Lynn Aase, an unforgettable presence in the lives of his family as well as countless students, friends, and fellow adventurers, left this world he so loved on Aug. 28, 2013. Lynn’s pilgrimage through life was characterized by tremendous physical and mental energy, manifest in his love of literature and learning; his ability to evoke divergent thinking in his students; his openness to the unknown; his penchant for exotic travels; his passion for outdoor adventure and sports; and his self-discipline to produce and achieve in any endeavor. All this intensity was balanced by his humor and incredible joie de vie. Lynn’s boundless curiosity is captured in one of his favorite lines from Shakespeare: “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamed of in your philosophy.” Those who’ve been inspired by Lynn’s spirit may find him in the hint of approaching autumn on an early morning or the rich wisp of wood smoke drifting by; the majesty of forested hills or the mesmerizing wonder of a mountain stream; or perhaps in the impossible serenity of a glassy surf aced lake with the evening light just starting to fade, birds flying quickly past as they hurry to get home safely before dark.
Lynn is survived and dearly missed by wife Karen; brother Craig Aase and sister Barbara Aase; sons Erik Aase-Remedios, Trygve Aase, and Arne Aase; step-children Eric McCall and Caitlin Pearson; and grandchildren Madeleine, Theo, Gabriella, Ian, Lena, and Emma; as well as mother-in-law Ethel Nichols.
Sandra Dianne Helmen Aasheim, of Littleton, Colo., passed away on Jan. 14, 2013. Survivors include three children; brother, Michael Helmen ’64, and a niece, Nicole Helmen ’97. She was preceded in death by her husband, Ralph Aasheim, and her father, Miles Helmen ’31.
Elwyn Trent Abel passed away Nov. 10, 2014 in Oakland, Calif. Mr. Abel was a 1966 graduate of C.A. Johnson High School. He is survived by his wife, Cassandra, his brother, Reginald Abel, and his sisters, Wendolyn and Allycin Branch. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to www.kidneyfund.org in Elwyn Abel’s name.
Naomi W. Score Aberg passed away peacefully of natural causes during the early morning hours of Feb. 14, 2015 at Sacred Heart Hospital in Eau Claire, Wis. Mrs. Aberg had been residing at Heritage Senior Living in Eau Claire since December 2013. After living in Green Bay, Wis. for nearly 30 years, she moved to Eau Claire to be closer to her son and only child, Attorney Joel Aberg ’74, a shareholder in the law firm of Weld, Riley, Prenn & Ricci, S.C.
Mrs. Aberg was born Naomi W. Score in 1924 at La Porte, Minn. She was the middle daughter of three by John and Elsie Score of La Porte. John Score was the local banker and Elsie Score was a homemaker. The family moved to the small town of Vergas, Minn. in 1936. Mr. Score reopened a bank that had been closed there since 1932. Eventually, Mr. Score and some partners purchased the Vergas State Bank and the family made their home in Vergas.
Naomi Score graduated from high school in Frazee, Minn. and went on to attend St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn. from 1942 until her graduation with a four-year degree in 1946. She loved her years at St. Olaf and maintained close relationships throughout her life with many of the friends she made during her college years. She was chosen by her fellow students as St. Olaf’s homecoming queen in the Spring of 1946.
Trained as a teacher, Naomi Score began her career as an educator at the public school system in Black River Falls, Wis. Later, she moved and took a teaching position in Viroqua, Wis. While living in Viroqua she met Donald L. Aberg, the son of a local dairy farming family. Donald and Naomi were married in 1951 and initially lived in Westby, Wis.
After a couple of years in Westby, Donald and Naomi Aberg moved to La Crosse, Wis. Mrs. Aberg was active in local and regional church activities. In 1960, she was elected Secretary of Education for the American Lutheran Church Women (ALCW). During her service with ALCW, she promoted educational media produced by the American Lutheran Church (ALC), directed the ALCW’s Bible study series, planned and conducted workshops and conventions, and was an instructor in the popular Bethel Bible Series. She also served for a time as La Crosse Conference representative at the Lutheran Welfare services of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan. Loving classical music, especially Mozart, she also sang in the church choir. While in La Crosse she attended classes at Viterbo College.
In 1968, the Abergs moved to Wethersfield, Conn., where they lived for three years. They then moved to Kettering, Ohio for three years before returning to Wisconsin in 1974-75. Their last home together was located in the village of Ashwaubenon, Wis., a part of Green Bay. Her husband, Donald, died in 1994 after retiring from his job in retail automobile sales, finance, and service. After leaving La Crosse, Mrs. Aberg continued to participate in church services and activities through the years. At the time of her death, she was a member of the Peace Lutheran Church in Eau Claire.
Naomi W. Aberg is survived by her younger sister, Mrs. Phyllis Schmidt, and by her son, Joel L. Aberg.
Agnes Theodora Braaten Mahoney Akland, of Saint Peter, Minn., died peacefully at home Sept. 4, 2014, after living valiantly with cancer since 2009. Agnes was born on Oct. 31, 1923 to Lutheran missionaries, Torstein and Clara Braaten, in Fort Dauphin, Madagascar. She attended the American School in Fort Dauphin until 1938, when Agnes and her sister, Arlene, moved to the US to attend Augustana Academy, a Lutheran boarding high school in Canton, S.D. Here she first met Leonard Akland, whom she would later marry.
Agnes started at St. Olaf College majoring in music and piano. She later transferred to Augustana College to be with her younger sister, Arlene. It was during this time that she met and married a young serviceman, Bill J. Mahoney, with whom she had one child, Gloria Akland Buczek ’67, before he was tragically killed while on duty as a Texas Highway patrolman. Agnes returned with Gloria to Northfield, Minn.,where she worked and completed her degree and was thrilled to sing in the St. Olaf Choir under Olaf Christiansen. On the day she graduated, June 4, 1951, she married Dr. Leonard R. Akland. Mark Steven was born in 1952 and Carolyn Akland ’78 in 1956.
In 1959, Agnes returned to Madagascar with her family as Len responded to a call to serve as a missionary doctor at Manambaro Lutheran Hospital. She taught music to the missionary children living at Trano Vato, the Missionary Children’s Home. Agnes was also very involved with the Malagasy women of the church. Agnes had a heart for the Malagasy people which continued all of her life.
The family retired from the mission field and returned to the US in 1969, and Leonard started a practice in Thousand Oaks, Calif. In 1975, hearing of the grave lack of funding for medical missions in Madagascar, Agnes and Leonard joined with other missionaries to start Global Health Ministries to meet this need. This organization has continued as a passion for both Agnes and Leonard.
Agnes is remembered for her music ministry, her strong and abiding faith, her generosity, her many friendships, her contagious sense of humor, her radiant smile, her highly esteemed roles as missionary, teacher, wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother and friend. Her presence will be greatly missed, but her legacy lives on in the many lives she touched.
Agnes is survived by her husband, Leonard; daughters, Gloria Buczek and husband John and Carolyn Akland and partner Jeannie; son, Mark Akland and wife Susie; grandchildren, Adam Buczek and wife Kanya, William Buczek and wife Christine, and John David Lackey and wife Stacy. She has seven great-grandchildren: Emma, Leah, Noah, Lana, Stanley, Jackson, and Anna Grace. She is also survived by two brothers, Folkvard Braaten ’51 and wife Betty Smith Braaten ’51 and The Rev. Dr. Carl Braaten ’51 and wife June “LaVonne” Gardner Braaten ’52. She was preceded in death by her sister, Arlene Moen and husband James.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to: Global Health Ministries, Minneapolis; Trinity Lutheran Church, Saint Peter; or St. Olaf College Music Department, Northfield.
Katherine “Kate” Camille Jacobson Akre died on Sept. 13, 2014, in her home in Portland, Ore. She was born Aug. 18, 1938 in Faribault, Minn.
She graduated from Kenyon High School and from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis with a degree in nursing. She spent her childhood on a farm near Dennison, Minn., and went on to raise her family in several towns in Wyoming and Montana. Her career took her to Saudi Arabia and back to Minneapolis. She finished her nursing career in Portland, where she retired.
She lived her passions, and inspired her children and everyone around her with her drive, commitment, and limitless energy.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Milton and Amy Jacobson, and the children’s father, John Akre ’59. She is survived by her five children, John M. and wife Beth Peloff, Jennie Rasmussen and husband Ed, Dan, Kaia Hillegass and husband Kevin, and Kirsten Akre and husband Anthony Star; seven grandchildren and one great-grandchild; her brother, Allen Jacobson and wife Lila; sisters, Jane Jacobson Roberts ’65, Mary Brown, and Lois Klein and husband Chris; nephews and nieces; and many friends.
*Gordon Luverne Albertson, 100, passed away peacefully, surrounded by his family on Nov. 29, 2014 at Edgewater in West Des Moines, Iowa. His passing was one year to the day after his wife Peggy’s death in 2013. Gordon’s gracious manner and deep caring for others endeared him to those around him. He embraced life with compassion and generosity. Gordon was a devoted husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. He was a true gentleman with unending support and sharing the wonders of life.
Gordon was born July 10, 1914 in Glendive, Mont. to John and Lily Westby Albertson. He was their only child. Their family moved to Watertown, S.D., where they owned and operated Albertson Grocery until his father retired. Gordon graduated from St. Olaf College in 1936 and joined the Army in 1942. He served with the 92nd Mortar Battalion throughout Western Europe until the end of the war, and returned in 1945.
Gordon and Peggy Niles were married Nov. 27, 1946 and settled in Des Moines, where they raised their three children. Gordon was a pharmaceutical representative with Schering Corporation for 33 years until he retired in 1979. He was a longtime member with the American Legion, Medical Representatives of Iowa and St. Mark Lutheran Church. Gordon was devoted to his golf game with a weekly round.
He is survived by his children, Paulette Metts and husband Neal, Steve Albertson and wife Faith Hodkiewicz, and Kip Albertson and wife Debbie; grandchildren, Jessica Fortin and husband Mike, Nicole Metts, Ashley Schott and husband Andrew, and Kurt Albertson; and four great-grandchildren. Gordon was preceded in death by his wife of 67 years, Margaret “Peggy” Albertson.
In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be given to St. Mark Lutheran Church.
Charlotte Elaine Alexander Althoff, age 92, of Cannon Falls, Minn., died unexpectedly on Sept. 11, 2014 at Mayo Clinic Health Systems in Red Wing, Minn. Char was born on Oct. 10, 1921 in Cannon Falls, the daughter of Dr. James Malcolm Alexander and Pearl Shotola Alexander. She grew up in Cannon Falls, where her father was a local veterinarian. She graduated in 1939 from Cannon Falls High School and went on to attend one year at the University of Minnesota. She then attended St. Olaf College, where she was a member of St. Olaf Choir, graduating with a degree in music. She worked for United Airlines until marrying Kenneth Althoff ’44 in January 1946 at the Congregational Church in Cannon Falls. They lived in Detroit, Mich., Pine River, Minn., and Dawson, Minn. until returning to Cannon Falls. She taught music at the Cannon Falls Schools, as well as providing private voice lessons.
Char was an active member of St. Ansgar’s Lutheran Church. Charlotte was always active in the life of the congregation and sang in the choir for many years. She was very involved in the Cannon Falls community and active in many events. She played tennis into her 80’s, played Bridge, was an avid bird watcher, and enjoyed reading. She also enjoyed many years of singing with a Northfield singing group.
Charlotte is survived by her three children, Bill Althoff and wife Nancy, Kathleen Althoff Brekken ’71 and husband Dennis, and Jean Althoff; grandsons, Alexander Brekken ’97 and wife Wendy Krook Brekken ’97, John Brekken and wife Renae, and Kevin Althoff; great-grandchildren, Andrew, Austin, and Catherine Brekken; and her sister, Kathleen “Kay” Glaess. She is also survived by loving cousins, nieces, and nephews. Char was preceded in death by her parents and husband, Kenneth, on Nov. 19, 2006.
Memorials preferred to the St. Ansgar’s Lutheran Church, Shepherd’s Center of Cannon Valley, and Cannon Falls Education Foundation.
*Allan Altnow, of Alexandria, Minn., passed away on Jan. 2, 2015. Al was born Oct. 12, 1927 to Herbert and Edna Lind Altnow. Allan was baptized into the Lutheran faith on Nov. 13, 1927 at St. Matthews Lutheran Church in Gaylord, Minn. He was confirmed in his faith on March 29, 1942 at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Arlington, Minn. On Nov. 15, 1958, he and Stella Mae Voehl were united in marriage at St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church in Worthington, Minn.
Al graduated from Arlington High School in 1945 after receiving letters in four sports. After serving 13 months in the United States Navy in World War II he enrolled at St. Olaf College. Al graduated from St. Olaf College in 1950. He then did post- graduate work at the University of Cincinnati.
Al’s work experience in chemical manufacturing plants encompassed every step from shift foreman to plant manager.
Al was active member of his church and enjoyed many church activities. He chaired several committees, including Stewardship, Evangelism, Lay Ministry, Salary, and Fiscal Planning. Al was the St. Louis Zone LLL Secretary. He also was President of Concordia Congregation in Kirkwood, MO. He participated in many Bible studies.
Hospitality was an important aspect of Al’s life. Al liked entertaining and was always the life of the party. His smile would light up a room as he told one of his funny stories. All loved to make people laugh. He was always the fun uncle.
Al was an amateur photographer and found life interesting. He liked to educate himself on new ideas. Music was also important in his life; he enjoyed listening to jazz, gospel, and big band music.
At was preceded in death by his father and mother, as well as a brother-in-law, Lorence Voehl ’50. He is survived by his wife and greatest joy, Stella Altnow. He is also survived by his nieces and nephews.
Orval was born May 26, 1919, to Alfred and Alphine Sickle Amdahl. He graduated from Lanesboro High School and St. Olaf College. He taught at Lanesboro High School prior to entering World War II as a commissioned 2nd lieutenant until being promoted to captain in the Marine Corps. He served two tours of duty in the Pacific Theater for a total of 31 months. At the end of the first tour, he was stationed in Nagasaki, Japan with the Occupation Force.
After the war, he managed Farmers & Merchants Lumber Yard until he was elected county recorder, where he retired after 40 years. Orval was an active member in Fillmore County and Lanesboro American Legion, Preston V.F.W., Forty & 8, Boy Scouts, Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Lanesboro, Christ Lutheran Church in Preston, Minn., Sons of Norway, and March of Dimes. He played first baseman on the Lanesboro baseball team for 10 years, and enjoyed the outdoors, camping, reading, and spending time with family. All his life, Orval worked to promote world peace and that all Americans are proud of their country. Recently, he was honored with the opportunity to return a World War II sword, which he took care of for 68 years, to the son of the original owner of Nagasaki, Japan.
Orval is survived by his wife of 72 years, Marie; children, Ronald Amdahl and wife Diane, James Amdahl and wife Kim, and Karyl Tammel and husband Steve; 10 grandchildren; and 14 great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his parents; sister; daughter, Ann O’Loughlin; and great-granddaughter, Liberty Amdahl.
Donald E. Anderson, 85, passed away peacefully on May 8, 2014 at Grace Rehabilitation Center of Vero Beach. Don was born in Zelzah, Calif. (now Northridge) in LA County and has been a resident of Vero Beach for 17 years, coming from Summit, NJ. He was the youngest and last surviving child of Pastor Albert and Viola Anderson’s six children. His Dad and Mom were missionaries at a Lutheran school in China for many years, where most of their children were born and spent early childhood.
Following graduation from St. Olaf College, Don went to Luther Seminary. While he graduated, he was never ordained. Rather electing to dedicate himself to immigration and refugee resettlement work in the US and abroad, mostly in connection with Lutheran congregations in the United States, which have very successfully resettled many people from Eastern Europe, Hong Kong, East Africa, Latin America and Indochina over the years. As specific refugee movements ebbed and flowed, Don spent interim years as Asst. Director of the Lutheran Student Foundation at the University of Minnesota and as Alumni Director at St. Olaf College. Don was Director of the Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service from 1963 until 1976, when he retired. During this time he provided significant leadership in the intergovernmental agency world, particularly during the Ugandan and Vietnamese Refugee movements.
Don was always an active community member and very civic minded. He especially enjoyed providing leadership and support for the many activities in which his sons were involved, particularly managing and programming large swim meets.
He is preceded in death by his siblings: Eunice Anderson Dinga ’49, Albert Anderson ’44, Clara Anderson, Ruth Anderson Lewis ’37, and Gertrude Anderson Hoff ’49. He is survived by his wife, Anne, of 48 years, and his sons, Albert and Sumner.
Don was born and raised in Madison, Minn. He attended St. Olaf College and received a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Minnesota in 1950. He earned his M.B.A. from Harvard University in 1952. He was a third generation banker who blended business and personal relationships, which led to achieving a successful career as a leader in the banking industry.
He joined Northwestern National Bank in Madison, Minn. in 1958. He was promoted to the National Division of the bank, where he served as a correspondent banker. He was headquartered in Minneapolis and served banks in states throughout the upper Midwest for more than a decade.
Don was recruited by the founders of Santa Barbara National Bank in 1969 to join their small community bank, founded in 1960, and serve as president. The founders were local businessmen who deeply believed in supporting their local communities. They were impressed by Don’s Midwestern values, which formed the leadership qualities he brought to this growing community bank. Don exemplified a spirit of hard work, honesty, and candor in leading the organization. He also possessed a great love of the game of golf and excelled as a competitor in the sport, winning many trophies and making many long time friendships with his golfing buddies.
These qualities, coupled with his giving back to the community through involvement in community charitable organizations, resulted in the bank becoming well known and highly respected for contribution to the quality of life in the Santa Barbara coastal region.
Under Don’s leadership, Santa Barbara Bank and Trust gained 30% of the banking market in the greater Santa Barbara area and was recognized as the best bank in the region. Don served as president and director for two decades, and then served as Chairman of the Board until his retirement in 2000.
Don has been a leader in the community throughout his time in Santa Barbara. In 1991, he received the Man of the Year Award from the Santa Barbara Foundation. This award recognizes those who make a positive impact on the greater Santa Barbara area by volunteering their time and talents in service to local non-profit organizations.
Don served as president of the United Way of Santa Barbara County, Channel Islands YMCA, Boy Scouts of America Council, and as a director of the Rehabilitation Institute of Santa Barbara. He also served on the boards of General Telephone Company and California Lutheran University. He taught as an adjunct faculty member for ten years at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
As a banker, Don was a leader in the banking industry serving on the board of the California Bankers Association, and as president of the Western Independent Bankers Association.
In 2006, Don received the Carlson School of Management’s Outstanding Achievement Award at the University of Minnesota.
Don was a man known for always speaking with honesty and candor. He would listen closely to what was being said and had the ability to ask just the right questions in order to get to the heart of the situation. His unassuming yet highly competitive nature, balanced by a quick wit and sharp sense of humor, provided him with a competitive advantage in the business arena and endeared him to all who knew him.
One of his favorite quotes, borrowed from his banker father, was “Hitch your wagon to a star, but be sure you tie the knot”.
Don is survived by his wife, Christine Anderson, daughter, Elizabeth French, and two nieces. He was pre-deceased by his first wife, Marvel C. Anderson, and their daughter, Karen. Donations in his memory may be made to Visiting Nurse and Hospice Care in Santa Barbara.
*Lon Daniel Anderson, of Poway, Calif., joined the angels on Dec. 5, 2014, at the age of 42, at Pomerado Hospital in Poway as the result of a heart attack. He was born on Oct. 28, 1972, in St. Cloud, Minn. to Kenneth and Carol Anderson. He enjoyed Boy Scouts in his youth and earned his Eagle Scout Award. His passion for chemistry inspired him to earn a B.A. in chemistry from St. Olaf College in 1994 and an M.S. in chemistry from the University of Iowa in 1997. He was a member of Clandestine Laboratory Investigating Chemists Association (CLIC) during his years as a forensic chemist at Southwest Laboratory with the Drug Enforcement Administration. After college, Lon spent nearly four years as a Specialist in the US Army, training to be a Russian linguist.
Lon is survived by his wife, Amy Ludvigson Anderson ’94; son, Dayne Jayson Anderson; his mother, Carol Anderson; his brothers, Ken Anderson and wife Kim Goetz Anderson, and Corey Anderson and wife Rachel Fetty; his sister, Melanie Leach; his sister-in-law, Sara Ludvigson Kelley ’92 and husband Doug Kelley; his mother- and father-in-law, Clayton and Lois Ludvigson; his nephews, Corey Anderson, Seth Leach, and Axel Anderson; and his nieces, Sophia Anderson, Serenah Leach, Emma Kelley, and Brianna Kelley. He is preceded in death by his father, Kenneth Anderson; his grandparents; a cousin, Jason Hettervig; and an army friend from Seattle, Jason Malone.
Contributions to the family in lieu of flowers will go to a Lon Anderson Memorial Fund for Dayne’s education.
Thank you to Dr. Jane Tanaka, Dr. Elizabeth Salada, Dr. Smitha Reddy, and Dr. Ramin Raiszadeh for the care given to Lon.
Patricia Mortvedt Arnesen, age 85, of Cary, Ill., died peacefully, surrounded by her family on February 19, 2014. Born on Oct. 19, 1928, in Fairbault, Minn., she was the only child of Robert and Gladys Twait Mortvedt. Patricia attended St. Olaf College. A long-time resident of Barrington, Ill., she worked at Aimee’s Dress Shop. She was very artistic in the art of ceramics and taught classes. She was an avid reader and prided herself on being knowledgeable regarding current events. She spent many hours tending her beautiful gardens. She cherished spending time with her family and friends and traveled to the West coast often.
She is survived by her sons, Craig Arnesen ’70 and Kent; daughters, Karen Whiting, Kimberly Arnesen, and Kristin Shepherd; son-in-law, Ron Kint; eight grandchildren, Lehn Shepherd, Tessa Shepherd, Emily Mastrangelo, Elliot and Ethan Prizant, and Jack, Adam, and Kees Kint; and three great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her daughter, Claudia Kint, and daughter-in-law, Susan Arnesen.
Barbara Jensen Aspaas, age 73, of Sioux Falls, S.D., died peacefully Aug. 13, 2014 in her home, due to complications related to bladder cancer. Barbara was born Feb. 24, 1941 in Minneapolis to Daniel Jensen ’39 and Joan Varland Jensen ’41. She attended St. Olaf College in 1959 and 1960. After meeting the love of her life, Lynn Aspaas, she transferred to Augustana College in Sioux Falls, where she graduated two years later, and then married Lynn in Rockford, Ill., on June 7, 1963.
Barbara and Lynn settled in Baltic, S.D. in 1974, after living five years in Wyoming. They moved to Sioux Falls in 1991. Barbara was passionate about her career as a teacher, and championed reading readiness in Sioux Falls and throughout South Dakota. She loved to sing, golf, volunteer, travel, go camping, and spend time with family and friends. Her faith in Jesus as her Savior and belief in an everlasting peace with God stayed with Barbara until the end of her life here on earth. Barbara’s wealth was surely in the family and friends she shared her life with.
Barbara is survived by her husband, Lynn; daughter, Maren Aspaas ’89 and husband John Legler; and son, Kyle Aspaas and wife Wendy. Barbara has three grandchildren, Sela Patterson, Kjerstin Aspaas, and Jacob Aspaas. Barbara’s brothers are Mark Jensen ’64 and wife Mary Pat, and Richard Jensen and wife Donna; and her mother-in-law, Fayella Aspaas. Barbara is preceded in death by her parents; her father-in-law, Nils; and sister-in-law, Kathryn.
Memorial gifts can be directed to the East Side Lutheran Building Fund or the Center for Western Studies at Augustana College.
Nora Odella Solheim Baak, 100, of Sioux City, Iowa, died June 15, 2014, at her home. Odella was born on Sept. 26, 1913, in Valley City, N.D., the daughter of the Rev. Elling and Helene Sogaarden Solheim. She grew up in Eagle Bend, Minn., and graduated from Eagle Bend High School in 1932. She graduated from St. Olaf College in 1936, with a B.A. in English and Latin. After college, Odella taught for three years in North Dakota, three years in South Dakota, and four years in Minnesota, teaching English, Latin, and music. She then taught at St. Olaf College in Northfield from 1946 to 1953.
She married Leonhard Baak on Aug. 8, 1953, in Eagle Bend, Minn. The couple then moved to Emporia, Kan., where they lived until 1960, when they moved to Sioux City. Odella taught library science and children’s literature at Morningside College for 22 years, until she retired in 1982. She was the chairman of the Library Science Department and served as an associate professor at the college. Leonhard died on Jan. 17, 1998, in Sioux City. Odella was a member of Redeemer Lutheran Church in Sioux City.
She is survived by her sister-in-law, Phyllis Solheim; three nephews, Dr. William Solheim, Edward Solheim, and Donald Solheim; and her grandnieces. She also informally adopted many freshmen at Morningside College. She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband; her brother, Arthur; and her sister, Evelyn Solheim Johnson ’40.
Odella would like memorials to be given to Morningside College or Redeemer Lutheran Church.
Katherine MacDonald Bade, age 91, of Chaska, Minn., died Oct. 10, 2014.
Katie was born in the middle of a blizzard in Gering, Neb., April 22, 1923 to Roderick and Frances Lawrence MacDonald, one of three children. Katie grew up in Chaska and graduated from Chaska High School before receiving her bachelors of art degree in physical education from St. Olaf College. Immediately after graduation, she became an instructor in the physical education department at St. Olaf. She was proud to be an Ole and would return to “The Hill” to attend the St. Olaf Christmas concerts every December.
A member of the Moravian church since confirmation, Katie made the headlines when she became the first woman to be elected to the governing board of the Western District of the Moravian Church. Katie participated in the Evening Circle, Mission Circle, Ladies Aid, Helping Hands, Women’s Fellowship, Meals on Wheels – you name it, she did it – and she was a lifelong member of the church choir. Her work with the women’s church groups led her to Church Women United, where she was president and received the Valiant Woman Award. She also was an active member in the Minnesota School of Missions. One of her latest honors came in 2009, when she was inducted into the Chaska High School Hall of Fame.
Katie loved competitive sports and was the first student to defeat the tennis coach at St. Olaf. In addition to tennis, bridge, golf, field hockey, basketball, football, the Chaska Cubs were among her passions. Put a cane pole in her hand and she would go fishing any day. Katie also was proud to be a member of the League of Women Voters Eastern Carver County.
On June 11, 1948 she married Douglas Bade at the Chaska Moravian Church. They had met at church camp and knew each other while working at the canning factory in town. They raised four children on what was known as Lewin’s Lane. She loved to mow the lawn and sod field, and picked cucumbers tirelessly in the pickle patch with the summer crew of her children, neighborhood children, and their friends.
She was quoted as saying, “I believe in the basic goodness of humankind. I believe God created us to enjoy life and live it to the hilt.” And live it she did.
Katie was preceded in death by her parents, husband, Douglas, and daughters, Rebecca Bade Lane ’74 and Liz Rosca.
Survivors include her children, Meg Peitersen and husband Larry, and James Bade and wife Stephanie; sons-in-law, Andy Lane and John Rosca; grandchildren, John Peitersen ’97 and wife Katherine Hanton Peitersen ’97, Nathan Peitersen ’99 and wife Rebecca Jeurissen Peitersen ’99, Rachel, Tony and wife Ona, Natalie, Greg, Stephanie, Sam, and Lily; great-grandchildren, Simon, Keira, Henry, Liam, and Carter; sister, Mary Ann Huelster and husband Howard; brother, Roderick MacDonald and wife Joanne; and beloved nieces and nephews.
Memorials preferred to Chaska Moravian Church.
Ken was a thoughtful, progressive leader who was instrumental in positioning Northfield Hospital & Clinics to grow and thrive in a challenging healthcare environment. During his tenure, he presided over the development of the Center for Sports Medicine & Rehabilitation, the expansion of surgical services and diagnostic imaging, the development and construction of a new hospital, and the development of a primary clinic network. He was also active in many community projects.
He spent his retirement in Tucson with his wife, Rhonda, where he enjoyed hiking in the many mountain ranges surrounding their home. Besides Rhonda, Ken is survived by their three children, Shannon Bank Pitt ’11, Erin, and Brian; two grandchildren; and a son-in-law.
In lieu of flowers or gifts, the family suggests a donation to Friends of Sabino Canyon, Tucson, Ariz., or Youth on Their Own, Tucson, Ariz.
Bonnie Nelson Barsness, of St. Germain, Wis., passed away on Jan. 22, 2015. She was preceded in death by her husband, Edwin Barsness ’45. Survivors include a son, Mark Barsness ’75.
LaJune F. “June” Thisted Barth, of Port Saint Lucie, Fla., passed away peacefully on July 15, 2014, with her family by her side. June was born April 15, 1920, on the Paulson family farm west of Alden, Minn. She was the daughter of Aaron and Nettie Paulson Thisted. June graduated from Alden High School and St. Olaf College. She was a member of the St. Olaf College Chapel Choir. She married Fred Ingebrigtsen Barth on June 20, 1943, and they settled in Rahway, N.J., for over 50 years. She was a homemaker for many years, and then was employed as the secretary to the principal of Rahway Junior High School in Rahway for 25 years. She retired in 1981.
June was a member of Mount Zion Chapter No. 116 Order of the Eastern Star, Metuchen, N.J., and Sons of Norway, Gulfstream Lodge in Jensen Beach, Fla. She moved to Port St. Lucie in 2009.
June was a gentle, kind, compassionate and caring person, almost saintly as her church friends would say. Her love of God, warmth, strength, and her unconditional loyalty to family are the characteristics that define her best.
Survivors include daughters, Karen Keat and husband Harry, and Ingrid Hammen and husband Frank; a son, Frederick I. Barth and wife April; 10 grandchildren; 18 great-grandchildren; six nephews; one niece; brothers, Dale Thisted and wife Barbara, and Paul Thisted ’62. She was predeceased by husband, Fred I. Barth, in 1999. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Treasure Coast Hospices, Fort Pierce, Fla.
Maude Ingvarda Knutsen Bassi, of Coupeville, Wash., died Oct. 29, 2013. Survivors include her sister, Nancy Knutsen St. Marie ’52. She was preceded in death by her husband, Jacob Bassi.
Roland Glen Beckering, of Edgerton, Minn., passed away on Nov. 26, 2013, at the age of 81 years, four months, and 27 days, after a reoccurrence of cancer. He was born to Dr. Gerrit and Martha Ritsema Beckering on June 29, 1932, in Chicago. In 1932, he was baptized. In the summer of 1936, the family moved to Edgerton, Minn. In the years following, his two sisters, Deanna and Barbara, were born. Roland attended Edgerton Christian Elementary School and graduated from Edgerton High School in 1950. Continuing his education, he attended St. Olaf College. While attending St. Olaf, he met his future wife, Sandra Berge ’54. They both graduated in 1954, earning bachelor’s degrees. Upon graduation, Roland and Sandy were married on June 29, 1954, in Roseau, Minn., Sandy’s hometown. After a short honeymoon, they both attended Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago. Upon completing his studies, Roland earned his medical degree, and Sandy completed the course in Medical Technology. Roland interned at St. Luke’s Hospital, in Duluth, Minn., from 1958-1959. He joined the Public Health service and was stationed, at his request, in Bethel, Alaska from 1959-1961. In August of 1961, returning to Edgerton, he joined his father, Dr. Gerrit Beckering, forming the Beckering Medical Clinic. This partnership continued until Gerrit’s death in 1972. Four children joined the family during these years: Debra Beckering King ’77, Dale Robert, David Bruce, and Douglas Scot.
Roland enjoyed bowling, hunting, and fishing. He went on many trips while doing these activities and looked forward to fishing season every year, along with the annual fly-in fishing trip in Canada. He treasured the company of his children, grandchildren, nephews, and nieces on trips to “the lake” in the summer and on the annual fishing trip. He passed on his love of the outdoors to his children, who continue to share it with their children.
Roland was a member at Bethel Christian Reformed Church in Edgerton. He was also active in the local medical society and had served as the chief of staff at the Pipestone County Hospital. He has also served as the past president of both the Southwest Minnesota Medical Society and the Southwest Minnesota Academy of Family Practice. He was interested in both school and civic affairs, having held the office of treasurer of the E.C.E.S. foundation and served a total of 26 years as both a city councilman and mayor of Edgerton.
Roland is survived by his wife of 59 years, Sandy; three sons, Dale, Bruce, and Scot; six grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; one sister, Deanna Westby; and several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his daughter, Debra; his parents, Gerrit and Martha; and one sister, Barbara Dawson. In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to Edgerton Christian Elementary School or Southwest Christian High School.
Charles Benson, age 57, of Stillwater, Minn., passed away on Jan. 7, 2015. Chuck graduated from Mahomet-Seymour High School and St. Olaf College, and received his M.B.A. from St. Thomas. Before retiring, he worked for H.B. Fuller, Merrill Lynch, and Ameriprise Financial. Chuck enjoyed reading, boating, fishing, golfing, and sports. He was a huge Twins and Packers fan. Chuck had a strong faith in God and was actively involved in local churches. Chuck was a loving husband, son, brother, and friend. He will be deeply missed. Chuck was preceded in death by parents, Norm and Ellen Benson, and his loving wife, Kathy. He is survived by sister, Lori Weyandt and husband Steve; nephew, Luke Weyandt; nieces, Hannah Hicks and husband Jim, and Naomi Weyandt; and other relatives and friends. In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to Community Resource Center at St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church, Mahtomedi, Minn.
Janet Corrine Haugner Benson, 90, of Savage, Minn., passed away on Aug. 1, 2014. Janet was born on Sept. 22, 1923 in Madison, Wis., to Clarence and Clara Gulson Haugner. She grew up in Madison, where she attended Randall Elementary School and graduated from West High School. She attended St. Olaf College for two years and completed her degree in Secondary Education at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She taught English for two years in Janesville, Wis. On Aug. 16, 1947, she and Claude Benson ’46 were married at Bethel Lutheran Church in Madison. They made their home in Minneapolis, where Janet taught at St. Peter’s Lutheran School and then worked in the library at Ramsey Junior High School. They moved into their new home in Richfield, Minn. in August 1952 and Claude died of polio six weeks later. Janet continued living in Richfield for almost 50 years. She was an assistant librarian at Roosevelt High School and then was head librarian at Washburn High School before becoming the head librarian at Richfield High School. She had studied Library Science through evening and summer school at the University of Minnesota and earned a Media Specialist degree from St. Cloud State University. Janet retired in 1983. She moved to Sunrise Terrace Apartments in Slayton, Minn. in 2002. In January 2003 she moved to Lindenwood Assisted Living Apartments and became a resident of Golden Living Center in Slayton in October 2005. Janet moved to Ebenezer Ridges Care Center, Burnsville, Minn. in September 2013. Janet was a former member of House of Prayer Lutheran Church in Richfield. She had belonged to a retired teachers group and the American Association of University Women. She enjoyed reading, traveling, and music, and she was an accomplished pianist, walking and spending time visiting with family and friends.
Survivors include her daughter, son, and their spouses: Corrine and Tim Totzke, and Claude Benson ’75 and Kaye; three grandchildren: Ann and her husband Chance Nelson, Amy Smit, and Mark Totzke and his wife Stacie; three great-grandchildren: Gabe Smit and Matthew and Katie Nelson; a sister-in-law, Barbara Benson Taft ’46 P ’74; and six nephews. She is preceded in death by her husband, Claude; her parents; sister, Pauline Taylor; brother, Raymond Haugner; sister-in-law, Esther Benson; brothers-in-law, Gordon Taft ’47 P ’74 and Jim Taylor; and grandson, Michael Horton.
Word has been received that Magna Louise Dysthe Benson, of Fort Myers, Fla., passed away on Dec. 12, 2003. Survivors include a son, Mark Benson ’63 and his wife Sandra, and grandchildren Scot and Bret. She was preceded in death by her husband, Robert Benson ’37.
Word has been received that Robert Alvin Benson, of Fort Myers, Fla., passed away on June 20, 2000. Survivors include a son, Mark Benson ’63 and his wife Sandra, and grandchildren Scot and Bret. His wife, Magna Dysthe Benson ’38, died in 2003.
Obed Berg, of Sun City, Ariz., died Feb. 1, 2010. Survivors include his two children, Bill and Gordon. He was preceded in death by his wife, Marlys Berg.
Shirley was born July 27, 1928 to Jacob and Edna Knecht in Bismarck, N.D. Shirley lost her father to ALS when she was 12 years old and her mother Edna managed to provide for the family. Shirley graduated from Bismarck High School in 1946 and attended St. Olaf College 1947-49 and the University of Minnesota Nursing School from 1949-52. Shirley worked in various nursing services and a favorite was teaching nursing at Augustana College in Sioux Falls, S.D.
In recent years, Shirley struggle with memory and in spite of that difficulty, she was determined to connect and serve with the people around her. We thank God for her servant life and her relentlessly cheerful disposition.
Shirley married Edwin Bersagel ’49 in 1952 in Bismarck, who passed away in March 2015. They had four children, Rebecca, Matthew and wife Ruth, Mary, and Eric and wife Shannon. They have four grandchildren, Annie, Paul, Ella, and Via; and various cousins. Other survivors include a brother, Donald Knecht ’61 and his wife Mary Lehnhoff Knecht ’61, and nieces and nephews, including Leif Knecht ’73, Genevieve Knecht Williams ’81, and Ann Knecht McIntire ’86.
Deceased are her brother, Loring Knecht ’47 and wife Virginia Peterson Gangsei ’44; sisters, Dorothy and Jean; and father-in-law Edwin Bersagel ’19 and mother-in-law Olivia “Ollie” Hanson Bersagel ’22.
Memorials in lieu of flowers are appreciated to the University of Minnesota Nursing School Foundation or the Alzheimer’s Association to further research for understanding and treatment of related disease.
Oliver J. Berven, age 92, of Golden Valley, Minn., passed away on Sept. 5, 2014, surrounded by family. Survived by wife of 68 years, Emma; children, Janet Bolm and husband William, Stan Berven and wife Mary Jo, Donald Berven and wife Margaret, and Gayle Beckman and husband Stan King; 11 grandchildren, including Maren Beckman ’12 and Heidi Beckman ’15; and four great-grandchildren. Memorials preferred to Calvary Lutheran Church of Golden Valley, Luther Seminary of St. Paul, Minn., or donor’s choice.
Arvid E. Bidne, age 90, of North Oaks, Minn., died on Jan. 24, 2015. Arvid was preceded in death by relatives including a cousin, Rodney Olson ’62 and wife Doris Robinson Olson ’63. Survivors include his wife, Anne Westergaard Bidne ’50. Memorials preferred to Luther Seminary, St. Olaf College, or Incarnation.
