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Joseph Potter

Dec. 14, 1946-Feb. 4, 2011

Joseph A. Potter, 64, of White Earth, died Friday, February 4, 2011 at his residence in White Earth.

A mass of Christian burial for Joe was held at 11 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 8 in St. Benedict's Catholic Church, White Earth, with interment at the Potter Family Cemetery in White Earth.

Visitation took place at the White Earth Community Center on Monday, Feb. 7.

Joseph Anthony Potter was born to Charles and Verna (Fairbanks) Potter on December 14, 1946 in White Earth. Joe grew up in the White Earth and Detroit Lakes area and as a young boy moved with his family to Minneapolis. After he graduated from high school, Joe attended Augsburg College for three years. In 1965, Joe proudly served his country during the Vietnam War and after earning two purple hearts and several campaign medals, he was honorably discharged.

In 1970, Joe was united in marriage with his childhood sweetheart, Patricia Day. During his working career, Joe was employed as an ICW worker and advocate for women in Minneapolis. In 1994, he moved back to White Earth and worked as a chemical dependency counselor and court advocate for the community.

Joe was forced to retire due to health related issues associated with his service time in Vietnam. With his community involvement, Joe helped organize and was one of the founders of the White Earth Honor Guard. He also helped facilitate AA meetings and lectures.

Joe loved spending time with his family, especially his 62 grandchildren and great grandchildren. He also enjoyed bird watching, traveling and visiting with his friends.

Joe will be remembered and missed by his wife Patricia, of White Earth; children Jeffrey (Mickie) Potter of White Earth, JoMarie (Gerald) Potter of White Earth, Shelly (Joe) Wanna of Coon Rapids, Minn., Kelly Potter of Minneapolis, MN, Joel (Darcie) Potter of Wahkon, Minn., Jeremy Potter of Moose Lake, Minn., and Jamie (Mike) Day of White Earth.

He is also survived by 31 grandchildren and 31 great grandchildren; brothers LaVerne Fairbanks of Mahnomen and Duane Potter of Lino Lakes, Minn.; and one sister; Theresa Potter of Spokane, Wash.

Preceding him in death were his parents; daughter Tanya Day; siblings Charles Fairbanks, Margaret King, Thelma Potter and twins Everett Potter and Francis Potter; as well as one grandson, Charles Connors.

David Donehower Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements. Memories of Joe may be shared online at