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Thomas Nathan Polifka

Thomas Nathan Polifka, 78, of Perham, Minn., died at the Broen Memorial Home, Fergus Falls, Minn., on Friday, Nov. 4, 2011, after a courageous and long battle with leukemia.

Funeral services for Polifka was Tuesday, Nov. 8, at St. Paul's Lutheran Church, Perham, with Pastor Carl Noble officiating. Visitation was Monday, Nov. 7, at Schoeneberger Funeral Home, Perham. A prayer service and visitation also were held. Burial took place in the Fairmount Cemetery, Fairmount, N.D.

Thomas was born June 4, 1933, the son of Clifford R. and Grace E. (Doleman) Polifka, in Tintah, Minn. On January 3, 1959, Thomas and Constance Steffens were united in marriage in Fairmount. After serving four years in the U.S. Navy, Thomas was a 30-year member of the North Dakota Air Guard, working as a Quality Control Inspector. He retired, in 1990, as Chief Master Sergeant. Thomas continued his career as Quality Control Inspector, for eight years, with Mid-America Aviation. He and Connie retired to Big Pine Lake, rural Perham, in 2000. Thomas enjoyed hunting and fishing and loved military history. His great joy was the time he spent with his grandchildren.

Surviving Thomas is his wife, Connie, Perham; children, Stephanie (Todd) Barney, Perham, Kim (Mark) Kroll, Duluth, Minn., and Mike (Laura), Minneapolis; grandchildren, Nicholas, Alexander, and Kellyn Barney and Thomas and Ian Kroll as well as three brothers, Neil (Judy), Owen, and John (Sharon).

Preceding Thomas in death are his parents and one daughter, Kelley Lynne.

Schoeneberger Funeral Home, Perham, is in charge of the arrangements. Online tributes may be posted at