Kate Birkenkamp, 29, Rochester, Minn., formerly of Mitchell, S.D., died April 17, 2014, from a ruptured brain aneurysm. Kate Elizabeth Birkenkamp was born April 30, 1984, to Ray and Kristin Kelsey Birkenkamp, in Mitchell, S.D. She grew up in Mitchell and graduated with honors from Mitchell High School in 2002. While in high school, she was a flutist with the Mitchell High School Band and was selected to participate in All State Band and All State Orchestra. Kate was also a pianist for the Mitchell High School Show Choir. Kate graduated with honors from St. Olaf College in 2006, with a B.A. in English and biology. While a student at St. Olaf, she had an opportunity to study in London, and was selected to participate in a two week health mission in Chennai, India. Following college, Kate worked for one year as a research fellow in the Allergy and Infectious Disease Department at the National Institutes of Health at Bethesda, Md. In 2007, she entered the University of Minnesota Medical School. Following her second year of medical school, she spent one year in Baltimore, Md., where she earned a Master’s degree in Public Health at Johns Hopkins University. She returned to the University of Minnesota Medical School in Minneapolis and graduated with her medical degree in 2012. Kate was an Internal Medicine Resident at Mayo Clinic School of Graduate Medical Education in Rochester, Minn. During her first year as a resident, she received a grant to spend a month in the Republic of Uganda, Africa, where she was involved in HIV research and furthered her interest in infectious disease and world health.
Kate was a member of First Lutheran Church in Mitchell and held memberships in the Phi Beta Kappa Society, Tri-Beta Biological Honor Society, the JB Grant Internal Health Society, the Anna Baetjer Society for Public Health Practice, and the American Medical Student Association. She had received scholarships and was a recipient of the Wesley W. Spink Award for International Research. Her volunteer work included working with the homeless, the University of Minnesota’s free clinic, and the Baltimore City Health Department Needle Exchange Program. She enjoyed playing the flute and piano and also outdoor activities, including cross-country skiing, hiking, birding, and astronomy with friends and family.
Kate was preceded in death by her maternal grandparents, Helmar and Barbara Kelsey. She is survived by her parents; her sister, Dena Birkenkamp; her boyfriend, Amit Patel; her paternal grandparents, Virginia and Arnold Birkenkamp; and aunts, uncles, cousins, and numerous friends.
Bob was born in Fergus Falls, Minn. on Oct. 30, 1920. He was a 1942 graduate of St. Olaf College and served as the XO aboard the USS Cole in North Africa during WWII. Marrying Joyce Gustafson Boen ’42 in 1943, they raised five children. Following the death of his first wife, Bob married Dorothy Delight Hanson Bloyer in 1982. Bob spent his career in the hardware business and operated the Hardware Hank Store in Bloomington, Minn. until his retirement in 1983. Bob was an avid golfer and horse racing fan. Life-long residents of the Tangletown neighborhood in Minneapolis, Bob resided at Cornerstone Assisted Living of Plymouth, Minn. at the time of his passing. Preceded in death by his parents, Rudolph and Luella Boen, first wife, Joyce, and stepson, James Bloyer, Bob is survived by his wife Dorothy; his five children, Robert Jr. and wife Diane, G. Michael and wife Patricia, Sandra Johnson and husband Robert, Susan and wife Cathy Perkins, and Bradley and wife Kathryn Franzen; stepdaughter-in-law, Susan Bloyer; seven grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren; and many friends. Memorials preferred to Cornerstone Assisted Living of Plymouth.
Ronald Bolinger, of Pine Island, Minn., passed away at Seasons Hospice in Rochester, Minn. on March 1, 2015, at the age of 64. He had been battling cancer for the last four and a half years.
Ronald Jay Bolinger was born May 24, 1950, in Albert Lea, Minn. He was the only child of James and Hazel Jasperson Bolinger. He was baptized and confirmed at First Lutheran Church in Albert Lea and graduated from Albert Lea High School in 1968. He then enrolled at St. Olaf College, graduating with a degree in music education in May 1972.
While at St. Olaf he met Ann Larson Bolinger ’72 and they were married May 30, 1972, at Boe Memorial Chapel on the St. Olaf campus. In the fall of 1972 he enrolled at Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minn. He graduated with a Master of Divinity degree in May 1976 and was ordained into pastoral ministry at First Lutheran Church in Albert Lea June 6, 1976.
His first call was to Grace Lutheran in Driscoll, N.D., where he began serving in June 1976. Subsequent calls were to Zion Lutheran, Beulah, N.D., 1979-1982; United Lutheran Church, Red Wing, Minn., 1982-1988; Faith Lutheran, Hoyt Lakes, Minn., 1988-1997; and St. Peter Lutheran, Rockwell, Iowa, 1997-2009. He then served part-time at Emmanuel Lutheran, Grafton, Iowa from 2010-2012. The love and support he and his family received in each of these congregations was a gift beyond measure.
Music was always a huge part of Ron’s life. He began taking piano lessons from a relative at age six and organ lessons at age 12. He sang in choir while in high school and worked as a church organist. In college Ron was privileged to sing with the St. Olaf Choir under Kenneth Jennings. He travelled to Europe with the choir in 1970 and again in 1972 when the choir was the featured choir at the Strasburg Music Festival in France. That trip was also his and Ann’s honeymoon!
After college he sang with the Dale Warland Singers for two years. In North Dakota he sang with the Bismarck-Mandan Chorale, in Red Wing with the Madrigal Singers (appearing on a “Prairie Home Companion” with Garrison Keillor), and in Rockwell with the North Iowa Chorale Society. He enjoyed singing with these groups immensely and called it “his therapy.” Music was where he most often experienced God.
Ron was an avid reader, enjoyed a good cup of coffee, had a small collection of fountain pens, and was always interested in photography. He liked to travel and the family had some memorable trips! He enjoyed watching sports, especially those his children participated in. Ron had a soft spot for animals and during their 42 years together, he and Ann “rescued” and gave homes to six dogs and seven cats.
After retiring from full-time ministry, he and Ann moved to their “dream home,” an acreage in New Haven Township near Pine Island. Here they enjoyed their new neighbors, woods, and wildflowers, the turkeys and deer, and especially the birds. In Pine Island they found a new church home at St. Paul Lutheran. For the first time in a very long time, Ron was again the person in the pew. He appreciated the fine sermons and gracious fellowship extended to him by Pastors Kip Groettum, John Lohre, Gary Wees, and Dave Peterson. He enjoyed being with the members of St. Paul who welcomed him into worship, the choir, and adult Bible Study.
Ron is survived by his wife, Ann; their three children, Erin Bolinger Rozier ’99 and husband Steve, Elizabeth Bolinger, and Ethan Bolinger and wife Kendra Wong; his cousin, Kent Jasperson and wife Julie; his sister and brother-in-law, Kathy Larson and Gordon Flett; and special friends Gladys “Nana” Anderson, Liz Michael Davis, Kaylee Michael, and Godson Kaleb Michael Davis. Preceding him in death includes father-in-law, Silas Larson ’42.
Knut Bolseth, of Bergen, Norway, passed away on Sept. 9, 2013. Survivors include his former wife, Marcia Taylor Schaupp ’75.
Born Aug. 7, 1925, in New London, Minn. to a Norwegian immigrant father and Swedish mother, he grew up in Spicer, Minn., graduated from Willmar High School, and joined the U.S. Navy, serving with the Seabees in the South Pacific during WWII. He subsequently earned a bachelor of arts degree at St. Olaf College, a master of education degree at Macalester College, and a doctor of education degree at the University of Colorado in Boulder.
Dennis married Marie Trodahl Bolstad ’50 in 1951 and together they raised five children, all graduating from Menomonie High School, and through 17 consecutive years of at least one child in college, sent them to St. Olaf College, Macalester College, Concordia College – Moorhead, Cornell College in Iowa, and Gustavus Adolphus College.
Dennis taught high school English and History in Mahtomedi, Minn. and was the high school principal in Lake Benton, Minn., but spent most of his working life at Stout State College, Stout State University, and the University of Wisconsin – Stout in Menomonie, mostly teaching psychology, philosophy, and education courses.
An active member of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, he also served the community with Habitat for Humanity and along with Marie received a volunteer-of-the-year award from the governor of Wisconsin for work with displaced youth in the Menomonie area.
Always an iconoclast, when Dennis saw wrong he tried to right it. As a young student, he wore a dress to school to protest a dress code treating city and country kids differently. He was also known to refuse to pay the war tax on the telephone bill, to give final exams in the middle of the term, to refuse to join the union, to run a bookstore out of his office, to buy and sell enough used cars that he was told he would need a dealer’s license to sell any more, and to convince his colleagues that they should all take a pay cut so that another colleague could be retained in the department.
Dennis was preceded in death by his parents, Johannes and Lavinia Johnson Bolstad; and his brothers, John, Robert, and Don.
He is survived by his wife, Marie; his sister and brother-in-law, Jane Bolstad Parr ’44 and Robert Parr; his sister-in-law, June; his children, Peder Bolstad ’74, Rolf, Ruth and husband Dave Chapman, Arne Bolstad ’84 and wife Karen, and Thor; his grandchildren, Drake, Quinn, Morgan, Peyton, Trace, Webb, and Gretta; and his nieces and nephews, Laura, Tom, Cindy, Steven, Jeanne, and Carol.
Though not by blood, Dennis is also survived by his “Chinese kids” – Stout students from Taiwan and their extended families that lived with Dennis and Marie through their college years and continue to stay in touch.
Memorials to your charity choice – Dennis had many!
Norman Borsvold, of Tigard, Ore., died March 10, 2014. He is survived by his wife, Jane, and his daughters, Cynthia and Kristin.
Sylvia “Sallie” Larson Boyum, 98, of Winona, Minn., died Oct. 20, 2014, at her home. She was born in 1916 in Landa, N.D., to G.B and Marie Larson, and she grew up in Milwaukee. She graduated from Washington High School in Milwaukee, and from St. Olaf College. In 1940 she married Stanley Boyum from Adams, Minn., and they made their home in Winona. Sallie was active as a volunteer in the YWCA, Girl Scouts, PTA, and church activities at Central Lutheran Church for many years. She taught at Winona Jr. High School from 1960 to 1979.
She is survived by her four daughters, Ann Frehner, Sandra Wally and husband Bob Sattler, Linda Larson and husband Larry, and Barbara Muskin and husband Dana Goldfarb; four grandchildren, Scott Wally and wife Stephanie, Heidi Weber and husband Tom, Kurt Frehner and wife Meg, and LaTasha Slinden and husband Dan; and six great-grandchildren. She is preceded in death by her husband, Stanley, in 1983; and two sons-in-law, James Frehner and Joe Muskin. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Central Lutheran Church or charity of donor’s choice in her memory.
Mark Howard Burgdorf, of Decorah, Iowa, died of natural causes on Jan. 23, 2015. He was born Aug. 28, 1951 to Howard and Sherry Jordahl Burgdorf in Urbana, Ill. In 1952 the family moved to the Twin Cities, Minn., where his parents fostered his intellect, artistic ability, and love of nature. He attended St. Olaf College for three years but received his real education from life.
Mark moved to Heivly Street in Decorah in 1973. He lived on Franklin Street in Highlandville, Ill., and was the champion of Winnebago, Minn. for more than 15 years; he resided there until his death. He died at Mayo Clinic Hospital, Saint Mary’s Campus in Rochester, Minn. Mark was a silversmith and consummate artist with a creative brilliance and a bit of a self-destructive streak. His interests included rocks, fossils, agates, gems, metals, polarized lenses, molecular structures of various materials, the Upper Iowa River, Lake Superior, Frida Kahlo, crows, the other birds of Iowa, historical preservation, female aviators, cameras, photos, clocks, postcards, stamps, coins, spontaneous art, found objects, plants, roots, stalks, puffballs, morels, coffee, NPR, public TV, politics, religion, his family, and everyone else’s family.
Mark is preceded in death by his mother, Sherry Burgdorf, and his great-aunt Julia. He is survived by his son, Owen Burgdorf-Hibbs, with whom he shared the ability to see the ordinary as extraordinary; his father, Howard Burgdorf; brothers, Eric Burgdorf and wife Kathy, and Andrew Burgdorf and wife Sherilyn; friend, Sherry Berg; friend, Nan Hibbs; nieces, Esther, Rebekah, Hannah, and Amanda Burgdorf ’13; nephew, Michael Burgdorf ’16; and many, many friends.
Memorials may be given to a fund for Owen Burgdorf-Hibbs c/o Decorah Bank & Trust, Decorah, Iowa.
Word has been received that Dorothy Rieckman Branes, of Rochester, Minn., died March 16, 1999.
*Gordon Keith Branes, 92, of Rochester, Minn., died peacefully May 16, 2014, embraced by his loving family at Saint Mary’s Hospital in Rochester. He was born in St. Paul, Minn. on Feb. 2, 1922, to Alfred and Clara Knutson Branes. Gordon grew up in St. Paul and graduated from Harding High School in 1941. Gordon was a machinist mate in the U.S. Navy during World War II from 1942 through 1945. He served in the Pacific Theater on surface and submarine craft. Gordon attended St. Olaf College from 1946 through 1947, and graduated from Macalester College with a bachelor of arts degree in 1950. Gordon married Dorothy Louise Rieckman, of Morris, Minn., in June 1948 and together they raised three children. He shared his life with her for 51 years, until her death in March 1999. Gordon graduated from Mayo School of Physical Therapy in 1952, and served in several capacities at Mayo Clinic for 35 years. He was the beloved director of the Physical Therapy Program at Mayo Clinic from 1964 until his retirement in 1985. He achieved the academic appointment level of Assistant Professor of Physical Therapy at the Mayo Clinic School of Health Related Sciences.
Gordon married Kathleen Susan Reinsvold of Rochester in August 2003. Together they enjoyed spending time with their friends and families at their lake cabin in Cumberland, Wis., and later at their “Cabin in the Sky” condominium in Lake City.
Gordon was a people-oriented person, who volunteered and directed in a variety of philanthropic groups most of his life. He was a firm believer in education, and mentored youth in activities such as little league baseball and Indian Guides. He served on the boards of directors of the Rochester YMCA, Samaritan Bethany Nursing Home and Foundation, Salvation Army, and the Valhalla Management Association. He also served in a variety of positions at Our Savior’s, where he and his family were longtime members. Gordon was honored for his work in the Rochester Rotary Club by being named to a Paul Harris Fellowship Service Award.
Gordon is preceded in death by his parents, Alfred and Clara; his wife, Dorothy Rieckman Branes ’49; a sister, Doris; and two brothers, Alfred and Harold. Gordon is survived by his wife, Kathleen; two sons, Roger and Dr. Gerald Branes; a daughter, Dr. Laurel Branes; two stepchildren; seven grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; seven step-grandchildren; and one step-great-grandchild.
Barbara Lacher Brooks, 82, of Zionsville, Ind., passed away Nov. 28, 2014. She was born in Minneapolis, the daughter of Benjamin and Clara Lacher. She was a graduate of St. Olaf College. Barbara was deeply committed to her faith, her family, and her community. She was an active member of the College Park Church, was a Precept Ministries teacher for many years, a member of the choir, and served at the church’s Welcome Desk. She served as a member of the Zionsville Community School Board and participated as a volunteer leader for numerous charitable organizations. She was an avid sculling rower for many years and a member of Sons of Norway. She was most notably her family’s biggest cheerleader.
Barbara was preceded in death by her parents; a son, David, who died of children’s leukemia; and her twin brother, Stanton R. Lacher. She is survived by her husband of 61 years, Elton H. Brooks; sons, Paul Brooks and wife Diane, and Michael Brooks and wife Vera; daughters, Anne and Katherine Brooks; and her grandchildren, Katie, Carly, Danic, and Eliana Brooks.
Marietta Jeanne Foss Brown, of Ann Arbor, Mich., died March 9, 2014. Survivors include her partner, Denise Smith, and her ex-husband, Gene Brown ’66.
David Paul Brunet, age 67, of Eagan, Minn., passed away peacefully on Sept. 15, 2014 after a long struggle with ALS and dementia. He was born in Hibbing, Minn., graduated from high school in Burnsville, Minn. and St. Olaf College, and then received his PhD from Columbia University. He was a writer and taught at the University of Wisconsin and St. Olaf College. He also worked in communications at State Farm Insurance. In 1992-1993 he was a Fulbright Scholar in Izmir, Turkey. David had a wide range of interests, from singing to cooking to carpentry and bird watching, but his greatest joy was his children and grandchildren. He was preceded in death by parents, Elna and Paul. He is survived by his loving wife, Maria Aukee Brunet ’69, of 45 years; daughter, Katharine Brunet Hanson ’98 and husband Troy; sons, John and wife Shannon, and Peter Brunet; grandchildren, Isaac, Lily, Ben, and Sarah Hanson; brother, Dan Brunet; sister, Elaine Fredrikson and husband Randy; stepmother, Lorraine White; stepbrother, Gary Robillard and wife Kim; stepsisters, Nita Glenn and Laurie Holasek and husband Steve; and many other relatives and friends. Memorials preferred to the ALS Association, The Gathering at Lyngblomsten, and All Saints Lutheran Church.
Blenda Joanna “B” Theilmann Bullard, age 78, of Blaine, Minn., passed away peacefully in her sleep on Feb. 27, 2015. B was born Oct. 4, 1936 in Minneapolis and graduated from St. Olaf College. She married Jim Bullard in 1960 and together they raised three children and celebrated 54 years of marriage in fall 2014. After many years as a dedicated community volunteer in Mankato, Minn., B began working at Immanuel St. Joseph’s Hospital, where she was employed for many years. She was a passionate animal and nature lover, devoted hockey mom, and maintained the best stocked cookie jar in the neighborhood. B is survived by husband, Jim Bullard; children, Lisa, Dan and wife Alexis, and Joel and wife Kris Bullard; her grandchildren, Matt, Alex, Sam, Caitlin, and Laura; and beloved cat, Chester. She was preceded in death by parents, Walt and Blenda Theilmann, and sister, Mary Warren. Memorial donations may be made to the Animal Humane Society in Golden Valley, Minn. or Blue Earth Nicollet County Humane Society.
Elizabeth Huizenga Buntrock, of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., died on July 1, 2014, at the age of 80. While sipping tea Monday and filling out a crossword puzzle, Ms. Buntrock had a heart attack at her Pantry desk. She was a Fort Lauderdale socialite, philanthropist, activist, and Huizenga family member, who left her mark on Broward County. Elizabeth Betty Joanne Huizenga Buntrock, more simply known as “B.J.”, founded Flowers and Found Objects on Las Olas Boulevard in 1983. Her more recent non-profit project, The Pantry of Broward, is in its sixth year of providing food to grandparents who are raising grandchildren. “She had the heart of a thousand women,” her daughter, Margot Weinstein, 54, of Greenwich, Conn., said in an email.
Ms. Buntrock didn’t take “no” for an answer and operated not as a boss, but more as fellow volunteer. She surrounded herself with books and good conversation, on topics ranging from crop circles to UFOs. “She never liked anybody to clap for her,” EJ Spector, The Pantry’s board chief, said. “She just did these things because she was the quiet donor behind the scenes.”
Ms. Buntrock had a personal touch. She would arrive at The Pantry at 5 a.m. to pen handwritten thank-you cards to each and every donor, Spector said. Born in Illinois, Ms. Buntrock moved to Fort Lauderdale in 1978. She was first cousins with H. Wayne Huizenga, former Miami Dolphins owner and billionaire businessman. Their fathers were brothers.
In the 24 years Gary Young worked for Ms. Buntrock at Flowers and Found Objects, they cultivated a close friendship, cemented by weekly visits over Saturday afternoon drinks — beer for Young, vodka cocktails for Ms. Buntrock, Young said. “B.J. was my friend, mentor,” Young said. “She was a person that I could say anything in the world to.”
Ms. Buntrock’s daughter, Charley Buntrock Zeches, 43, of San Francisco, said her mother was an “unorthodox parent”. Zeches recalled being uneasy and scared by the family’s move from Chicago to Fort Lauderdale when she was seven and her mother’s unusual way of soothing her. As they stood on the edge of the pool at their new home decades ago, Ms. Buntrock suggested they jump in, clothes and all. “We can do this”, Zeches recalls her mother saying. “Let’s just jump in.” And they did. “That’s kinda how she lived every day,” Zeches said.
Ms. Buntrock is survived by two sisters, Suzanne Kannis and Ginger Jurries; two brothers, J.C. and Peter Huizenga; ex-husband Dean Buntrock ’55; three daughters — Weinstein, Zeches, and Dana Buntrock, 55—and their husbands; six granddaughters; and friend, Ruth Kelly Hustad ’55 P ’78 ’81 ’81. The family will accept donations to The Pantry of Broward in her honor.
Carolyn Bue Burt, of Boulder, Colo., passed away on Sept. 26, 2014 at the age of 90. Born in Pittsburgh, Carol was raised in North Dakota and Montana, and was a graduate of Zahl, N.D. High School and St. Olaf College class of 1946. After graduation, Carol relocated to Boulder. She worked for many years at the University of Colorado in various capacities, including Student Finance, Wardenburg Health Center, and the Memorial Center. She was perhaps best known to generations of Boulder Reservoir patrons, as she also worked at the Reservoir from 1958 until her retirement in 2004. During that time, she operated boat rentals, taught water skiing and sailing, provided lake patrol and mooring services, and coordinated community service activities. Carol is survived by two sons, three grandchildren, and 10 great-grandchildren.
Sylvia Ellen Christiansen Buselmeier, of Stillwater, Minn., died Jan. 17, 2015 at the age of 88. She was preceded in death by parents, Olaf Christiansen ’25 and Ellen Kjos Christiansen ’23, brother-in-law, Robert Ostrem ’56, and grandson, Mason Ahrens Schulte. She is survived by husband, Robert Buselmeier; four children, Brule Buselmeier and wife Lisa, Barbara Buselmeier Schulte ’84 and husband John Schulte ’82, Bryn Buselmeier ’84, and Britta Worsinger and husband Jeff; six grandchildren, Autumn Anderson and husband John, Garrett Buselmeier and wife Missy, Anika Phillips and husband Ben, Alyssa Beck and husband Justin, Cole Schulte, and Audrey Worsinger; three great-grandchildren, Afton Rose Anderson, Lochlan Jude Phillips, and Naomi Jane Worsinger; and nieces and nephews, including John Christiansen ’84, Sue Ostrem ’85, and Sten Ostrem ’84 P ’15 and wife Jill Christie Ostrem ’85 P ’15. She is also survived by siblings, Fredrik Christiansen ’51 and wife Mary Lou Sampson Christiansen ’50, Sigrid Christiansen Ostrem ’56, Julianne Christiansen ’64 and husband Carl Dietz, and foster brother Herb Christiansen.
Orin Raymond Champlin, Jr., 81, of Melrose, Mont., passed away on Nov. 29, 2014, at St. Patrick Hospital in Missoula, Mont., surrounded by his family.
He was born in Minneapolis on May 4, 1933 to Orin and Vera Champlin. He went to St. Olaf College and enjoyed singing in the choir. After graduating he taught music in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Montana.
He married Lois Dobak in 1959 and they moved to Helena, Mont. in 1967, where he taught at the Helena High School for 23 years. Since his retirement, he divided his time between England, Florida, and Montana.
He was preceded in death by his sister, Eva Marie Champlin. Ray is survived by his wife of 55 years, Lois; sister, Winnefred Jean Jones; children, Orin Champlin and wife Linda Hopple, Kari Hand, and Chris Champlin and wife Wanda; grandchildren, Breanna Champlin, Alliya Champlin, Brisanna Champlin, Deshawn Lewis, Jessica Levritt, and Rachael Marx; and great-grandchildren, Lyli Peinhardt, Deshawn Champlin, and Tiffany Champlin.
*Merton Christensen, of Bilings, Mont., died April 2, 2014, thankful for 83 years of his life on his earth and trusting the Lord to take it from here. He was born in Minneapolis to R. Maynard Christensen and wife, Myrtle Snartemo Christensen. He grew up in Minnesota, first in South St. Paul, and then Leroy. He is a graduate of St. Olaf College and Luther Theological Seminary in St. Paul.
Merton served in the Air Force as a Chaplain, and then as Pastor to Lutheran congregations in Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, and Montana. In retirement, he served for several years as a Financial Advisor with Raymond James Financial Services. He is remembered as a caring and honest person with a rare, but often hidden sense of humor.
He is survived by a daughter, Siri Baker; a grandson, Timothy Trang; and a sister, Lavonne Larsen.
*Preston Christensen, of Elgin, Ill., passed away on Feb. 25, 2014. After graduating from St. Olaf, he served for six years in the U.S. Navy. He received his master’s degree from Northern Illinois University in 1970, and taught science for 28 years in Elgin. Preston also belonged to the American Legion.
Long time Eagle River, Alaska resident, Keith Christenson, passed away Aug. 10, 2014 while enjoying the rugged Alaskan lifestyle. Keith is best known for his love of steam powered railroad, mining equipment and industrial history. He will be missed by many in his passing.
Keith was born in 1942 to Gust and Signe Christenson in Evanston, Ill. He was raised in Park Ridge, Ill., where he developed his interest in steam and antique power from his father, an engineer in the locomotive design industry.
Keith graduated from St. Olaf College. He achieved a Juris Doctorate at the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana after dabbling in English and Economics.
After moving to Alaska in 1969, Keith was instrumental in the title project for the right of way of the Trans Alaska Pipeline. Keith handled the right of way projects from Deadhorse to Valdez, Alaska and an alternate route bypassing areas around Fairbanks, Alaska. Later he became a partner in the law firm Johnson, Christenson, Schaumberg, Glass & Link, and later became a sole practitioner in real property law in Anchorage, Alaska. He was a member of the Eagle River Elks Lodge, the Alaska Bar Association, Alaska Live Steam, the Antique Power Club, and the National Railway Historical Society.
Keith is survived by his adult children, Erik, Lisa Doring, Kevin, and Meagan, as well as a large extended family made up of relatives and friends spread across the country, who enjoyed their shared time. He will be remembered by all who knew him as a man generous with his time, a zeal for helping the underdog against larger foe and a kind and attentive friend with a love for all things Alaskan.
Memorial donations can be sent to the Christenson Family in Eagle River, Alaska.
Clara R. Froiland Christianson, age 96, of Bloomington, Minn., passed away on Sept. 21, 2014. She was preceded in death by husband, Gordon, and son, Bruce. She is survived by children, Sandra, Paul Christianson ’77 and wife Greta, and Robert; granddaughters, Mara and Kari Christianson ’14; brother, Rev. Sven “Phil” Froiland ’50 and wife Marilyn; sister, Ruth Hansen; and nieces and nephews, including Sonja Froiland Lynch ’82. If so desired, memorials may be directed to Bethlehem Lutheran Church or the Hjalmer S. Froiland Scholarship at St. Olaf College.
*Lorren C. Church, 85, longtime resident of Owatonna, Minn., died April 23, 2014 at Homestead Hospice House. Lorren was born on Dec. 13, 1928, the son of Fred and Ella Engebretson Church, in Luverne, Minn.. He attended high school in Luverne and graduated from there in 1946. Lorren enlisted in the Army in 1946 at the age of 17, with the permission of his parents. He served in Japan in the occupation forces until 1948. After his military service, Lorren attended St. Olaf College and graduated with a business degree in 1952. Lorren was recruited by Federated Insurance in 1952, where he met his future wife, Romaine. Lorren was united in marriage to Romaine Thurnau on May 18, 1957, at St. John Evangelical Church in Owatonna. The couple made their home in Owatonna. Lorren continued work at Federated in the underwriting department for many years and retired in 1990. He was a member of the V.F.W. Hugo Matejcek Post 3723, American Legion, and the Sons of Norway. Life interests included golf — in his younger years he enjoyed many sports, including baseball, volleyball, bowling, and softball; traveling in retirement; and daily crossword puzzles with his wife. Lorren will be remembered for his sense humor and spontaneously singing old songs.
Lorren was preceded in death by his parents. He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Romaine; daughter, Sara; son, David; grandson, Jesse Lorren; brother, James Church; sister, JoAnn Rhoda; and many nieces and nephews. Memorials may be directed to Trinity Lutheran Church building fund or Homestead Hospice beautification fund.
On Nov. 29, 1955, a baby girl was born to Don and Janice Lovgren Larsen in Alexandria, Minn. She was named Denise LaRae and she was the first of their four children. As a young girl, Denise joined and excelled in various 4-H projects, and was an active member who looked forward to annual State Fair trips. She would remain a yearly attendee and fan of the fair. Denise was a graduate of Osakis High School with the Class of 1974. She then attended St. Olaf College and received her bachelor of science degree in nursing. She began her nursing career by working at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis. In 1978 Denise married Mark Davis in Osakis. She worked at various health care facilities over the years, primarily in the metro area, with an emphasis on long-term care patients. She also made time to continue her education toward a master’s degree from St. Cloud State University. Denise had a kind and caring manner that put her patients at ease. She had a compassion for others that shone in all she did. That extended to the animal kingdom as well, for Denise had many various pet cats and dogs over the years. In 1995 Denise married Jeffrey Collins in south Minneapolis. They attended the Parkway United Church of Christ. Denise was a former member of the First Presbyterian Church in Osakis.
Some of Denise’s favorite things included traveling, reading, tending her flowers, and cheering for the Green Bay Packers. She had a life-long love for music, from playing in the high school band to taking in concerts and following the musical career of her husband’s band, Randy and the Wolf Pack. She also enjoyed good food and trying new restaurants and food trends. Her favorite treat however was anything with chocolate. Her gentleness and smile will be dearly missed by her family and friends.
She is survived by her husband, Jeff Collins; her parents, Don and Jan Larsen; siblings, Shari Maloney and husband Dennis, David Larsen and wife Kim, and Carla Mathews and husband Chad; 10 nieces and nephews; and three great-nieces and nephews. Preceding her in death are her grandparents.
Karen Nelson Conger, of Santa Barbara, Calif., passed away peacefully on May 5, 2014, after a brief illness. Karen was born on Feb. 20, 1943 in Glendale, Calif. to Madeline and Jon Nelson. After World War II the family moved to Lu Verne, Iowa so her father could join his father at their family owned bank. She loved and excelled in sports, and was pursued by Look Magazine, to work for and star on a basketball team they had. She was accepted by St. Olaf College and majored in Liberal Arts. In 1963, she was hired by Continental Airlines to fly as an Air Hostess. She loved her job and continued it for 20 years, flying both domestic and international flights. She was invited to hunt tiger in Nepal and spent two weeks in the jungle on Safari at the age of 23 in 1966. During her flying career she met and married Richard Rhodes in 1971. They were members of the Los Angeles Country Club. She became a passionate golfer and was asked to be on the Women’s Golf Team, and was also asked to serve on the Junior Golf Committee. Her marriage to Richard Rhodes ended in 1982. In 1983 Karen married James Conger, a DC-10 Captain with Continental Airlines. They had a son, Christopher Conger.
Karen is survived by her husband, Jim Conger; her son, Christopher Conger; her sister, Sonja B. Nelson ’62; and her brother, Jon Nelson.
Raymond J. Conklin, 64, of Moline, Ill., gourmet chef, bread baker extraordinaire, and master gardener, died July 4, 2014 at his home, surrounded by his family, after living for nine months with stage IV cancer. Raymond James Conklin was born Sept. 17, 1949, in Rockford, Ill., to Raymond and Doral Oskins Conklin. On Sept. 13, 1986, in Davenport, Iowa, he married Renee Fallow.
Ray attended St. Olaf College and received his undergraduate degree and Juris Doctorate from University of Iowa, Iowa City, graduating summa cum laude. He was very proud of the fact that he only missed one point on his LSAT exam to get into law school. He was a partner at Robertson & Conklin Law Offices for many years. In 2004, he was appointed Associate Judge to the 14th Judicial Circuit Court, State of Illinois. He also was appointed to the Illinois Special Supreme Court Advisory Committee for Justice & Mental Health Planning. He held membership in the Illinois Judges Association, Illinois State Bar Association, Rock Island County Bar Association, and Illinois Association of Drug Court Professionals.
Throughout Ray’s life, he was a champion of social justice in both his career as a judge, and his personal life, where he focused on helping those without a voice. He was the first judge and co-founder of Rock Island County Mental Health Court, and believed that an integrated approach combining the justice system with mental health services was the key to reducing repeat offenders with mental illnesses.
Ray also was a great father and husband, and was extremely proud of his three children, Alissa, Aaron, and Matt. He was married for 28 years to the love of his life, Renee, and together, they raised two dogs, Kambell and Rebecka, the second loves of his life.
He was known for his quick wit, intellect, advocacy and unique sense of humor. He had friends in all walks of life, swore without limit or shame, and was the toughest softy you could ever meet. Everyone who had the honor to know him will miss him terribly, and his contagious zeal for life will never be forgotten.
Survivors include his wife, Renee Conklin; mother, Doral “Dixie” Simons; daughter, Alissa Conklin and husband Miquel Bermeo; son, Matthew Conklin and wife Courtney; stepson, Aaron Klugger and wife Tracy; sister, Cherie Morgan; brother, Jon Conklin and wife Denise; grandson, Lucca Bermeo; and a granddaughter, Hadley Conklin, on the way.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Mayo Clinic or Beacon of Hope Hospice.
*Mary Saltsman Cunningham, of Chula Vista, Calif., passed away on Aug. 11, 2014. She was born April 24, 1919 in Minot, N.D., to George and Alice B. Saltsman. She attended Williston Elementary and Williston High School, where Mary graduated valedictorian of her senior class in 1937. After receiving a scholarship, Mary attended St. Olaf College. However in 1943, Mary changed her career path and enlisted in the US Navy. She was sent to Naval Supply School in San Francisco in 1944. As a female naval supply sailor, Mary traveled in both the USA and England.
At the end of the War, Mary returned to Minot to attend Minot Business College and became an accountant. After completing college, she worked in the Minot County Assessor’s office before being recalled by the US Navy in 1951. She was assigned Supply Check positions in California and Hawaii. She was assigned as a Navy Recruiter in the states of Washington and California. Mary received many outstanding honors while serving as a female in the US Navy.
While working in Burbank, California, Mary met and married Senior Chief Donald F. Cunningham in 1960. Mary also became a Master Chief while serving in Monterrey, Calif. The honor of Master Chief was a position few women experienced during their military career.
Mary retired in December 1970, and she and Donald, chose to live in Chula Vista for the remainder of their lives. She is predeceased by her husband, Donald F. Cunningham, brother, George J. Saltsman, sister, Mable Saltsman, and nephew, Craig Saltsman. Surviving relatives are Mary Saltsman, sister-in-law, and nephews, George Saltsman and Bill Saltsman
Catherine Clausen Deam, 69, a longtime Oak Park volunteer and community leader, died on June 26, 2013. Born on March 23, 1944 in Chicago, she spent her youth in Chicago, was valedictorian of her high school class, and graduated from St. Olaf College with a bachelor of arts degree in mathematics and a minor in French. She and her husband moved to Oak Park in the early 1970s, shortly after the birth of their first daughter. Described by a friend as the “Grand Dame of Oak Park,” she was a dynamic director of many local organizations, including the Park District of Oak Park board of commissioners, Pleasant Home Foundation, Parenthesis, and the League of Women Voters. She not only served these non-profits, but was also pivotal in creating the Parenthesis Kitchen Walk, getting Cheney Mansion donated to the park district, and helping Pleasant Home become a National Historic Landmark.
Always a humanitarian, Catherine and her family provided short-term foster care for more than 25 children through Hephzibah Children’s Association in Oak Park. Many remembered her long into adulthood. She worked as a math and French teacher in the Denver area elementary schools, served as a Strikers and AYSO soccer coach and Brownie/Girl Scout leader, and hosted many International Exchange students from Germany, Spain and Argentina. In 1985, she was named Illinois Citizen of the Year by the Illinois Association of School Social Workers for her outstanding community service on behalf of children. She turned her love of history and community into work as a real estate agent for BHG/Gloor Realty Co. She enjoyed introducing newcomers to the historic housing stock in Oak Park and sharing her breadth of knowledge on many house tours. She was a member of the First United Church of Oak Park and the Rotary Club of Oak Park-River Forest. Ms. Deam also loved her Colorado home and traveled there often to enjoy nature and the slopes. She served as host to the Steamboat Springs Ski School and brought many Oak Park skiers to the mountains, asking them to “make a donation to Pleasant Home” as payment for staying at her home. Catherine lived her life for her family, friends, volunteering and travel. Her adventurous spirit and love of history took her to historic homes, cities, and landmarks across the United States and around the world, including France, Guatemala, Turkey, Budapest, Greece, Croatia, South America, and Morocco.
Catherine Deam is survived by her husband, Malcolm Deam ’65; her brother, George Clausen; her children, Holly Larson, Matthew, and Erica Elbekri; four grandchildren; and her dog Annie Doodle. She was preceded in death by her parents, Sara Lee and Richard Clausen. Her family requests that memorial donations be made to the Pleasant Home Foundation, Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation, or Heifer International.
She was preceded in death by her parents, G. Carl Holtan and Lillian Brekke, brother, John Holtan, and husband, Donald Delvin. She is survived by her children, Eric J. Erickson ’85, Jana Erickson Knight ’83, and Anne Erickson Edgley, and two grandchildren.
Robert Devens, of Fridley, Minn., passed away on June 23, 2014. He was preceded in death by his wife, Dorothy, and brother, James Devens ’52. He is survived by his five children and their families.
Eunice Anderson Dinga, age 87, of Bloomington, Minn., died April 12, 2014, with her husband and family by her side. She was born Jan. 7, 1927, to Lutheran missionary parents while they were serving in China. She did it all – wife, mother, special ed teacher, world traveler, book clubs, Stephen Minister, bridge club, friends, shopping, camping in the US and Canada, cruises around the world, dining out, family, knitting, politics, weaving, singing, ceramics, painting with oils, walking…she loved talking to everyone, being at the ocean, going barefoot, and warm sunny weather!
