Erwin Peter Kraai was born on November 4, 1926 in Orange City, Iowa. His parents were the late Christian Frederick and Anna Pearl; (Van Es) Kraai. Erwin was baptized and confirmed in Orange City, Iowa. He graduated from the High School with the class of 1944 in Orange City, Iowa and then graduated from the Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa with a degree in civil engineering.
On July 5, 1954 Erwin was united in marriage with Rolette Sandwick in Viroqua, Wisconsin. Their marriage was blessed with two daughters: Adele (Todd) Mann of Perham and Kristin (Fabio) Lewis Bardini of Salem, Massachusetts. Erwin was employed as an executive with Kodak in Rochester, New York. He was an officer of the Rochester Oratorio Society and active member of his church. Erwin enjoyed reading, and traveling for business and pleasure. He also enjoyed genealogy, golf, grandchildren, tending his lake and farm property in upstate New York and telling stories.
Erwin made his home in rural Perham to be closer to his family. On May 6, 2018 Erwin passed away peacefully at Timber Lodge in Perham Living at 91 years of age. He will be dearly missed by his family and friends. Preceding Erwin in death were his parents; wife, Rolette; sister and brother-in-law, Mary Ann (Robert) Utteck.
Erwin is survived by his daughters: Adele (Todd) Mann of Perham and Kristin (Fabio) Lewis Bardini of Salem, Massachusetts; 9 grandchildren: Torin Mann, Elling Mann and Leif Mann all of Laramie, Wyoming; Erik Lewis of New York, New York; Nils Lewis of Geneva, Switzerland; Anna Lewis of New York, New York; Kristina Lewis of Worchester, Massachusetts; Ilaria Bardini and Cosina Bardini both of Salem, Massachusetts; many other relatives and a host of friends.