John Wallace Salmela

John Wallace Salmela, 75, passed away on Monday, Feb. 5, 2018. John was born on April 8, 1942 in Virginia, MN, the son of Wallace and Bernice. John grew up in the Virginia area and graduated from the Roosevelt High School. John was united in marriage… Please register for a free account or log in below to access this content. […]

Frank G. Erchul

Frank G. Erchul, 92, of McKinley, died Tuesday Feb. 6, 2018 at New Journey Residence in Biwabik. Frank was born January 3, 1926 in McKinley to Joseph and Angeline (Zgonc) Erchul.  He attended McKinley and Gilbert Schools and later served our country … Please register for a free account or log in below to access this content.

Waino “Bert” Wilbert Ranta

Waino “Bert” Wilbert Ranta, 93, of Virginia, passed away Monday, Feb. 5, 2018 at Essentia Health Virginia. Waino was born January 28, 1925 in Eveleth to Waino Ranta and Hilma Pellinen. Bert was an Army Veteran, serving in WWII. On January 29, 1949, h… Please register for a free account or log in below to access this content.

James David Grummett

James David Grummett died on Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018 at Carefree Assisted Living in Cook, MN after a courageous battle with Alzheimer’s. Jim was born on September 9, 1940 in Duluth to Earl and Margie (Temby) Grummett. After graduating from Two Harbo… Please register for a free account or log in below to access this content.

Elvie Marie Luoma

Elvie Marie Luoma, 93, died Sunday, Feb. 4, 2018 at St. Michael’s Health and Rehabilitation Center in Virginia. She was born on April 14, 1924 to Sam and Fannie (Heinonen) Mileusnich in Crosby.  She was raised by her mother and step father, Emil Laur… Please register for a free account or log in below to access this content.

Pastor Kristin Foster:

She stayed (and she made a difference)


(From left) Kristin Foster’s first article for Hometown Focus was published on Jan. 2, 2009. Kristin was instrumental in the creation of many important programs such as SWOP (Student Work Outreach Program) and Earth Fest. SWOP celebrated 20 years las… Please register for a free account or log in below to access this content.

The stories they help us tell: A tribute to local journalism



Messiah Lutheran Church ELCA, Mt. Iron, is hosting a communitywide celebration of the nearly three decades of ministry of Pastor Kristin M. Foster with Messiah and the community. The event will be held on Sunday, Feb. 11. (See p. 5 for details.) Phot… Please register for a free account or log in below to access this content.

Fire Seed


The 81-year-old Messiah Lutheran Church in Mt. Iron that was destroyed by fire on July 14, 1998. Submitted photo. AUTHOR’S NOTE: The following essay appeared in the Mesabi Daily News on October 4, 1998, the first in a series of guest columns from … Please register for a free account or log in below to access this content.

Offering hope: She’s gifted at “fostering” the gifts in us



Pastor Kristin Foster is shown inside Messiah Lutheran Church in Mt. Iron. Submitted photo. MT. IRON – You could ask any one of dozens of active members of Messiah Lutheran Church to reflect on the ministry of our Pastor Kristin Foster—and that of… Please register for a free account or log in below to access this content.

Kristin Foster: My pastor, my friend



MT. IRON – Our church was struck by lightning in 1998. At the time it seemed to be an end as we had just lost our beloved church building, but the church is more than a building, it’s about the people. And we would find out in the days and weeks ahea… Please register for a free account or log […]


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