Preceded in death by her parents, Reverend Albert and Mrs. Viola Anderson; sisters, Ruth Anderson Lewis ’37, Gertrude Anderson Hoff ’49, and Clara Anderson; and brother, Albert Anderson ’44. Survived by loving husband and fellow traveler of 65 years, Gustav Dinga ’47; children, Paul Dinga, Marc Dinga ’74, Cheryl Dinga Feigum ’80 and husband Gregg Feigum ’81, and Diane Dinga Stratton ’80 and husband John Stratton ’78; brother, Donald Anderson ’50, who died May 2014; sisters-in-law, Delores Anderson and Anne Anderson; grandchildren, including Anna Feigum ’07, Naomi Dinga ’05, Marcus Dinga, Chloe Dinga, Rachel Dinga, Nathaniel Dinga, Lisa Stratton, and Sarah Feigum; great-grandchildren; nieces and nephews, including Barbara Anderson Jeffers ’84 and husband Philip, Albert Anderson, and Sumner Anderson; cousins; many relatives; and friends.
Thanks to Wealshire of Bloomington, Pathfinder Care Management, and Park Nicollet Methodist Hospital Hospice for their loving and gentle care!
Dorcas, daughter of Orin and Gladys Christeson Byro, was born on April 23, 1925, in Eagle Grove, Iowa. She graduated from Eagle Grove High School in 1943. Dorcas loved music and excelled at it from a very young age. She received her A.A. from Waldorf College in 1945 and her B.A. in music at St. Olaf College in 1950. She sang in the top choirs at both institutions. In between her college years, she taught music in the Belmond and Fertile schools in Iowa. After St. Olaf, she had a meaningful teaching experience in Spirit Lake, Iowa from 1950-53. There she met her future husband, Edgar, the Dickinson County’s Agricultural Extension agent.
Dorcas married Edgar in 1953 and joined him in Osage, where he had become the Mitchell County Extension Agent.
After a short stint teaching music in the Osage schools, Dorcas found her home at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Osage in 1953, directing two children’s choirs. These choirs were well known throughout the area for their excellence and they anchored many regional choir festivals. Her love for music inspired many children to continue studying and making music into their adult lives. After 20 years as youth choir director, Dorcas was the adult choir director at Our Savior’s Lutheran for another 15 years. Her adult choirs sang Handel’s “Messiah” and other important works under her direction. She also knew how to throw a great choir party.
These were each perfect positions for her, blending her love of music and her teaching skills with her deep faith in God and commitment to the Church. Dorcas believed deeply in the role of music to inspire and add meaning to the worship experience. She chose hymns and anthems that brought meaningful texts and musical depth to the liturgy and scripture. Her work and leadership has brought musical and spiritual inspiration to many individuals.
Dorcas also continued her dedication to Waldorf College, teaching voice, serving as interim choir director, and as an outspoken institutional supporter. This led to her election as the first woman on the college’s Board of Regents, which she served on for 12 years. She was Director of Alumni Relations for several years until her retirement.
Dorcas was a leader in the Lutheran church in many ways. She was chairwoman of the Northeastern District of the Women of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA) when the ELCA was first getting organized. She also was chairwoman of the ELCA Iowa Task Force on Peace and Reconciliation.
Dorcas’ desire to build cultural bridges led her to become a driving force in founding the Osage Sister City Organization, where she helped establish a close relationship with the city of Lermontov, in the Stavropol region of Russia. In 2006, Dorcas received the Governor’s Volunteer Award for her efforts and was recently honored locally for her 25 years of service to the Osage Sister City organization.
In recent years, Dorcas invested much time in writing poetry, and her work has been published in Lyrical Iowa for 11 consecutive years.
Dorcas is survived by her husband of 61 years, Edgar; children, Martha Dorow ’80, and Joel Dorow ’82 and wife Miriam Chilton; siblings, Miriam Byro Rogness ’54 and husband Martin, Paul Byro and wife Betty, and Kenneth Byro and wife Lani; and grandchildren, Shaina Dorow and Samuel Dorow. Dorcas was preceded in death by her parents and her infant sister, Evelyn Byro.
Marilyn Lonsbury Drake, of Lanham, Md., passed away on Oct. 9, 2014 at Doctor’s Community Hospital following surgery.
Marilyn was born in Des Moines, Iowa and later moved with her family to Minneapolis. She attended St. Olaf College, where she earned a B.A. degree and sang with the world-renowned St. Olaf Choir. She married Earle Drake ’57 and moved with him to the Washington, D.C. area in 1958, where she taught English and Spanish in the Montgomery County, Md. school system before having her children. In later years, she enjoyed gatherings with family members and friends near and far, and being an involved and loving grandmother to her three granddaughters.
For 56 years, Marilyn was the beloved wife of Earle Drake, who survives her, as do her children Steven Drake and Susan Bell, daughter-in-law Jane Redicker, son-in-law John Bell, and granddaughters Emily Bell, Abigail Bell, and Katherine Drake. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the American Heart Association in Marilyn’s memory.
*David Drentlaw, age 74, of Northfield, Minn., passed away Feb. 3, 2015 in Arizona at Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn Hospital.
Dave’s higher education included St. Olaf College and Minnesota School of Business. In 1964 he was accepted into the Minnesota National Guard Military Academy and provided years of service with honors. In recent years he served as Treasurer of American Veterans (AMVETS) in Fountain Hills, Ariz., actively delivering this service though his last day of passing.
During high school and college his basketball abilities were highlighted, followed by awards and champion trophies in handball, bowling, tennis, skiing, and golf throughout his life. Dave enjoyed ice and boat fishing, as well as hunting birds and big game.
Dave’s career started in commercial airline pilot training. His business understanding and entrepreneurial drive developed successful businesses he owned and operated in the construction and real estate industry. His community social relations included: serving as public government commissioner on the Northfield planning commission; President of the Northfield golf club during the expansion of the nine-hole course into 18 holes; and board member of community associations. He also organized hosted and funding non-profit charity events for the wellbeing of individuals during challenging times.
His construction-related talent carried into his personal craftwork of clocks, picture frames, corkboards, and other artwork made from recycled wood materials. Dave’s artwork is displayed in multiple businesses and residences for long term admiration by individuals and the public community. Friends and family will forever carry heartfelt memories of the deep love and care within Dave’s heart and soul.
He is survived by children, including Drew Drentlaw ’90, grandchildren, and wife Kathy. Dave was raised by Mr. and Mrs. Leslie Drentlaw, who preceded his death.
In lieu of flowers or presents, memorial donations in memory of Dave Drentlaw are appreciated and welcomed by Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota online or via standard mail. Your donation will support and raise hope for individuals facing challenging times.
Elsa Wilhelmina Kesatie Dross, of Edneyville, N.C., has died. Elsa was preceded in death by her husband, Stanley. Survivors include a niece, Kathryn.
Kathy Ann Borchardt Dyess, age 64, of Shakopee, Minn., passed away on June 17, 2014, after a courageous two and a half year battle against ovarian cancer. Kathy was born in New Prague, Minn., on Jan. 14, 1950, and grew up in Shakopee, where she was valedictorian of the Shakopee High School class of 1968. She went on to study biology at St. Olaf College, and received a bachelor’s degree in 1972. After college, she spent 12 years as an educator, while living in Stillwater, Minn.; Huron, S.D.; and El Paso, Texas. While in Texas, she also worked for five years in medical research for the Health & Sciences Department at the University of Texas, San Antonio. Kathy moved back to Minnesota, where she worked as an adjunct faculty member and lab supervisor at St. Catherine’s University for a semester, followed by serving as an Environmentalist for both Scott County for five years and Carver County for 16 years. Kathy’s hobbies included reading, music, photography, gardening, singing, and traveling. She was a loving and compassionate mother to Emily. She will be remembered also for her genuine warmth and engaging personality.
Kathy is survived by daughter, Emily; brother, Bradley Borchardt and wife Judy; nephew, Ben Borchardt and wife Crystal Churchill; and a number of aunts, uncles, and cousins. She was preceded in death by parents, Ruth and Roland Borchardt.
Judith Ranney Eddy, age 73, of Shoreview, Minn., passed away peacefully on Nov.11, 2014 to be with Jesus. She was surrounded by her family, singing her favorite hymns. Judy was a woman of prayer and loved praise music. She was an avid quilter. She enjoyed spending time with her family, doing crosswords, and playing bridge with her husband. Judy was a sports fan and an amazing cook. She was preceded in death by parents, Bill and Valborg Savre Ranney ’28, and sister, Helen Esther. She will be missed by husband of 52 years, Eldon; children, Steve and partner Spencer, Paul and wife Jody, and Deb Hartman and husband Mike; grandchildren, David, Marissa, Lauren, Zachary, Morgan, Ryann, Riley, and Jacob; sisters, Margaret Steblay and husband Jon, and Barbara Ranney Schafer ’64 and husband Dick; and extended family and friends. As a committed member of her church, memorials are preferred to North Heights Alpha Class.
Virgil was born April 20, 1923, to Clarence and Jessie Hutchison Edson at Barron. He graduated from Barron High School in 1941, served in WWII from 1943-1946, and then graduated from St. Olaf College in 1947 with an economics and science major.
Virgil was an example of compassionate self-sacrifice. His life motto was “Every individual in the community has a little civic or social rent to pay.” This, he said, makes life meaningful for everyone. Service was so important to him that he received the Outstanding Citizen of Barron Award in 1968.
Where he first started working at the Boy Scouts of America, he became a lifelong scoutmaster and later received the Silver Beaver Award for distinguished service in 1968. He also led as a lieutenant governor of Kiwanis Club District 21 – with perfect attendance for 50 years.
Equally active in church as in the community, Virgil was as a lifelong member and president for multiple committees at First Lutheran Church in Barron. He would humbly say he did all of this with the cooperation of many, without mention of other recognitions and leadership activity at the V.F.W, Barron Community Center, and American Cancer Society.
On April 12, 1952, Virgil married Harriet Anderson. The fall of that year, he went into the petroleum business with his dad and brothers, Jack and Joel. They then entered the appliance and TV business in mid-1960.
Later that decade, Jack and Virgil purchased Olson Department Store in Barron and opened stores across Northern Wisconsin and Minnesota. They named them “Edson’s Department Store.”
After his wife Harriet died in 1991, he married Paula Hong on Feb. 12, 1993.
Virgil enjoyed traveling, hunting, waterskiing, golf, tennis, swimming, cross country skiing, and gardening. His family was important to him, and he cherished their time together. He was exceptionally giving and truly gregarious, making everyone feel special.
Surviving in addition to his wife, Paula Hong, are a brother, Joel Edson ’57; a sister-in-law, June Edson; children, Chuck and wife Paula Edson, and Mark and wife Diane Edson; grandchildren, Lindsey, Eric, Carly, and Erin Edson; stepchildren, Lee and wife Rita Johnson, and Peter and wife Heidi Olson; granddaughter, Haley; and many loving relatives.
Virgil was preceded in death by his parents; his first wife, Harriet; sisters, Geraldine Edson Ellefson ’46 and Marjorie; and a brother, Jack.
Janet was born on April 9, 1951 and grew up in Kenyon, Minn., graduating from high school there in the class of 1969. She then attended St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn., where she enrolled in the Navy Nurse program and earned her bachelor of science in nursing degree in 1973. A highlight of her college experience was going on Global Semester, which allowed her to study in and experience many parts of the world. This love of travel continued throughout her life. Following St. Olaf, she began her duty with the United States Navy and served as a nurse until 1975.
During her time in the service, she met and married Frank Edwards. They moved to Minneapolis where Janet continued with her education, attending the University of Minnesota where she received her master’s degree in public health. During this time, she gave birth to the light of her life, her daughter Jennifer. Janet went on to have a full career as a Certified Pediatric Nurse Practitioner. She has been honored as the CPNP of the Year, reflecting her boundless dedication to her patients, and was also recognized for her role in the legislative effort to obtain the authority to write prescriptions for nurse practitioners. Janet worked for many years for Group Health and was currently employed by Allina Health at the Coon Rapids Clinic as a triage nurse.
Janet is survived by her daughter, Jennifer Edwards Bailey, and her two beloved grandchildren, Ella, eight, and Colin, five, who were blessed by her special involvement in their lives, taking many trips together, experiencing countless adventures, and listening to all of her stories. She is also survived by her brother, David Jorstad ’77 and his wife Deanna “Dede” Hokanson Jorstad ’78, niece and nephew, Siri Jorstad ’13 and Gunnar; an uncle, Erling Jorstad ’52; and cousins, including Eric Jorstad ’78 and Laura Jorstad ’82.
Janet’s great faith gives comfort as she now is joined with her dad and mom, Oscar Jorstad ’43 and Doris Weeks Jorstad ’41, who preceded her in death. Janet was also preceded in death by an aunt, Elsie Jorstad Willig ’49 and husband Harley Hanson ’50, and an uncle, Curtis Jorstad ’47 and wife Frieda Hise Jorstad ’47. Janet was a wonderful, positive, loving woman who gave so much of herself and her life to her family, friends, patients, and to her Lord. She will be missed by the many whose lives she touched.
Steve was born Aug. 31, 1943, in Van Nuys, Calif., to Sam and Millie Nelson Edwins. At the age of 10, he moved with his family to St. Louis Park, Minn. He graduated from St. Louis Park High School in 1961 and in 1965 received his degree in studio art from St. Olaf College. He attended Yale University, where he received his master’s in architecture in 1970.
While attending Yale he studied under many talented professors, but became most passionate about low income housing in rural Appalachia. After graduating from Yale, he received a Robert F. Kennedy Fellowship and moved to Kentucky to continue his work in Appalachia. In the fall of 1970, he started teaching architecture at the University of Kentucky, where he researched issues of urban design and theory of architectural education.
In 1976, Steve joined his teacher, mentor, and friend Edward Sovik ’39 at SMSQ Architects in Northfield, where he became principal and then owner. The morning of his first day of work at SMSQ he met his future wife, Jennifer Harvey Edwins ’74. Steve and Jennifer married on July 2, 1977, at Dundee Presbyterian Church in Omaha, Neb.. For a short time they lived in Minneapolis, before making their home in Northfield.
While he worked on many different project types, Steve’s passion was church architecture and historic preservation. Even though he worked on buildings throughout the country, projects in Northfield were always especially important to him. From porch additions and house remodeling to the Northfield Public Library addition and the Boe Chapel renovation, as well as additions to St. John’s Lutheran Church, First United Church of Christ, and All Saints Episcopal Church, Steve contributed greatly to the architectural fabric of Northfield over his 38-year career at SMSQ.
Guided by the notion that downtown Northfield should be a place for all to gather, live, work, and shop, Steve worked tirelessly with others to create a more vibrant downtown. As one of the founding members of the Northfield Heritage Preservation Commission, Steve saw the potential in Northfield and spent countless hours helping to create the downtown as we know it today. Through his work on the HPC, his long-term vision is reflected in the streetscape and many of the buildings in downtown Northfield. While he spent time preserving Northfield’s architectural past for future generations, he also saw the role that technology and media could play in Northfield’s community as a founding member of Northfield Public Access Television NTV26.
For 25 years, he taught architectural design studios as an adjunct professor of architecture at St. Olaf College. Additionally, he served on various local and state historic review boards, lending his knowledge to others in the preservation, historical, and architectural communities.
A man of humility, Steve was a behind-the-scenes leader, always willing to let others have the credit. He shared a very holistic view of Northfield and was patient and tireless in his commitment to make it a better place.
Survivors include his wife of 37 years, Jennifer; his sons, Andrew and girlfriend Michele Goddard, and Daniel Edwins ’08; his brother, Rev. Michael Edwins; his mother-in-law, Jody Harvey; his sister-in-law, Patricia Goodwin and husband Bob; his nephew, Seth Goodwin; and many cousins and friends, including Katherine Edwins Schumm ’67. He was preceded in death by his parents and his father-in-law and good friend, Donald Harvey.
*Magnus S. Egge slipped away in his sleep on Oct. 12, 2014 in Fallbrook, Calif. Magnus was born on April 23, 1922 in Ottertail, Minn., to Marvin and Soneva Egge. Magnus served as a Navy Pilot in World War II as a Lieutenant, flying submarine patrol off an aircraft carrier. He graduated from St. Olaf College with a degree in theology. He graduated from Luther Seminary, in 1952 with a Masters of Divinity. The churches he served and built were in Greenwood and Longwood, Wis., and Redwood Falls, Minn. He started St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church, a home mission church in San Diego. He also served at Chapel of Peace in Inglewood, Calif., where he re-established the school. He moved to Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church in San Clemente, Calif., and then retired from Christ the King Lutheran Church in Fallbrook. If Magnus wasn’t singing hymns, he was reading or golfing. Magnus is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 71 years, Elaine; his children: Pamala Grender and husband Robert, Marcus, Paul and wife Victoria, Elaine Brillhart and husband David, and Kaarn Westerhoff and husband Robert; nine grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren. Memorials may be given in Magnus’ name to Fallbrook Hospice, Christ the King, or Luther Seminary.
*Richard Einarson, beloved father, husband, and grandfather, passed away on Feb. 2, 2015, at Valley Health Care Center in Billings, Mont. His family loved him dearly, but is comforted in knowing his faith sustained him and he is now with the Lord.
Of Norwegian stock, he was born in Starbuck, Minn. on June 9, 1935, and raised in Milwaukee. After high school, Dick served in the U.S. Army in Washington, D.C., from 1954 to 1957. After the service he attended St. Olaf College, where he studied biology, played football, and met and married the love of his life, Joann Traver Einarson ’60. After graduation, they moved to Billings in 1962, where he worked in pharmaceutical sales.
Over the years, Dick pursued a number of business ventures before retiring from MONY. Dick enjoyed working in the yard, woodcarving, and all sporting activities; he especially enjoyed being his grandchildren’s No. 1 Super Fan. Dick loved cheering for his favorite football teams – the Green Bay Packers and the Denver Broncos – and meeting good friends for coffee.
Dick is survived by his wife of 57 years, Joann Traver Einarson; two sisters, Barbara Duwe and Diane Hutt; his three daughters, Debi Skalbeck and husband Steve, Barb Einarson and husband John, and Liz Simpson and husband Scott; and four grandchildren, Traver, Lillie, Arch, and Brita.
He left us with a legacy of love of family and life and kindness that will continue to inspire us throughout our lives.
Memorials can be made to American Lutheran Church or Young Families, Inc. in Billings.
*Donald Elstad, of Plymouth, Minn., died Jan. 28, 2014. He was born in Eidswold, Minn.; a St. Olaf graduate, a WWII Veteran, and associated with the tire industry for over 45 years. Survived by wife, Celeste; son, Peter; grandchildren, Hanna, Sonja, and Jakob; sister, Genevieve Elstad Prochnow ’43; and nephew, Bill. Memorials preferred to Mt. Olivet Lutheran Church, Plymouth.
Helen L. Dahlgren Emerson, age 87, of Andover, Minn., formerly of Windom, Minn., passed away at home on July 27, 2014. She was preceded in death by her husband, Lynn; infant son; granddaughter, Erin; parents; sister, Dorothy and husband Russel; and brother, Roland. She is survived by children, Janet DeGuise and husband Gary, Steve Emerson and wife Marilyn, and Barb Lutmer; grandchildren, Matt DeGuise ’01 and wife Darcy, Ryan DeGuise, Alison DeGuise and fiancé Jeff Mans, Chris Emerson and wife Heather, Jeff Emerson, and Kim Emerson. Memorials preferred to Grace Lutheran Church, Andover; American Heart Association; or American Diabetes Association.
Isaac “Ike” Sevine Enderson, of Blue Earth, Minn., passed away on Jan. 15, 2013. He was born April 10, 1906, to Omen and Belinda Swinilid Enderson, near Standhope, Iowa. He grew up on the family farm and later moved to Story City, Iowa with his parents. He graduated from the Story City High School in 1925 and continued his education at St. Olaf College, graduating in 1929. After graduation, he moved to Platteville, Wis., where he was employed for 17 years as a store manager with Gamble-Skogmo company. He also supervised six associate stores in that area. Ike married Hazel Omundson, of Roland, Iowa, and they had three daughters. In 1946, Ike moved his family to Blue Earth, Minn., and with his brother-in-law, Floyd Omundson, purchased the Paul Dittert Plumbing and Heating Company. Later, they added and operated a Marshall Wells Hardware Store until Marshall Wells went out of business. At that time, Floyd moved to Michigan and Ike operated a Plumbing and Heating Shop and a Gift Shop for many years. In the 70’s and 80’s, Ike also operated an insulation business in Blue Earth until his retirement.
Enderson is survived by three daughters, Barbara Ryan, Karen Gustafson, and Kathryn Ylvisaker; six grandchildren, Dan Ryan, Kelley Ryan Jacobs, Jodi Gustafson, Jessica Ylvisaker Hollahan, and Ben Ylvisaker; seven great-grandchildren; nieces and nephews, including Dorothy Enderson Thompson ’55 and husband James Thompson ’55, and Carolyn Enderson Hampton ’57 P ’84 and husband David Hampton ’56 P ’84; and a special friend, Mae Ellestad. Ike was preceded in death by his wife, Hazel, in 1998; one son-in-law, Mark Ylvisaker, in 2009; six sisters, Isabelle Madson, Bertha Hanson, Ovedia Bergland, Sarah Paulson, Julia Swenson, and Gladys Enderson; and four brothers, Andrew, Thomas, Jacob (infant), and Jacob Enderson ’28.
*David P. Engleson, 85, of Medford, Ore., passed away April 21, 2013, at Providence Medford Medical Center. Dr. Engleson was born Nov. 24, 1927, in Benson, Minn., to Leo and Lavina Engleson. After one year of college at St. Olaf, Dave joined the U.S. Army, playing trumpet in the jazz band and competing on the golf team. At his exit physical, he was diagnosed with tuberculosis and was discharged straight into a sanatorium for treatment. During his two years of treatment there, Dave developed a passion for the works of Kierkegaard, Thomas Mann, U.S history, and literature in general.
On Dec. 29, 1951, he married Jean Torgerson ’51 in Benson. Dr. Engleson received his DDS degree with a Masters in Orthodontics at University of Minnesota. In 1958, Dave and Jean moved to Medford, Ore., to set up his orthodontics practice and raise their children. He was a member of the Oregon Dental Association, and for many years was an advisor on OHSU’s craniofacial team, developing treatment plans for children with cleft palate.
David was an avid river boater and fisherman, taking many trips with his friends through the Wild and Scenic section of the Rogue River at the oars of his drift boat. He also loved music and history, but his greatest passion was reserved for golf. He was a member of the Rogue Valley Country Club, and enjoyed competing in their annual Southern Oregon tournament. When he was no longer able to play, he continued to go to golf courses to watch others play and give advice.
Dr. Engleson is survived by his brother, Leo; sons, Paul, Joel, and Leo; daughter, Jill; eight grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Jean; and sons, Dean Engleson ’75 and Ned.
Audrey L. Stephenson Erdman, age 86, of Decorah, Iowa, passed away with grace and peace at Aase Haugen Senior Services on Oct. 24, 2014.
Audrey Lucille Erdman was born Aug. 19, 1928 in Slayton, Minn., the first of two children born to Stephen and Irene Nepp Stephenson. She grew up in Slayton and completed high school in 1946 before continuing her education with a degree from St. Olaf College in 1950. After college she began a teaching career at the high school in Houston, Minn., where she taught business education until 1953. For the next two years she continued in a similar teaching position at St. James, Minn., while also beginning a summer master’s degree program at the University of Colorado in Boulder. She spent three fondly remembered summers in Boulder from 1954 to 1956.
In 1955 she accepted a teaching position in the business department at Luther College. At Luther, Audrey met Lowell P. Erdman, who was teaching pre-engineering courses at the college. Audrey and Lowell were united in marriage on Aug. 18, 1956. Eventually Audrey stopped full-time teaching in 1957 as she had begun work as bookkeeper for Erdman Engineering, a position she continued into the 1990s.
While raising a family and keeping books for the family business she still found time for numerous additional activities, including membership in the Luther College Women’s Club and Decorah Monday Club. She and Lowell were also part of the founding membership of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Decorah, where she served as secretary for several terms.
She began work with the Low Rent Housing Agency in 1970, which led to board membership in the newly founded non-profit Oneota Housing, Inc. in 1972. What began as a secretary of the board position in 1972 evolved into administrator and eventually president of the group from 1981 to 1994. Through this time the multiphase Oneota Housing complex along Ohio Street in Decorah was constructed to serve low income residents. She again served as secretary from 2003 to 2008, during the time the facility was updated and remodeled.
In 1976 she was elected to the Vesterheim Norwegian American Museum Board of Trustees, where she continued until 2010. Her term on the Board was highlighted by her co-chair work for the committee responsible for the royal visit of King Harald V and Queen Sonja in 1995. For her work in organizing the royal visit she received the title of Knight of the Royal Norwegian Order of Merit.
Audrey enjoyed exploring her Norwegian and German heritage. Family genealogy was more than a hobby and included several trips to Norway. Her authentic family Norwegian Bunad (dress) appeared frequently at many annual Nordic Fests as she participated in numerous Nordic Fest and Vesterheim activities.
She is survived by her husband, Lowell; their three sons, Lindsay and wife Karla, Paul, and Jeffrey and wife Sharon; one brother, Norris Stephenson ’53 and wife Joyce Larson Stephenson ’57, and their three daughters, Kristen Stephenson Andrews ’82, Karin Reinhardt, and Andrea Stephenson Komschlies ’87 P ’18 and husband Craig Komschlies ’87 P ’18.
In lieu of flowers the family requests memorials be given to the Vesterheim Norwegian American Museum, Decorah, Iowa, and Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Decorah, Iowa.
Kinara Ingrid Erickson, a warrior at the age of 39, lost a long battle with cancer on July 5, 2014. Kinara began her theater career at age 5 with her first community play, “The King and I”. Before college, she performed with HLOC, PAC, NCRT, FRT, PIP, and at AHS. Kinara played clarinet, piano, saxophone, and was learning violin; however, vocal music was her passion. She sang in numerous choirs locally, at college, and in Germany. Recently, she sang with HSU, HUUF, SRCA, AIGC, Heartbeat Chorale, and RCC Alumni. Kinara studied dance locally and in college. Kinara studied at St. Olaf College, and spent a semester abroad in Italy and London. She returned to Europe and lived in Germany for seven years, where her daughter Fiona was born. Kinara described herself as a polyglot. She studied French at Jacoby Creek School and through college. She also studied Italian, German, Spanish, and recently, Chinese. She will be missed by her daughter, Fiona; parents, Abby and Michael Proulx, and Tom and Lila Erickson; siblings, Ande, Derek, Anthea, Shelly, and Bonnie; and close friends Steve and Debi, along with a community of friends around the world. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to an account set up for Kinara’s daughter by contacting the family, to HUUF, or the Humboldt Breast Health Project. Kinara will be remembered as “Forever Young”.
Joycelaine Carol Tronson Evenson died July 28, 2014 in Apple Valley, Calif., at the age of 87. She was born July 14, 1927 in Glenham, S.D. Joycelaine was baptized and confirmed at the Norway Lutheran Church in Glenham, where she sang in the choir with her sister Muriel Tronson Bandy ’45 and cousin Audrey and were commonly known as “The Tronson Girls”. She graduated from Mobridge High School in 1945 and went on to achieve a bachelor’s degree in biology and speech, with a minor in drama, from St. Olaf College in 1949. Her younger years were spent riding horses with her cousin, who rode “Curly”. She loved spending time in the fields with her father Edwin, a farmer. Her mother Constance was a teacher at a one room school named Wayside School House. Joycelaine went on to teach high school, following her mother’s path. She married Edwin Harold Evenson on Sept. 21, 1957, who also was raised on a farm. They eventually moved to a farm in the High Desert. She proudly rode her American Bashkir Curly horse “Peacock” in the Los Angles Rose Parade for eight years. Joycelaine is survived by her two sons, Grant and Carmon Evenson, and many cousins, nieces, and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband, Edwin Harold Evenson; parents, Edwin Oscar Tronson and Constance Antoinette Tronson; her brother, Arden Tronson; and two sisters, Arlene Liccardi and Muriel Bandy.
Thomas Nathan Everson, 74, of Rochester, Minn., passed on to the next life to be with his Lord Sept. 24, 2014 at his home, after a nearly year-long fight with cancer. He was born Jan. 26, 1940, in Slayton, to Rev. Harold Everson ’29 and Alfhild Boe Everson ’28.
Tom moved with his family to Dawson, Minn., and later to Zumbrota, Minn., where he graduated from high school in 1958. He went on to attend St. Olaf College, where he graduated in 1962 with a B.A. degree in English education. While at St. Olaf, he sang in the Viking Male Chorus, and played football and baseball. He was elected co-captain of the football and baseball teams his senior year. In pursuit of his master’s degree, he attended classes at the University of Minnesota, Augustana College in Sioux Falls, S.D., Bemidji State, and in 1969, he finished his MST degree in English education from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.
His English teaching/coaching career began in Madison, Minn., in the fall of 1962. He married his college sweetheart, Mary Ellen Davies Everson ’63, in Jackson, Minn., on June 15, 1963. While she was teaching in Minnetonka, Minn., Tom enrolled in graduate school at the University of Minnesota. He then took a teaching/coaching position in Columbia Heights, Minn., where he taught English and coached football and baseball at Columbia Jr. High School until 1970. He and his family then moved to Rochester, where he accepted a teaching/coaching position at John Marshall High School. He taught high school English and coached football and baseball at JM until his retirement in 1998.
In retirement, Tom kept active teaching in the JM Alternative Ed. Program, and substitute teaching in Rochester, Pine Island, Minn., and Zumbrota. He also was a longtime driver for Gold Crown Limousine Co. in Rochester, and was the site manager for the Rotary Basketball Tournament for 12 years. He also enjoyed his volunteer baseball coaching in Pine Island for five years. He was a life-long sports enthusiast, and in addition to his coaching career, he enjoyed TV sports programs and especially, the Gophers, Twins, Vikings, and small college and high school sports. He was a lifetime member of the Minnesota and State High School Baseball Coaches Associations, the State and National Education Associations, and a longtime member of the Rochester Downtown Quarterbacks Club.
For most of his life, Tom enjoyed the beauty of Lake Kabekona in northern Minnesota near Walker. The family cabin was built the same year Tom was born and he never missed visiting at least once per summer in his 74 years. It was clearly his favorite vacation spot. The family gatherings, trees, lake, breeze, fresh air, and sunsets all gave an appreciation for God’s creation and greatness. Fishing, hiking, reading, and visiting were activities enjoyed at the cabin throughout the years.
His life was a testimony to the grace of God through his Lord Jesus Christ. Tom grew up in the Lutheran church and was a member of Gloria Dei since coming to Rochester. He served on numerous church boards, was active in Men’s Bible study, and with his wife, Mary, sang in the church choir.
Tom is survived by his loving wife of 51 years, Mary; son, Dave Everson and wife Barb and grandchildren, Abbey and Luke; daughter, Laura Everson ’91; four brothers, Harold Everson ’55 and wife Dorothy Froyum Everson ’54, Hildegarde Everson Vallevand, A. Joseph Everson ’59 and wife Susan Corey Everson ’61, Arne Everson ’66 and wife Ellen, and John Everson ’69 and wife Mary; and 10 nieces and nephews, including Paul Everson ’87, Sarah Everson ’93, Peter Everson ’03, and Viem Hong ’88. Tom was preceded in death by parents, Rev. Harold and Alfhild Boe Everson, and brothers-in-law, Art Vallevand and Richard Davies ’61. Memorials are suggested to JM High School, St. Olaf College Athletic Departments, Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, or Mayo Clinic Cancer Research.
James Eyer, age 79, went home to be with the Lord and his beloved bride Vonnie on May 21, 2014. He was born in Chicago on Sept. 22, 1934, and graduated from Luther High School, class of 1952. He attended St. Olaf College, receiving his B.A. in 1957. St. Olaf is also where he met Vonnie at a school square dance. Jim attended Luther Theological Seminary in St. Paul, Minn., receiving his B.D. in 1961 and his M.Th. in 1965. He was also part of an archeological expedition to Hebron, Jordan in 1964. From 1961-1967 he was the pastor for three congregations in rural Benton and Sherburne counties – Glendorado, South Santiago, and West Branch, Minn. In 1967, he left the ministry to pursue a career in social work. Jim was a longtime advocate for children, working in Anoka County Child Protective Services and Family Child Care Licensing from 1975 until retirement in 2000.
During this time he was a founding member of Minnesota Association of Family Child Care Licensors, was the organization’s second president, and was a longtime board member. He was also named the first Minnesota Child Care Advocate of the Year in 1997. He was a church organist for 25+ years and would combine his music composition skills and sense of humor to include arrangements of Dr. Seuss songs during postludes, and Happy Birthday for Christmas services. After retirement, Jim enjoyed reading, needlepoint, and Jazz, travelling numerous times to New Orleans with Vonnie for festivals and Mardi Gras. Memorials may be sent to Allina Palliative Care, St. Paul, Minn..
James was preceded in death by parents, George and Evelyn, and his wife of 54 years, Yvonne Bourn Eyer ’58. He is survived by son, Timothy; daughters, Gloria and Margaret; grandchildren, Kristin, Billy, Chase, Scott, Sarah, Spencer, and Blake; and great-granddaughter, Rylea.
*Ivan B. Fagre, age 90, of Northfield, Minn., passed away Oct 26, 2014. He is remembered for his lifetime of service as a teacher, missionary, and pastor, and as a wonderful husband, father, and grandfather. He was born in Finlayson, Minn. to Christian and Emma Easton Fagre and graduated from Park Rapids High School. He served in World War II with the 103rd Infantry Division and was wounded in action in Germany. He received the Combat Infantryman’s Badge, Purple Heart, and Silver Star. Ivan graduated from St. Olaf College in 1948 and later earned advanced degrees from Luther Theological Seminary and Princeton Theological Seminary. Ivan worked for the Lutheran World Federation refugee services in Germany from 1949 to 1951, the last year as American Zone Director. After his ordination, he became a missionary in Tokyo with the Evangelical Lutheran Church, where he served for nine years. Returning to the US in 1968, he served as the training director for Lutheran missionaries and worked in the areas of international mission and development in St. Paul, Minn. and New York. In 1977 he accepted a call as pastor with the Bavarian Church in Berchtesgaden, Germany. At the end of his career, he joined the St. Olaf faculty in the religion department. Ivan is survived by his beloved wife of 62 years, Alvilda “Polly” Albertson Fagre ’53; children, Daniel Fagre and wife Ann, Nathan Fagre and wife Connie, Anitra Waldo and husband Tom, Leslie Poppele and husband Eric, and Ingrid Fagre-Miller and husband Kent; grandchildren, Casey Kohn and husband Matt, Danielle Fagre, Lars Waldo, Nick Waldo and wife Hannah, Mats, Christian, Alex and Ben Fagre, Jasper and Eli Poppele and Justin Miller; and nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; siblings Ed, Irene Mielke, El Corchran, Pearl Nicklawske, Oswald, and Len; and sister-in-law, Solveig Albertson Dahl ’49 and husband Lyle Dahl ’49. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Lutheran World Relief, Baltimore.
Eileen Schrader Fehner, age 88, of Northfield, Minn., beloved mother, grandmother, and sister, passed away peacefully on Oct. 9, 2014 at Northfield Care Center. She graduated from Northfield High School in 1943. She graduated from St. Olaf College and received a master of arts from the University of California – Berkeley. She taught Romance languages at St. Olaf until she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1972. She married Richard Fehner in 1949 and had one son, Michael Fehner ’92. She was dedicated to her family and friends; her relentlessly positive attitude and outlook made everyone she met happier for having known her. She will be greatly missed and always remembered.
She is survived by her son, Michael Fehner and wife Jeannie Su; her grandchildren, Nicole and Zachary; siblings, Ardis Schrader Liebenstein ’52, Marilyn Schrader Schroeder ’45, Marvin and wife Sara, and Forrest “Woody” Schrader and wife Ione; sister-in-law, Jean Radt Schrader ’51; and numerous nieces and nephews. Eileen was preceded in death by her loving husband, Richard Fehner; her parents; her brother, Kenneth Schrader ’50; and two brothers-in-law, Warren Liebenstein and Clem Schroeder.
Laura Elizabeth Larson Ferguson, of Chisago City, Minn, died May 23, 2014.
Survivors include her husband, Gregg Ferguson ’76; daughters, Anastasia, Anna, and Lubov; siblings, Susan Larson Carson ’78, John Larson ’81, and Paul Larson ’90; her parents, Donald and Florence Larson; nieces, Amanda Carson ’07, Morgan Larson ’12, Araya Larson, and Tara Larson; nephew, Ross Larson; brother-in-law, John Carson ’78; and sisters-in-law, Julia Larson and Jirapron Larson. She was preceded in death by daughter, Sarah Ferguson ’05.
Faith Fjeld, former resident of Duluth, Minn., passed away on Oct. 18, 2014 in Moab, Utah. She was born on June 2, 1935 to Dr. Lawrence Fjeld and Lorraine Simerson Fjeld in Kalispell, Mont.
She spent most of her childhood in Montana, where her father was a Western Norwegian Lutheran Church bishop. She graduated from Murray High School in St. Paul, Minn., and St. Olaf College in 1957. After she married, she lived in several places including Denver, San Francisco, Japan, England, and the Netherlands and worked as an editor, an artist, and a fashion model. In the early 1960s Faith was active in the civil rights movement and Another Mother for Peace. Following her divorce, she settled in San Francisco on Fillmore Street in the late 70s. It was there she spent her happiest days, where she developed her work as a fabric collage artist, raised her sons, enjoyed the jazz scene, and made banana bread that she sold at local bakeries to make ends meet. She did her graduate work at San Francisco State University in American Indian Symbolism. After becoming aware of her Sami heritage, she traveled to Sapmi – the Sami homelands in Norway, Sweden, Finland, and the Kola Peninsula of Russia – and in 1991 became the founding editor of Baiki: the International Sami Journal. Through Baiki and through her writing, lectures, classes, and exhibits, she became a leader of the North American Sami Reawakening, connecting countless Sami descendants with each other and their heritage. She lived in Alaska for five years researching the Alaskan Sami story and co-curating, with Nathan Muus, the exhibit The Sami Reindeer People of Alaska, which has traveled throughout the United States, most recently at the Vesterheim Norwegian American Museum and the Minnesota Discovery Center in Chisholm, Minn.
She was a founding organizer and board member of the Sami Cultural Center of North America. She was long active in and passionate about indigenous and environmental issues. Her life was filled with family, friends, and meaningful work.
Faith was preceded in death by her parents and infant sister. She is survived by her sons, Bruno Kark and Clay Kark; granddaughters, Ruby French-Kark and Olivia Kark; special cousins; and a multitude of friends and colleagues from around the world, who remember her with love and gratitude.
