Cover photo for John Terwilliger's Obituary
John Terwilliger Profile Photo
1950 John 2022

John Terwilliger

December 13, 1950 — January 2, 2022

Melrose, MN

John Claude Terwilliger was born on December 13, 1950, in Long Prairie, Minnesota to Lawrence and Lillian (Hineline) Terwilliger.  He graduated from Sauk Centre High School in 1969 and attended Alexandria Technical School for Carpentry.  John started working for a construction company in Brainerd and built his home in Garrison.  He later built his parent’s home on Fairy Lake in Sauk Centre.

John then worked for a time at Spanier Cabinets out of Melrose, before starting his own company with JCT Construction, with his main focus being on custom cabinetry.  He built his home and shop on his property north of Melrose.  John’s life work was woodworking, and he was very detailed in his craft and was known for being a perfectionist.

John loved spearing and was a member of the Dark House and Angling Association.  He also enjoyed deer hunting and was a life member of the Deer Hunters Chapter in Sauk Centre.  John was a member of First Lutheran Church in Sauk Centre and was honored to make the altar, pulpit and lectern that are still being used today.  One of his favorite memories was taking an Alaskan Cruise trip to Alaska with his girls.

John died on Sunday, January 2, 2022, at his home in rural Melrose at the age of 71.  He is survived by his daughters, Kristie Terwilliger of Hoffman and Kelly (Ryan Abbott) Terwilliger of Kemah, TX; grandsons, Liam, Tanner and Trevin; brother, Glen Terwilliger of Sauk Centre; sister, Karin Wessel of Sauk Rapids and many nieces and nephews.  John is preceded in death by his parents, Lawrence and Lillian; and sister, Ila Stepniak.

A Memorial Service will be held at 11:00 AM on Saturday, January 8, 2022, at First Lutheran Church in Sauk Centre.  Visitation will be held for one hour prior to the service at the church.

A live stream and recording of the service will be available 11:00 AM on Saturday, January 8, on the funeral home website.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of John Terwilliger, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Saturday, January 8, 2022

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

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Memorial Service

Saturday, January 8, 2022

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

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