Mary Ann Novack at St. Stanislaus Catholic Church in St. Paul.

In 1949, Vernon was employed by Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Minnesota.  In 1951, he was hired by the Patterson Dental Supply Company.  He worked for Pattersons until his retirement in 1989.

Vernon and Mary Ann Caroline moved to Little Canada, MN in 1952 where they raised their five children, Michael, Colleen, Patrick, Timothy, and Maureen.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Mary Ann Caroline, a sister, Verna Wirtz, a brother, James Caroline, son-in-law Brocklyn Spike, and grand-daughter Rebecca (Spike) Zander.

Vernon is survived by his son Michael Caroline and his wife, Ellen Kalenberg of Apopka, FL, daughter Colleen Spike of St. Peter, MN, son Patrick Caroline and his wife Jiah of Forest Grove, OR, son Timothy Caroline and his wife Susan of Moose Lake, MN, and daughter Maureen Espelien and her husband Robert of Oakdale, MN, grandchildren, Melinda, Sean, Katharine, Alex, Brennan, Sheenagh, Erick, Kevin, and Kelsey, great-grandchildren Claire, Kiera, Garrett, Ava, and great-great-grandchild Declan.


A Celebration of Life honoring Vernon Caroline will be held later this summer at a time and place to be determined. 

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