Graham Stanton “Stan” Frear died Aug. 17, 2014 in Northfield, Minn., with his family by his side. He was born June 24, 1922 in Columbia, Mo., son of Dana and Grace Smiley Frear. Stan grew up in Michagan and then Minnetonka, Minn. After his mother passed away when he was a teenager, his father remarried. His step-mother insisted that Stan go to St. Olaf College, where he obtained majors in biology and English with certification to teach in secondary schools. He attended the University of Minnesota for his post-graduate and doctoral course work. While attending St. Olaf, he met Helen L. Jensen ’47 and they were married in 1947.
Stan took a teaching position in Amery, Wis., teaching both biology and English for three years, then returned to Northfield, where he taught English for 12 years. In 1962, he was offered a position at St. Olaf College to teach English as well as supervise student teacher candidates. During his 24+ years at St. Olaf, Stan designed and taught four new courses, including “Irish Literature” and “Studies in Ireland”. After his retirement, he continued to teach Irish literature to the Elder Collegium. Stan became the first secondary teacher in Minnesota elected president of the Minnesota Council of Teachers of English (MCTE). He was a charter member of the Conference on English Education, MCTE, and NCTE.
Stan always had a passion for art and began painting landscapes and seascapes from the north shore of Lake Superior and the country side of England and Ireland. He commissioned construction collage boxes, which can be found in the homes and businesses of Northfield and throughout the country. He wrote many articles, stories, and poetry. The two poetry books that were published were Red Shoes and Other Poems for My Wife; Love, Marriage, Cancer, Death and Poetry in Past and Present Tenses.
Stan is preceded in death by his wife, Helen, and sister-in-law Lois Jensen Nelson ’34 P ’61 ’65 ’69 and husband E. C. Nelson ’33 P ’61 ’65 ’69. He is survived by daughter, Christine King, son, Jonathan Frear ’79, and granddaughter, Jennifer King and husband Christopher Maas. Memorials preferred to St. John’s Lutheran Church.
Lillian Alice Gilbertsen Frederiksen, of Austin, Texas, died July 5, 2014. Survivors include a son.
*Richard Lee Fredrickson, 82, of Red Wing, Minn., passed away Sept. 3, 2014. He was born Nov. 8, 1931 in Minneapolis to Oscar and Marie Dahlen Fredrickson. Richard was a 1950 graduate of Marshall High School in Minneapolis. He joined the Navy in 1951 and served his country for nearly four years. He attended St. Olaf College, where he earned his undergraduate degree in physics. While there, he met and married classmate Martha “Marcy” Maki ’57. The two had four children: Jeanne Gallaher, David Fredrickson, Douglas Fredrickson, and Barbara Fredrickson. He received his masters from Temple University in Pennsylvania. Most of his 30+ years of teaching were in the Robbinsdale school district #281, more than 20 of which were at Cooper Senior High, teaching physics and astronomy. He was preceded in death by his parents; his four siblings and their spouses; a son, Douglas; a niece; and second wife, Sydney. At the time of his passing, he was survived by three children, Jeanne, David, and Barbara and their families, and he had seven grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. The family would like to give thanks to the staff at the following organizations, who gave such wonderful care to Richard and his family: Visiting Angels, Red Wing; Millstream Commons in Northfield, Minn.; Deer Crest in Red Wing; Mayo Hospice, Red Wing. Instead of flowers, the family requests donations of your time at elderly residences near you, simply sharing your time, smiles, listening ears, and loving touch.
Artist and illustrator Dolores Moeller Fritz, of Red Wing, Minn., died on Feb. 26, 2015 of cancer at age 88. Her three daughters were with her. Mrs. Fritz was a fashion illustrator for major department stores in Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minn. in the 1950s and early 1960s. Her drawings appeared in newspaper and magazine advertisements and in catalogs. Her major accounts were with Young-Quinlan, The Dayton Co., Munsingwear, and The Emporium. She became interested in preservation of historic buildings in Red Wing in the late 1970s. Mrs. Fritz and her late husband, Henry E. Fritz, a professor of history at St. Olaf College, moved to Red Wing in 1993, and she continued with her restoration work on the T. B. Sheldon Mansion. She discovered the original Victorian designs by pealing back layers of paint and wallpaper and recreated the ornate patterns on walls, ceilings, and stairwells. Her work can also be seen on the 1898 pipe organ in the lobby of the St. James Hotel. She painted the original Victorian patterns on the pipes in authentic colors of beige, gold, green, and rose. Mrs. Fritz was born to Walter and Elsie Moeller in Peoria, Ill., on July 27, 1926. Her father was a portrait photographer and her mother was a dressmaker. From her parents, she acquired a deep appreciation for art and fine craftsmanship, along with a strong work ethic, which set the stage for her career as a commercial artist, painter, and textile artist. Mrs. Fritz served as editor of the yearbook during her senior year at Peoria High School. When she graduated in 1943, she was hired by Jack M. Kraft and Associates as a graphic production coordinator, and she enrolled in Bradley University’s Evening Division. Two years later, she became a fashion illustrator for Block & Kuhl Co. She also worked as a packaging designer for Muirson Label Co. She married Henry Fritz on Sept. 3, 1950, and they moved to Minneapolis, where he earned a Ph.D. in American History from the University of Minnesota. She completed her bachelor of arts degree in 1965, when she graduated magna cum laude from St. Olaf College with a double major in English literature and studio art. She also received the academic honor of Phi Beta Kappa. Mrs. Fritz continued to paint until a few months before her death. Her oil paintings include scenes of Red Wing and her recent travels to Italy, Greece, and Turkey. She was also fascinated by quilting and created both traditional and abstract pieces. In addition to her husband, who died in 2005, Dolores was preceded in death by their son, Lorman Henry Fritz, in 1962. She is survived by her brother, James Moeller; daughters Esther Fritz Kuntz ’76 and husband Walter, Malin Fritz Walrod ‘87 and husband David, and Marie Fritz-Perry ’92 and husband James Perry ’92; and her beloved grandchildren, David Kuntz, Martha Butler and husband David, Neil, Amalia, and Aidan Perry, and Juliana and Erika Walrod. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Hope Lodge, American Cancer Society, Inc., Rochester, Minn.
Stephen was born in Terre Haute, Ind. to Mildred and Raymond Fuller ’30 in 1943. The family subsequently moved to San Bernadino, Calif., where Stephen graduated from San Bernadino High School in 1961. Stephen received his B.A. from St. Olaf College in 1965 and his M.M. and D.M.A. from the University of Southern California, where he was awarded a Jascha Heifetz Music Scholarship. He served in the U.S. Army in the 8th Field Hospital in Nha Trang, Vietnam.
Stephen was on the music faculty of St. Cloud State University (SCSU) from 1975-2010. During his tenure he was the Director of Choral Activities for 19 years and the Graduate Coordinator from 1999-2010. He taught courses in Choral Conducting, Music History, and Ethnomusicology, as well as supervised graduate research in choral music.
Stephen was a pianist and organist who performed a series of EAST MEETS WEST recitals premiering the works of Asian composers in Minnesota, Iowa, California, Hawaii, Texas, and England. He also did research on Japanese music that he regularly presented to the Japanese Studies Association.
Prior to teaching at SCSU, Stephen taught at the University of Hawaii – Hilo from 1968-1973, and was a Visiting Associate Professor of Choral Music at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa from 1983-85. He was the organist and choirmaster at several Lutheran churches in California, Hawaii, and Minnesota. Throughout his career he was a guest clinician at choral and musical festivals around the country. In recent years he served as substitute organist at Atonement and Bethlehem churches in St. Cloud.
Stephen is survived by his spouse, Ozzie Mayers; brothers, James and wife Marcia and Wayne Fuller ’67 and wife Alice; four children, David Fuller ’95 and wife Jenny Usselman Fuller ’95, Timothy and wife Harini, Sharon and husband Chris, and Christopher and wife Sarah; step-daughter, Mariana Leonard-Mayers and husband Thomas; and 13 grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents; former wife, Beverly Burnett Williams ’65; and step-child, Luc Leonard-Mayers.
In lieu of flowers, Stephen has asked that donations be sent to Atonement Lutheran Church, St. Cloud.
Robert Fulton, of Rocky Mount, N.C., age 77, passed away Oct. 29, 2011. He is survived by wife, Delphine Fulton, and children, Kevin, Scott, Kimberly, Leslie, and Beth.
Philip A. Gangsei, 86, of Scottsdale, Ariz., died Oct. 22, 2014. Philip was born May 16, 1928 in Sacramento, Calif. He was a devoted husband, pastor, father, father-in-law, grandfather, brother, son, and friend. He accepted a call to start Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, a mission church in Phoenix, in August 1957, where he served faithfully for 30 years. He was also pastor at Hope Lutheran Church, San Mateo, Calif., and Shepherd of the Valley and La Casa de Cristo Lutheran Church, Phoenix. Philip is survived by his sister, Erma Gangsei Larson ’47, and brother, David Gangsei ’53 and wife Helen; his children, Susan Gangsei , Ann Watson and husband Dave, and Mark Gangsei and wife Karen; his grandchildren, Sara, Brian, Thomas, Christine, Logan, and Savannah; and nieces and nephews, including Paul Gangsei ’67, Karthia Gangsei Grotey ’79, David Gangsei ’67, Peter Gangsei ’69, and Olivia Hagen Gangsei ’55. He is preceded in death by his wife, Jean; parents, including Nels Gangsei ’17; brother, Lyle Gangsei ’42 and wife Virginia Peterson Gangsei ’44; brother-in-law, Leslie Larson ’49; and son-in-law, Gerry Glaser.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Westminster Village Foundation, La Casa de Cristo Lutheran Church, Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, or any organization that supports Philip’s ministry of God.
Beverly Ann Breymeyer Garrett, 71, of Okeechobee, Fla. and Massac County, died May 17, 2014, at the Baptist Health of Paducah, Ky.
She was born in Watseka, Ill. on Jan. 29, 1943, to the late Clarence and Helena Duis Breymeyer. She was a member of the St. John’s Lutheran Church in Metropolis, Ill. She had a degree in home economics from St. Olaf College. She taught kindergarten at Jefferson School in Massac County.
On July 17, 1966, she married her surviving husband, William David Garrett. Also surviving are two children, Mark Garrett and Martha Bonner and husband Michael; two grandchildren, Allison and Andrew Bonner; two brothers, Gayle Breymeyer and wife Cindy and Deane Breymeye; and a sister, Carolyn Breymeyer.
For those who wish, memorial contributions may be made to the St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital and be left at the funeral home.
Joy Evelyn Oberstad Gilliam, of Los Angeles, died Feb. 23, 2014. Survivors include her husband, Gordon, and a daughter, Gwendolyn.
Priscilla Long Grubbs, from Winston Salem, N.C., passed away on February 4, 2013, from cancer. Survivors include her brother Bill Long.
Kristin Carol Lang Guice, wife, daughter, sister, and friend, age 34, of Maple Grove, Minn., passed away June 6, 2014, after battling an aggressive, unknown type of cancer. Kristin had an infectious smile, always had a positive attitude, and was loved by everyone. Survived by husband, Andy; parents, Carol and George Lang; sister, Michelle Lang Stueland ’93 and husband Brett; brother, Steven Lang ’95; mother-in-law, Madonna Kettler; father-in-law, Henry Guice; brother-in-law, Nathan Guice; and many aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends. Kristin will also be missed by her three cats: Milo, Finola, and Gidget.
Carol Ann Haaland, a lifelong resident of Long Beach, Calif., died at the age of 66, on Nov. 26, 2013.
Maxine Schult Halvorsen, of Inver Grove Heights, Minn., passed away on Nov. 10, 2014. She is survived by her husband, Daniel Halvorsen ’46; children, Daniel Halvorsen ’73 and wife Kay, L. Craig Halvorsen ’76, and Joycelyn Wolfe and husband Douglas; and grandchildren, Daniel, Christian, and Kelly Wolfe Hayton ’05.
Jacquelyn Carol Bergstedt Halvorson, 68, of Goodyear, Ariz., passed away peacefully on Feb. 16, 2015 after a brief but fierce battle with cancer. Jackie was a loving and beloved daughter, sister, wife, mother, grandmother, and friend. She is survived by her husband, J. Paul Halvorson ’68; her daughter, Kristina Halvorson ’93; her son, Erik Halvorson and his wife Jennifer; her son, David Halvorson ’98 and his wife Carolyn; her seven beautiful grandchildren, Gus, Marin, Avery, Ingrid, Maia, Sonja, and Brynne; and her parents, Ken and Margaret Bergstedt. Fram! Fram! Forward! Forward!
William David Hammond, of Naples, Fla., died Dec. 30, 2012.
*Arnold M. Hamren, age 91, of Chanhassen, Minn., passed away peacefully on Aug. 14, 2014. “Arnie” graduated from high school in Kiester, Minn. in 1941 and then attended St. Olaf College, where he met the love of his life, Helen Bergh Hamren ’48, in Norwegian class. Arnie served proudly in WWII, serving in France, Belgium, Germany, Czechoslovakia, and Japan. He was then a corporate employee from 1950 to 1988 with Shell Oil, Super America, and Kentucky Fried Chicken. He managed the Real Estate Departments for Super America and KFC. Arnie loved sports and was a catcher on his college baseball team. His passion for golf was also a big part of his life, especially in retirement. He loved and was very proud of his family and showed his support always. We all loved Arnie deeply and will miss him very much. Arnie was preceded in death by parents, J. Arnold and Marie C. Hamren, and brother, Duffy. He is survived by wife of 67 years, Helen; three children, Marc Hamren and wife Pam, Chris Hamren Rine ’75 and husband Dave, and Carol Hamren; five grandchildren, Stephanie Hawley and husband Jake, Michelle Olmstead and husband Scott, Becky Ulstrom and husband Leif, Kim Wismar and husband Jason, and Kelly Hamren-Anderson ’09; nine great-grandchildren; and many friends. Any memorials should be directed to the Athletic Department at St. Olaf College.
Eric Hansen, age 61, of Wayzata, Minn., formerly of Saint Paul, Minn., went home to be with his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, on June 8, 2013, surrounded by family at J. A. Wedum Hospice in Brooklyn Park, Minn. He was a graduate of St. Olaf College and Duke Law School, and corporate lawyer at 3M for 30 years.
Preceded in death by parents, Florence and Donald Hansen ’42, and late wife, Janet Hansen. Survived by wife, Kathleen “Catherine” Hansen; children, Lindsey Hansen ’08, Jessie Hansen, Elizabeth Khoueir, James Alford, Thomas Alford, and Stephen Alford; granddaughters, Anne Marie Khoueir and Caroline Grace Alford; sister, Robyn Lindberg ’76; and father-in-law, Martin Bostrom. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to New Life Family Services.
Anne Husby Hanson, age 74, of Roseville, Minn., died at home on Jan. 20, 2015. Anne was born on Easter Sunday, March 24, 1940 to Mary and Joseph Husby. She enjoyed world travel and volunteering. Anne was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Bill; and cousin, Marilyn Husby Ahlberg ’59 P ’92 ’93. She is survived by her daughters, Kari and Kristin; grandson, Andrew; sister, Jean Husby Milton ’69; brother, Paul Husby and wife Bethany; nephews, Joseph, David, and Erik; stepchildren, Staci and husband Tony, and Scott; cousins, including Joan Husby ’62 P ’84 ’89 ’91 and Louise Husby Feske ’56 P ’82 ’83; and AFS Sister, Loly and family. In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to Lutheran Social Services or Como Park Lutheran Church.
Cleo Mervina Anderson Hanson, of Mountain Iron, Minn., died on Oct. 1, 2014. She was a 1938 graduate. Survivors include two sons, Gary and Robert. She was preceded in death by her husband, Gordon L. Hanson, and a son, Ron.
Nels Sörn Hanssen, age 89, of Mound, Minn., passed away Jan. 8, 2014, in Richfield, Minn. He was born April 30, 1924, in Melbu, Norway, to Sverre and Mary Haug Hanssen. Nels was preceded in death by his wife, Eunice Engedal Hanssen ’47, and sister, Anne Utne. He is survived by his children, Peter, Paul, and Heidi Hanssen ’79; grandchildren, Timothy, Tricia, Chris, Lee, Derek, and Whitney; great-grandchildren, Samuel, Dyllan, and Ayden; and many nieces, nephews, and friends.
*Isaiah Harriday, age 82, of Minneapolis, passed away Dec. 19, 2014 at the VA Medical Center. Isaiah was born March 18, 1932 to Littleton Morgan Harriday and Hattie Victoria Hall Harriday in Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. His father was an African Methodist Episcopal minister in addition to serving as butler to the governor of Maryland. He graduated from Lincoln High School in Rockville, Md. in 1950. He served as an aircraft mechanic in the US Air Force from 1950 to 1959, spending five of those years in Germany, where he learned to speak German as he felt it important to speak the language of the people in whose country he lived. He served in the Air Force Reserve for two additional years.
In the Air Force, Isaiah struck up a longstanding friendship with Stuart Barstad, a Lutheran military chaplain. After Isaiah felt the call to ministry, Stuart brought him to see St. Olaf College and Luther Theological Seminary in Minnesota. In 1959, Isaiah enrolled at St. Olaf at age 27. The college contacted five people to see who was willing to accept an African-American roommate. The fifth call was to Jory Watland, who became his roommate and lifelong friend. Isaiah was welcomed into the extended Watland family, celebrating holidays with them for decades. Dan Wee, a sophomore roommate, also became a lifelong friend.
In his college summers, he worked as a canoe guide and counselor for youth exploring the Boundary Waters, even though he could not swim. There he met Peter Rogness who, along with his family, became special friends. Isaiah graduated from St. Olaf College in 1963, the second African American to do so. He moved to the north side of Minneapolis and began studies at Luther Theological Seminary in St. Paul, Minn. in 1964. Isaiah worked as an orderly at Fairview Hospital, where he met Theamarie “Timmie” Loberg, a student at Augsburg College. They married on Aug. 31, 1968 at Bethel Lutheran church in Minneapolis. He interned at Queen Parish in Battle Lake, Randall, and Trefoldighed, Minn. for two years, driving every weekend into northwestern Minnesota. In 1971 he became the first ordained African American to graduate from Luther.
After graduating from Luther, he became pastor of Ascension Lutheran Church in inner city Los Angeles, where church organist Mildred Gallagher became “grandmother” for his growing family. Isaiah loved to camp with his family, first in a tent, then a converted van, over time visiting 48 of the contiguous United States and most of Canada. After leaving Ascension, he moved into special ministries, including work with the County of Los Angeles and as a principal of Westchester Lutheran Church and School.
Isaiah was the proud father of Sonja Marlies Baute Harriday, born 1972; Signe Victoria Harriday, born 1976; Solveig Mathea Harriday, born 1984; and Sylvie Renate Harriday, born 1991.
He loved biking, canoeing, hiking, and the peace and quiet of the outdoors. Isaiah was a fabulous cook and did all the cooking for his family. He loved music and played saxophone professionally as a young adult. When meeting strangers, immediate friendships were often made. Isaiah was steadfast in his faith, compassionate, and always concerned for others; the kind of person who would give away the shirt off his back. Making contributions of his time, finances, and heart, he helped countless people in need.
Isaiah will be greatly missed by many.
He is survived by his wife, Theamarie; daughters, Sonja Baute-Harriday ’93 and husband Brad, Signe Harriday ’97, Solveig Harriday ’06, and Sylvie Harriday; grandchildren, Sierra, Tyrone, and Sydney; great-grandsons, Andrae and TyWri; and many nieces, nephews and friends.
In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to ELCA World Hunger or NAMI Minnesota.
The Harridays extend immense gratitude to all friends and family for their ongoing and unwavering love and support. They would also like to thank the many volunteers for their generosity.
*Harald Leif Rye Haugan, of Saint Paul, Minn., peacefully passed away on Feb. 26, 2015. Harald was formerly Treasurer of Inter-City Paper Company, Maplewood Council member 1969-1977, Dellwood Hills Golf Club Board member, Sons of Norway, Torske Klubben, St. Olaf graduate, and US Navy WWII veteran. He was the beloved husband of Mildred Trenk Haugan, father of sons Carl and wife Jane, Thomas and wife Kelli, and daughter Ann and husband Ronald Okada, and grandfather of Lauren, Michael, David, Julia, Thomas Jr., and John. He was preceded in death by his parents and brothers Norman and Haakon.
Violet Leola was born Oct. 24, 1913, in Menomonie, to Ole and Inga Stubban Hawkinson. She grew up in North Menomonie, attending North School and Menomonie High School. “Vi” graduated from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn., majoring in biology, youth guidance and physical education, receiving her bachelor’s degree in 1936.
While at St. Olaf, she was offered a youth guidance position at the Green Bay, Wis., Y.M.C.A, in the high schools of Green Bay, DePere, and Allouez, Wis. Vi also directed the Green Bay and Madison, Wis. Y.M.C.A. Camps. She pursued her graduate studies in the School of Social Work at Western Reserve University in Cleveland, then took graduate work at the University of Wisconsin in physical therapy and received her master’s degree at Marquette University in counseling, guidance, and the sciences.
Vi taught college physiology at Edgewood College in Madison prior to entering the Dominican Order of teaching Sisters, hence the name Marie Karen. Upon becoming a “Religious”, she dedicated her life to teaching the Life of Christ, biology, and physical Eeducation for nine years at Trinity High School in River Forest, Ill. She then taught at Visitation High School in Chicago, to be followed by St. Clara Academy and the Novitiate.
In 1964, Marie Karen accepted the invitation to direct Camp We-Ha-Kee for girls at Winter, Wis. The international interfaith camp drew campers and staff from 13 countries around the world. The camp provided very diversified activities that proved educational and life enriching. She helped girls learn to live compatibly with different cultures.
While directing Camp We-Ha-Kee, she was president of the Wisconsin Camping Association from 1967 to 1972, which also involved chairing a five-state convention in Milwaukee in 1968. She also assisted in the accreditation of other camps for the National American Camping Association.
Marie Karen dedicated 20 years as the director of Camp We-Ha-Kee, retiring at the age of 73. She was very active in local churches, provided religious support for the home bound and dedicated her life to the council and support of all who knew her.
In 2005, Karen Hawkinson received a “Woman of Distinction” award for her life-inspired guidance of youth, presented by the Girl Scouts of Indian Waters Council.
Vi is survived by her nieces, Jacqueline Finder, Shirley Olson, Sharon Michaud, Sandra Zahurones, Jean Drury, and Elaine Hawkinson; and many great-nieces and a great-nephew as well as other relatives and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Ole and Inga Hawkinson; her brothers, Alvin and Arnold Hawkinson; and nephews, Jerry and Thomas.
Eric M. Heggeseth, age 63, of Cypress, Texas, passed away on March 15, 2014, in Fitchburg, Wis. He was born on June 4, 1950 in Marshall, Minn. Eric married Christine Schroth Heggeseth ’74 on June 15, 1974. In 1997, the family settled in Houston, when Eric joined the power generation company, GDF Suez. Eric was deeply devoted to his family and was generous with his time, energy, and resources. He was an active member of Kinsmen Lutheran Church of Houston and a strong supporter of the arts. Eric is survived by his wife, Christine Heggeseth; two sons, Michael Heggeseth ’04 and wife Kirsten Haaland Heggeseth ’03, and Paul Heggeseth ’08 and wife Brianna Hirst Heggeseth ’08; his granddaughter, Emma Heggeseth; his sister, Sharon Ashley and husband Kenneth; and sisters-in-law, Elizabeth Schroth Sellers ’71, Susan Schroth Graef ’68 P ’05, and Carolyn Schroth Van Otten ’64 P ’95. He was preceded in death by his parents, Eric L. and Ruby B. Heggeseth.
*John R. Heidemann, 92, of Chevy Chase, Md., died March 11, 2014 at a nursing home in Bethesda, Md. He had coronary artery disease. John was born in Le Sueur, Minn., and served in the Army Signal Corps during World War II. He joined the CIA as an Asia specialist in the early 1950s. He remained with the CIA until his retirement in 1976 and worked on the president’s daily intelligence briefing. His memberships included the Canoe Cruisers Association, whose newsletter he edited, and the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club.
John is survived by his children, Kris and Andy.
Ruth Marie Jacobson Helgeson passed away peacefully with her loving husband, John, at her side on Sept. 22, 2014. She was born on Dec. 15, 1928 in the lakeside town of Osakis, Minn., to Dr. Jay A Jacobson, who was a dentist, and T. Marie Olson Jacobson, who taught Latin at Osakis High School. Ruth graduated with honors and attended St. Olaf College. After her junior year, she volunteered to serve with the National Student Association to help with reconstruction efforts in Europe after World War II in Hamburg, Germany. In 1950 she graduated from St. Olaf, having completed a double major in math and English and a minor in French. She was selected to be a member of the Phi Beta Kappa honor society.
She met her husband, John Helgeson, while in college, and they married in 1951. Following his graduation from Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minn., Ruth then accompanied John as he served parishes in Irene, S.D. and Greenbush, Minn.; studied theology in Edinburgh, Scotland; and taught at Pacific Lutheran University in Parkland, Wash. During this time, Ruth was a busy homemaker, lovingly raising her three children, Peter Helgeson ’80, Michael Helgeson ’79, and Mary. In 1965, the family moved to Oakland, Calif. to pursue graduate study, where Ruth started her teaching career in the nearby Piedmont School District.
Ruth taught mathematics at the Piedmont middle school, helping many of her students overcome math anxiety. She made math fun and accessible by incorporating art, science, and sports themes into the curriculum. While teaching full time, she completed a master’s degree in mathematics at Holy Names College, and was promoted to Principal of Havens Elementary School in Piedmont, where she touched the lives of many young students, their teachers and families, retiring in 1991.
In 1984 Ruth and John were “empty nesters” and moved from Oakland to Walnut Creek, Calif. During their retirement, they traveled with close friends and family members to Europe and the Middle East and explored their roots in Norway. With their children and grandchildren they celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary in Hawaii and their 50th in Cancun, Mexico.
As a retiree, Ruth became a student of quilt-making, designing beautiful hand-made quilts for friends and family members. In each of her quilts, she created something beautiful that conveyed her love and shared her warmth. Ruth also enjoyed reading, attending concerts and plays, and going on walks with John and their faithful dog, Daisy. She was an active member of St. Matthew Lutheran Church, participating in Bell Choir, Altar Guild, Worship & Music Committee, Priscilla Circle, and the “Piecemakers” quilting group. She also served on the Lutheran Church in America’s Synod Commission on Ecumenical Affairs to strengthen links between churches. Ruth was also on a St. Matthew team for 21 years that prepares and serves dinners to families in need and to the homeless at Loaves & Fishes in Martinez.
Ruth was a member of PEO, a philanthropic educational organization with the motto “Women helping women reach for the stars.” Throughout her career and in retirement she was a tireless advocate for women in all professions, especially math and science.
Ruth was preceded in death by her infant daughter, Maren, in 1953. She is survived by her husband, John; her sister, Jane Jacobson Gelle ’54 and husband Bob; her children, Peter Helgeson and wife Sharon Lorraine, Michael Helgeson and wife Mary, and Mary Johnsen and husband Jim; her grandchildren, Greta Johnsen ’07, Jakob Johnsen, and Sonja Helgeson ’15; and nieces and nephews, including Mark Gelle ’76 P ’07 ’10 ’15 and wife Claudia Miller Gelle ’80 P ’07 ’10 ’15, Nancy Gelle ’77, Fredric Gelle ’81 P ’12 ’15, and Susan Gelle Nelson ’83 P ’09 ’11 ’15 and husband Scott Nelson ’83 P ’09 ’11 ’15.
In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting that donations be made to Loaves and Fishes of Contra Costa County, Lutheran Social Services of Northern California, or the Alzheimer’s Association of Northern California.
Bruce G. Helland, of Nisswa, Minn., formally of Austin, Minn., passed away peacefully July 12, 2014, at his sister’s home. Bruce was born Feb. 22, 1949 in Milwaukee, to Gordon and Darlene Johnson Helland. He graduated from Austin High School, and then went on and graduated from St. Olaf College. Bruce worked in Minneapolis and Marshall, Minn., in retail as a merchandise buyer until retiring to his “cabin” in Nisswa. He enjoyed his life at the lake, working in his flower garden, weeding the lake for the perfect beach, and spending time with his dog, Elly. Bruce’s cabin was always open to family and friends for time away.
He is survived by his mother, Darlene Helland; two sisters, Barb Neubauer and husband Jerry, and Beth Wood; one brother, Brian Helland; eight nieces and nephews, Sherry Oeltjenbruns and husband Jim, Brett Neubauer, Wade Neubauer and wife Bridget, David Helland and wife Beth, Ben Helland, Daniel Helland, Tom Wood, and Alison Wood; and 13 great-nieces and nephews. He is preceded in death by his father; brother-in-law, Thomas Wood; and canine companions, Bummer and Lacey.
James Ingvald Hembre, age 76, of Plymouth, Minn., died of a heart attack on April 22, 2014. Jim was a beloved teacher of chemistry for 37 years at Wayzata High School, dedicated to his students and respected by his colleagues. He graduated from St. Olaf College in 1960 and received his Masters in Chemistry from Seattle University. After his teaching career, Jim worked as a researcher at 3M and was proud to be listed as an inventor on many patents. Jim was a wonderful and generous husband, father, brother and “Boppa.” He was known for his handyman skills and put them to use at home and at the family cabin on Lake Ida. He was always happy to help with a project when asked by his children or grandchildren. He was active in the church, loved music, sports, and puzzles of all kinds, but most of all he loved being with his family.
Jim was preceded in death by his parents, Margit and Ingvald Hembre, and his brother Jack. He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Ruth Mandsager Hembre ’61; four children, Turi Hembre ’87, Erik Hembre ’90, Leif Hembre ’93, and Anna Hembre Rustad ’96; nine grandchildren; his brother Don; sister, Dorothy; and many nieces and nephews. He will be deeply missed by his family and friends.
Memorial contributions may be given to St. Olaf College, Westwood Lutheran Church, or Habitat for Humanity.
*Roger Herrlinger died April 15, 2014, in his Mesa, Ariz. home. He was born at home in Dovray, Minn., to Max and Ella Herrlinger, on Sept. 20, 1931. A natural athlete, Roger started playing “ball” at an early age. He excelled at football, basketball, and was an outstanding baseball pitcher starting in high school, and continuing all three sports while attending Waldorf Jr. College in Forest City, Iowa, and St. Olaf College. He continued to play “ball” while in the Army, stationed at Camp Hale in Colorado. After discharge from the Army, he continued to play on town teams. He was inducted into Waldorf’s Athletic Hall of Fame.
Roger and Mary were married April 17, 1954. He taught and coached in Milan and Springfield, Minn. He then worked for Prudential Life Insurance, moving to Rochester, Minn. After five years they moved to Viroqua, Wis., and he began 30 years of teaching. He enjoyed music, and participated in the Waldorf Choir; each town’s church choirs; and in Viroqua, the Barber Shoppers. Roger volunteered and also participated in an ECLA church sponsored trip to Poland. He helped to restore the Temple Theater in Viroqua and built homes for Habitat for Humanity. He was active in the Lions Club, serving as Secretary for many years.
Survivors include his wife Mary; sons, Eric, Paul, and Peter; daughters, Beth Gatlin and Sara; grandchildren, Nikki Gatlin, US Navy stationed in Okinawa, Japan, and Alex Gatlin, US Navy stationed in San Diego. Preceding him in death were his parents; sister, Gene; infant sister, Dorothy; and one infant daughter, Ann.
*Lowell Hesse, of Kent ,Wash., passed away at St. Francis Hospital in Federal Way, Wash., on March 22, 2014. Lowell was born on June 3, 1923, in Bird Island, Minn., to George and Mabel Hesse. Lowell grew up in Bird Island, receiving his education and graduating from Bird Island High School class of 1940. After high school, he attended St. Olaf College for a year, and then moved to Seattle and began working for Boeing. In 1943, he was drafted into the Army Air Corps, where he served for three years. After his discharge, Lowell returned to his job at Boeing.
He met his sweetheart, Betty Bentzlin, and they were married in Gustavus Adolphus Lutheran Church in St. Paul, Minn. They returned to Washington and raised five boys, making their home in Kent for the last 64 years. Lowell worked 45 years at Boeing, finally retiring in 1985, as a Superintendent of Quality Control.
Lowell was a true woodsman. He loved chopping, stacking wood, and working his many projects in his shop. He enjoyed reading, listening to big band music, and sitting by the fire. Lowell took pride in integrity. He loved his family, especially time spent with his grandchildren. He treasured his wife Betty.
Lowell was preceded in death by his parents, George and Mabel, and his brother, Donald Hesse ’47. He is survived by his wife, Betty; his sons, Gordon, Roger, Jon, Curtis, and Brian; grandchildren, Jessica Hesse, Kevin Hesse, Tyler Campbell, and Ashley Campell; four great grandchildren; and two sisters-in-law, Eleanor Bergendahl Hesse ’46 and Mary Bentzlin. Memorials may be made in Lowell’s name to Zion Lutheran Church.
Shirley Ann Hilden, 74, of Brush Prairie, Wash., died on Nov. 17, 2014, at Ray Hickey Hospice House in Vancouver, Wash.
Shirley, daughter of Joseph and Olga Molden Hilden, grew up on a farm near Watson, Minn. and graduated with honors from Montevideo High School in 1958. She played the alto saxophone in band, took parts in World Affairs Club, and became an accomplished pianist. She graduated magna cum laude from St. Olaf College, majoring in biology and chemistry, and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa honors society. While pursuing her doctorate in cell physiology at Stanford University, Shirley collected sea urchins on the California coast for study. She did research as a post-doctoral fellow at Hokkaido University in Japan, University of Wisconsin – Madison, and Universidade de Coimbra in Portugal.
For the following three-plus decades, Shirley worked as a research scientist and administrator at the National Institute of Aging in Baltimore, New England Medical Center in Boston, and the Center for Scientific Review at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md., specializing in urology and nephrology. Her dedication to research was prompted, in part, by the death of her younger brother, Aaron, from leukemia when she was 11. Shirley retired in 2009.
Shirley’s twin enthusiasms for travel and photography began with a family trip to Yellowstone National Park while she was in high school. Later highlights were a safari in Serengeti National Park; the leper colony at Molokai, Hawaii; the Passion Play in Oberammergau, Germany; a helicopter tour of Alaskan glaciers; a cruise up Sognefjord in Norway; and Ayers Rocks in the Australian outback. She visited family in Montevideo annually, catching up with cousins and her aunt, Sylvia Hacker. Shirley’s last trip was to the Grand Canyon in October 2013. Poor health prevented her from seeing the ruins of Machu Picchu in Peru, which had been a dear wish.
Shirley was an avid hobbyist with interests including bonsai, ikebana, sewing, and basket making. She was a lifelong collector, spanning kaleidoscopes to netsuke, but focusing her passion on crèche in later years. Shirley was thrilled to discover the Friends of the Crèche society in 2002, through which she attended lectures, took classes, and traveled to conventions. She was particularly drawn to unusual representations from other cultures, displaying them year-round with artistic flair.
Shirley was close to her family. She arrived at Christmas with a new handmade ornament for everyone, as well as the latest electronic gadget that had caught her eye – and krumkake for Christmas Eve dessert. Her door was always open for family visits, which many times coincided with cherry blossom season in Washington, D.C. Shirley took pleasure in showing visitors the capital: monuments, the National Art Museum, exhibits, and restaurants. Her many friends enjoyed her company, at plays and concerts as well as on travels.
When Shirley developed mantle cell lymphoma, she was gratified that she qualified to participate in a clinical trial. She achieved remission twice. With the third onset, she moved to Vancouver in May 2014 to be near family.
Shirley loved to read and learn. She was patient and kind, open and accepting. We all miss her.
*Theodore H. Hinderaker, 87, of Tucson, Ariz., passed away in his sleep on July 28, 2014. Born in Hendricks, Minn., to Theodore and Claire Hinderaker, Ted enlisted in the Navy at age 17. After World War II, he attended St. Olaf College for a B.A. and the University of Minnesota for an M.P.A. In 1951, Ted joined the FBI and enjoyed a long and distinguished career. He proposed to Laura Dixon Hinderaker on their second date, was married four months later, and they have been inseparable for 60 wonderful years.
Their union produced five children: Ted Hinderaker and wife Lydia, Dixon Hinderaker and wife Beth, Sue Peterson and husband David, Kari Duensing and husband Steve, and John Hinderaker and wife Nicci, as well as 12 grandchildren. Ted was a fixture at his children’s athletic events and served as a swim meet official for 26 years.
Ted and Laura lived most of their lives in Indio, Calif., and in retirement moved to Tucson and became ardent University of Arizona sports fans, traveling with the basketball team each March and spending summers in Detroit Lakes. Ted will be remembered for his loyalty, loving devotion to family and friends, integrity, and kindness.
Ted is survived by his children and wife. He was preceded in death by his brother, Ivan Hinderaker ’38 and wife Birk.
Mrs. Grace Evangeline Thompson Hines, age 83, of Billings, Mont., passed peacefully May 14, 2014. Grace was the first daughter and sixth child of Grace Sanders Thompson and Rev. Tenner Thompson ’17, born in Minneapolis on May 27, 1931. Grace, being the only girl, learned her life lessons through the trials and tribulations administered lovingly by her five brothers and carried those values throughout her life. Grace graduated from Roosevelt High School in 1949 and continued on to St. Olaf College, where she graduated in 1953. Grace loved her educational experience so intently that she decided to choose the art of teaching as her profession. Grace taught in many locations in Minnesota before deciding to move west to Billings in 1958. She served the Billings School District #2 for 10 years as an English and physical education instructor, and loved all sports, indoor and out. She adored skiing, golf, basketball, and baseball, and also enjoyed cheering on her beloved Minnesota Vikings and Twins when able to view them on television. Grace married Mr. Lew B. Hines in 1965 in Minneapolis, with her father presiding over the ceremony. Grace and Lew welcomed their son, Chris Hines, three years later. Grace and Lew enjoyed 48 years of marriage and served The American Lutheran Church as members of the congregation, as well as leadership for the ELAC.
Grace is survived by her devoted husband, Lew; her loving son, Chris and his wife Layla; and two adoring grandsons, Cale and Carson. She was preceded in death by her parents and five brothers. Memorials may be made to American Lutheran Church or charity of choice.
