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Former councilman dies

Harris Kittelson died Sunday at St. Joseph's Hospital in St. Paul after suffering a stroke a few days earlier. He was 79.

Kittelson, a printer by trade, served for many years on the City Council during two stints: From 1982-1993, at-large; and from 1995-2003, representing District 3 on the east side.

Current councilmember Wayne Beebe said he took Kittelson to breakfast Thursday morning at the South Fork Café to celebrate Kittelson's 79th birthday. Later that night he got word that Kittelson was taken by ambulance to the hospital.

"It's a real shock," Beebe said. "We were friends, socialized, and were on the council together for years. Harris knew a lot of different people and was always friendly.

"As a council member he tried to analyze the issues before making a decision. I found him to be a stable influence and pleasure to be with as a colleague on the council. He was a good, dedicated representative."

Kittelson worked at the River Falls Journal and later for Lillie Suburban papers for 27 years as a linotype operator.

Kittelson enjoyed gardening and taught knot tying for many years to Boy Scouts.

He was also known as a committed member at St. Bridget Catholic Church, where he served as usher and, most recently, as head usher.

Kittelson married Jean Huetmaker in 1952 in Glenwood City. They were married for 56 years and have four children, two grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

A Funeral Mass for Kittelson will be 11 a.m. Wednesday at St. Bridget Catholic Church. Visitation will begin at 9 a.m. and continue until time of services.

Military rites will be provided by River Falls veterans. The family prefers memorials.