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February 4, 2024
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Paul Joseph Solem went to his next adventure on January 29, 2024, after battling a rare aggressive form of cancer. He was born on March 24, 1980 in LaCrosse, Wisconsin to Scott Solem and Cheryl Albrecht. He grew up in Dakota, Minnesota, where he had many adventures among the bluffs and by the river. Paul attended Dakota Elementary School, and from there, Winona schools. Early on, he had a unique way of living his life, and was never afraid to color outside the lines and push the boundaries. He experienced many different adventures – he was a professional trained chef and cooked for the Minnesota Vikings training camp; he became a butcher and furthered that training by learning how to honor the animal from Native Americans. He spent a holiday season loading trucks for UPS all while living in a tent. He then got together with some other incredible musicians and they formed the Jelly Project. They produced several CDs and attracted a loyal following in the metro area. Paul was the band manager and organized all of their shows and interviews, including a sit-down which was requested by Prince. They opened for ZZ Top at Sturgis and traveled to California and made a music video. Paul loved playing those drums, When they disbanded, Paul started working for a lawn care/snow removal service. Recently, he drove a front-end loader at a recycling center and through all of that, he created his art. Unique, abstract, interactive and thought-provoking. When this monster cancer came on the scene, he was again creating his art and getting ready and organizing an art show with several other artists.
Paul was always a healthy person, but two years ago he had a heart attack which nearly took his life. A series of resulting health issues were challenging but he continued working, even after he received the cancer news. He fought so hard and maintained his special sense of humor through it all, but the cancer was too aggressive for him to overcome.
Paul is survived by his wife, Jenny; their beloved cat, Timber; his mother, Cheryl (Carl) Olsen; sister, Miranda (Kevin) Huddleston; nephews, Scott and Joe; and niece, Emmeline; mother-in-law, Kathy (Greg) Boland; father-in-law, Dale Avery; uncle, Ron (Jennifer) Albrecht; aunt Shelley (Phil) Duffy; cousins, Mason, Sidney, Hollie, Matt; special friends, including Jenny (Ryan) Purnell and Chris (Betsy) Reifsteck.
He was preceded in death by his father, Scott Solem (who died on Paul’s first birthday); uncles, Joe and Gary Solem; grandparents, Thelvin and Lila Solem, Arlyn and Kathy Albrecht; niece, Kelly Sue Beach; uncle, Allen Albrecht; and fellow adventurer and uncle, Rick Severson.
Our wish is that Paul is finally with his dad, and the Solem boys are all together.
A memorial celebration/art show/gathering will be held 5-10pm on Saturday, March 2 at 333 Sibley Street. Memorials preferred to family.