Joan H. Werhan Hollenbeck, 86, of Lincolnshire, Ill., died Aug. 18, 2014. Daughter of the late Levi and Helga Werhan, of Long Lake, Ill., Joan retired from a career as a high school English teacher, last at Deerfield High School. She is preceded in death by two brothers and three sisters. She was the beloved wife of Donald Hollenbeck. Joan is survived by nieces Jennifer Riggio and husband Charles and Linda Taylor, and grandniece Leslie White. In lieu of flowers, send donations to Alzheimer’s Disease Research.
John S. Huff, age 85, of Bloomington, Minn., formerly of Edina, Minn., passed away peacefully on July 21, 2014, surrounded by family and friends. John humbly began in a sod house in North Dakota. Just before the great depression began, the family moved to Madelia, Minn., where John attended school in a one room school house. He graduated in 1945 from Truman High School. He went to St. Olaf College and finished up his pre-med studies at the University of Minnesota. He graduated from medical school in 1953 and went into otolaryngology (ENT). He became an assistant professor at the University of Minnesota medical school, co-authored several books, and wrote numerous journal articles. John joined ENT Associates, where he practiced medicine for 42 years. He was a devoted husband, father, and grandfather, spending much of his free time with family and relatives. John loved music and sang for years in the Augsburg Masterworks Chorale. He was active in many professional and community organizations. Active in retirement, John spent winter months teaching elementary students how to ski at the Hyland Ski Area in Bloomington. In the summers, he volunteered as a ‘maverick’ for Holden Village, Lake Chelan, Wash.
John is preceded in death by his loving wife, Mary; sisters, Anne and Dorothy; and parents, Al and Emma. He is survived by brother, Al, and sister, Florence; children, Steve and wife Brenda, Sue Jerve and husband Greg, Jim and wife Lois, Kathy Manthey and husband Gary, Mike and wife Kathy, Dave, Barb Trombley and husband Jay, and Robert Huff ’94 and wife Susie. He is survived by 17 grandchildren, including Anndee, Jessie, and Kayla Huff, Michael Manthey, Laura Greening, Paul and Annie Huff, Brittney Whalen, Kaylin Huff, Alex and Ryan Jerve, Noah and Nathan Huff, Devin and Jack Russell, and Bennett and Emma Huff. John is also survived by one great-grandchild, Effie Manthey. Memorials may be made out to Holden Village, Community of the Cross Lutheran Church Capital Improvement Fund, or the Hyland Ski Area Scholarship Fund.
Raymond H. Jacobsen, 84, of Los Angeles, passed away peacefully on Jan. 30, 2015 from natural causes. He was a devoted husband and father who retired from dentistry after 37 years of practice. Raised in Brooklyn, N.Y. with his identical twin brother, Alfred Jacobsen ’53, he went on to St. Olaf College, where he studied science and played ice hockey. A tuberculosis survivor, he recuperated for a year by alpine skiing and mountain climbing in the Alps, which included a record paced ascent of the Matterhorn for that year. He attended Northwestern Dental School where as a sophomore he met his wonderful wife of 55 years, Florence “Deda”, of Santa Monica, Calif. After graduation Ray moved to Los Angeles, where he was intoxicated by the orange blossoms, palm trees, and lovely Deda. In 1960, they married and he set up his practice in Beverly Hills. Renowned for his reconstructive and cosmetic dental skills, he enjoyed a thriving practice filled with many well-known celebrity and corporate clientele. An avid deep-sea fisherman, Ray made many journeys with a crack team of comedy writers to Cabo San Lucas in search of an audience and a great catch. His ability to tell a story or joke was legendary, with a seemingly endless repertoire. This talent provided a great “chair-side” manner his patients always appreciated and entertainment value his friends and family always will remember fondly. He is survived by his wife, Deda; three children, Eric and wife Mary Ann, James, and Nancy-Jan; two grandchildren; and his brother, Alfred. In lieu of flowers, the family asks a donation be made in his name to the California Dental Association Foundation.
Lucille Hartberg Jennings, of Racine, Wis., passed away at Becker Shoop Center on Sept. 27, 2014. She was born to the late Ida and Andrew Hartberg on Aug. 7, 1919 at their farm home near Heron Lake, Minn. She attended the Heron Lake Public Schools and went to St. Olaf College before completing a B.S. in Home Economics Education from Iowa State University. She later earned a M.S. from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in Educational Administration and Supervision. She was employed as a teacher of Home Economics in Virginia, Minn. and Wisconsin. In Racine, she taught at the Racine Vocational School, Washington Junior High, and Gilmore Junior High School. She retired in 1984 after 31 years of classroom teaching. Her retirement years were busy with many trips to foreign countries, participation in many Elder hostel programs, and classes in ballroom, line dancing, and aquacise swimming. She enjoyed camping and travel vacations with her family as well as planning gardens with flowers to be enjoyed by all. Always active in community groups, she belonged to Wustum Museum, Racine-Kenosha Home Economic Association, Brandywine Conservancy, Wisconsin Education Association, Racine Retired Educators, Lincoln Lutheran Auxiliary, and Atonement Lutheran – Rachel Circle and volunteered for Meals-on-Wheels. Lucy was married to W. “Bob” Robert Jennings in Newport News, Va. on June 27, 1942. They moved to Racine in 1946 where they lived and where their children were born. They were married for 68 years. She is survived by their daughter, Mary Barcio and husband Jim; and sons, James Jennings and wife Marcy, and Andrew Jennings; grandchildren, Heather Barcio-Solon and husband Michael, Amy Groller and husband Joseph, Scott Schulz, and Robert Schulz and wife Sara; great-grandchildren, Sean Parker Schulz, Hayden Groller, Macy Rose Schulz, Maxwell Schulz, Samuel Robert and Seamus Solon, Shannon Solon, Alexandra Barcio, Michael Barcio, and Jacob Barcio; and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband, Bob, on Feb. 15, 2010; brothers, Wilbur Hartberg and wife Ramota, and Truman Hartberg and wife Irene; grandson, Anthony Barcio; parents; and parents-in-law. The family suggests memorials to the Atonement Lutheran Scholarship Fund in Racine, Wis., or The Becker-Shoop Nursing Center in Pleasant, Wis. in lieu of flowers.
The Chicago native, WWII veteran, and school teacher is preceded in death by husband, Harold, and survived by sons, Paul and David, grandsons, Lucas, Tryg, and Tait, and great-grandson, Carson.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations are made to St. Olaf College, in care of the Corrine Jensen Memorial Fund. Donations also can be made online via stolaf.edu.
Barbara A. Babcock Johnson, age 81, of Litchfield, Minn., formerly of Glencoe, Minn., passed away peacefully on Feb. 20, 2014. Barbara was born Dec. 20, 1932, to Verne and Adah Slater Babcock, in Northfield, Minn. She married Richard Johnson ’54 on Oct. 8, 1955. Barbara served her community and church over the years with the Girl Scouts, Lutheran Social Service, Senior Companions, and Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. Barb loved her books, flowers and gardening, and the Lake, and she was a skilled cook and baker. She enjoyed participating in the Beckville Book Club, Glencoe Red Hats, and the Litchfield Library Book Club. She is preceded in death by her husband, Richard; parents, Verne L. and Adah B. Babcock; brother, Alan Babcock; and sister, Patricia Olson. She is survived by children, Lori Johnson Ahmad ’78, Linda Johnson Prestholt ’80 and husband David Prestholt, and Lee Johnson Zollner; five grandchildren; and one great-grandson.
David P. Johnson, age 80, of Rice Lake, Wis., died June 12, 2013 at Heritage Manor Nursing Home. He was born Jan. 17, 1933 in Northfield, Minn.; the son of Paul Johnson ’28 and Eveline Ellingson Johnson ’29. He married Elizabeth Nelson ’55 in Minneapolis on April 13, 1957. David graduated from St. Olaf College in 1955, and from Luther Seminary in 1959. He served several ELCA churches throughout his career, including Avoca, Iowa; Denver, Iowa; Shell Rock, Iowa; Ettrick, Wis; and Our Savior’s (Stanfold), Rice Lake, Wis. Dave’s main hobby was repairing antique radios. Since retirement, he liked to travel. He visited China twice, Alaska several times, and has reached the Arctic Ocean. For several years, he wrote the religion column for Wallace’s Homestead magazine and is also author of two books on antique radios.
He is survived by his wife, Betty; two children, Katherine Johnson ’82, and Richard Johnson ’83 and wife Laura; three grandchildren, Paul, Eric, and Anna Johnson; one sister, Linda Johnson Carpenter ’58; two nieces, Laura Carpenter Jasnoch ’85 and husband Jon, and Kristen Carpenter; and one nephew, Clayton Carpenter . David was preceded in death by his parents, Paul and Eveline, and brother-in-law, Ralph Carpenter ’58.
Dorothy Larson Johnson, 94, of Rockford, Ill., died on April 6, 2014, in Pennsylvania Peterson Center for Health. Born Nov. 23, 1919, in Huxley, Iowa, the daughter of Lewis and Isabelle Dobbe Larson, Dorothy attended Huxley High School, Huxley, Iowa; Waldorf College, Forest City, Iowa; St. Olaf College, Northfield, Minn.; University of Illinois, Champaign, Ill.; and University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls, Iowa. She married Pastor Marvin Johnson ’40 on Sept. 30, 1944, in Huxley. Dorothy and Marvin moved to several Lutheran parishes where he served as pastor, including Fridhem Lutheran Church, Funk, Neb.; Nathanael in Alcester, S.D.; First in Amery, Wis.; Trinity in Marshalltown, Iowa; and Zion in Rockford, Ill. Dorothy was on the library staff at Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa; and a librarian at Creston Jr. College and High School, Creston, Iowa and Rockford Lutheran High School, retiring in 1982. She was a member of Zion Lutheran Church for 38 years, where she participated in the A Cappella Choir, the Altar Committee, Saturday Nite Seniors, and Bible Study Group. Dorothy and Marvin founded the ELCA Retired Pastors/Spouse Group in the Rockford area. She spent her free time gardening, camping, and singing, and she enjoyed traveling to Europe and Alaska.
She is survived by her sons, Bruce Johnson and wife Charmaine, Dr. Mark Johnson and wife Sharon, and Glenn Johnson and wife Sandra; grandchildren, Sarah Johnson and husband Dr. Douglas Lin, Eric Johnson and wife Eboni, Paul Johnson, and Matthew Johnson; and brother, Edward Larson and wife Ruth. Predeceased by her husband, three sisters, and one brother, Robert Larson ’40 and wife Lucille.
Evan “Alec” Johnson, of Menomonie, Wis., was born Dec. 18, 1974, and died Dec. 23, 2014, five days after his 40th birthday. He was an astrophysicist working in fields so technically specialized that it was hard for his friends, even those with a science background, to grasp what he was up to. He had math going around in his head from grade school on through St. Olaf College and his graduation from the University of Wisconsin – Madison with a Ph.D. in applied mathematics in 2011. Math was Alec’s gift and it could have been his ticket to a comfortable life at a prestigious university, but along with his keen intelligence he held a radical belief in the Christian obligation to the poor. He took literally Jesus’s statement, “What you do unto the least of these, you do unto me.” And so Alec led a rather unusual life.
At U.W. – Madison, while refining a program for solving nonlinear differential equations and creating mathematical models of the interaction of high-speed ions (bare atoms) moving fast through magnetic fields, he befriended the handicapped and the poor. He got interested in the plight of poor children in Haiti. After his colleague, Dr. Tonghai Yang, established the Hometown Education Foundation to support school children in rural China, Alec not only supported children financially, but wrote them individual letters and then visited them in person. For a year, Alec lived as a homeless person in Madison in order to better understand their lives. He learned how to sleep on bare floors without blanket or mattress. He learned to live with the bare minimum of possessions.
A long-time friend of Alec’s in Madison said, “Alec had the mind of Christ with a depth and obedience I’ve never seen. It was not something he ‘put on’ in situations. It permeated all his being, whether worshipping or at a baseball game. He showed me how to be a true friend to people we might think of as projects—lonely people to whom we might feel a duty.”
His career led him to Belgium and the Catholic University of Leuven, where he did important groundwork useful in the design of nuclear-fusion containment vessels—one of humankind’s hopes for clean energy—and also used to predict the effects of the material ejected from solar flares (from “sunspots”) on the earth’s magnetic fields. Strong solar flares can damage satellites, computers, and the electrical power grid. Predicting whether they will hit the earth, and if so, when and how strongly, allows equipment to be shut down to decrease damage.
In Belgium, he worked with the DEEP-ER supercomputer project of the European Union to speed up programs running on “grids” made up of thousands of computers. At the same time, he developed ties to the poor of Uganda, made numerous trips there, and gave most of his income to provide scholarships to Ugandan students and to promote sustainable farming.
He traveled the world with only a tablet and a small backpack. He made friends whom he deeply cared for, including Anywarach Joshua Carter, with whom he collaborated on care for Ugandan orphans, and enjoyed long conversations about health, agriculture, community development, and education.
Out of his own pocket, Alec funded scholarships for about 60 students from grade school into college who could not have otherwise attended school. He paid for school gardens, tree nurseries, and donated the land for a coffee nursery that last year gave out 360,000 seedlings to the poor. He planned to buy land for a high school for the needy, with enough acreage to permit farming. His plan at his death was to teach university mathematics in Uganda.
Alec was willing to be taken advantage of—once. After that, he always had work that the person could do to earn more. “They reveal themselves,” he said wryly. He began a goat project in Uganda, requiring that when the goat had a kid, it was to be given to another family to grow the project naturally.
In the DEEP-ER project, Alec was leading work on a really hard and important problem. “He was doing great work,” said his supervisor, Dr. Giovanni Lapenta, “and we will be lost without him.”
The day before Alec died, one of his Ugandan friends had a dream that Alec visited the St. Augustine community in Uganda and wished them farewell, saying he had now assigned someone else to take over. Alec’s family will use gifts in Alec’s memory to continue his commitments around the world, working to build leaders with character, to provide sustainability and accountability in education and agriculture.
Alec is survived by his parents, Daniel and Isabelle Johnson and siblings, Michael Johnson ’93 and wife Kimberly Christian Johnson ’93, and Laura Johnson ’00.
James Johnson, of Norfolk, Va., passed away on May 1, 2012. He was preceded in death by his wife, Nan, and is survived by his sons, Kurt and Erik.
LaVonne Stolen Johnson, 92, of Red Wing, Minn., died Feb. 17, 2015 at Sunrise Senior Living Home in Minnetonka, Minn. She was born Nov. 30, 1922, in Armstrong, Iowa, to Reverend Ernest and Myrtle Monson Stolen. She graduated from high school in Racine, Wis. and went on to receive her bachelor’s degree in economics and history from St. Olaf College in 1944. She was united in marriage to Owen Johnson on Sept. 5, 1946. They lived several places throughout their life including Stoughton and Portage, Wis.; Omaha, Neb.; Park Forest, Ill.; Livonia, Mich.; Charlottesville, Va.; and Cherry Hill, N.J. before moving to Red Wing in 1978. LaVonne had worked for Maas Realty in Red Wing as a real estate agent. She was a member of United Lutheran Church, Red Wing Hospital Auxiliary and had served on its board, Women’s Study Club, Ruth Circle, and Sons of Norway. She and Owen enjoyed traveling. He died Feb. 19, 2005.
She is survived by three children, Randall Johnson ’75 and wife Joanne, Julie Hoffman and husband John, and Chris Anderson and husband Eric; grandchildren, Jacquie Arana and spouse Andy, Valerie Duckett and husband Kevin, Carolyn Johnson, Jonathan Hoffman and wife Jess, Jennifer Beck and husband Sean, Ari Anderson and wife Rachel Wells, and Ellis Anderson; eight great-grandchildren; a sister, Doris Stolen Gravrock ’47; and nieces and nephews, including Mark Gravrock ’73 P ’98 and Sylvia Gravrock ’76. She was preceded in death by her husband; brother-in-law, Howard Gravrock ’49; and a nephew, Stephen Gravrock ’69.
Memorials are preferred to United Lutheran Church or donor’s choice.
Yvonne Bottem Jorgenson, of Northfield, Minn., passed away with her husband and family by her side, on July 1, 2014, at Abbott-Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis, at the age of 79. She was born April 30, 1935, in St. James, Minn., to Ted and Anna Henderson Bottem. She was baptized and confirmed at Albion Lutheran Church and attended country school near Godahl, Minn. In 1953, she graduated from St. James High School and in 1957, received her bachelor’s degree in sociology from St. Olaf College.
On July 13, 1957, Yvonne married Gordon Jorgenson ’54 at Albion Lutheran. After marriage, they made their home for a short time in Saint Paul, Minn., before moving to Edina, Minn. In 1965, they moved to Columbia Heights, Minn., where they raised their children and made many lasting friendships. In 1991, they moved to Burnsville, Minn., and to Northfield in 2006. Yvonne and Gordon had enjoyed wintering in Surprise, Ariz., for the past 14 years. Over the years, Yvonne was always active in the neighborhood in which they lived and the church to which they belonged. She had the wonderful ability to make friends easily and relished every friendship. She enjoyed her family, her flower garden, various bridge clubs, and the occasional bowling league. When Gordon retired, they enjoyed traveling to new places, including Australia and Alaska. Yvonne took great pleasure in her Norwegian heritage and became adept at making many traditional Norwegian treats.
Survivors include her husband of 57 years, Gordon; two children, Eric Jorgenson ’80 and wife Amanda, and Beth Jorgenson Abdella ’82 and husband Blake Abdella ’82; six grandchildren, Rianna, Lydia, Claire, Ryan Abdella ’13, Michael Abdella ’13, and Scott Abdella ’14; and other relatives and friends. She was preceded in death by her parents and her brother, Dennis Bottem.
Memorials are preferred to St. John’s Lutheran Church, Northfield; or St. Olaf College.
*L. Richard Jurgensen, 90, of Galesburg, Ill., died Nov. 4, 2014. Even with the ravages of cancer, hearing loss, and probably Alzheimer’s, until his last week on earth, he loved to smile, talk, and eat sweet corn, cinnamon rolls, apples, and Snickers.
He was born Sept. 11, 1924 and raised in Sioux City, Iowa; surveyor and postmaster for the Alaskan highway; Navy veteran in WWII; St Olaf and Luther Seminary graduate; ordained Lutheran pastor for both parishes in Wisconsin, Illinois, and Ohio, and campuses at Minot State University, Northern Illinois University, and the University of Chicago; N.D. State Senator; Dekalb County board member; emissary to China on apple development; beekeeper, goat rancher, photographer, philosopher, poet, and writer. He also enjoyed reading, symphonies, operas, his dogs, raising an orphaned baby moose, and collecting aphorisms.
While his ashes will be scattered in trees near water, his earthly spirit and memory lives on in those who knew him. His heavenly spirit has entered into God’s Kingdom. He is sitting in a magnificent orchard surrounded by golden retrievers, goats, moose, and a grizzly, with eagles soaring overhead.
He was preceded in death by his parents, three brothers, and wife Barbara Bitting Jurgensen ’50. He is survived by his daughters, Janet Kjerne and Marie Volkers and husband Dave; son, Peter Jurgensen and wife Mariza; grandsons, Phillip Volkers ’02 and wife Katie Volkers, Tomas, and Lucas Jurgensen; and a brother in Texas.
Charlotte Jerene Mundale Karasek, 93, of Sapulpa, Okla., went to be with the Lord on July 14, 2013. She was born on Jan. 2, 1920 in Frost, Minn., the third child of Henry and Johanna Mundale. Charlotte graduated from St. Olaf College with a bachelor of arts degree. She worked as a teacher for a short time. Charlotte met Franklin Karasek ’42 and they were married on Oct. 25, 1941. They began their family with JoAnn “Joey” and soon after Frank joined the Air Force and served during World War II. In time, their family grew to eight wonderful children. Her primary occupation and joy was that of wife, mother, and homemaker.
Charlotte was not only devoted to her family, but she was also devoted to God and to His service. She and her husband, Frank, were active members of Broken Arrow First Assembly of God and in recent years, Charlotte was a beloved member of Foundation Church in Sapulpa.
Reading, gardening, crafts, flower arranging, and being with her family and friends were her joy. When she was younger, she liked to sew for her girls. She would read the Bible every morning and evening, as she felt it was the most important thing to do each day. She desired to leave a legacy that centered on knowing and sharing Christ with others.
She is survived by her children, Janie Terry, James Karasek, Judy Renwick, Jill Gustin, Jean “C.J.” DiIorio, John Karasek, and Jerome Karasek; 24 grandchildren; 26 great-grandchildren; nieces and nephews, including John Petraborg ’70 P ’93 ’99 and wife Corine Felland Petraborg ’70 P ’93 ’99; and a host of family and friends.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Frank Karasek; parents, Henry and Johanna Mundale; brother, Martin Mundale ’48; sister, Irene Mundale Petraborg ’39; and is joined in heaven with daughter JoAnn “Joey” Krause.
H. Eugene Karjala, age 81, of Lilydale, Minn., passed away on Nov. 18, 2014 in Clare Bridge of Eagan, Minn. As a career educator, he directed bands and choirs in Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, and Germany and was on the faculty at Ball State University School of Music for 24 years. Gene had a love for his Finnish heritage and in retirement was active in the Finnish American community, serving on both the FACA and Salolampi boards. In 2001 he spent the year at the University of Helsinki and in 2007 was named one of the University of Minnesota CLA’s Alumni of Notable Achievement. Eugene was preceded in death by his parents. Survivors include his wife, Beth; aunt, Katherine Karjala; and cousins throughout the country. Memorials to Salolampi Scholarship Fund, Salolampi Foundation, Minneapolis.
Christine Holm Keay, of Everett, Wash., passed away on Dec. 30, 2014. Christine was born on Aug, 3, 1927 in Hibbing Minn. She attended St. Olaf College from 1945 to 1949. She was an accomplished student, musician on the piano and organ, English teacher, mother, Pastor’s wife, homemaker, and caregiver. She and husband Luther Keay ’47 served ALC and ELCA parishes in Minot, N.D., Ettrick, Wis., Allendale, N.J., Park Ridge, Ill., Naperville, Ill., and Jacksonville, Fla. Following Luther’s retirement and subsequent passing in 1989, she relocated to Everett, Wash., in the company of three of her five children, where she lived until her death.
Christine is preceded in death by her husband. She is survived by her children, including Timothy Keay ’75 and wife Susan Frankenberg Keay ’74; grandchildren, including Andrew Keay ’07; and other relatives, including niece Kari Holm Fawcett ’79 P ’09.
Donations in her memory will be gladly accepted by St. Olaf College in the name of the previously established The Rev. Luther B. Keay Endowed Scholarship, or Luther Seminary in the name of the Luther and Christine Keay Endowed Scholarship Fund, established in 1991 to assist young seminarians in their pursuits.
Eunice Isaac Keljo, 89, of Columbus, Ohio, died on Jan. 11, 2015 at Westminster Thurber Community. Born on Feb. 27, 1925 to the late Edward and Tyyne Isaac, Eunice was a graduate of Hancock High School, Mich., Suomi College, St. Olaf College with a B.A., and the State University of New York at Cortland with an M.Ed. She taught and worked as a reading specialist in elementary, high school, and sheltered workshop settings. Eunice also played the organ and piano, and enjoyed working as a translator after she retired. Having moved to Columbus 16 years ago, she was a member of Hope Evangelical Lutheran Church, where she valued the fellowship of the Ruth Circle, helping at the food pantry, and singing in the choir. She was a devoted partner and great support to her husband throughout their 63 years of marriage and took joy in being a mother and grandmother, particularly delighting in her great-grandchildren. Eunice is survived by her children, Karen Tracy and husband Gary Darke, David Keljo and wife Judy, and Kurt Keljo and wife Susan; grandchildren, Ken Tracy and wife Alison, Jonathan Keljo and wife Amy, Jesse Keljo and wife Sara, Christina Tracy, Michael Keljo and wife Lindsey, and Kirsten Olson and husband Scott; great-grandchildren, Ian, Evelyn, Helen, Charlie, Freddy, and a great-granddaughter on the way; brother, Paul Isaac ’62 and wife Susan; brother-in-law, Ken Seaton; and nieces and nephews, including Davin Isaac ’99. Eunice was preceded in death by her husband, Karlo Keljo, and siblings, Lois Seaton and Edward Isaac. Memorial contributions may be made to Hope Evangelical Lutheran Church or Finlandia University.
Alan was born March 10, 1951 in Minneapolis to Dr. Chauncey M. and Marion L. Lofgren Kelsey. He currently lived in Apple Valley, Minn. During his lifetime he also lived in Roseville, Minn.; Fort Ransom, N.D.; Menomonie, Wis.; and Star Prairie, Wis.
Alan graduated from Kellogg High School in 1969. He attended St. Olaf College for three years and graduated from Augsburg College. He completed his graduate degree at Luther Seminary.
Alan married Sharon Thorpe Kelsey ’73 on Jan. 5, 1974.
After serving three ELCA parishes, Alan held several sales positions and was a realtor with Edina Realty before working as an instructor at Hennepin County Technical College. Alan retired from teaching in July 2014.
Alan was active in Boy Scouts of America. Alan achieved Eagle Scout, Order of the Arrow, and his Pro Deo et Patria award. Alan worked at Tomahawk Reservation as a lifeguard and waterfront counselor. He also worked as the Protestant Chaplin. While Alan attended St. Olaf College he was in the St. Olaf orchestra and a member of the service fraternity Alpha Phi Omega. Alan enjoyed classic cars. He enjoyed taking several cross-country trips with Sharon in their MGs.
Alan is survived by his wife, Sharon Kelsey; his brother, Robert Kelsey and wife Stephanie; his sister, Kathleen Kelsey Grindstaff; nephews, David Kelsey, Dan Grindstaff, Dr. Paul Grindstaff and wife Cathy, and Bryan Magnum [a.k.a.Ben Hembel] and wife Kim Grob; nieces, Carolyn Kluender and wife Kim, Sara Hembel-Sytsma and husband Jesse Sytsma, and Marina Krasnoyarova Grindstaff; 12 grand-nephews and nieces; as well as numerous cousins and friends. Alan was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Carmen Hembel and husband Alan; stillborn sister, Katherine; nieces, Christina Hembel and Jennine Hembel; and grandnephew, Grant Kelsey.
Ellen was born in Castle Rock, Minn. on Oct. 1, 1923. The youngest daughter of Ross B. Perkins and Leticia A. VanSlyke, she acquired the family nickname “Trude”, a contraction of “Gertrude”, as her name was easily confused with her older sister, Helen. The family lived in Castle Rock until her father’s death in 1928. Her mother moved the family to Northfield, Minn. She graduated from Northfield High School and briefly attended St. Olaf College before transferring to the University of Minnesota, from where she graduated in 1945 with a bachelor’s degree in education. She later went back to school to receive a certification in teaching emotionally disturbed adolescents.
She met Gilbert Kueseman while teaching in Bird Island, Minn., and they were married on June 24, 1948 in Le Center, Minn. Ellen and Gil had four boys: Glen, Jim, Dohn, and Steve. They lived in Le Center, Minn.; Yankton, S.D.; and Alexandria, Minn. before settling in Willmar. Her husband Gil passed away in 1964; faced with raising four young boys on her own, she resumed teaching in the Willmar Public School district. She taught for many years in the adolescent unit at the Willmar Regional Treatment Center before retiring in 1987.
Ellen loved to travel, heading to four different continents. She loved photography and took many pictures during her travels. In retirement, she added pets to her life: a dog, Cobber, and a cat, Patches.
She devoted a lot of time and energy to her church. She was a devoted member of United Methodist Church in Willmar. She touched many lives through her humble and caring dedication to family and friends. She was a strong, quiet person. She had a long life, not devoid of trials and misfortune, but happy. She was deeply loved and will be greatly missed by her family and many friends.
Ellen is survived by her sons: Glen, Jim and wife Suzanne, Dohn, and Steve and wife Cathy; six grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; and sister, Jeanne Schnacke. She was preceded in death by her husband, parents, and siblings Norman Perkins and Helen Stegemann.
Surrounded by her loving family, Dorothy Evanson Klausner passed away peacefully on Oct. 17, 2011 in San Pedro, Calif., where she lived for 60 years. Dorothy was born in Lemmon, S.D., on July 16, 1926. She graduated from St. Olaf College and earned a B.S. degree in physical education in 1947, then began a teaching career in Montana. She joined her sister in Los Angeles to begin teaching in Bell, Calif.
While attending a square dancing class, she met her life mate and true love, Stanley Klausner, a San Pedro High history teacher. They married in 1951. While raising six kids, she continued to teach part time at Harbor College and San Pedro High School. Vacations were filled with camping trips and traveling the world. Dorothy was an active member of AAUW. She and Stanley enjoyed ballroom dancing, always first on the floor and the last to leave. They danced through life together for 56 years with grace and style.
Dorothy was preceded in death by Stanley, in 2007, and her sister, Dolores Evanson ’43. She is survived by her children, Jean Ritter and husband Mike, Steve Klausner and wife Jill, Cheryl Klausner, Viki Trani and husband Jim, Stan Klausner and wife Cyndy, and Peggy Diaz and husband David; 10 grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; and a large extended family.
Suzanne Straus Kollmeyer, of East Lansing, Mich., passed away peacefully, surrounded by her family, on April 6, 2014. She was born on July 12, 1942, in Madison, Wis. She attended St. Olaf College and graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1964. She taught pre-school and first grade, then worked as a resource specialist for the Michigan Self-Help Clearinghouse and volunteer coordinator for Hospice House of Mid-Michigan. She was a 20 year volunteer for Sparrow Health System and also volunteered for Clinton County Meals on Wheels. She was a member of the Philanthropic Educational Organization (P.E.O.) and an active member of Bethlehem Lutheran Church for 43 years.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Marshall and Janet Huegel Straus, and her brother-in-law, Peter Rand ’66. She is survived by Kurt Kollmeyer, her loving husband of 47 years; her daughter, Kristin Kollmeyer Schaaf; two sons, Kent Kollmeyer and wife Betsy, and Karl Kollmeyer and wife Brande Dixon; and seven grandchildren, Karson, Keegan, Maximilian, Kelsey, Kayla, Silas, and Adelyn. She is also survived by her brothers, Richard Straus and wife Susan, and James Straus; and her sisters, Nancy Straus Rand ’66, Lisa Straus, and Kate Davis; as well as many nieces and nephews, including Amy Rand ’94 and her husband Scott Pryor, and Dorothy Rand ’98 and her husband Corey Mollet. She was a devoted wife, mother, and grandmother.
Carol Mickelsen Korf left this earth on Feb. 14, 2015 to be reunited with her beloved husband, Jerry, in the world yet to come.
Born in 1925 to Rudolph and Laurene Mickelsen in Minneapolis, Carol moved to Waukesha, Wis. with her family, where she grew up along with her brother, Rodney Mickelsen ’53. She attended Carroll College in Waukesha and then graduated from St. Olaf College in Minnesota with a degree in education. She attended graduate school at University of Wisconsin – Madison and then taught high school English for several years.
Carol married Gerald J. Korf on June 30, 1951 in Waukesha. Jerry had a law practice in Mukwonago, Wis. prior to 1965, when he and his family, which by then included two daughters, moved to Madison. He became an Administrative Law Judge for Wisconsin’s Division of Worker’s Compensation and then for the Labor and Industry Review Commission. Carol joyfully immersed herself in family and volunteer activities. She also occasionally taught as a substitute teacher in Madison schools. She enjoyed a long, happy marriage with Jerry until his death in 1997.
A long-time member of Advent Lutheran Church in Madison, Carol’s strong Christian faith was central to her essence. She participated in many church activities including a women’s circle, book club and quilting. In addition, she was a volunteer children’s reader at Wexford Village, recorded for the blind, and was a member of Zeta Phi Eta, as well as the Madison Civics Club. Carol and Jerry enjoyed many years of participating in Elderhostels, which met their interests in lifelong learning and traveling.
Carol is survived by her daughters, Lisa Korf and Kristin Todd, as well as Kristin’s husband, R. Kim Todd and their children Kelly and Connor, all of whom she cherished. She is further survived by several much-loved nieces and nephews, as well as a host of valued friends.
In addition to her husband, Carol was predeceased by her dear mother, father, and brother.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the charity of your choice, if you so wish.
Carol was a loving presence in the lives of family and friends and will be dearly missed.
Paul Kottom, of Alameda, Calif., passed away on Sept. 14, 2014. He was born on Sept. 18, 1954. Paul was preceded in death by his mother, Alice Lee Kottom ’50. He is survived by his wife, Kathy.
She was born on July 1, 1929, in Viroqua, to Thomas N. and Edith Hill Sandwick. She graduated from Viroqua High School in 1946 and St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn., in 1950. She taught English in high school and also was a pre-school teacher. On July 5, 1953, she married Erwin Peter Kraai at the South West Prairie Lutheran Church. They lived in Spirit Lake, Iowa, Penfield, N.Y., Atlanta, Rochester, N.Y., and Viroqua before moving to Cross Plains. She loved music, the fine arts, traveling, reading, and was a lifelong learner.
Rolette is survived by her husband, Erwin Peter Kraai; two daughters, Kristin Kraai Lewis, and Adele Kraai Mann ’86 and husband Todd; nine grandchildren, Nils, Erik, Anna, and Kristina Lewis, Torin, Elling, and Leif Mann, and Haria and Cousimo; and other relatives and many friends. She was preceded in death by her parents; and her five siblings, Thomas Ellsworth in infancy, Ethel Mathews, Nulton Sandwick, Audrey Fulton, and Theresa Sandwick Thomas ’49. She was also preceded in death by brothers-in-law, Fred Mathews and Floyd Fulton; and her nephew, Carl Mathews.
The family suggests memorials to the Alzheimers Association.
Robert Kruger, 78, of Rock Island, Ill., passed away June 14, 2014, at UnityPoint Health-Trinity Rock Island. Robert was born on April 24, 1936, in Manly, Iowa, the son of Alvin and Esther Walk Kruger. He graduated from Waldorf College, Forest City, Iowa, and St. Olaf College, Northfield, Minn., with a bachelor of arts degree in 1959. He received a master of divinity from Northwestern Theological Seminary, St. Paul, Minn., and was ordained in 1963, celebrating 50 years of ministry in 2013.
Rev. Kruger was a pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America and was a retired clergy of the Minneapolis Area Synod. He served Grace Lutheran Church in Wayzata, Minn., from 1963-1969, and East and West Lutheran Churches in Carver, Minn., from 1969-1994. After retirement, he moved to Northfield, where he lived until 2002. He moved to Rock Island to live with Dr. William Hiebert, a seminary classmate. During his retirement years in Rock Island, he often supplied at many area churches, including First Lutheran and St. James Lutheran Churches in Rock Island, and Calvary Lutheran and First Lutheran churches in Moline, Ill.
He enjoyed watercolor painting, storytelling, reading, and travel. His skill in writing and graphic design work was first developed working on the high school newspaper. He managed the college yearbook publication and later served as editor of the Minnesota Lutheran newsletter for many years.
Survivors include his siblings, Allen Kruger, Dora Runyon, Ruth Erdmann, Clarice Wilde, and Deanna Sande; and several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his sisters, Myrtle Davis and Gladys Grant, and brothers, Walter, Harold, Edward, Harvey, and an infant brother, Richard. Memorials may be given to St. James Lutheran Church, Rock Island.
Tim graduated from St. Olaf College, Northfield, Minn., with a bachelor of arts in English.
Tim and Julie owned Good-Kruger Dolls, Inc. for 20 years. He later managed the industrial division for VisionCorps (formerly SABVI), serving the blind community for 10 years. After retiring a year and a half ago, he joined Julie in the family business, Inglenook Tile Design. A creative and artistic person, Tim collaborated with Julie on many design projects.
Tim was a marathon runner and played football in high school and college.
He was a kind and compassionate man, who was an inspiration to many and known to be a tremendous consensus builder.
The light of Tim’s life was his family. He considered raising his daughters to be his greatest life work. He derived his strength from his belief in Christ.
Born in Minneapolis, Tim was the son of the late Arden and Shirley Knutson Kruger. In addition to Julie, he is survived by daughters, Emily Kruger and husband Imad Belaallam, and Kristina Kruger and husband Matthew Fisher; a brother, Marc Kruger and wife Stacey Gruett; a sister, Marci and husband Larry Kiewel; and nieces and nephews.
Hans Krusa, 100, of Chapel Hill, N.C., died Oct.1, 2014 at Carol Woods Retirement Community in Chapel Hill. He was born in Redwood, N.Y. and graduated from St. Olaf College, where he was president of the class of 1937. He worked his way through school by taking a variety of jobs, including a stint as a radio announcer. He received his M.Sci. and PhD from New York University School of Business, and later earned a master’s degree in public health at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
After working in several managerial positions in the private sector, Hans joined the faculty at NYU in 1940. His tenure there lasted until 1968, though for a number of those years he worked abroad. He organized the first business school and faculty for the University of Lagos, Nigeria and started the MBA program at the University of Alexandria, U.A.R. After receiving his MSPH, he helped officials in India enhance their public health programs by showing them how to apply business principles in their efforts.
In 1971 Hans returned to UNC as adjunct faculty in the Kenan Flagler School of Business. He served as deputy director of the Carolina Population Center and completed projects for the Center in Kenya and Turkey. In all, his career as an educator spanned over 50 years.
In 1982, Hans and his wife Renee moved to Carol Woods. There he served on several committees, including serving as co-editor of the Carol Woods News and co-chair of the Workshop Committee. In 2013, the newly expanded craft building was named “The Krusa Craft Shop.” One of his personal projects was making walking sticks for fellow residents. He always wanted to be of help and enjoyed making people happy.
Hans is survived by son, Paul Krusa and partner Elaine Curry; daughter, Joan Asplin and husband Tony; six grandchildren; and 13 great grandchildren. He was predeceased by his wife, Renee, and son, Peter Krusa ’69. Memorial contributions may be made to The Peter B. Krusa Memorial Scholarship at Appalachian State University in Boone, N.C.
Melvin Kurnow, age 84, of Minnetonka, Minn., passed away Aug. 10, 2014. He was preceded in death by parents, Samuel and Anna Kurnow, and brother, Max Kurnow. Loved by all, he is survived by wife, Renee; children, Nadine Bynum, Richard Kurnow, Mark Kurnow, Barbara Kurnow, Jamie Corwin, and Michelle Bennett; nine grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; brother, Meyer Kurnow; and sister-in-law, Jeanette Kurnow. Memorials preferred to the Adath Jeshurun Gan Shelanu Preschool, or the donor’s favorite charity.
