Mosaic 04


November 24, 1946 ~ August 24, 2023 (age 76) 76 Years Old


Wilbur "Bill" Japp, of Braham, after a brief battle with pancreatic cancer, peacefully passed into the arms of his Lord and Savior on Thursday, August 24, 2023, at his home with his family.  He was only 76 years old.

Wilbur John Japp, lovingly known as Bill, was born on November 24, 1946, in Little Falls, Minnesota to parents William and Marcella (Bentler) Japp. He was the third of five children. The family lived in Randall, Crosby Ironton and eventually Northeast Minneapolis where Bill graduated from Minneapolis Vocational Technical High School with training in printing.  He worked as a typesetter at Mono-Trade and Minneapolis Tribune.  In the 1970’s he learned flooring installation working with Dave Hass and eventually became his own boss by starting Bill’s Carpet and Tile, where he was able to help homeowners with his quality work.  He volunteered his talents whenever possible, including installing the carpet in the sanctuary of Oxlip Church in the 1980’s (which is still there) and helping with the carpet in the new addition in 2013.  He retired from the carpet business in 2007 but never really stopped working. As we all know, building and remodeling and working with his hands were things he loved to do. 

In April 2000, Bill married Sheila.  Together they’ve lived in several homes that have seen the benefits of their creative talents.  This includes 5 homes in Minnesota and 3 in Texas!

In his younger years, Bill loved drag racing in his “beloved” 1964 Olds 442.  He even held the track record at Twin City Speedway for a while.  He’s always loved hunting and fishing and traveling.  He spent many years going on hunting trips with the guys to Montana or Alaska and other places.  He has traveled to almost every state in the US, and Mexico, Cyprus, the Holy Land, Japan, Germany, and England.

Bill was always very active in the church, attending Oxlip Evangelical Free Church beginning in the 1970’s.  After moving with Sheila to Rush City, they then attended Pine City Evangelical Free Church.  Over the years, he’s gone on several mission trips including Panama, Jamaica and Corpus Christi, Texas.  He’s always loved people and wanted to help friends and family in any way he could. Many times, over the years, if he heard you were laid off from work, he would conveniently need help on a job. 

Bill had a wonderful, sarcastic, quirky sense of humor.  Always a twinkle in his eye and a word of encouragement for others.  He loved his “dad” jokes and was excited when he found someone new to share them with. He loved Sheila, his family, and he loved his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  He was such a blessing and he touched so many lives.

Bill is preceded in death by his parents, brother Paul Japp, grandchildren Allen Kelling and Grace Kelling.

He will be lovingly remembered by his wife Sheila; daughters, Karen (Gary) Putnam and Debby (Ron) Gohl; step-children, Scott (Kodi) Kelling, Jon Kelling (Alicia S.), Eric (Kari) Kelling, Amanda (Jamison) Sundermeyer, and Daniel Kelling (Karen); grandchildren, Jake (Claire), Luke (Lydia), Adam, James (Jenna), Katie, Anna, Joel, Timmy, Samuel, Joseph, Leah, Greta, Rylee, Emma, Johan, Alanna; great grandchildren, Eloise, Eden, Jace, Elayna, Donovan, Isaiah, and June; siblings, Joe (Carol) Japp, Pat Jeukens, and Joyce (John) Sande; many extended family and friends.

A Memorial Service will be held at 2:00 pm on Wednesday, August 30, 2023 at the Oxlip Church in Isanti with Pastor Joel Preston officiating.

A Memorial Visitation will be held 1 hour prior to the service at the church.

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Memorial Visitation
August 30, 2023

1:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Oxlip Evangelical Free Church
29237 Roanoke St. NW
Isanti, MN 55040

Memorial Service
August 30, 2023

2:00 PM
Oxlip Evangelical Free Church
29237 Roanoke St. NW
Isanti, MN 55040


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