Obit: Haaya, Emil #2 (1882 - 1941)

Contact: Sandy (Safemaster) Seiler

Surnames: Haaya, Mattson

----Source: OWEN ENTERPRISE (Owen, Clark Co., Wis.) 09/25/1941

Haaya, Emil (4 SEP 1882 - 21 SEP 1941)

Funeral services were conducted Wednesday afternoon from the Finnish Lutheran church for Emil Haaya, 58, retired Owen businessman who accidentally lost his life while hunting on the Felix Sapetta farm seven miles north of the city last Sunday.

Emil and a friend, Eino Backe, had been hunting together Saturday afternoon, the opening day of the bird season. That night Mr. Haaya told friends that he had not had any luck hunting except for killing an owl and that he was going out again the first thing Sunday morning.

Sunday he drove north of the city to the Felix Sapetta farm, arriving there at about nine o’clock.

The Sapetta family invited Emil to return to the house at noon and have dinner with them, but he declined saying that he would drive his car down the lane through the open field to the woods and hunt until two or three o’clock in the afternoon.

Late in the afternoon Mr. Sapetta, while after the cows, noticed Mr. Haaya’s car still in the field and thought that he would soon be showing up as it would be getting dark in the woods within a short time.

When Mr. Haaya did not show up long after darkness had settled in Mr. Sapetta became alarmed and notified the Taylor county sheriff, Charlie Stellick, at Medford.

The sheriff arrived at the scene and notified Chief of Police Henry Reigel at Owen, who immediately organized a posse. At 9:30 over 40 persons left the city and drove to the Sapetta farm where they joined with farmers and other volunteers to begin a hunt.

At 11:45, Charles Thorne, a farmer residing in that community, came upon the body as he spotted Haaya’s gun with his flashlight while following a fence line.

The accident had occurred the first thing in the morning as Mr. Haaya was going through the fence at the edge of the woods.

The Taylor county coroner, Dave Ruesch, of Medford was called to the scene and stated that "Emil Haaya came to his death by an accident...from the discharge of his 16 gauge shot gun which struck him under the left arm."

Monday of this week marked Mr. Haaya’s 25th year in the city of Owen.

The Enterprise will carry a complete obituary of Mr. Haaya in its next week issue.

(Follow on in 10/02/1941 Owen Enterprise)

A week ago Wednesday the business places of this city closed their doors to the public for an hour from two o’clock until three p.m., out of due respect and honor to Emil Haaya, whose final rites were being read at the Finnish Lutheran Church.

Mr. Haaya, who a week ago last Monday would have celebrated his 25th anniversary as a resident and former businessman in the City of Owen, had met his death due to an accidental discharge of his gun while hunting birds on the Felix Sapetta farm seven miles north of the city Sunday afternoon, Sept. 21.

Emil Haaya was born in Virolahti, Finland, on Sept. 4, 1882. He came to America as a young man and worked during his early manhood life in Michigan and northern Minnesota before coming to Owen in 1916. At that time the Mattson and Haaya grocery store was established in business in Owen. This partnership continued until 1930 at which time Mr. Haaya and son, Donald, took over the business and continued to operate it until this spring.

Early this year Mr. Haaya received serious injuries in a fall from the roof of his home where he was working, and fractured both of his ankles. Since that time it had been hard for him to get about and was unable to continue working.

He enjoyed daily visits up town and with his many friends. This fall he was eagerly awaiting the hunting season as a doctor had recommended hunting to him as a good means of exercising his feet by walking on soft soil to aid in loosening up the muscles and chords in his feet.

His accidental death came as a great shock to this community as he was a man that was loved by both young and old and enjoyed perhaps the greatest acquaintance and friendship of any one in the city.

During the recent Finnish crisis, Emil was an ardent worker among those helping in Finnish relief. He was one of the oldest members of the Finnish Lutheran church congregation.

His passing is mourned by his wife, Johanna, nee Johanna Mattson, whom he married on Oct. 27, 1908, at Eveleth, Minn., a son, Donald, and a daughter, Thelma, and a host of friends.

Among those from away that were here for the services were Mr. and Mrs. John Jackson and Miss Ronnie Jackson of Ishpeming, Mich.; Mr. and Mrs. Matt Rahko of Duluth, Minn.; Mrs. Hanninen and Mrs. Axelson of Superior; and Mr. and Mrs. Werner Mattson of Stone Lake; Mr. and Mrs. Donald Haaya of Milwaukee; and Miss Thelma Haaya, Rock Island, Ill.



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