Mildred Synneva Hansen Largey died on March 20, 2014, at Castle Ridge Care Center in Eden Prairie, Minn., with her daughter at her side. She was born on June 3, 1915, in St. James, Minn. Mildred was the eldest child of Severt and Anna Mathilda Westberg Hansen. She grew up in St James, Minn. with her brother, Harold Hansen ’38, and her sister, Eunice Hansen Logan ’41. She attended school in St. James and also worked in her father’s jewelry store.
After graduating from high school in 1932, Mildred went to Mankato Business College for one year. The following year, Mildred and her brother, Harold, both started college at St. Olaf. She graduated from St Olaf in 1937, with a B.A. in history. St. Olaf College was a place of celebration for Mildred in that not only did she and her brother graduate from St. Olaf, but she had three nieces, one nephew, and a daughter who graduated from there.
Following college graduation, Mildred returned to St James, where she worked in the court house for Watonwan County. Her first teaching position came with a position in Tulsa, Okla., at an Indian Boarding School. Following that, she was able to return to the Midwest for teaching positions in Minnesota and Iowa. While Mildred was living and teaching in Lake Center, Iowa, she met George Edward Largey. They were married on June 16, 1944, in St James. Mildred and George started their married life in Dickens, Iowa. Mildred continued to teach in Lake Center, Terrill, Ruthven, and Ayrshire School Districts. She also did bookkeeping for a trucking firm that George worked for.
The year of 1956 was the year of changes for Mildred and George. They moved to a farm on Highway 18, just east of Ruthven, Iowa. On Nov. 24, 1956, their daughter was born, Cynthia “Cindy” Largey Swanson ’79. They lived on that farm until November 1969. That is when they moved into Ruthven. Mildred and George lived in their own home until December of 2002. At that time, they both moved into Ruthven Care Center. Mildred remained at Ruthven Care Center even after George’s death in May of 2003. In November of 2005, Mildred moved to Castle Ridge Care Center, in Eden Prairie, Minn., to be near her daughter, Cynthia Largey Swanson.
In her time living in Ruthven, Mildred was busy in many ways. First, there was her active work at Zion Lutheran Church. She was active in the church not only through her volunteering, but also as an employee. She was the parish secretary as well as church treasurer for many years. She was also an active member with American Legion Post 33 Auxiliary. Mildred enjoyed being busy with her hobbies. They included sewing, embroidery work, needlepoint, and knitting. Her last three years at Castle Ridge, she even did painting. Many people will also remember that she loved to sing. She was active in choir in her first church, First Lutheran Church in St James, during her high school and college years, and at Zion Lutheran Church. She also would sing solos for funerals.
Mildred is preceded in death by her parents, her brother, her sister, and her husband. She is survived by her daughter, Cynthia, and her son-in-law, Mark, along with her grandpuppy, Synneva. She is also survived by nieces and nephews living in Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Oklahoma, and California, including Ian Logan ’77 and wife Kari, Robert Logan, Mary Logan Lenihan ’71, and Martha Logan ’71 and husband Josh Hudgens.
Caryl Weyhrich Larson, age 77, of Golden Valley, Minn., passed away on Oct. 29, 2014. She was born Oct. 18, 1937 in Mapleton, Iowa to Vernon and Vivian Brown Weyhrich. She was a graduate of St. Olaf College. Caryl was preceded in death by parents, Vernon and Vivian, and brother, W. Dale Weyhrich ’64. She is survived by her husband of 52 years, David J.; daughters, Janette Larson Reeves ’88, and Betsy Lindgren and husband Skip; grandchildren, Zac and Grant Reeves, and Frances, Vivian, and Georgia Caryl Lindgren; and other loving family and countless friends. If so desired, memorials may be directed to Exsultate; National Lutheran Choir; or Calvary Feed My Starving Children Pack-a-thon.
*David M. Larson, of Wayzata, Minn., retired Cargill executive and University of Minnesota regent, died Oct. 25, 2014 at age 70. Shortly after David’s birth in Valparaiso, Ind., his family moved to Glenwood, Minn., where he spent most of his youth. Having been impressed with his family’s support of foreign students, David attended the University of Americas in Mexico City a year after starting at St. Olaf College. He finished his degree in political science at the University of Minnesota and became a lifelong advocate of that institution, eventually being elected a regent in 2005. He joined Cargill as a trainee in 1966, and soon turned to Cargill’s feed business, serving in Kansas City, Kan. before a year of military service in Vietnam. When he returned, he managed Cargill’s Research Farm in Elk River, Minn., and was promoted to various management positions in Kansas City and Minnesota. In 1983 he was appointed president of the entire Feed Division, and in 1995 was president of Cargill’s Animal Nutrition and Poultry Group, which then operated in 22 countries. His predecessor credited David’s ability to understand the business, look critically at opportunities, and effectively train new talent. David served the entire industry when he was named chairman of the American Feed Industry Association in 1990. Elected executive vice president of Cargill in 1999, David became known for his advocacy of corporate branding, quality, and employee engagement and recognition. Always passionate about Cargill’s talent, he wrote that “there is no more significant form of recognition than offering people trust, freedom, and responsibility.” David was a mentor to a number of key Cargill executives including its executive chairman Greg Page. David was a member of the company’s Corporate Leadership Team and served on the Cargill Board of Directors. After 44 years, David retired from Cargill in 2010, but he continued to seek ways to engage with the community. He served on the executive council of the Minnesota Historical Society, was a trustee of the board of National History Day, and a year after his retirement he was elected to a second term as a regent of the University of Minnesota, where he served as vice chair from 2011-2013. He was a Board appointee to the University of Minnesota Foundation Board of Trustees, serving for 12 years. A long-time volunteer at the University prior to serving on the Board of Regents, he was an active member of the College of Liberal Arts Dean’s Advisory Board and volunteered for the University of Minnesota Foundation during Campaign Minnesota. David had a deep love of the University and often said that higher education was the foundation for his successful professional career. Honoring that legacy, David endowed a scholarship at the University in 2008 aimed at addressing his concern about the rising cost of education for middle class families. Since its inception, the University has admitted 350 Larson Scholars. Thanks to David’s vision and generosity, this community of students has been able to follow their dreams, receive an exceptional education and graduate with minimal debt. A passionate Gopher football fan, David also provided generous support to Gopher Athletics. David is survived by his wife, Janis; children, David Lance and Reid; a granddaughter; sister, Sandra Swartzmiller; brother, Paul W. Larson; nieces, Nicole and Melissa; and nephews, Stefan and Chris. David was preceded in death by his parents, Helen and Marvin Larson. Memorials preferred to the Coach Kill “Chasing Dreams” Epilepsy Fund, 1600 St Paul, Minn.
Joanne Luella Qualley Larson, age 74, of Zimmerman, Minn., passed away Aug. 29, 2014. She was born May 22, 1940. She is survived by her husband, Jerome Larson ’61; children, David Larson and wife Jennifer, Julie Diedrich and husband Darrin, and John Larson ’95 and wife Claire Lorence Larson ’95; her eight grandchildren, Kelsey, Kirsten, Michael, Zachary, Amy, Linnea, Anders, and Annelise; her sisters, Lois Qualley Halberg ’64 and husband Charles Halberg ’64, Sharyn Larson and husband Steve, and Harlene Myre; and many nieces and nephews, including Mara Halberg Chartier ’94. She was preceded in death by her parents, Harlyn and Evelyn Qualley. Memorials preferred to Calvary Lutheran Church.
Judith Rasmussen Larson, of Rockford, Ill., wife of Gerald Larson ’56, died on July 1, 2011. She attended St. Olaf College, graduated with a B.A. degree from Carthage College, and earned a MSED degree from Northern Illinois University. Survivors include her husband of 53 years; daughters, Stephanie Hughes, Kristen Hair, and Laurie Lundquist; eight grandchildren; brother, Philip Rasmussen; aunt, Muriel Rasmussen Sovik ’38; and cousins, Katherine Sovik-Siemens ’70 P ’05 and husband Brian, and Elisabeth Sovik ’69. She was preceded in death by her parents, Solveig Thorpe Rasmussen ’31 and Halbert Rasmussen ’29; aunt, Dorothea Thorpe Glasoe ’34 and husband Paul Glasoe ’34 P ’66 ’71; and uncle, Ansgar Sovik ’34. The family prefers memorials to Mt. Olive Lutheran Church, Rockford, Ill.
Lucille Christine Stubkjaer was born on Jan. 25, 1916 to Christian and Mette Stubkjaer in Lake Preston, S.D. She graduated from St. Olaf College and received her library science degree from the University of Minnesota. She worked as a children’s librarian and during the ’40s she proudly worked as one of the many “Rosie the Riveters,” working in a factory and helping the war effort.
She married Roger Larson ’42 in 1942 in Minneapolis, where Roger was in physical therapy school. They moved to Pullman, Wash. in 1947, where they raised their family and Lucille worked at the Neill Public Library and Pullman High School Library. Lucille was proud to be Danish but learned the “Norwegian ways” from Roger. She baked and ate lutefisk and taught more people than you could count the fine art of making lefse.
Lucille was a good old soul. She believed in hard work, the love of God, and the strength of family. She spent summers working alongside her family at Camp Roger Larson planning menus, budgeting for the buying of food supplies, and keeping the campers and counselors well fed.
She was active in Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Moscow, Idaho and Trinity Lutheran in Pullman. She was a tireless servant at the church: sewing quilts, making up health kits for children overseas, teaching Sunday school, and cooking for various events. She believed in service beyond self and was active in Pullman Child Welfare, the American Red Cross and Meals on Wheels. When she was well into her 60s, Lucille announced that she was going to “help the old people exercise” at the Respite program in Pullman.
Lucille was generously loved and is already missed by her daughters Christine Larson and partner Catherine Henze, and Margi Vogel and husband Rob, and her grandchildren, who were the center of her life for so very long: Matthew Eng and wife Lauren Sandven ’01, Nathaniel Eng and wife Maggie, and Grethe Wood and husband Justin; and great-grandchildren, Larson, Kaarin, Charlie, and Albert. She was preceded in death by her parents; her five siblings; her son, Ole Weik; her husband, Roger; her daughter, Mary Larson-Eng ’67; and son-in-law, Geoffrey Eng. Memorials are suggested to Gentiva Hospice or to Trinity Lutheran Church.
Margarethe Borge Larson, of Menno, S.D., died peacefully March 28, 2014. She was born Oct. 13, 1922, in Lawrence, Wash., to Olaf and Sigrid Greibrok Borge. In 1924, she and her family moved to Cambridge, Wis., where she lived until college. Margo graduated from Augustana Academy and St. Olaf College. After college, she received her master’s degree from Western Reserve Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing.
Margo met Mearl Larson at Augustana Academy. Their friendship developed over the years, and they married Aug. 31, 1948 at East Koshkonong Lutheran Church, near Cambridge, Wis. Margo and Mearl settled on Twin Brook Farm, S.D., south of Menno. From 1949 until 1962, she gave birth to six children: Peter, Timothy, Naomi, Stephen, Rachel, and Andrew. She was a devoted mother, excellent gardener, and a steadfast provider for her family.
Margo was a registered nurse and worked for many years at Sacred Heart Hospital in Yankton, S.D. Over the years, she worked in many nursing capacities, including intensive care and mental health. She completed her career at Freeman Nursing Home. In her retirement, Margo became well known in the local area for her homemade bread, granola, and lefse. She served in all ways imaginable in the church, making quilts, leading bible studies, advocating for prison ministries, and working to end racism. In their later years, Margo and Mearl continued their active involvement in and generous support of Our Savior’s Church. During Mearl’s last years, Margo was his constant companion and caregiver, until he died on July 28, 2005.
Survivors are her children, Pete, Tim, Naomi, Steve, Rachel, and Andy; grandchildren, Terry Bitsos, Tammy Lockman, Lisa Benski, Nathan Grega Larson, Susanna Larson Holmstrom, and Mark and Anna Larson; step-grandson, Thomas Bitsos; great-grandchildren, Zara Bitsos, and Trevor, Josh, and Nathaniel Lockman; and many faithful friends. She was preceded in death by her parents, siblings, and husband, Mearl.
Marion Geraldine Berg Larson, of Milwaukie, Ore., passed away on Jan. 28, 2015. Marion was born in Lewistown, Mont., on May 9, 1917. Her parents Ingartha Thormodsgaard and Oswald Berg, hearty Norwegians, were ranchers in Lennep, Mont. Marion was raised on the Berg Ranch along the Musselshell River, a place that she treasured her entire life, now in the care of its fifth generation of Berg ranchers. The eldest child of four, she attended the one room school in Lennep and later high school in Harlowton and Bozeman, Mont. She was studious, whip smart, and loved to ride her horse into the hills north of the ranch to read books under a tree. Her mother passed away after the birth of Marion’s sister, Lois Berg Irion ’53, when Marion was 14. She became the ‘woman’ of the ranch family’ until she was succeeded by her dear stepmother Lois. This experience was formative and imbued her with a strength, resilience, and independence that characterized the rest of her life.
Marion was a top student in high school and placed first overall in chemistry in the state of Montana. She was awarded a scholarship to the University of Montana for this achievement. Despite tough economic times, her father chose to send Marion instead to St Olaf College, the college her mother Ingartha wished for her children to attend. Marion graduated from St. Olaf magna cum laude in 1938 with a degree in chemistry and came west to Portland, Ore. to train to be a lab technician. She worked in various medical offices and at Emanuel Hospital. She was the organist at Central Lutheran Church and active in the Luther League, a program for young adults. There she met her future husband, Palmer. They married after he returned from serving in the Army Air Force in WWII and raised two children, Eric and Grethe Larson ’72. She was a wonderful mother, dearly loved her family, and instilled a strong sense of family in her children, grandsons, and extended family.
A person of great depth and faith, Marion had an enduring interest in life, family, friends, and people, and an amazing strength of character. She was a genuinely beautiful person, inside and out. A talented writer, she wrote marvelous letters and was a community news columnist in the local paper for years. She served as the Milwaukie Lutheran Church organist and worked in the media center for the North Clackamas Schools. She called herself “Marion the Librarian.” She was a great cook and homemaker and turned the bounty of Palmer’s Hector Street garden into fabulous raspberry and strawberry jams, apple sauce, and pies. She loved flowers, nature, and sunsets and appreciated the beauty around her.
Later in life, Marion and Palmer enjoyed winters in the Arizona desert – initially in a humble trailer on property on the Sonoran Desert called the “Cactus Patch” and later at a lovely Vista Hermosa condo. They explored the Southwest and made a new circle of interesting friends. They travelled to Australia several times to visit their AFS daughter Patsy and also enjoyed trips to Norway, Sweden, and Denmark, New Zealand and Fiji, and various places around the U.S., including several Thanksgivings in Hawaii with their children and grandchildren. Marion and Palmer moved to Rose Villa Retirement Community in 2002, where they spent their last years.
Family was important to Marion. She was especially proud of her artistic, talented husband of almost 67 years, Palmer. Together they were quite a pair and she was devoted to him in his declining years. She also was proud of her children and very proud of her five grandsons, Peder, Kris, and Paul Larson, and Andrew Mullins ’11 and Peter Mullins. She remained interested in them until her last days. She also had a strong sense of heritage and was interested in and devoted to her numerous nieces and nephews. She had a lovely smile, engaging blue eyes, a charming sense of humor, a wonderful laugh, and an elegant air about her.
Marion passed away peacefully at the Rose Villa Health Center. She was preceded in death by her siblings, Oswald Berg ’40, James Berg ’44, and Lois Marie, cousins, including Dorothy Berg Fallis ’43, and her husband Palmer. She leaves behind her loving family and friends, who will miss a multi-talented lady who never stopped being genuinely interested in others. Marion is survived by her son Eric, his wife, Teresa Bigelow, and his family, Peder and Suzy and their children Blake and Ryan, Kris and Joni, and Paul and Celia; by her daughter, Grethe, her husband, James Mullins, and her family, Andrew and Peter; by her AFS daughter, Patsy Withycombe, in Australia; a cousin, Jean Berg Ellison ’41; and by numerous nieces and nephews and countless friends.
Special appreciation is extended to the Rose Villa Health Center for the loving and compassionate care provided. Memorials may be made to the Milwaukie Lutheran Church Endowment Fund.
Robert “Bob” Irven Larson, of Green Valley, Ariz., passed away on May 27, 2014, after a long illness with complications from COPD and heart problems. He was born in Faribault, Minn., to Irven and Olive Larson, on Oct. 2, 1923. He graduated from Faribault High School and went on to St. Olaf College. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in education and science. He received a master’s degree in science from the University of Minnesota. He taught school in Osakis, Shattuck Academy in Faribault, and Anoka, Minn. He married Bette Larson in 1950 and had one daughter, Connie. He retired from teaching in 1983 and he and his wife moved to Green Valley, Ariz. He enjoyed traveling and participating in many clubs. Bowling was his passion. He had a special interest in playing the Lowery organ.
He leaves behind his wife, Bette, and daughter, Connie.
Helen Moeller Lee, 87, a resident of Hopewell Township for more than 60 years, passed away Sept. 6, 2014, at Pennswood Village, Newtown, Pa. Born in Kanaranzi, Minn., to the late Emil and Dorothy Moeller, Helen was a graduate of St. Olaf College. She began her career working in the atomic energy program at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee and retired as a research associate from Union Camp Corporation in Lawrenceville, N.J. Helen spent her later years volunteering at the Hopewell Valley Watershed and painting with the Tuesday Morning Art Group. After moving to Pennswood Village 18 months ago, she continued to volunteer in their library. The widow of Nathan Lee, Sr. ’48, she is survived by three sons and their families, Nathan and wife Janice, Dave and wife Nancy, and Mark; six grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren. Donations in Helen’s memory may be made to Abiding Presence Lutheran Church, Ewing, N.J.
Randall Lewis, of Marinette, Wis., passed away April 8, 2014. His earthly journey began when he was born to devoted and always supportive parents, Lyle and Marcella Rechtzigel Lewis ’44, on July 15, 1953.
Randy struggled most of his life with gradual loss of muscle strength due to a neuromuscular disorder, but his strength in perseverance and courage more than made up for the physical deficits he faced every day. He attended St. Olaf College, where he completed his undergraduate studies. While attending the University of Health Sciences in Kansas City, Mo., where he attained his medical degree, he also fulfilled a lifelong passion and became a pilot. As an intern in a hospital in Wauwatosa, Wis., he met his future wife, Beth, a nurse. After marrying in 1983, they moved to northeast Wisconsin and founded and co-owned the Crivitz Medical Clinic, followed by FamilyCare Medical Clinic in Marinette a few years later. They were blessed with their long awaited and dearly loved son, Timothy Lewis LewisWolf ’09, in 1987.
Those who encountered Randy knew him to be a compassionate and devoted physician, who most would say “always took the time to listen”. He treated all of his patients and everyone he met throughout his life with the utmost dignity and respect. Although his body continued to fail him, his faith, determination, and quick wit did not. When he was no longer able to practice medicine, he retired and enrolled in law school to keep his mind sharp, stimulated, and growing.
Randy is survived by his mother, Marcy Lewis, who loved him so much; his loving and devoted wife of 30 years, Beth; his pride and joy, son Timothy and wife Christina Wolf LewisWolf ’09; and his dear brother and friend, Kirby Lewis Kallas-Lewis ’77 and partner K.T. Niehoff. He is further survived by his sister-in-law, Lucy Bartelt; nieces, Marybeth Sison, Allison Parker, and Amy Bartelt; nephew, Lyejm Kallas-Lewis; and great-nieces Madelyn and Elisabeth, whom he adored. Randy will be missed by his family and dear friends who were always there for him, as well as the puppy, “Archie”. He was preceded in death by his father, Lyle E. Lewis, who was his close companion and fishing partner.
*George Arthur Lexau, age 90, of Lindenhurst, Ill., died May 28, 2014, after a long illness. He was born April 9, 1924 in Chicago. The family moved, to Long Lake, Ill., while he was still in elementary school. He was attending St. Olaf College when the U.S. declared war, and joined the Navy as a corpsman in early 1942. He participated in landings in North Africa, Italy, and Normandy, before finishing his service in the Pacific. He returned to Long Lake to marry the late Marion Wallace, on Oct. 30, 1948 at Trinity Lutheran Church, where they were members until her death. They were happily married for 29 years and enjoyed traveling the country. They had three daughters, Christine Lexau, Linda Reiff, and Janet Lexau Padilla ’78. George was Vice President of Ideal Cabinet Company of Chicago and Wheeling his entire career. He served several terms on both the church council and the Gavin School Board. He married LaVerne Egerter on Sept. 24, 1980, on Washington Island, Wis. They lived in Gurnee, Ill., later moving to Lindenhurst and joining St. Mark’s Lutheran Church.
George is survived by his wife of 33 years, LaVerne; his daughters, Linda and Janet; grandsons, Jacob Reiff, Mark Reiff, and Tim Reiff; great-grandsons, Ethan, Brett, Luke, and Trevor Reiff; sister, Ruth Lexau; step-daughter, Dyane Elia; step-grandchildren, Julie Elia, Michael Egerter, Miriam Elia, and Josh Elia; nieces, Barbara Schipke and Vicki Walliser Simpson; nephews, Carl Walliser and Andy Walliser; and numerous grandnieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, Hoiden and Helga Lexau; his first wife, Marion; his daughter, Christine Lexau; his brother, Harold Lexau; and his nephew, John Lexau. In lieu of flowers, memorials to the Salvation Army or St. Mark’s Lutheran Church would be appreciated.
Ruth “Kiatcha” Dahle Lie, of Juneau, Alaska, passed away on July 19, 2014. Kiatcha was born on July 29, 1923 to Elmer Dahle ’16 and Ingeborg Hanson Dahle ’19 in Teller Mission, Alaska. Her missionary parents named her with a name derived from the Russian and Inupiat words for “princess.” Kiatcha grew up loving life in several Alaska villages – especially the island village Shishmaref. She rode on dog teams. She was bilingual as a child, speaking Inupiat as well as English. Her Inupiat friends taught her how to seek out snacks in the caches of siksikpuk (ground squirrel).
During WWII Kiatcha attended St. Olaf College. Writing to Norwegian seamen as a part of the war effort was an assignment for Kiatcha’s Norwegian class. A belated response to this assignment occurred a year later when young Leif Lie ’51 got one of the letters. He quickly decided that Kiatcha was the lady he was going to marry but initially she was not so sure. However, Leif prevailed and the couple was married Oct. 23, 1948 in St. Paul, Minn.
Kiatcha and Leif had two daughters, Linda Kathrine and Martha Ingeborg. To help Leif complete university, Kiatcha gave piano lessons, did parish work at a Lutheran Church, took in sewing, taught sewing, and helped Leif in his photography business by tinting the photos with oil paints.
Although she had previously taught a year in a village school in Shishmaref, Kiatcha attended Chicago Teacher’s College and taught in Chicago, Albany, New York, and Anchorage, Alaska. Her particular love was teaching kindergarteners.
Kiatcha was a musician. She was a founding member of the Juneau Oratorio Choir. She played the piano and organ, created original music and conducted choirs. When Martha and Linda were little girls, Kiatcha would play Chopin polonaises and Grieg pieces while the girls danced, twirling sheets from the laundry. Kiatcha also enjoyed sewing beautiful apparel, including costumes for her daughters, and did applique on pillows and baby quilts. She enjoyed sketching and reading great literature.
Kiatcha enjoyed corresponding with her daughters and 10 grandchildren. She included stickers in all of her letters, choosing ones to specifically match the interests of each recipient.
One of her friends described Kiatcha as being a “prayer warrior.” Kiatcha had a deep faith which she shared with her daughters through bedtime Bible stories and prayer times. Her love of Jesus influenced every aspect of her life.
Kiatcha died in Martha’s Florida home, surrounded by family members. She was eager to join Leif (whom she had been missing for two years) and the Jesus she loved. She is survived by her daughter, Linda Lie Ancell ’72 and husband Paul; daughter Martha Ingeborg Lie Coning and husband Robert; ten grandchildren; and 11 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband Leif; her brother, Ben Dahle; and her parents. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to Alaska Synod – SPLM Endowment.
Maria Windh Lind, of Atherton, Calif., passed away from complications caused by leukemia on Oct. 4, 2014. She is survived by her parents, John Windh ’58 and Elsa Freise Windh ’59; brother, Rolf; husband, Daniel Lind ’89; and children, Sophia and Cooper.
Janet Marie Thompson Lundmark, 88, a longtime Virginia, Minn. resident, died April 12, 2014, at the Chestnut Grove Residence. Janet was born Nov. 20, 1925, in Rolfe, Iowa, the daughter of Luther and Sylva Larson Thompson; she graduated Rolfe High School and St. Olaf College. Janet’s independent, determined spirit led her to Milwaukee for her first employment, as a social worker. She moved to Virginia, Minn. for work, where she met and married Claude Lundmark, in September of 1956. They lived in Duluth and Hibbing, Minn., prior to moving back to Virginia in 1974.
Janet was a member of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church. She was employed as a social worker for St. Louis County for many years. She loved children and interacting with them, and especially enjoyed reading books to them. She was proud of her Iowa heritage and her family’s work ethic in their ice business. Janet loved to bake, make candy, and was an avid walker. She was a determined woman and enjoyed her daily routine.
Janet was preceded in death by husband, Claude; her parents; and her brother, Gerald. She is survived by children Mary Kay Lundmark ’85 and husband Patrick, and Dave Lundmark; granddaughters, Brynn and Bria Lundmark; a sister, Margery Nagorny; and nieces Abigail, Emily, and Allison.
Mary Kay Lundmark, 52, of Virginia, Minn., died Feb. 19, 2015 in her home, holding Patt’s hand after a hard fought battle with cancer.
She was born Nov. 26, 1962, the daughter of Claude and Janet Thompson Lundmark ’47. She was a graduate of Virginia High School and St. Olaf College. Mary Kay married Patrick Germer in St. Louis Park, Minn. in 1994. She grew up in Virginia and lived in Minneapolis prior to returning to Virginia in 2005. Mary Kay was employed at Jostens Company in Minneapolis and was a client advocate in Provider Services with Blue Cross in Virginia. She was a member of The Honorable Order of American Co-Masonry, and the Sons of Norway Haarfager Lodge #40. Mary Kay was a passionate reader and loved to go travelling and camping.
Mary Kay is survived by her husband, Patt; brother, David Lundmark and wife Amy; nieces, Brynn and Bria Lundmark; extended family; and many friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents.
Alan D. Lyng died June 8, 2014, at the age of 79, living in Lakeville, Minn. Alan grew up in Rock Rapids, Iowa, and received his B.A. from St. Olaf College. His 50+ year career was in the banking industry, in Plymouth, Wis. and in the Twin Cities, Minn. area. He was a longtime member of the Lion’s club and was an avid golfer.
He is preceded in death by his wife of 50 years, Sharon Lyng, and his parents. Survived by his daughters, Amy Lyng and Julie Lyng Jass; son-in-law, Herman Jass; grandson, Tanner Jass; brother, R. Douglas Lyng ’61 and his wife Margaret; sister-in-law, Marcia Johnson and her husband Dick Johnson; as well as nieces and nephews, including Gregory Lyng ’96. Memorials to St. John’s Lutheran Church, Lakeville, Minn.
James Oliver Lysne passed away Oct. 23, 2014, at the Three Links Care Center in Northfield, Minn., at the age of 84. Jim was born April 14, 1930, in Northfield, to Melvin and Anna Eliassen Lysne ’24. He was raised on the family farm in Greenvale Township and attended District 86 Country School. He graduated from Northfield High School in 1947 and St. Olaf College in 1951. His first teaching job took him to Chandler, Minn. He taught high school science in Minnesota at Rosemount, Renville, and with the Anoka-Hennepin School District for many years. He retired in 1979 and returned to the family home in Northfield.
Jim was a member of the Retired Teachers Association in Minneapolis. He enjoyed gardening, travel, and visiting with his family.
Survivors include his brother, Donald; sister-in-law, Darlene; nieces, Lisa Lysne and husband Troy Kroeger, and Shelly and husband Jerry Bell; nephew, Edric and wife Amy Gordon; several great and great-great-nieces and nephews; other relatives; and friends. He was preceded in death by his brother, Loring; his sister-in-law, Ruth; his niece, Darla Reko; and his parents.
He was born April 5, 1953, at Watertown, Wis., to Howard and Carol Rollefson Mainz. He grew up in Oconomowoc, Wis., where he attended grade school and high school. He was a graduate of St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn. and sang in the St. Olaf Choir, at the time under the direction of Dr. Kenneth Jennings. He worked as a bus driver for Jefferson Bus Lines, and later moved to Rochester to manage the bus depot. On May 14, 1988, he married Joleen Marie Hegland at Arendahl Lutheran Church in rural Peterson, Minn. The couple had previously met at Bethel Lutheran Church in Rochester. In 1991, he teamed up with his wife in the financial services business and subsequently provided tax preparation services.
Paul was an avid golfer, having golfed in 43 states. He took pride in having consecutively golfed the past 179 months. He also enjoyed playing tennis and was a proud shareholder of the Green Bay Packers. He was an active member of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Rochester, serving in various capacities including musician, playwright, and director. Much of his work was done under the name of his own production company, Seatadapants®.
Paul will be remembered by those who loved him as an unrelenting force for prodding talent from those around him. His infectious enthusiasm was irresistible. He wrote and produced four Biblical melodramas at Good Shepherd Church, four dinner theater productions, and for four years directed a community wide interfaith musical production of “The Promise,” a play about the life of Christ.
Paul was well-grounded and a visionary. Always funny yet sincere, Paul usually had a joke to share. He was always planning the next event. Paul loved to travel with his family, carving out special trips with each of them, and was known as the “human GPS” for his superior navigation skills. He was devoted to his wife and loved his children and grandchild deeply.
He is survived by his wife, Joleen; his daughter, Elizabeth Mainz ’03 and husband Andrew LaFave ’03; his two sons, Erik Paul Mainz and Elliot Paul Mainz; his grandson, Patrick Steven LaFave; his two sisters, Sharyll Mainz Smith ’62 and husband Phillip, and Diane Amans and husband Alan; along with several nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents.
Richard Arthur Marvin, of Sterling, Va., died Feb. 11, 2014. Survivors include his father.
*Richard Gordon Matson, 82, of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, died of cancer Dec. 10, 2014 under the care of Hospice of North Idaho. Dick was born Nov. 14, 1932 in Eau Claire, Wis. to Blanche K. and Laverne “Rocky” Rockwell. He was later adopted by his stepfather, Roy H. Matson. Dick was baptized at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Eau Claire, and was confirmed at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Whitehall, Wis.
He graduated Valedictorian from Central High School, Strum, Wis., in 1951; from St. Olaf College, Northfield, Minn., with a bachelor of arts degree in 1959; and from Luther Theological Seminary, St. Paul, Minn., with a master of divinity degree in 1964. He was ordained at Strum Lutheran Church, Strum, Wis., his home town church. He studied pipe organ and theology for one year at Tübingen University in Germany.
Dick served ship-board as a radar man in the U.S. Navy for four years, stationed out of San Diego during the Korean War. While serving in the military, he sensed God’s calling to Christian Ministry. In June 2014, Dick celebrated 50 years in pastoral ministry. He served Valier Lutheran Church, Valier, Mont.; Faith Lutheran Church, Great Falls, Mont.; La Jolla Lutheran Church, La Jolla, Calif.; Resurrection Lutheran Church, Torrance, Calif.; San Vicente Community Church, Ramona, Calif.; Solana Beach Presbyterian Church, Solana Beach, Calif.; Trinity Lutheran Church, Coeur d’Alene, Idaho; Clark Fork Lutheran Church, Clark Fork, Idaho; and St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, Hayden, Idaho. Additionally, he served in music ministry at Strum Lutheran Church; in St. Paul, Minn. churches; at four churches in the San Diego area; and at Trinity Lutheran Church in Coeur d’Alene.
Alongside his ministry in churches, Dick at one point directed Oak Glen, a California residential facility addressing the needs of troubled girls. He also launched a chaplaincy program at the Green Hospital of Scripps Clinic and Research Foundation in La Jolla, Calif. – and served five years as its first chaplain.
Dick’s overall passion in life has been to grow in his own relationship to Jesus Christ, and to help others to do the same. Teaching and preaching God’s Word have been his joy. His life and ministry have been significantly impacted by the truths of the Bible, by Campus Crusade for Christ’s training in personal evangelism, by Yoke Fellows Prison Ministry, and by the writings of Oswald Chambers and Eugene Peterson.
Dick is survived by his wife of 46 years, Pat Miller Matson; his two daughters: Ann Conte and husband Aaron, and Kari Neff and husband Harry; three brothers, Jim and wife Carol, Fred and wife Dianne, and Erik and wife Kathleen; six grandchildren: Laura, Caroline, Sarah, and Mason Conte, and Francis and Callen Neff; nieces and nephews; cousins; stepmother, Roseanne Rockwell MacMillan; and many friends.
In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be offered to either of the churches hosting Dick’s memorial services, or to the Union Gospel Mission, Spokane, Wash.
Although saddened by the loss of Dick, family and friends rejoice in the truth of the psalmist’s words: “You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”
Jean Harriet Jacobson Maus, age 86, of Dawson, Minn., died peacefully Oct. 16, 2014, with her family at her side. Jean was born and graduated from high school in Madison, Minn., working for the Western Guard newspaper before attending St Olaf College, where she met her husband, Philip Maus ’50. Jean was a sweet and practical force. Although shy and shunning the spotlight, she always summoned courage. Jean supported Phil through medical school, started their family with the birth of Timothy Maus ’77 in Panama during Phil’s Air Force deployment, managed the kids and family through many of Phil’s busiest years of practice, and encouraged Tami’s Peace Corps travel. Jake and Hilda Jacobson, her beloved parents, enjoyed Jean’s loving care through their final years. Jean kept her brave face in the midst of numerous health challenges, without complaint, maintaining her optimism and sense of humor. Jean stayed close to Madison high school companions, but flourished in Dawson. She nourished ailing friends with her Norwegian rice, delivered meals on wheels, registered blood donors, helped launch the hospital auxiliary, became a Cub Scout den mother and Girl Scout volunteer, was active in the Esther Circle at Grace Lutheran, and attended every single school activity of her children. She loved playing bridge and golf, sharing coffee and conversation, and knitting afghans for friends and family. Jean and Phil were named the Dawson Gnomes of 1999, a recognition of special community service, and the first time a couple was so honored. Jean did it all with amazing grace. Her family expanded greatly in her final five years with the staff and fellow residents at the Johnson Memorial Care Center in Dawson. Jean and her family are especially grateful for the wonderfully attentive care of the nursing assistants who loved to joke and banter with her. Through it all, her cherished Phil was by her side. Jean was well-loved; her humble encouragement, gentle actions, and smiles made all around her feel special. Tim said it best, among the host of peaceful words in Jean’s presence during her final days: “Bye, Mom, one of life’s quiet heroes.”
Jean was preceded in death by parents, Jake and Hilda Jacobson; sister, Roselle Schulz; brother, Lloyd Jacobson ’46; and many dear friends. She is survived by husband of 62 years, Phil; son, Tim Maus and spouse Pat Gardner; daughter, Tami; nieces and nephews, including Rolf Jacobson ’72 P ’07, Kathryn Jacobson Benson ’75, and Heidi Jacobson Diggs ’78; sisters-in-law, Ruth Skinsnes Jacobson ’46 and Ellen Maus Boler ’58; and granddaughter, Emily. Memorials suggested c/o Hanson and Dahl to the Dr. Phil Maus Community Scholarship Fund, the Johnson Memorial Care Center, or Grace Lutheran Church.
Karen was the second child born to Howard and Judith Gram Thompson in Milwaukee. Before she was two years old, the family moved to Madison, Wis. Karen attended Falk School, Orchard Ridge Middle School, and James Madison Memorial High School, where she graduated at the top of her class, was co-editor of the student newspaper, and played violin in the Memorial and the Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestras. Karen graduated, majoring in mathematics, from St. Olaf College, earned a master’s degree in mathematics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering (Operations Research) from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1987. It was during her Ph.D. program, in a mathematical optimization class, that she met husband, Deepankar “Deep” Medhi, a Ph.D. student in computer science. They were married on Aug. 15, 1987, at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Madison.
Shortly thereafter Karen and Deep moved to Holmdel, N.J., where both were employed by AT&T Bell Labs. When Deep took a position at the University of Missouri-Kansas City in 1989 Karen continued with AT&T, but was a telecommuter from Kansas City till 1996. A key contribution during her time at AT&T was to show the economic advantage of long-haul optical networks by creating mathematical models. She led algorithm design efforts and oversaw system development of mathematical software that was used in production environment for many years; this tool served as the primary source for guiding operational engineers in network equipment orders. From 1996 to 1999, she was a principal engineer at Sprint PCS, one of her key works being the development of mathematical wireless call traffic models with reporting features to assess future equipment needs in metro markets. During 2000-2001, she worked for a startup, VPI Systems, building mathematical models, algorithms, and prototype software to aid network planners in establishing cost-effective optical networks.
Thereafter, she chose to be a stay-at-home mother to her two boys, Neiloy and Robby. During this time Karen was active in the community, serving as a religious education teacher, chair of the Long Range Planning Committee, member of the Board of Trustees, and as president of the congregation at All Souls Church. She was mentor for students under Juvenile Justice Authority. She also tutored students at Shawnee Mission East High School and low-income working mothers.
Karen re-entered the workforce in 2007 when she found an opportunity to be a mathematics teacher at Kansas City Academy. This change in career allowed her to dedicate herself to her passion for mathematics, by impacting and improving the lives of many students, through her teaching. Her teaching philosophy was a result of her personal experience:
“I believe it is important for a teacher to be enthusiastic and share the passion of their content area. For some students enthusiasm can be contagious. I remember clearly as a high school student, despite the fact that I was advanced in mathematics, I could not admit (even to myself) that I liked math. It was only after attending St. Olaf College that I gave myself permission to love mathematics. I clearly remember taking the Real Analysis course from a professor who had recently joined the faculty. This faculty member exuded enthusiasm and I caught the bug!”
She was selected the teacher of the year in 2011 by the senior class, in the first year of this award. Her peer-review papers appeared in Mathematical Programming, Journal of Optimization Theory & Applications, and AT&T Technical Journal. She was a full member of the Institute of Operations Research and Management Science (INFORMS).
