Norman Edward Klenow was born on July 18, 1941, and raised in East Tawas, Michigan. His father and middle son, Douglas, were fellow firefighters.
Norman enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1959, before his 18th birthday, and served for four years. He was a radioman and served on an ammunition ship.
Norm was a member of the East Tawas Volunteer Fire Department for over 52 years, serving for many of those years as assistant chief.
Norm took advantage of all the fire training that was available. Starting around 1972, Norm took the 66-hour basic fireman training class. As the requirements changed and classes were added, Norm completed the 132-hour course and eventually the current Firefighter I and II classes. The first hazardous materials class was an awareness class taught by the sheriff’s department. Later, Norm took State Certified Awareness and Operations Haz-Mat as the classes were developed. Norm was one of the first firefighters in the county to take an EMT class. Norm became a certified Medical First Responder and kept his license current by taking continuing education every year. He was very proficient in ladder truck operations and taught others on our ladder trucks. He took classes in wildfire operations and Operating in the Wildland/Urban Interface. These classes were taught by the U.S. Forest Service and Michigan DNR Fire Division. Norm helped with activities such as family fire picnics, car washes, teen dances, and pancake breakfasts. On the new fire truck just put into service, Norm was recognized “In Memory of Norm Klenow.”
Norm was active in the Holy Family Catholic Church in East Tawas. He was an altar boy, served as usher and Eucharistic minister. He attended Catholic school through the eighth grade. Norm was a member of the Knights of Columbus and the Elks.
Norm managed the Clark Gas Station for over 40 years. He was a member of the East Tawas City Council and recently received recognition with a certificate of appreciation for 33 years serving on the East Tawas Park Board.
Norm and his wife, Barbara, were married for 55 years. They had three sons, David, Douglas (deceased), and Dennis. He enjoyed watching his boys play sports, boating, fishing, and camping. He had nine grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
He is missed!