You are here


John Wayne Patrick Bunnell passed away Sunday, May 5, 2019, in Fort Frances, Ont.

He was 65.

John was a proud father and a loyal friend. He is survived by his four children, Patrick Bunnell of Alexandria, Mn.; Miranda Kruse-Bunnell of Miami, Fla.; Brandi Kruse of Seattle, Wash.; and Timothy Kruse of Buffalo Lake, Mn.

He also leaves behind three grandchildren, Brayden, Emrey, and Marek; his sisters, Maureen Bunnell and Elizabeth Rathgaber (Terry); and nephew, Jefferson Bunnell of Calgary, Alta. 

John is also survived by his life-long partner, Sandra Kruse of Fargo, ND, who remained close with John long after their separation and until the day of his death.

John is preceded in death by his mother and father, William John Gregory Bunnell and Lauris-Ann Bunnell (Sutton); his baby brother, William Lawrence Gregory, and brother, Darrell Robert William Bunnell.

John was raised in Fort Frances and attended Fort Frances High School. He met Sandra, who he called the love of his life, at Smokey Bear Park at the age of 20.

The couple relocated to Fargo, ND, where John worked as an electronics technician for many years. Together they journeyed around the United States and Canada, sometimes by motorcycle.

They loved coming back home to Rainy Lake for camping, canoeing, and fishing with friends and family. 

The couple settled on a farmstead in rural Glyndon, Mn., where they raised their four children and hosted many annual family events. John instilled in his children a deep love of the outdoors and taught them to be fiercely independent.

When his four kids had all left the house, John returned to Canada and travelled across its many provinces—from east to west and far north—working for Snap-On Tools before settling back in Fort Frances. 

John was one of a kind. He was a truly original character who delighted both complete strangers and those close to him with his unique sense of humor and witty one-liners.

He loved to brag about his children and regale his friends with stories of his many adventures. He often dreamed of living out his final days canoeing the boundary waters.

Everywhere John went, he left a mark on those he encountered. The world will never see another like him. He will be deeply missed.

John loved to read and write. He wrote these words in his diary before his death:

“I go now to a different place and I do not fear.”

The Kruse-Bunnell family is forever grateful to all those who supported him on his journey through life.

A private family service was held.

Online condolences may be made in care of