She was a voracious reader on a wide variety of subjects and shared her enthusiasm for what she read by making reading recommendations to her relatives and friends. Despite her significant personal, academic, and professional accomplishments, Karen remained truly humble, more focused on others than herself.
Karen is survived by her mother and father, Judith and Howard Thompson; her husband, Deep Medhi; two sons, Neiloy M. Medhi and Robby S. Medhi; her brothers, James Thompson and wife Virginia, and John Thompson and wife Karen; two sisters, Linda Thompson Schultz ’81 and Ann Thompson; 11 nieces and nephews, Peter Schultz and partner Morgan; Chelsea Thompson, Daniel Thompson, and Allison Thompson; Natalie, Anna, and Sarah Thompson; and Maddy, Jada, Paxton, and Tucker Braun. She is survived by her mother-in-law and father-in-law, Prity and Jyotiprasad Medhi; her brother-in-law, Shubhankar Medhi and wife Yashodhara; and her two sisters-in-law, Shakuntala Choudhury and husband Niren, and Alakanandaa Deka and husband Sasanka. On her in-laws side, she is also survived by five nieces and nephews, Namrata Jain and husband Sachin, Abhishek Choudhury, Riddhiman Medhi, Pooja Deka, and Seemankar Deka.
Memorials to Karen may be made to the Karen Medhi Memorial Fund at Kansas City Academy.
*Lois Kloth Meyer, 99, passed away Dec. 17, 2014 in Brookings, S.D. Lois was born April 9, 1915 in Norwood, Minn., the daughter of Fredrick and Frieda Kloth. She grew up in Norwood Young America and graduated from St. Olaf College. Lois taught high school in Buffalo Lake and Norwood Young America and served in the Waves during WWII.
In 1946 she married Gordon Kloster; they resided in Minneapolis and Faribault, Minn. and had three children. Gordon died in 1967; in 1970 she married Harold Meyer and moved to Fargo, N.D.
Lois was active at Immanuel Lutheran Church and volunteered at St. Luke’s Hospital. In 2007 she moved to Brookings, S.D. to be near her daughter Mary.
Lois was preceded in death by her brother, Stanley “Buzz” Kloth ’52, and husbands Gordon and Harold. She is survived by children, Greg Applen and wife Jane, Mary Malo and husband Doug, and Paul Kloster and wife Mary; stepchildren, Susanne Jungwirth and husband Larry, and David Meyer and wife Erin; 12 grandchildren; and many great-grandchildren.
*William Mickelson, of Fredericksburg, Va., died April 5, 2014, from catastrophic rupture of his aorta during emergency surgery at VCU Medical Center in Richmond, Va. He was 81 years old. Bill was born on Sept. 17, 1932, in Sturgeon Bay, Wis. He enrolled in St. Olaf College and while there, he met and married his wife, Nancy McLennan Mickelson ’55, and entered AFROTC training. He lettered in football and graduated in 1954, with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and minors in chemistry and physics. At the time of his graduation, he received his commission as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force.
Bill was a highly decorated pilot. He served two tours in Southeast Asia, accumulating 218 combat missions, including 131 over North Vietnam and 131 night missions. His many service awards included 16 Air Medals, the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Legion of Merit, Air Force Commendations Medal, and the Outstanding Unit Award with two Oak Leaf Clusters. He retired from active duty in 1984 as a Colonel, with more than 30 years of military service to our country. In his retirement, Bill found great joy spending time with his family, traveling, and enjoying time with his many friends. He was a member of American Legion Post 320 in Spotsylvania, Va. He and Nancy led more than 100 trips around the region, the country, and the world with the 55 Club of Lee’s Hill and the Senior Adult Ministry of Spotsylvania Presbyterian. Dubbed the “Mayor” of Turnberry by his Lee’s Hill neighbors, he always enjoyed meeting and speaking with anyone he met on his daily walks in the neighborhood. It can truly be said that Bill never met a stranger.
He is survived by his wife of more than 60 years, Nancy; brother, Thomas Mickelson ’66 P ’99; and daughters, Kim Roscoe and her husband, Tom, Karen Iannicelli and her husband, Don, and Kendra Sheets and her husband, Clif. In addition, he is survived by 10 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.
Linda Mix, of Cookeville, Tenn., died Aug. 7, 2014, at Cookeville Regional Medical Center. She was born April 6, 1950, in Robbinsdale, Minn., to Claire Harriette Jones Mix and the late James Harry Mix.
Miss Mix graduated from St. Olaf College in 1972, and sang in the famous St. Olaf Choir. She later attended Mankato State and obtained a teaching degree. After moving to Cookeville, she served the Upper Cumberland Region for many years with the Safe and Drug Free Schools initiative. She was a gifted trainer of youth and adults in the areas of drug and alcohol abuse prevention and mediation. Miss Mix was instrumental in the development of Project Graduation for the middle Tennessee region, a program that has continued, for more than 17 years, to give high school seniors a safe alternative for celebration of their graduation. From 1999 until spring of 2014, Miss Mix served as executive director of Mediation Services for Putnam and Overton Counties.
Her many loves and interests included music, playing guitar, animals, gardening, antiques, laughing, and dancing. She collected bells and was a talented artist with a paint brush on canvas and furniture refinishing — enjoying these activities with her coffee mug nearby. She will be fondly remembered as a caring, loving mother and friend who was willing to offer her assistance and support at any time.
In addition to her mother, Miss Mix’s family includes a daughter and son-in-law, Becca and Shawn Watson; a brother, Jim Mix; two sisters, Deb Blattman and Judith Mix Kuesel ’68; six grandchildren, Shawn Douglas Watson, Christopher Thomas Watson, Adrie Johnson, Ryker Johnson, Isaac Andrews, and Coleman Andrews; two special daughters by choice, Jessica Johnston and Melissa Andrews; and her best friend of 46 years, Deborah Speese-Linehan ’72.
Miss Mix’s family suggests that memorial contributions be made to the Bank of Putnam County in Cookeville in her name, or to community outreach issues close to her heart: The Arbor Foundation, prevention of cruelty of animals, domestic violence, and children’s advocacy.
*G. Frederick Mohn, retired journalism teacher from Champaign, Ill., died Jan. 1, 2015 in hospice care with lung cancer. He was 85.
George Frederick Mohn was born in Northfield, Minn. on Aug. 11, 1929, the son of George Mohn ’05 and Valborg Kjosness Mohn ’24.
He graduated from St. Olaf College, served in the U.S. Navy, and joined United Press, later United Press International, in Minneapolis in 1956. He married Audrey Ostby in Bismarck, N.D., on Nov. 15, 1958.
George Frederick Mohn worked as a reporter, editor, and manager for UP and UPI in eight Midwestern states, most of the time in Illinois in its Chicago and Springfield bureaus.
He resigned from UPI as Detroit bureau chief and Michigan manager in 1969 to accept an offer to be editor of the University of Illinois News Bureau at Urbana-Champaign. In 1984, he joined the journalism teaching faculty until he retired in 1999 at age 70.
Survivors include his wife of 56 years, Audrey; two sons, Douglas and Alan; a sister, Margaret Mohn Spear ’45; and five of Audrey’s brothers and sisters, and their spouses and descendants. He was preceded in death by his parents and cousins, including E. Elise Ayers Sanguinetti ’46.
Memorials may be made to scholarship funds at St. Olaf College or the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, or may be given to Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Champaign.
Joanne L. Jacobson Moline, age 87, of Mt. Olivet Careview Home, formerly of Richfield, Minn., passed away on July 2, 2014. She was preceded in death by husband, Clayton. She is survived by children, James Moline and wife Nancy, and Janet Svejda and husband William; six grandchildren; and 19 great-grandchildren and expecting one more. Memorials preferred to Alzheimer’s Association or American Cancer Society.
*Christopher J. Moller, 82, of Brookings, S.D., died May 7, 2014 at The Neighborhoods in Brookings. Christopher Jennings Moller was born June 3, 1931 in Dell Rapids, S.D., to Christopher and Jennie Iverson Moller. He grew up four miles west of Baltic, S.D., attended the Willow Creek Country School, and graduated from Lyons High School. He attended St. Olaf College and South Dakota State University before entering the United States Marine Corps. After his service, he attended the University of South Dakota and graduated from the University of South Dakota Medical School. He completed his medical school training at Northwestern Medical School in Chicago. Chris interned at Minneapolis General and worked as a general practitioner in Dell Rapids before entering the Ear, Nose, and Throat residency program at the University of Nebraska Medical School in Omaha. After completing that program, he practiced in Mitchell, S.D. and Mankato, Minn. He retired in 1996 and moved to Brookings in 1999. During his career he worked for two months in Vietnam—treating civilian patients—under the American Medical Association Volunteer program. He also volunteered for two one-week shifts at a Presentation Sisters clinic in Mexico. Chris married Florence Nielson June 17, 1958 at Benton Lutheran Church, rural Crooks, S.D..
Grateful for having shared his life are his wife, Florence; children, Eric Moller and wife Nannette, Katherine Magee, Jennifer Moller, and Margaret Moller and husband David Conrad; ten grandchildren, Christopher, Michael, and Alexander Moller, David and Thomas Wimer, Kristin Moller, Vance Magee and wife Kimberly Stars, Adam Magee, and Maybelle and Donald Conrad; and six great-grandchildren, Izabella and Ramone Moller, King, Lennox and Cashiz Harwood, and Kierra Magee. He was preceded in death by his parents, Christopher and Jennie Moller.
Memorial may be directed to Feeding Brookings and the Harvest Table.
Michael Jon Monson passed away on Dec. 15, 2014 at the Chris Jensen Health and Rehabilitation Facility in Duluth, Minn. He was born on Nov. 17, 1957 in Zumbrota, Minn. to Robert and Mary Hugstad Monson. Mike was a graduate of Red Wing Central High School class of 1976 and St. Olaf College class of 1980.
After college graduation and as the family business expanded, Mike moved to Duluth and immersed himself in his career at Monson Trucking, Inc. until its closing in 2009. He moved up the ranks from “gopher, grunt, and tractor washer” to Vice President. Mike was a member of the Board of Directors of The Minnesota Trucking Association.
Mike had a longtime interest in golf, the stock market, talking politics, and of course, trucks! He enjoyed canoe trips and ice fishing excursions, as well as many memory-making get-togethers with his lifelong friends. Mike has been blessed with devoted friends and relatives who have enriched his life with their friendship and support.
Mike leaves behind his parents, Robert and Mary Monson; aunts and uncles, including James Hugstad ’61, Paul Hugstad ’65, and Martha Hugstad Hoven ’59; brother, Mark Monson and wife Kristi; sister, Carrie Huppert and husband Roger; three nieces, Melissa Kim and husband Johnny, Megan Licano and husband Alex, and Jessica France, in whose lives Mike played a very important role.
Mike and his family would like to extend a special thank you to the staff at both St. Luke’s Hospice Duluth and Chris Jensen Health and Rehabilitation Center. Their outstanding care and genuine concern for Mike and his family is deeply appreciated.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorials be directed to St. Luke’s Hospice Duluth.
*William Edwin Moore passed away on April 14, 2012, in Sun City West, Ariz. He was born on Aug. 17, 1927 in Pipestone, Minn. Bill graduated from St Olaf College, served in the U.S. Army, and went on to receive his M.B.A. in chemistry. Bill taught chemistry at St. Louis Park, Minn. High School and served as Department Head of the Science Department. He retired in 1984 and moved From Minnetonka, Minn. to Sun City West. Bill was an active member of Lions and served as President of the Sun City West Sunrise Lions from 1995 to 1996. His love of cars, trains, and fix-it projects was only superseded by his love for his family.
Bill was preceded in death by his wife of 53 years, Jeanne Moore. He is survived by four children, Connie J Moore, Barbara L. Bambenek and husband Tom, William A. Moore and wife Peggi, and Richard E. Moore, M.D. and wife Sue; eight grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren. Memorial contributions may be made to Shepherd of the Hills United Methodist Church in memoriam of William E. Moore.
*John C. “Jack” Morgenson, 85, died Oct. 24, 2014, in St. George, Utah. Jack was born in Rochester, Minn., on Aug. 9, 1929. He attended grade school and high school in Rochester, where he was a standout athlete in basketball and golf, graduating in the famous Class of 1947. Jack attended St. Olaf College, where he continued his athletic interests, pursued his B.A. degree, and met his future wife, Margretta “Gretta” Olson Morgenson ’53. He graduated from St. Olaf in 1951 and married Gretta in December 1952. He served a tour of duty in the Marine Corps as a lieutenant during the Korean “conflict.” Jack worked most of his business career with the JC Penney Company. In his 31 years at Penney’s, he and Gretta were located in many places throughout the country, and he held numerous management positions while advancing to the vice president level. He retired in 1986 in Plano, Texas.
During his retirement years, Jack was active in consulting assignments for the State Department, working in Poland and Russia. He developed an interest in private flying, found new time to spend with his family, and further developed his golf skills. In his later years of retirement, Jack and Gretta spent their summers at Long Lake in Park Rapids, Minn. Throughout his life, Jack was known for his loyalty and generosity to all his family and friends. He was a loving husband, caring father, and a wonderful example of a godly man. He will be missed by many.
In addition to his wife, Gretta, of 62 years, Jack is survived by sons, John and wife Joyleen, and Eric and wife Gina; daughters, Monica Sivakumar and husband Pip, and Erica Holland and husband Bryan; brother, Donald Morgenson ’50 and wife Leslie; a sister, Marilyn Morgenson Hedstrom ’48 and husband Burt; and nieces and nephews, including Gretchen Morgenson ’76 P ’17, Andrew Hedstrom ’86, John Hedstrom ’86, Peter Hedstrom ’83, Carl Hedstrom ’74, Marin Hedstrom Sprenger ’90 and husband Michael Sprenger ’85, Kari Hedstrom Lorence ’76 and husband Drake Lorence ’76, Mark Hedstrom ’78, and Maria Hedstrom Lien ’92. Jack and Gretta have 19 grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren.
Jack was preceded in death by his son, David, in 2010; and by his parents, Einar “Butch” Morgenson, a longtime teacher at Rochester Junior High School and sports announcer for KROC, and Marjorie Morgenson Paul, a sales adviser at CF Massey.
In lieu of flowers, family prefers memorials to the Wounded Warrior Project, Topeka, Kan. Pleas mention in memory of Jack Morgenson.
Elizabeth A. Hovey Nelson, resident of Edina, Minn., passed away at the age of 62 on March 31, 2011. Beth was always an optimist and a faithful member of God’s family. She will be dearly missed by her loving husband, Roger; brother, Bob and his wife Siv; sister, Carla; and many cousins, nieces, and nephews. Memorials preferred to Feed My Starving Children, Chanhassen, Minn.
*Gordon Victor Nelson, age 87, of Minnetonka, Minn., formerly of Crystal, Minn., passed away on Sept. 7, 2014. Gordon was born on May 5, 1927 to Victor M. and Hulda Erickson Nelson of Braham, Minn. Gordon graduated in 1944 from Cambridge High School. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy on his 17th birthday and served in WWII. He attended St. Thomas College and was a 1948 graduate of St. Olaf College. Gordon had a lifetime career in sales and management, culminating with many years as the original General Manager of Rudy Luther’s Hopkins Honda, retiring in 1992. He had a competitive spirit as a salesman, high school and college baseball and basketball athlete, duplicate bridge player, and avid golfer at Golden Valley Country Club. He was a longtime member of the Hopkins Rotary Club. Gordon took special joy in the achievements of his children and grandchildren, and is remembered for his laughter and jokes, loving support, confidence, intelligence, and encouraging optimism. Gordon often expressed gratitude about having had the good fortune to be married to “two wonderful women”. He met his first wife, Jane, in Ottumwa, Iowa, where he began his sales career with Goodyear Tire. After marrying, they lived in Iowa, Wisconsin, and Illinois before settling in Crystal, Minn., where they raised six children together for many years prior to her passing. He then found a new love for his golden years, marrying Bobbie in 1993. He and Bobbie were blessed to have over two decades together in retirement, enjoying global travel, golf, music, family, and friends. Besides his first wife of 42 years, Jane, Gordon is predeceased by his parents; his sisters, Ruth Alvin and Bette Kannenberg; and his oldest daughter, Claudia Nelson. He is survived by his loving wife of 21 years, Bobbie; his children, Douglas and wife Alison Jones, Jeffrey, Stephanie Schmit and husband Steve, Charlotte Nisleit and husband Rick, and Gregory and wife Kathy; his son-in-law, Jeffery Spanel; and Bobbie’s children, Christie Jones and husband Howard, Gary Duncan and wife Pam, and Michael Duncan and wife Kay Rezanka. Gordon is also survived by numerous grandchildren: Morgan and husband Marcus, Nick, and Liz Spanel; Blake and wife Christine, Peter Nelson ’07 and wife Anna, and Jessica Nelson ’11; Joanna, John and wife Kelsie, Daniel and spouse Tobie, Erika, and Ben Schmit; Amanda Jensen and husband Dave, Sarah Peterson and husband Zach, and Carly Nisleit; Kevin Nelson; Rachel Jenner and husband Ryan, and Russ Schmidt and wife Mindy; and Lindsey Bathrick, Heather Tripp, and Casey Smith and spouse Jamie. Gordon is also survived by great-grandchildren, Noah, Ella, Eva, Bentley, Remington, Justin, Ethan, and Ian; and by many dear friends. Memorials preferred to Alzheimer’s Association Minnesota-North Dakota chapter or to Excelsior United Methodist Church.
*Newell “Bud” Nelson, of Edina, Minn., died Feb. 8, 2015 at his home, surrounded by his family. Bud was born in Minneapolis on July 28, 1924. He was proud and thrilled to reach the age of 90, having battled cancer for the last 12 years of his life. Bud grew up in St. Paul. He graduated from St. Olaf College in 1949, his education interrupted by three years of service in WWII, serving in the U.S. Army; China, Burma, and India division. After St. Olaf, he earned an M.A. degree in economics at the University of Minnesota. Bud went on to work for the State of Minnesota and then to his longtime career at Generals Mills where he worked for 32 years, the last ten as Corporate Economist. Bud was an active volunteer. As a young man he coached youth hockey and served on the Lynnhurst Park council. He continued to volunteer for the United Way, Plymouth Christian Youth Center, Fairview Riverside Hospital, Loaves and Fishes, Meals on Wheels, and much, much time for his alma mater, St. Olaf, and the church of his whole life, Bethlehem Lutheran in Minneapolis. He loved his south Minneapolis neighborhood where he lived for 53 years and where kids on the block called him Grampa Bud. He loved being with his family anywhere, but especially in Wisconsin at Sommer Ro, a family retreat built by his Norwegian immigrant grandfather. Bud was generous and kind, really smart, and willing to help anybody. He was a highly principled man of deep faith who brought a constant and steady determination to life’s challenges, facing them without complaint. We will all miss him very, very much. Bud was preceded in death by his parents, Newell Nelson ’20 and Signe Roe Nelson ’22; brother, Stanley Nelson ’48; aunts and uncles, including Borghild Roe Syrdal ’24 and husband Rolf Syrdal ’24; and parents-in-law, Irvin and Nora Olson Jacobson ’21. He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Lois “Loey” Jacobson Nelson ’49; children, Rebecca Nelson MacKenzie ’73 and husband Bruce MacKenzie ’72, Peter Nelson ’75, Daniel Nelson ’77 and wife Joan Wandke Nelson ’78, and Suzanne Nelson Thompson ’79 and husband Kirk Thompson ’79; grandchildren, Matthew MacKenzie ’03 and wife Julia Jackson MacKenzie ’03, Benjamin MacKenzie ’05 and wife Kristina Gorder MacKenzie ’05, Simon MacKenzie, Jack Nelson, Annamarie Nelson and fiancé Michael, Nathaniel Thompson ’11, Nels Thompson ’15, and Eliza Thompson ’17; great-granddaughters, Lillian and Elise MacKenzie; brother, John Nelson ’51 and wife Nancy Helland Nelson ’51; sister-in-law, Virginia “Rif” Rifenbary Nelson ’47; many nieces and nephews, including Mark Nelson ’74 P ’02, Kathryn Nelson ’82 and husband H. T. Fish ’80, Kristen Nelson ’77, Gretchen Nelson ’80, Julie Nelson Comes ’88, and John Nelson ’90 and wife Stephanie Moser Nelson ’90; brothers-in-law, Edward Jacobson ’50 and Howard Jacobson ’44; a close extended family, including cousins Ellen Syrdal Erdahl ’57 P ’82 ’83 ’84 ’87 ’90 ’98 and husband Arlen Erdahl ’53 P ’82 ’83 ’84 ’87 ’90 ’98, and Frederick Syrdal ’65; and a St. Olaf dinner group that met monthly for nearly 50 years. Memorials preferred to St. Olaf College, Luther Seminary, or Bethlehem Music Series. Special thanks to Park Nicollet/Methodist Hospice staff.
Ronald A. Nelson, age 86, of Minneapolis, passed away April 18, 2014 in San Diego. Beloved church musician and composer, Nelson led choirs of all ages at Westwood Lutheran Church for 37 years and composed choral and organ music in vigorous retirement. Survived by wife, Betty Oleson Nelson ’49; children, Rachel, Peter, and Paul; and grandson, Philip. He will be held in the hearts of friends and countless choir school graduates, “Ronnie’s Kids.” He was preceded in death by sister, Margery; daughter, Eileen Nelson ’74; and grandson, Bryce. Memorials to Westwood Church organ fund, Westwood Nelson Fund, or St. Olaf College Music Scholarship Fund.
Marjorie Mott Nerison passed away on Sept. 22, 2014, in Jamestown, N.D., where she lived for 61 years. Marge was born March 25, 1925 in Grand Rapids, Minn., the first child of James and Amanda Mott. James was a newspaper reporter for the Grand Rapids Herald. His profession brought him to Rolla, N.D., where he became owner and editor of the Turtle Mountain Star. Marjorie grew up a small town North Dakota girl. The family had a cottage on Lake Upsilon in the Turtle Mountains near Rolla, which she loved. She was a good student and very talented musically, so after high school she focused her education on music first at St. Olaf College, then the University of Minnesota. After graduation she took a job as a music teacher in Alton, N.D. She came home to Rolla for two summers and the second summer she met her husband-to-be at Lake Upsilon. Russell Nerison was visiting his cousin at the lake. They met and were married shortly after on June 18, 1948. Russ had decided to attend the University of North Dakota after serving in WWII and farming for a couple years. They moved to Grand Forks and started a family. Son Tom and daughter Kathryn were born while Russ pursued his law degree and Marge became a full time mother. After Russ received his law degree the family moved to Bismarck, N.D. for one year and then Jamestown, where they remained for life. Son William was born in Jamestown. Marge was a full time homemaker and pursued many activities during the Jamestown years. She was active in the Episcopal Church as organist and director of the Junior Choir. She was a member of PEO, Bridge Club and volunteered for Meals on Wheels. She was an expert knitter and seamstress. She taught piano lessons at Jamestown College for a time, saving money to buy a Baldwin Baby Grand Piano. Christmas carols around the piano were a family tradition, as well as summer vacations to the family cabin at Lake Upsilon. She and Russ enjoyed traveling later in life, often taking long “road trips.”
Russ passed away in 2004 and after a time Marge moved to Ave Maria Village, where she spent her last years. She and her family greatly appreciated the good care she received during her residence there.
She leaves behind her sister, Kaky; son, Tom and his wife Doreen; daughter, Kathryn; son, William and his wife Brenda; grandchildren, Thomas, Marisa, Tristan, and Jenny; and great-grandchildren, Lucretia and Bergen.
He was a son of the late Jean and Ken Ness, and was born in Albert Lea, Minn. on Sept. 13, 1941. Growing up, he was an Eagle Scout and a life guard in Wells, Minn., and worked as a Camp Counselor at Camp Warren in Minnesota for four summers. This was David’s first exposure to sailing; in later years he enjoyed sailing and racing on Lake Murray with his family and friends.
He graduated from Wells High School in 1959, and received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from St. Olaf College. David was a Lieutenant in the United States Navy, and served as a navigator on the USS Taluga (AO-62) during the Vietnam War.
He married the late Yvonne Wells in 1964. They lived in California, Texas, and Georgia before relocating to South Carolina, where they lived for 38 years. When David moved to South Carolina, he worked at the University of South Carolina as the Director of the Russell House student union.
David was the owner/broker of the Re/Max Real Estate Services of West Columbia, S.C. until he retired in December 2010. He was an invited speaker and educator of Real Estate throughout the country and Europe. He was honored with many awards: Columbia Realtor of the Year, Hustler, Spirit, Distinguished Service, Regional Speaker, International Speaker, and Award for Re/Max Carolina. He was awarded Educator of the year and Re/Max Regional Eagle for the year. He was Past President of the Greater Columbia Association of Realtors. In December of 2010, David moved to Ft. Myers, Fla.
He loved his role as a Christian, and he was a discipleship, new membership, and spiritual gift teacher and an usher. In his spare time, he enjoyed reading, swimming, exercising, playing chess, watching westerns, and spending time with his grandchildren.
David is survived by his two children, Craig Ness and Michele Tyson; three grandchildren, Joseph Ness and Pierce and Holland Tyson; his sister, Kathy Oldfather; and brothers, Thomas Ness, Charles Ness, William Ness, and James Ness.
*Richard G. Norby died peacefully among friends and family at his home at Waverly Gardens in North Oaks, Minn. on March 3, 2015, following a brief illness at age 93. Born in Fergus Falls, Minn., he was the youngest of six children of Joseph and Minnie Norby. Richard grew up on Portland Avenue South in Minneapolis and was confirmed at Bethlehem Lutheran. He attended Shorewood High School in Milwaukee, where he began his careers in science and hockey. He played hockey for St. Olaf College and completed his pre-med studies in 1943. He played hockey at the University of Minnesota and received his medical degree in 1946 in connection with his enlistment in the US Army, after turning down a draft offer from the Detroit Red Wings. He served two years as a captain with a hospital unit in Hokkaido, Japan. He returned to the States as a medical resident at St. Luke’s Hospital in Cleveland, where he encountered nursing student Marjorie Jean St. Clair, of Newton Falls, Ohio, sneaking out of the women’s dorm after hours. The transgression was overlooked and Marjorie and Richard were married in Newton Falls on Sept.15, 1951. The couple moved to New Orleans to complete a residency at Charity Hospital. Pending the birth of Karin, they moved back to Cleveland, where Marjorie was a public health nurse and Richard developed a private practice in Internal Medicine at St. Luke’s Hospital and later at Hillcrest, with teaching duties at Case Western Reserve Medical School. Richard coached generations of young hockey players at the Cleveland Skating Club, and found time to play with the big guys after hours. After raising their three children in Cleveland Heights, Chagrin Falls, and Conneaut Lake, Pa., Richard and Marjorie “retired” to Venice, Fla. in 1980, where Marjorie sold real estate and Richard continued his medical practice at Venice Hospital, later Bon Secours. He moved back to his beloved Minnesota in 2008 and lived out his days enjoying the dramatic changes of seasons at Waverly Gardens, where he continued to practice kindness and consideration, if not some off the record medicine. Though he has signed out here for the last time, he will be at the hospital in Heaven tomorrow at 6:00 am sharp, ready to care for anyone still in need. Richard was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Maurice; sisters, Constance Norby Nasby ’40 and husband A. Gordon Nasby ’31, Helen Norby Thompson ’34, and Alice Norby Behrents ’38 and husband E. G. Behrents ’36; sister-in-law, Dorothy Erickson Norby ’37; niece, Carol Nasby Kaehler ’64 P ’94; wife, Marjorie St. Clair Norby; and son, Erik. He is survived by his brother, Paul Norby ’36, Rear Admiral, Ret.; his daughter, Karin Norby Mathews ’74; son, Thomas Norby ’83 and wife Mary Burns Norby ’85; grandchildren, Jonathan Richard “JR” Mathews, Matthew Norby, Megan Norby ’15, Connor Norby, and Kevin Mathews; and many well-loved in-laws, nieces, and nephews, including Mary Nasby Lohre ’69 P ’95 ’99 and husband John Lohre ’67 P ’95 ’99, Elizabeth Nasby Maland ’75 P ’02 ’05 ’11, David Nasby ’62 P ’86 and wife Karen Lillehaugen Nasby ’62 P ’86, Connie Behrents Ferris ’72, Rolf “Buzz” Behrents ’69, Alice Behrents Hendricks ’66, Richard Thompson ’62, and Peter Thompson ’62 P ’92 ’95 ’99 and wife Susan Svidal Thompson ’67 P ’92 ’95 ’99.
Olive Jensen Nordby, of Madison Wis., age 98, died April 8, 2014, at the Sebring Assisted Care Residence in Madison. Olive was born in Dodge Center, Minn., on April 10, 1915. The daughter of Norwegian immigrants, she enjoyed a long career as both artist and philanthropist. Over many years, her sensitive hand-colored woodcut prints gained a wide following and national recognition. Her work has won many awards at juried exhibitions, including Wisconsin shows at the Madison Art Center, the Wright Museum of Art at Beloit College, and the New Visions Gallery in Marshfield, Wis. Olive’s art has also been honored at the Burpee Art Museum in Rockford, Ill., and at Hostfest in Minot, N.D.
Having majored in art at St. Olaf College, Olive did post-graduate work at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts and the St. Paul School of Art, and studied printmaking at the Madison Vocational and Technical School. Her widely collected woodblock prints revealed her love of nature and her attraction to the special qualities of wood grain and texture that became an integral part of her printed images. A keen observer of the natural world, Olive was inspired by trees, flowers, mountains, and animals, which she interpreted with flair. She was also attracted to the scenes and subjects of Norway, and to the heritage of Norwegian Americans. She combined her love of art with philanthropy, donating the proceeds from the sale of her prints to benefit two non-profit organizations close to her heart: Vesterheim Norwegian American Museum, Decorah, Iowa, and the Norwegian American Genealogical Center & Naeseth Library, Madison, Wis. Among other artistic projects, she was commissioned to create 47 woodcuts on Norwegian themes for the Stein Eriksen resort in Utah.
One of Mrs. Olive’s first teaching jobs was as an art instructor in 1938 and 1939 at Luther College, Decorah, Iowa, where she first met her future husband, Eugene Nordby. Their close partnership of over 72 years resulted from this chance meeting. Following Eugene’s medical school and military service, the Nordbys moved to Madison in 1940, living for many years in South Highlands before moving to Coventry Village during retirement. In Madison, Eugene began his distinguished medical career, becoming one of the country’s leading orthopedic surgeons. Active in the Madison Art Guild, Olive was, along with her husband, a long-time member of Bethel Lutheran Church. The Nordbys became leaders of the Norwegian-American community, with membership and leadership roles not only at Vesterheim and the Genealogy Center, but also in the Gudrid Reading Circle, Madison Torske Klubben, Ydrasil Literary Society, Norwegian American Historical Association, and many other groups. During the nearly 30 years of Eugene’s service as president of the Vesterheim Museum Board of Trustees, he and Olive became friends of successive generations of the Norwegian royal family, often visiting King Olav V and later King Harald V and Queen Sonja, both during the frequent trips the Nordbys made to Norway and during the periodic visits of the Norwegian royals to the United States.
In 2013, Olive’s art was featured in a large format publication called “Olive Jensen Nordby: A Retrospective of Her Art.” Edited by Ingrid and Jay Jensen, the volume includes over 35 of Olive’s best-known woodblock prints, as well as five of her paintings. Quoted in the text of the book that explored her artistic accomplishments and philosophy, she said: “The way things are arranged or composed can create a feeling, give an impression, or recall a memory. That is what art is all about.”
In addition to Eugene, Olive is survived by their son, Jon Nordby ’70; daughter-in-law, Kim Nordby; and nephew, Jay Jensen ’61 and wife Sandra Overdahl Jensen ’61. Olive was preceded in death by her siblings, Lisbeth Jensen ’21, Otto Jensen ’24, and Edith Jensen ’24.
*Orville E. Nysted, a long-time resident of Colfax, Wis., left this earth for his Heavenly home on Aug. 3, 2014. Orville Edward Nysted was born on Nov. 10, 1925, in Bessemer, Mich., to Peter and Tilla Nysted. When he was five years old, the Nysted family moved to Loyal, Wis., and he grew up there. A member of the graduation class of 1944, he cut high school short by enlisting in the U.S. Navy as soon as his 17th birthday in l943. Unique to the patriotic days of World War II, his graduation diploma was presented to his mother at the 1944 graduation ceremony as his other classmates received theirs.
During his three-year term in the Navy, he took his “boot” training at the Great Lakes Naval Training Center and then served at the U.S. Naval Hospital at Great Lakes. His next service was aboard the USS Hornet, but he was reassigned to the COMSERPAC at Pearl Harbor. He served there until he had nearly enough points to qualify for discharge and was assigned to the USS Pocomoke, a seaplane tender. Once the Pocomoke was “mothballed” at the Naval Yards in Philadelphia, he was returned to Great Lakes for discharge.
In the fall of 1946, he began his college years at St. Olaf College. As a junior at St. Olaf he met and fell in love with Mildred J. Nysted, daughter of the Rev. and Mrs. Lee Holmes, and they married the following summer. On graduation from St. Olaf, they moved to Des Moines, Iowa, where he had a job with the Home Insurance Company in their crop insurance department. With the beginning of the Korean War, being a Naval Reservist, he was recalled for active service in the Navy. In 1952, he received his second Honorable Discharge and immediately moved to Iowa City, Iowa, where he had registered at the University of Iowa to work on his master’s degree in education.
In 1953, a job offer from the Home Insurance Company persuaded him to return to the crop insurance business, this time as a Special Agent working out of Minneapolis. Two years later, he was offered a job by Anchor Casualty Company to establish a crop insurance department for them. He enjoyed the challenges of starting a new business for them.
In 1964, he and wife Millie purchased and moved his family to a farm near Colfax. He continued to commute to his office in St. Paul, Minn. As the result of a merger in the company he worked for, Orville was able to purchase the crop insurance department he had built and managed for many years, and he organized “North Central Crop Insurance Company”. In 1978, he moved the company to Eau Claire, Wis., so he could be closer to the farm. He declared that the 14-year, 82-mile commute to St. Paul had at least proved that he was a determined, stubborn Norwegian. North Central Crop Insurance had become a substantial crop insurer, doing business in five local states.
Orville’s position in the crop insurance industry extended beyond just running his own company and included executive positions in the three major national crop insurance organizations. These were the organizations that coordinated efforts to properly establish premiums, properly pay claims, and improve the multi-peril insurance program. He was also a member of an international crop insurance organization, which included congresses in England, Germany, Switzerland, Holland, and Italy.
He also joined with 11 other crop insurance executives in a State Department-sanctioned trip to Japan and China to discuss crop insurance with interested people in those countries. Mike Mansfield was then the Ambassador to Japan and he set up a meeting with the crop insurance people in Tokyo. In Beijing, China, they met with Chinese statisticians who had preserved data from their work thru the turmoil of the Mao Tse Tung era.
Both he and Millie enjoyed their many travels to Europe and even the Far East. Orville retired in 1989 and he and Millie got involved in “RVing”. With 5th wheel trailers and motor homes, they traveled most of the great USA. Escaping the cold Wisconsin winters became part of their “Snowbird” lifestyle throughout the past many years.
Orville was a member of the American Legion, the Veterans of Foreign Wars, and the United Methodist Churches in Colfax and Sun Lakes, Ariz. He loved to sing and was a frequent soloist. He was a charter member of the Dunn County Barbershop Chorus and sang with the Desert Chordsmen Barbershop Chorus in Sun Lakes. He loved to garden and both his home in Arizona and his farm home were accented with flowers.
Orville was an outspoken Christian and could recite examples of where God in his life had taken him by the hand and directed him through problems and opportunities. He strove to lead a life that would please the Lord. His faith assured him that Jesus had already paid the price to provide him a place in one of those mansions in Heaven for eternity.
Those Orville leaves behind include his children, Kathleen Holling and husband David, and David Nysted and wife Bonnie; four grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; three sisters, Mary Nysted, Jeanne Dahlby, and Wanda Auth; one brother, Leonard Nysted ’51; and nieces and nephews, including Lee Nysted ’75.
Orville was preceded in death by his beloved wife, Millie; his parents, Peter and Tilla Nysted; one brother, Julius Nysted; and three sisters, Margaret Noeldner, Pearl Ursin, and Violet Finet.
Any memorials can be directed to the Colfax United Methodist Church or Hospice of the Valley in Phoenix.
*John Mark Odden, age 83, of Red Wing, Minn., died Jan. 1, 2015 at Loving Residence in Red Wing. He was born on Feb. 8, 1931 in Madison, Wis. to Arthur Odden ’21 and Agnes Klovstad Odden. He graduated from Twin Valley High School of Minnesota in 1949 and later from St. Olaf College in 1957. He also obtained his master’s and specialist degrees from Winona State University. John served as an officer in the Korean War and was honorably discharged as a 2nd LT. He married Beverly Bryan on July 16, 1960. He taught art and was the Principal at the Correctional School for Boys in Red Wing for 37 years. He served on many committees in the area, including the Red Wing Art Association, Senior Center, United Way, Goodhue County Historical Board, and many committees at United Lutheran Church. He was a member of United Lutheran Church and Red Wing Noontime Kiwanis, where he served as President and Lt. Governor. He enjoyed camping, hiking, painting, boating, and downhill skiing.
He is survived by his wife, Beverly; three sons, Mark and wife Lisa, David and wife Kim, and Stephen and wife Lisa; four grandchildren, Samuel, Kiara, Courtney, and Ryan; sister, Corinne Odden Fredrick ’49 and husband Bill; brother, Robert Odden ’55 and wife Frankie; and sister-in-law, Gloria. He was preceded in death by his parents and brother, Arthur Odden ’50.
Memorials are preferred to the National Parkinson Foundation or United Lutheran Church.
Mabel Eleanor Bjornnes Odden, 95, of Hopkins, Minn., died Jan. 18, 2015. Mabel was born May 17, 1919, in Duluth, Minn., to Carl Johan and Olga Elina Bjornnes. She graduated 1937 from Duluth’s Central High School and attended St. Olaf College. Mabel was a charter member Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church in Edina, Minn. and an active member for over 60 years. She enjoyed ballroom dancing, golf, bridge, quilting, and dominos. She worked 30 years for Life Touch National School Studios. In 1997-98, Mabel was Senior Queen of the Hopkins Raspberry Festival. Mabel was preceded in death by husband, Robert Norman Odden, whom she married on June 28, 1941. She is survived by five children, Barbara Schaub and husband Dennis, Allan Odden and wife Eleanor, Stephen Odden and wife Marcy, Robert Odden and wife Barbara, and Kari Unruh and spouse Kendall; 11 grandchildren, Colin Schaub, Wendy Schaub and husband Todd Hurley, Molly Schaub, Michelle Odden, Sarina Odden and husband Brett Meyer, Robert Odden, Tom Odden, Mat Odden, Vanessa Barnhart, Danny Unruh, and Kelli Unruh; and six great-grandchildren, Alaina and Nathaniel Hurley, Noah and Daniel Schaub, and Micah and Junia Meyer. The family thanks staff at Beacon Hill Assisted Living for the professional and loving care they provided Mom/Nana.
