John Valene, age 100 of Deephaven, Minnesota passed away at home, surrounded by family, on Tuesday afternoon, August 21, 2018. He served in the US Army Air Force during WWII. John was a true entrepreneur and founded his first business in 1947 and was President and Owner of RPP, Inc.
He was an avid horseman breeding and owning many successful Louisiana-bred thoroughbreds with his son Murray under the banner of Valene Farms, a venture the pair started in 1962. In 2000 Valene Farms was the Louisiana TOBA Breeder of the year. Notable Louisiana-bred runners from the Valene Farms stables include Asta’s Foxy Lady, Doctor Mike, Ide Like A Double (Louisiana Bred Champion), Hisse, Autobeacat (Louisiana Bred Champion), Platinum Lady, and G2 Adirondack Stakes winner Designer Legs (Louisiana Bred Champion). Designer Legs brought Louisiana-breds to the national stage once again competing in the 2013 Breeders Cup Juvenile Fillies Stakes.
Survivors include his children, Murray Valene (Geraldine) of New Orleans, LA, Valerie Valene (Michael Pukas) of Gypsum, CO, Scott Valene (Patrice) of Long Lake; 8 grandchildren, Kym Valene of New Orleans, Kari (Sean) Dart of Settle, Brandon Valene of Seattle, Courtney (Ari) Low of Wayzata; McKenna, Connor, Riley and Jack Valene, all of Long Lake; 5 great- grandchildren, Samantha and Jesse Dart, Ethan, Alexandra and Chase Low; nephew, Robert (Angilea) McNae of Orono. He was preceded in death by his wife Sally, his daughter Marjorie Valene Grossman, his brothers Jacob, Leo & Sam, & his sisters Rose, Helen & Mary. A special thank you to his care team: Missy, Diana, Alex and especially Barb Cummings-Ward. A gathering to honor John and celebrate his life will be held from 4:00PM – 7:00PM, Monday, August 27, 2018, at David Lee Funeral Home, 1220 Wayzata Blvd. E., Wayzata, 55391. David Lee Funeral Home Wayzata 952-473-5577 davidleefuneralhome.com
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