Kenneth E. Youngquist, age 57, of St. Francis died June 27, 2017 at home surrounded by his family. He was a proud Minneapolis Police Officer. A memorial service will be held at 11:00 A.M. Saturday, JULY 8th at South Isanti Baptist Church, 3367 County Road 5 NE, Isanti. A memorial visitation will be held one hour prior to the service at the church and also from 4:00 – 8:00 P.M. Friday, JULY 7th at Strike Life Tributes in ISANTI. Interment will be in Isanti Union Cemetery.
Kenneth Edward Youngquist was born on February 1, 1960 in Hayward California to Lawrence and Mildred (Polivka) Youngquist. After moving several times due to father’s job with United Airlines Ground Maintenance Crew, he graduated high school from Willow River, MN in 1978. They moved again to Gresham, OR where Kenny earned a degree in Forestry from Mount Hood Community College. In 1980, he moved back to Minnesota with his parents and attended Mesabi Community College (now called Mesabi Range College) in Eveleth, MN and then Vermillion Community College in Ely, MN, both for a degree in Fish/Game and Wildlife to be a Game Warden. He worked one summer for the DNR at Banning National Park near Sandstone, MN.
In 1982, Kenny enlisted in the US Army and attended Basic Training at Fort Leonard-Wood MO and AIT at the Defense Language Institute at the Presidio of Monterey, CA, where he took a 48 week accelerated course in Czech. Being half Czech (His mother’s maiden name means soup in Czech), it was with a sense of pride and accomplishment that he was able to learn to speak his grandparent’s native language. In 1984, Kenny was offered an opportunity to attend the college of his choice to become an officer in the US Army, through the Reserve Officer’s Training Corp (ROTC) to continue with his career in the military. He then attended Bemidji State University where he met his future wife Sheila K. Andrew, who was already attending as an ROTC scholarship recipient. They were commissioned as Second Lieutenants in the US Army Reserve in May 1986, and were married that same September. Kenny fulfilled his military obligations as an officer in the MN Army National Guard and as a Captain, he was the last unit commander at the Princeton Guard Armory for the 434th Maintenance Battalion, 34th Infantry Division until 1992 when he was honorably discharged and resigned his commission. Kenny also achieved his 4 year Bachelors of Science degree in Criminal Justice in 1988, attaining his secret life-long dream of being a police officer when he was accepted into the MPD Police Academy in June 1989, a job he never regretted and served each day with pride and distinction at the MPD 5th precinct (as his health would allow) up to his retirement in December 2014.
Douglas James, his first born, arrived February 6, 1987. Followed by Pamela Jo on August 2, 1990 and Sarah Jean on March 16, 1995. No man could be prouder or more joyful at the birth of each precious gifts. Until Evangeline Kay arrived on May 27, 2015 – Kenny’s first grandchild taught him a whole new depth of joy and fulfillment.
Kenneth was stricken with Glioblastoma, diagnosed on December 19, 2012, after his first tumor removal from his brain on December 17. He fought bravely for 4 ½ years, wanting only to return to the streets of Minneapolis to serve as a cop again and to take care of the family he loved. He passed away June 27, 2017 at home surrounded by his family and friends at the age of 57 years 4 months and 26 days. He was preceded in death by his parents.
Kenneth will be lovingly remembered by his wife, Sheila; son, Douglas; daughters, Pamela (Brian) Adkins, Sarah (Tammara) Bebensee; granddaughter, Evangeline Adkins; three siblings, Ronald (Wanda) Youngquist, Sheila Ann Youngquist, Curt (Tammy) Youngquist; and many other relatives and friends.