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Obituary: Norton “Nordy” Rockler

General News

Norton “Nordy” Rockler, Age 98. passed away peacefully in his home surrounded by family on December 28th, 2020.

Norton “Nordy” Rockler
(02/22/1922 – 12/28/2020)

Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota on February 22nd, 1922 “2-22-22!” Preceded in death by wife Bert Rockler and son Gary Rockler. He is survived by daughters, Janie Rockler (Allan Schwartz), Ann Jackson (Robert); grandchildren,Jill Thies (Dan), LiLi Jackson, A/J Jackson; and great-grandchildren Henry and Charlie Thies.

In 1954, Nordy founded Minnesota Woodworker Supply Company, originally located at 1713 Olson Highway, Minneapolis. Later his two brothers, Mike and Bill Rockler, joined him in the business for a time. Nordy was a pioneer and innovator in his field. He was able to recognize trends in woodworking and furniture making. He loved selling great products, especially finishing, turning and hardware. This made the company unique in the United States and introduced hobbyists to specialty items that formerly were only accessible to professionals. Nordy laid the foundation for the company, now called Rockler Woodworking and Hardware, which does business nationally and internationally. It is still family owned and operated, now including the third generation.

Nordy’s kind and gentle nature attracted many wonderful employees, many of whom became good friends. Nordy was a devoted father and grandfather. He cherished his children and was a wonderful husband to his wife, Bert. Together, they supported many arts organizations and charities. Nordy was committed to doing good in the world – with his family, friends, community and more.

He will be dearly missed by those of us who loved his kindness, intelligence, curiosity, and honesty.

Rest In Peace, Dad.

In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to the donor’s favorite charity or the Norton and Bert Rockler Family Fund at JFCS (Mpls).

Source: Hodroff-Epstein Memorial Chapel