Cover photo for James Anthony Dahling's Obituary
1954 James 2022

James Anthony Dahling

April 2, 1954 — October 2, 2022


James Anthony Dahling, of Fridley, formerly of Bellechester, passed away on Sunday, October 2, 2022.

Jim was born on April 2, 1954, to Vernon and Lucille (nee Reuter) Dahling in Zumbrota. He was educated at St. Mary’s Catholic School in Bellechester and was a 1972 graduate of Goodhue High School. He attended technical college in Rochester and Bemidji, acquiring an associate degree as a Machinist. He worked in Red Wing as a machinist at Behrens and then took a position with the City of Red Wing where he worked for over 20 years. He was promoted from garbage collector to mechanic to Operations Foreman of the public works garage during his time with the city. Jim was active in his local AFSCME Union and held leadership roles in his local and in MN AFSCME Council 65 serving as Council President for many years prior to joining the Council as a staff member. He was a Union Business Representative for AFSCME for the last 17 years prior to his retirement in 2017. Jim resided at the home farm his entire life until he moved to Fridley, MN to be close to family, as his health failed.

He is an avid motorcyclist, traveling and riding many a mile with his soulmate Jill. He was a member of the Association of Independent Riders, St. Croix Valley Riders, and ABATE. He was a member of the Motorcycle Riders Foundation and was inducted into their Hall of Fame in 2021. He was a three-time national champion in his class drag racing motorcycles. Jim shared his love of motorcycling and his belief in motorcycle safety by being a motorcycle safety instructor for the Minnesota Motorcycle Safety Center for many years. He was a member of the Knights of Columbus of Bellechester and the Democratic Party, where he ran for State Representative in the 1970s. He represented Wabasha County DFLers at two National Democratic conventions.

Jim is survived by one sister: Ruth Loia of Roseville, MN and his companion: Jill Kielblock of Saint Paul, MN, his two nieces: Lisa (Craig) Thompson of Eagan, MN, Mary (John) Neuman of Eden Prairie, MN and one nephew: Christopher (Kathryn) Dahling of Rosemount, MN. He is further survived by his great nieces and nephews: Abby, Matthew, Jack and Michael Thompson, Emma and Katelyn Neuman, Isabella, and Elizabeth Dahling.

He was preceded in death by his parents, his brother Gerald Dahling, sister-in-law Edell Dahling, brother-in-law Lou Loia and one nephew: David Dahling.

Funeral services will be held at the Mahn Family Funeral Home-Larson Chapel in Zumbrota on Saturday, October 8, 2022, at 11:00 a.m. Randy Swenson will officiate, and music will be provided by Katie Jane Cummings. Terry Heimer will provide a eulogy.

Visitation will be held at the Mahn Family Funeral Home-Larson Chapel in Zumbrota on Friday, October 7, 2022, from 4-7 p.m. and again on Saturday one hour prior to services.

Burial will follow in the Belvidere Union Cemetery, rural Bellechester. A luncheon and celebration of Jim’s life will be held at the Zumbro Falls Golf Course following the burial. Jeffrey Vincent will conduct graveside services.

Pallbearers will be Colin Atkinson, Terry Heimer, Kevin Lee Kautz, Rich Majerus, George Mietzner, Rick Nelson, John Neuman, and Craig Thompson. Honorary Pallbearers include Members of the Association of Independent Riders, Walter Binder, Christopher Dahling and Neil Stehr.

This is a biker funeral, casual dress, jeans and leather are expected.

Memorials preferred to the Motorcycle Riders Foundation Education and Awareness (MRF A&E) at PO Box 581, Big Lake, MN 55309.

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

Service Schedule

Past Services


Friday, October 7, 2022

4:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

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Funeral Service

Saturday, October 8, 2022

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

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