Long-time Realtor Don Luhman remembered as generous manPublished 11:21am Thursday, May 10, 2012
Friends remembered Don Luhman, former owner of Luhman Real Estate and familiar face in the Fergus Falls community, as a generous man with a heart for others. Luhman died at PioneerCare on Tuesday, May 8. He was 80.
Carmon and Audrey Jackson were two of the first people to meet Don and his wife, Ruth, when they first moved to Fergus Falls from the Mankato area in the early 1970s.
“They moved to town and bought a house right next to us on Hoot Lake,” said Carmon. “We were good neighbors for a long time, and friends.”
The two couples were constantly at the home of one or the other, sharing dinners, projects and special occasions, and they stayed friends after the Luhmans moved into town in the 1980s. Jackson described Don as an opinionated and loyal man.
“He was a friend who would be a friend until the end of time,” he remarked.
In business, Don was “quite an entrepreneur,” according to Jackson. Don and Ruth operated a hardware store and a gift shop before Don eventually began running Luhman Real Estate.
In the latter venture, which has since been sold to RE/MAX, Don showed a real affection for his clients and was a pleasure to work with, according to Realtor Pat Schultz, who worked at Luhman and is still employed at RE/MAX.
“He always had a hug for everybody when they walked in the door,” said Schultz, recalling that Don asked employees nearly every day how they were doing and what was going on with their families.
From his packed Christmas parties to a willingness to help or contribute to practically any event in town he heard about, Don worked to positively impact those around him, said Schultz.
“There wasn’t a charitable organization who walked out of here without a check in hand,” he recalled.
Don had a special affection for kids, even though he and Ruth did not have children.
Schultz remembered one time when his son, Derek, was asked by Don to do a couple of hours of work weeding and cleaning around the office. When Derek finished, Don wrote him a check for $250.
“My dad passed away in ‘83, and Don was kind of like a father figure to me,” said Schultz.
Don was heavily involved with various church boards at Trinity Lutheran Church over the years, and he and Ruth were instrumental in getting Trinity’s youth bell choir started.
“He will certainly be very, very missed by the people at Trinity and his circle of friends,” said Marcie Koennicke, who along with her husband Al were friends of the Luhmans through church.
Marcie saw Don a few days before he died, and she was happy to be able to talk with him one last time.
“We’re going to miss him,” she said.
Whether it was through faithful service at church or a generous heart in the community, Jackson will remember Don as a man who would always try to help.
“He was a good man,” he said.