Cynthia Louise Olsen Ohlrogge, of Minneapolis, died unexpectedly on Sept. 12, 2014 from complications of medical conditions she’d been heroically fighting in recent years. Those who knew her well know that there has never ever been another woman quite like Cynthia. She was born on Feb. 19, 1947 in Frederic, Wis. to Edward and Beth Olsen. When she was stricken by polio at age six, she became a fighter, spending months of her young life at the University of Minnesota Hospital and emerging as a poster-child for polio therapy, with no significant disabilities. Upon her graduation from Frederic High School she attended St. Olaf College and later graduated the University of Wisconsin at River Falls. She was a school teacher, worked for years at an art gallery, and then brought all her talents to bear as a homemaker-to-be-reckoned-with; in her prime she could manage contractors like a factory foreman, and once ripped out ceiling tiles to get a lower appraisal from a tax-assessor. She was creative with a sophisticated sense of taste, enhanced by her many years as a docent at the Walker Art Institute, and a rapier wit. When she married Kendel Ohlrogge ’69, a friend told him, “You’ve been looking for a smart, classy woman with a wicked sense of humor, and you found her.” She could hold her own in any conversation about art, politics, horticulture, style, or current events, and would happily exchange verbal zingers with anyone. You always knew where Cynthia was coming from – and with her intellect and wry, sarcastic sense of humor, could never wait to see where she was going to take you. Post-polio syndrome slowed her down but didn’t keep her down. With family and friends she kept traveling and seeing the world, using a wheelchair for lengthier distances. Once in London a curb was too steep for the wheelchair, and when she stood up to walk across the street an astonished man in the crosswalk said, “My God, I’m witnessing a miracle.” In a way, he was. Most importantly, Cynthia was loving, giving, savvy, and true – the person we all wanted with us during good times and bad, to celebrate with, to grieve with, and to keep us on life’s course with a sense of honesty and humor, and a touch of class. Her loved ones wanted, needed, and expected her with them for many more years, but it was not to be. She lived a good life, fought the good fight, and leaves them feeling blessed that they had her in their lives. Cynthia is preceded in death by her parents; sister, Elizabeth Coen; and brother, John Olsen. She was deeply loved and will be greatly missed by her husband, Kendel; daughters, Emily Balogh and Julia Ohlrogge; daughter-in-law, Kate Davenport; son-in-law-to-be, Jeremy Barnett; grandson, Julian Ohlrogge Barnett; and so many others whose lives she touched and enriched. Memorials not designated for a specific charity will be used for a bench on a Minneapolis lake walking path, with a plaque to commemorate how she used to love taking those walks.
Jane Margaret Oiseth, of Albert Lea, Minn., passed away at the Good Samaritan Society on Oct. 19, 2014. She was 78 years old.
Jane was born on Sept. 27, 1936 to Kenneth Oiseth ’35 and Ruth Esse Oiseth in Albert Lea. The family moved to various locations, including Omaha, Neb., Kansas City, and Chicago. In La Grange, Ill., Jane attended and graduated high school. She attended Luther College for one year. She worked for a daycare in the Chicago area that cared for children from age two to four. Jane decided to continue her education, so she enrolled in St. Olaf College. She graduated with a bachelor’s degree in art education and psychology. She returned to the Albert Lea area, where she taught art in the Albert Lea school district. She also was a part of Gallery 101, an art store located on Broadway in Albert Lea. She retired in the 1990’s. Jane was a very thoughtful, positive, and friendly person, often at her best in caring, supportive roles. Throughout most of her life, she used to her skills as an artist to turn blank canvases and other media into wonderful pieces of art.
She will be deeply missed by her brother, Michael Oiseth ’65 and spouse Lonnie; nephews, Nils Oiseth ’01 and wife Maren, and Jon Oiseth; a niece, Amy Grass and husband Jay; and a grandniece, Hanna.
She is preceded in death by her parents, Kenneth and Ruth; and two brothers, Jon Oiseth ’57 and Mark.
Arthur “Art” Olsen, age 85, of Sioux Falls, S.D., passed away on May 4, 2014, in Sioux Falls. Dr. Olsen was professor emeritus of philosophy and religion and former provost at Augustana College. During his tenure, Olsen served Augustana College for more than 40 years and remained a dedicated advocate for the college, even after his retirement. Olsen earned his undergraduate degree from St. Olaf College, went on to receive a bachelor’s degree in theology from Luther Theological Seminary, and earned a doctorate in theology from Harvard Divinity School. He later served as a visiting scholar at both Harvard and Stanford universities. He first joined Augustana in 1956. While pursuing his doctoral studies at Harvard, he took a part-time position teaching speech at MIT from 1957-1960. He then re-joined the college and served until his retirement in 1996.
Appointed by former Augustana President Dr. Bill Nelsen, from 1985-1990 Olsen served as Augustana’s first Chair of Religion and Values, later named the Stanley L. Olsen Chair of Moral Values, a position made possible thanks to a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. At the same time, Olsen also assumed the post of chief coordinator/implementer of Augustana’s general education curriculum, as the new curriculum moved toward implementation.
The son of Norwegian immigrants, Olsen served as a champion for sharing the Norwegian culture and heritage, organizing Norwegian language camps for children on campus, founding the annual Nordland Festival in 1975, and preserving Heritage Park, a collection of historic Great Plains buildings dating from the late 19th to early 20th century, located on campus. Olsen was particularly active in developing and teaching courses related to questions of value. He served as director of Capstone, encouraging and supporting the development of Capstone courses as part of Augustana’s General Education, and chaired the committee that helped define the college’s five Core Values: Christian, Liberal Arts, Excellence, Community, and Service.
Survivors include his wife, Ruth Arneson Olsen ’53; his four children, Arne Olsen, James Olsen, Solveig Santillano, and Beret Rishniw; and their families.
*Terrill “Terry” Olsen, of Bremerton, Wash., passed away on Sept. 16, 2014 from complications of coronary artery disease. He was 75 years old, born on Feb. 20, 1939, to Carlyle and Margaret Olsen of Albert Lea, Minn. Terry graduated from Albert Lea High School; St. Olaf College; University of Minnesota Medical School; and the Mayo Graduate School of Medicine in Rochester, Minn in 1972, specializing in ophthalmology.
He married his true love, Sharon Sommars Olsen ’63, on March 28, 1964, in Jackson, Minn. They enjoyed 50 wonderful years together, recently enjoying their golden anniversary with celebrations in both Bremerton and their home at Lake Chelan, Wash. The couple first arrived in the Northwest with the US Navy, when Terry was assigned as a medical officer aboard the USS Sacramento and at Bremerton Naval Hospital (1967-69). They loved the area so much that they returned from the Midwest to Bremerton in 1972, where Terry began his private practice as an ophthalmologist with the Eye Clinic of Bremerton, Pacific Eye Care, and Achieve Eye and Laser of Silverdale. Dr. Olsen was deeply dedicated to his patients as well as his staff and medical partners. So much so that he found it difficult to officially retire, not wanting to be away from his medical “family.” Over the years, he held memberships in numerous professional organizations, including Kitsap County Medical Society. At the time of his passing, he was the longest serving physician on staff at Harrison Medical Center, from 1972-2014 (42 years).
Terry was a longtime supporter of the Bremerton Symphony and served as a board member from 1998-2004. He and Sherri shared a great love of music, singing in the symphony chorale, church choirs, and duets together. They were long time members of Bible Study Fellowship (BSF), Sylvan Way Baptist Church, and North Shore Bible Church of Manson, Wash.
Dr. Olsen was a deeply spiritual man, with a love and dedication to his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Terry was also fiercely loyal to his family, caring for his loved ones selflessly, and nurturing a legacy to his three sons and grandson that will never be forgotten. His family is thankful to God for his life, his love, and his legacy: “A righteous man will be remembered forever,” Psalms 112:6b. They know Terry is now home in heaven with Jesus and his loved ones gathered there.
Terry is survived by his wife of 50 years, Sherri; sons, Christopher and wife Linda, Gregory, and Timothy and wife Rachel; and his one and only grandson, Jordan; siblings, Sally Cleve and husband Bob, Susan Geiken and husband Dennis, Nancy Vraniak and husband Damien, and brother, John Olsen and wife Valerie; and nieces and nephews, including Brook McShane ’97. He was preceded in death by his parents.
In honor of his lifelong commitment to ministry, music and medical, memorial donations may be given in his name to Sylvan Way Baptist Church; the Bremerton Symphony Association; or the Harrison Medical Center Foundation, specifically to the Healing Garden to be constructed at the new Harrison Hospital site in Silverdale, Wash.
*Arnold Olson, age 86, of Winter Haven, Fla., died of heart failure, March 10, 2014. Born in Little Falls, Minn., on Nov. 19, 1927, he came to Winter Haven from Minnesota in 1981. He was a teacher for Mounds View School District. He was an Army veteran of the Korean War, and a member of the American Legion Post #8 in Winter Haven. He was a member of Grace Lutheran Church in Winter Haven.
Arnold was preceded in death by a daughter, Kay Olson, in 1959. He is survived by his wife, Janet Olson; son, John Olson ’93; daughters, Susan Horne, Karen Wolfington, Sandra Counts, and Cindy Tonjes; eight grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.
David C. Olson, 57, passed away peacefully on July 16, 2014, surrounded by family after an 18-month fight with lymphoma. David, as president of the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce for the past 23 years, was widely credited for the Minnesota Chamber being recognized as the state’s premier business advocacy organization. He was respected across the state for his uncanny ability and art of bringing people together, for setting strategy and solving problems. His deep personal love for Minnesota carried throughout his long career, where he was committed to improving the state’s economy and the lives of Minnesotans. David was named president of the Minnesota Chamber in 1991 and immediately made grassroots participation central to every aspect of the Chamber’s work. His insistence on listening to member concerns – and then engaging businesses of all sizes and types statewide – was evident both in the Chamber’s legislative accomplishments and its organizational strength. He made the Minnesota Chamber a respected and formidable force at the State Capitol. The Chamber achieved many legislative accomplishments under David’s leadership. Many organizations sought out David for his expertise in advancing public policy, his leadership skills, and his ability to bring the right people together to get the job done. He was an active member of many local and national boards, including: The Minnesota State Colleges & Universities Board of Trustees, chair from 2007-10, and chair of the Chancellor Search Committee; United Way Board of Directors; Northern Star Council-Boy Scouts of America Board of Directors; National Association of Manufacturers Board; United States Chamber of Commerce Committee; Greater MSP Partner Advisory Council; co-chair of the Workers’ Compensation Advisory Council; chair-elect of Council of State Manufacturers Association; Generation Next Partnership Board; President of Svenska Sallskapet; and many more. Prior to his tenure at the Minnesota Chamber, David was President of the TwinWest and Burnsville Chambers of Commerce, and held positions at the Greater Minneapolis Chamber of Commerce and City of Minneapolis. He holds an M.S. in public administration from Mankato State University, and a B.A. in urban/political science from St. Olaf College. He was especially proud of the fact that he was an Eagle Scout. Everyone David met became a friend. His humor, coupled with his passion for Minnesota, was his strength and made him an inspiration we all admired and will miss. The state of Minnesota has lost one of its greatest champions.
David is survived by his wife, Carolyn; sons, Erik Olson ’11 and Nicklas; sisters, Elizabeth Olson Erdahl ’82 and husband Paul Erdahl ’82, and Mary Claire and husband John Potter; aunt; nieces; nephews; cousin;, in-laws; and many very close friends. He was preceded in death by mother and father, Barbara and Glenn Olson. In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to University of Minnesota Foundation, Lymphoma Research, in Minneapolis.
Enid C. Olson, 94, of Oberon, N.D., died Jan. 12, 2014, at the Benedictine Living Center in Garrison, N.D. Enid Catherine Lace was born Jan. 11, 1920, on the family farm north of Northfield, Minn., the daughter of Irving and Laura Shellenbarger Lace. She attended the District 74 rural school and graduated from Northfield High School. Enid graduated from St. Olaf College with Latin and English concentrations. She taught eight years in the Minnesota high schools of Red Lake Falls, Excelsior, and Red Wing.
Enid and Carl Olson were married in a garden ceremony at her parents’ farm Sept. 22, 1951. Enid and Carl lived and farmed near Oberon, and were the parents of daughters Laurel and Betty. After her daughters were in school, Enid taught five years in Oberon. Following Carl’s death on July 3, 1979, she remained on the farm for 20 years and later lived near her daughter, Betty.
Enid was confirmed and was a long time member of Antelope Valley Lutheran Church, rural Oberon. She served as organist for many years and was a member of the WELCA. Enid attended local bible studies, and was an avid gardener and letter writer, often pressing flowers to include with her letters. She will be lovingly remembered for her sustaining faith and love of her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Grateful for sharing in her life are daughters, Laurel Olson, and Betty Haakenson and husband Dennis; a brother, Verne Lace ’49 and wife Dorothy Cole Lace ’48; sisters:, Marion Trout, Lois Lace ’51, and Patricia Severance; sister-in-law, Elda Lace; and a number of nieces and nephews, including Margit Lace Lamey ’83 and husband Mitchell, Robert Lace ’77, John Lace ’79 P ’04 ’07 and wife Kari Mudge Lace ’79 P ’04 ’07, and Joanne Lace ’72. Preceding her in death were her parents; husband; brothers, Owen, Richard, and Wayne Lace; sister-in-law, Gerry Lace; brother-in-law, Gene Trout; and a special cousin, Beth Johnson and husband Bill.
Irene Petra Langemo Olson, 80, of Fairmont, Minn., passed away June 3, 2014, at the Mayo Clinic Health System in Fairmont, after a three week journey with cancer. Irene was born on June 23, 1933, at the hospital in Fairbault, Minn., the daughter of Peter and Inez Jorstad Langemo. Irene attended school in Kenyon, Minn., and graduated from Kenyon High School. Following her graduation, Irene attended college at St. Olaf, where she majored in piano and public school music. On Aug. 22, 1954, Irene was united in marriage to Stanley Olson, at the Holden Lutheran Church, Kenyon. Together, the couple made their home on a farm near East Chain, Minn., and were blessed with three children, Karen, Mark, and Stephen. Irene had a huge place in her heart for her family. She loved to say her home had expandable walls. Everyone was welcomed warmly.
Irene cherished Jesus and studied the Bible with great interest. Her friends in Bible study remember her for knowing the scriptures and trying to live each day from them. Irene was a member of the Fairmont United Methodist Church. Irene loved music and treasured the opportunity to teach music. She taught at the Blue Earth Elementary School for two years. For 60 years, she taught piano lessons and played the organ and piano for church. She was a member of the National Guild of Piano Teachers for 41 years and was also a judge for the National Guild of Students for 26 years. She spent her life in service to others. Through those black and white keys she loved so much, she has touched thousands of lives.
Left to cherish her memory are her children, Karen Erickson, Mark Olson, and Stephen Olson; their father, Stanley Olson; grandchildren, Kristin Erickson Hu, Katie Erickson, Marie Mehlhaf, Amy Olson, Bjorn Olson, Aeli Olson, Signe Olson, Stephanie Olson, Jacob Kotila, and their familes; siblings, Helen Langemo Miller ’57 and George Langemo; sister-in-law, Janice Olson; as well as many nieces, nephews, extended family, and friends. Irene was preceded in death by her parents, Peter and Inez Langemo; her father-in-law and mother-in-law, David and Edith Olson; and her brother-in-law, LeRoy Olson.
Lance was a graduate of St. Olaf College and Northwestern University. He spent his career working for Congressman Jim Ramstad. The family would like to thank the staff at Fairview Southdale Hospital, 3rd Floor Surgical Unit and the staff at N.C. Little Hospice. Lance is survived by wife of 30 years, Ann Herzog-Olson; sons, Wesley Olson ’11 and Luke; mother, Doris “Vonnie” Ekholm Norum ’42; brothers, Laird Olson ’69 and wife Cyndi, and Linden and wife Michele; sisters, Laurel Olson Johnson ’76 and husband Stephen Johnson ’73, and Lizbeth Olson Brown ’82 and husband Michael; step-sister, Nina Norum ’75; sisters-in-law, Kathy Johnson, and Julie Goetz and husband Keith; brothers-in-law, James Herzog, William Herzog and spouse Kory, and John Herzog and wife Helen; many nieces and nephews, including Margit Johnson Dylla ’08, Christopher Johnson ’02, and Erik Olson ’10; and many friends. He was preceded in death by father, Norman Olson ’43; brother-in-law, William Johnson; step-father, Philip Norum ’42; and step-brother, Robert Norum ’72. In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to N.C. Little Hospice or TreeHouse Youth Program.
Torger was born Jan. 28, 1947 in Green Bay, Wis. He was the only child of Gilbert and Rosemarie Vannee Smith Omdahl.
Torger was named for Torger Tokel, World Champion ski jumper in the 1930s and 40s. Tokel and Torger’s father served together in the 10th Mountain Division in World War II. Tokel was killed at the very end of the war in Italy in April 1945.
Torger came to Iron River in 1952 with his parents. His father relocated to begin building a chain of service stations throughout Upper Michigan. He was a Conoco jobber. In his early years, Torger grew up in a gas station.
He attended Stambaugh High School and graduated in 1965, and St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn., receiving a bachelor of arts in 1969. He excelled in football and basketball, but his basketball career in college was cut short by an injury. Next, he attended Tulane University in New Orleans, La., graduating with a juris doctorate degree in 1973. He then returned to Iron River where he began his law practice with Les Fisher. Almost right out of law school in 1974, Torger became Iron County Prosecuting Attorney and served for two terms. He had many friends and former clients throughout the Western end of the Upper Peninsula and Northern Wisconsin.
For the past 30 years, he has dedicated himself to representing injured persons against insurance companies and persons charged with crimes by the state and federal government.
Torger loved life, his family, clients, cars, basketball, golf, and people in general. He enjoyed participating in the Iron River Men’s Basketball League and watching football and basketball. He had a wry sense of humor, which often presented itself in the courtroom.
In his most famous case, he represented the estate of the late George Gipp of Calumet, Mich. and Notre Dame, Ind. The case was extensively covered by The New York Times on its front page. ESPN was one of the defendants.
A big part of the Omdahl family life was centered on their cottage at Big Sand Lake, which they acquired in 1980. They were also members for a time of the Smokey Lake Reserve. All forms of water sports were on the agenda for the family. Torger and Susan loved to travel, visiting Japan, Hawaii, Europe, especially Norway, the Caribbean, and Mexico. Due to the law school connection, and love of the culture and cuisine, New Orleans was a favorite destination of theirs, as well as New York City.
Torger leaves his wife of 43 years, Susan; two children, Bryce, age 33, and fiancée Samantha, and Victoria, age 26; and numerous cousins.
The family suggests memorial donations to the Iron County Cancer Unit or the Grace Covenant Church, Benevolent Ministry.
Word has been received that Milas Kay Omdalen, age 72, of Coon Rapids, Minn., died Feb. 10, 2007, in Clewiston, Fla. He was born Apr. 6, 1934 in Robinsdale, Minn., the son of the late Earnest and the late Esther Rebecca Mews Omdalen. He was a winter resident of Florida for the past 10 years. Survivors include his wife, Dorothy Omdalen; two sons, Mark Omdalen and wife Sue, and Terry Omdalen and wife Patricia; one daughter, Mary Myos and husband Richard; and seven grandchildren.
Our loving sister, friend, and aunt, Nadine H. Ornburg, of Santa Fe, N.M., left this world for a place that is “peaceful and calm” on Aug. 1, 2014. She left this world surrounded by love and peace. Though our hearts are heavy, she is now free from the earthly confines and is free to reunite with loved ones passed, including her partner, Darien Gracen, and her parents, Neil and Alice Ornburg. Nadine was born in 1946 in Minneapolis and from the beginning her compassion shined. She always took care of her two sisters and in turn they shared much laughter. She grew as a free spirit and went on to live in Colorado and eventually settled in New Mexico. Along the way she became a massage therapist and eventually graduated from Naropa as a psychotherapist. She went on to teach and heal others. She is survived by her sisters, Laurian Reiners and husband Jim, and JaNice Lucas; her nieces and nephews, Alison Reiners, Benjamin Reiners and family Tami and Donovan, Theresa Torevella and family Stuart, Max, and Macey, Anna Ridgway and family Cane, Liv Vitale and family Joe and Vinny, and Tommy Lucas; cousin, including Cortlund “Cork” Ornburg ’56 P ’80; as well as Jennifer Hinton, Patrice Bazile, Lola Bazile, Ken Bowling, and Margaret Renner. She has given so much to this world and all those around her. It is clear that everyone she comes in contact with she quickly turns into a friend. She has taught many to live in the moment and live with love and passion. She has taught us that each person you met is an opportunity to open your future to endless possibilities. Nadine, you have left us each other and we are forever grateful. We are all proud to have known you.
*Arthur Edward Otto, 69, of Kalispell, Mont., passed away on Dec. 23, 2014. He was the second child born to William and Muriel Hass Otto on Sept. 27, 1945. He was raised in Havre, Mont., where he excelled in school and mastered the trumpet. He graduated from St. Olaf College.
Art served in the Navy as an officer during the Vietnam War. The idea of going to vet school was born during a night watch aboard ship, and upon discharge he worked on a cattle ranch in northern Montana to further explore the thought. Art graduated from veterinary school in Fort Collins, Colo., and did an internship in New Jersey before returning to Montana, where he opened his own clinic in Kalispell. He retired in 2008.
In retirement, Art enjoyed fishing, hunting, reading, and spending time with his beloved family. He faithfully served his Lord Jesus Christ and his home church, Central Bible. His love for all people and animals and his amazing kindness will be missed by many.
After a morning spent in church Art, suffered from a stroke on Dec. 21, 2014 and went home to be with his Lord Jesus Christ, surrounded by his family, on Dec. 23, 2014.
Art was preceded in death by his sister, Patty; son, David; and parents, William and Muriel Otto. He is survived by his wife, Debbie; children, Joshua Otto ’94 and fiancé Erin Galvez, Gabriel and wife Charlotte, Paul, Katie and husband Jimmy, and Christine and husband Kashawn Miller; and his four grandchildren, Shaelyn and Kendrick Miller, and Jayce and Brynn McElroy.
Art would want memorials sent to Gideon’s International, who place Bibles in the hands of many, or to your local animal shelter.
*Osmund R. Overby, 82, of Columbia, Mo., died peacefully and in the presence of his family on June 1, 2014, after a lengthy struggle with Parkinson’s disease. Osmund “Ozzie” Rudolf Overby, the son of Oscar Overby ’21 and Gertrude Boe Overby ’23, was born Nov. 8, 1931, in Minneapolis. He attended school in Northfield, Minn., and graduated from St. Olaf College in 1953, with a degree in mathematics and philosophy. He played in orchestras and bands as a clarinetist and saxophone player, and was active in several sports and outdoor activities, including ski jumping.
He married Barbara Spande ’55, of Portland, Ore., in 1954, in Brooklyn, N.Y. He served in the United States Army during the Korean War, as a military band musician. The couple attended graduate school at the University of Washington, Seattle, where Ozzie obtained a master’s degree in architecture. In 1963, he received his Ph.D. in art history from Yale University. His first teaching position was at the University of Toronto. From there, he came to the University of Missouri, Columbia, where he taught in the Department of Art History and Archaeology until his retirement in 1998.
At MU, he was a key contributor to long-range campus planning, a driver of the renovation of Pickard Hall, and director of the Museum of Art and Archaeology. He led architectural students from around the nation during several summer projects for the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Historic American Buildings Survey in St. Thomas, Boston, Newport, Hanover, and St. Genevieve. In 1987, Ozzie was named distinguished alumnus of St. Olaf College. During sabbatical years, he conducted research and taught at the University of California, Berkeley; the University of Tennessee, Knoxville; Washington University, St. Louis; and the Philipps University in Marburg, Germany, which was one leg of an extraordinary, year-long road trip through 14 European countries the family made in a 1971 Volkswagen camper van.
Ozzie founded and led several historic preservation organizations at community and state levels in Missouri. He also was a nationally recognized champion of architectural preservation. In Ozzie’s honor, the Missouri Alliance for Historic Preservation, an organization that advocates for preservation of architectural and historic landmarks in Missouri, annually bestows the Overby Award, given for a published work contributing to the documentation and interpretation of Missouri’s architectural history. Ozzie was a longtime editor of the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians and wrote a number of articles and books, including William Adair Bernoudy Architect: Bringing the Legacy of Frank Lloyd Wright to St. Louis. He served for several years as editor-in-chief of the Buildings of the United States series, a 60-volume collection that documents American architecture. His own co-authored volume in this series on the buildings of Missouri will be published posthumously. Over the course of his career, Ozzie advised and mentored numerous doctoral students who have gone on to teach around the world. He was a popular lecturer, and he and Barbara hosted many memorable backyard picnics welcoming students to the department.
A supporter and patron of musical performance in Columbia, Ozzie loved attending student, faculty, and professional concerts. Early in his time in Columbia, he co-founded a film society at the university. He also served on the board of the Missouri Parks Association and advised former Governor Kit Bond on the restoration of the Governor’s Mansion in Jefferson City. He lent his time to civic, academic, and religious organizations, including St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church in Columbia, where he sang in the choir for many years. While working and in retirement, he joined his wife Barbara on archaeological excavations in Portugal, and together they walked the Camino de Santiago in France and Spain, and a similar pilgrimage route, St. Olaf’s Way, in Norway, from Oslo to Trondheim. Admired for his kindness, intellect, humor, generosity, and humility, Ozzie greatly inspired these same qualities in his friends, colleagues and family.
Ozzie is survived by his wife of 60 years, Barbara; his children, Paul, Katherine Howland, and Charlotte; and four grandchildren, Clara, Alexander, Joseph, and Sarah. He also is survived by a sister, Solveig Overby Tschann ’49, and a brother, Karl Overby ’60. He was preceded in death by a brother, Rolf Overby ’58, in 1959. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the Columbia Civic Orchestra.
Word has been received that Anita S. Hanson Pershern, age 77, of Menomonie, Wis., stepped forth from this life into God’s hands Nov. 9, 2011, surrounded by family. Born in Virginia, Minn., on Oct. 14, 1934, to Andrew and Sadie Hanson; Anita was their only child. She graduated from Roosevelt High School in Virginia in 1951 and continued with Junior college, followed by further undergraduate work at St. Olaf, graduating in 1955 with a bachelor’s of science in home economics and dietetics. Following graduation, Anita married Frank R. Pershern, of Gilbert, Minn., on June 25, 1955. Moves to Wisconsin, Indiana, Texas, and back to Wisconsin would be accompanied by the additions of Andrew, Peter, Mary Kay Pershern Polashek ’81, and Michael. By 1965, the family settled in Menomonie, and after the arrival of Susanna Pershern ’93, Anita began teaching and resumed her studies at the University of Wisconsin-Stout. Anita’s later educational pursuits included a master’s degree in food science at the University of Wisconsin-Stout and culminated with a doctorate of philosophy from the University of Minnesota in Food Science and Nutrition in 1989, with a thesis on “Corylus avellana” – the common hazelnut.
Anita was a loving and cherished wife, mother, grandmother, and professor. Her joys shared on this earth included countless hours at the piano and organ bringing the joys of music in private, in pairs, with congregations, and with choirs. As a teacher/professor she mentored, instructed, and guided her students, to help to prepare them for a professional career.
Dr. Pershern retired from the Food and Nutritional Science Department of the University of Wisconsin-Stout in 1996. In their retirement, travel in North America and abroad engaged Anita and Frank, but their Northern Minnesota/Iron Range roots had taken them back to Burntside Lake in northern Minnesota for summers, starting in 1980. With Frank and Susanna, along with many other family members and friends, a traditional North Woods log cabin emerged and became the focus of their retirement – a gift from the parents which shall serve for generations to come. The summer of 2005 was special for family and friends, who gathered in the north woods for the celebration of Frank and Anita’s 50th wedding anniversary. Anita further embraced the north woods for the blueberries, whispering pines, relaxed visits and meals with friends, soulful calls of the loons, and tranquil days that brought forth peace of mind and comfort.
Anita is survived by her sons, Andrew Mark, Peter John and wife Kay Marie Pershern, and Michael Joseph; daughters, Mary Kay and husband Emil Polashek ’82, and Susanna Marie Pershern and husband Ronald Hawes; and grandchildren, Brandon and Cassie Pershern, Hannah, Caleb, Jotham, and Isabel Polashek, and Laurie Pershern. She was preceded in death by her parents and her beloved husband, Frank.
Sherry Benjamin Peters, of Milwaukee, was called home to the Lord on Aug. 22, 2014, at the age of 61. Sherry was a music teacher at Hales Corners Elementary School for 25 years. She was the beloved wife of Dale for 39 years, devoted mother of Kelly Carr and husband Chad and Kevin Peters and wife Erin, proud grandma of Miles, cherished daughter of Gwenn and the late Clyde Benjamin, and loving sister of Bonnie Hendryx and husband Maxey, and Karen Thompson and husband Mike. Sherry will be dearly missed by nieces, nephews, other relatives, and many dear friends. In lieu of flowers, memorials to Mount Hope Lutheran Church Music fund would be appreciated.
Phyllis Petersen, age 71, of Stillwater, Minn., passed away unexpectedly on Nov. 19, 2014. Phyllis was a successful antique dealer. She is preceded in death by her parents. Phyllis is survived by her sister, Lois Becker; nieces, Katie Weisser and husband Paul, and Anne Brink; nephew, Ricky Becker and wife Dee; and seven grand-nieces and nephews. She is further survived by other relatives and friends.
Duane M. “Pete” Peterson was born Aug. 26, 1925 in Tracy to Marvin S. Peterson and Ida Stageberg Peterson.
He grew up in Garvin, Minn. and graduated from Tracy High School in 1943. After high school, Duane attended St. Olaf College, graduating in 1947. While at St. Olaf Duane was a member of the famed St. Olaf Choir from 1943-1947, singing under the direction of F. Melius Christiansen while touring the United States. Duane married Marjorie Manke on July 23, 1947, in Tracy. She was the love of his life and traveling partner for 67 years and seven months. They traveled the world extensively. Duane was a business man, owning his insurance agency, real estate business, and a tax practitioner business in Garvin and Tracy beginning in 1947 until selling completely in 2002. Duane still went down to the office and worked with Real Estate until December 2014. Duane was a board member of Norwegian Mutual Insurance Company in Cottonwood, Minn. for 54 years, being President for 34 years.
Duane was very active in the church and community, being a board member at Shetek Lutheran Ministries for 15 years (1956-1971), while also being treasurer for 10 years and Sunday School Superintendent at Lake Sarah Lutheran for 21 years and the Garvin Business Mens Club for 46 years. Duane was also a church council member numerous times. Duane was a member of Tracy Lutheran Church, Tracy Country Club, Garvin Fire Department, Tracy Chamber of Commerce, and other various civic clubs.
Duane is survived by his wife, Marj; daughter, Kristin Peterson Kaiser ’72 and husband Jim and grandchildren Christopher Kaiser ’96 and wife Lisbet, Marjie Kaiser Sarphati ’97 and husband Joffrey, Andrew Kaiser ’99, and Amanda Kaiser ’04; son, Mark Peterson and wife Kathy and grandchildren Heidi Deragisch and husband Justin and Eric Peterson; son Ivar Peterson and wife Diane; and several great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, other relatives, and many friends. Duane was preceded in death by his parents; brother, M. Irving Peterson ’42; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Bill and Bertha Manke; and brothers-in-law, Bill Otto and Bob Manke.
Duane was a kind, gentle, loving man, stating “Goodbye is NOT in my vocabulary; instead we say, I’ll be seeing you later.”
Eldred Raymond Peterson, 89, of Chippewa Falls, Wis., Oct. 15, 2014 at Chippewa Manor Nursing & Rehabilitation in Chippewa Falls. He was born July 22, 1925 in Milwaukee to Selma Jorgine Olson Peterson and Carl Emmett Peterson. He was baptized and confirmed at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Milwaukee. He attended school in Milwaukee at Grant Street School, Walker Junior High School, and South Division High School. He graduated from St. Olaf College, attended the University of Wisconsin and University of Minnesota, and graduated from Luther Theological Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1951.
On May 17, 1958, Eldred married Ruth Elvern Johnson at Long Lake Lutheran Church in Sarona, Wis. He served as a Lutheran Pastor from 1951 to 1985.
Eldred responded to God’s call on his life by faithfully serving others and sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ in word and in Christ-like living. He will be remembered and cherished as a deeply loving husband, father, grandpa, and friend.
Survivors include his wife, Ruth; a son, Dale Lee Peterson; a daughter, Esther Christine Johnson and husband Robert; three granddaughters, Anna Christine Mitchell and husband David, Julia Lorraine Johnson, and Clara Louise Johnson; and a great-granddaughter, Eloise Grace Mitchell. He was preceded in death by his parents.
“For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.” — Philippians 1:21
Memorials will be given to VCY America, Inc. — Christian Radio.
Word has been received that Elizabeth Jane Bruce Peterson, of Santa Fe, N.M., died Mar. 19, 2011. Survivors include a daughter, Karen.
*Harry Michael “Top” Peterson, Jr., 91, of River Forest, Ill., died of natural causes July 23, 2014, at Rush Oak Park Hospital in Oak Park, Ill. Born on Dec. 4, 1922 in Oak Park, he was the son of Dr. Harry M. Peterson, Sr. and Lillian Mayer Peterson. He was a graduate of Oak Park-River Forest High School in 1940 and St. Olaf College in 1946, and a life-long learner. He enlisted in the U.S. Army, served in the 99th Division, and was deployed to the European Theater during WWII. On Dec. 18, 1944, he was taken captive in the Battle of the Bulge and survived prison camp until liberated by allied forces April 28, 1945. In the months between his honorable discharge from the military and his return to college, he wrote a book about his war experience entitled “Our Days Are a Shadow”. The book was published in 2006. He returned to St. Olaf spring semester 1946, where he completed his degree and also met Mary Thorstensen ’46, whom he wed June 6, 1948. Mr. Peterson was founder and president of Food Foundation, Inc., a manufacturer of pancake syrup (Timber Trail) and other sugar, fruit, and maple products. Innovative in business, he was an early adopter and leader in the use of high fructose corn syrup, plastic packaging, and national product distribution through cooperative warehousing (CODE). He sold his business in 1986 and remained in contact with his associates at Tone Products, who have furthered the legacy of his formulae and brands. On Feb. 13, 1975, his first wife, Mary Alice, succumbed to cancer. On April 10, 1976, he married Mary Jane Yoder, who shared his zest for life for 38 years. Mr. Peterson made numerous contributions to his community, including service as board chairman of the Austin YMCA – Chicago, and as a Republican Party precinct captain. He was a member of Fair Oaks Presbyterian Church, where he was confirmed in 1936. A Ruling Eder, he served multiple terms on Session, taught Sunday School, chaired various committees, and was the baritone anchor of the church choir and a quartet. A life-long resident of Oak Park and River Forest, he was active in OPRF Rotary and was an honorary member of American Opera Society of Chicago. He will be lovingly remembered by his family and considerable network of friends for his honorable and courageous service to his country, indomitable spirit, unquenchable curiosity, faith commitment, sense of humor, joy in living, strength of character, breadth of knowledge and generous hospitality. He is survived by his wife, Mary Jane Yoder Peterson; three children, Scott Peterson ’73 and wife Victoria Lynn Soland, Heidi Peterson ’76 and husband Jeffrey Clayton, and Grant Peterson ’77 and wife Diane Thayer Peterson; seven grandchildren, Kaia Peterson and husband Chris Chitty, Leif Peterson and wife Alyssa Boggs Peterson, Harry Matthias Peterson-Brandt and wife Valerie Leigh Peterson-Brandt, Jesse Peterson-Brandt and wife Mary Ahlquist, Micah Peterson-Brandt, Garrett Peterson and wife Natalie Hansen Peterson, and Elise Peterson; two step-grandchildren, Ellen and Joshua Clayton; and two great-grandchildren, Caroline and Espen Chitty. He also leaves a sister, Mary Lou Moore and husband John Moore; sisters-in-law, Jackie Yoder, and Virginia Yoder Marthey and husband Robert Marthey; brother-in-law, Reverend William J. Yoder; and numerous beloved nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his parents, Harry M. Peterson, Sr, and Lillian Mayer Peterson; his first wife, Mary Alice Thorstensen Peterson; and his brother-in-law, Virgil Yoder. Memorial contributions may be made to Fair Oaks Presbyterian Church, Oak Park and River Forest Rotary Scholarship Fund, Oak Park, or a charity of choice.
Mark D. Peterson, of Chevy Chase, Md., passed away unexpectedly on Feb. 21, 2015 while doing something he loved – playing pond hockey with friends. He touched the lives of friends and family in his 56 years and will be remembered dearly in our hearts. Mark had both a magnetic presence and infectious laugh. He had unconditional love for his family, especially his beautiful daughters, Madison and Alexandra. He was passionate in his work as an aspiring author and attorney at the Federal Trade Commission, as a true Minnesota born life-long hockey player, outdoor sports enthusiast and loving father. He was a graduate of St. Olaf College and William Mitchell College of Law. We will miss him beyond measure and are eternally grateful for the joy he brought to each of us. He was preceded in death by his father, Dwight Peterson. Mark is survived by his mother, Marion Peterson; Susan Starr; daughters, Madison and Alexandra; sisters, Karen Kepple and husband Lloyd and Laurie Resch and husband David; nephews, Matthew Resch ’03 and Benjamin Kepple; and nieces, Kate Kepple and Emily Resch ’06. Memorials may be sent to the Mark Peterson Memorial Scholarship.
*Margaret Strohm Pitman, of Salida, Colo., passed away on Sept. 20, 2012. She was born in Carroll, Iowa in 1921. She graduated from St. Olaf College and went on to serve in the U.S. Marines in Oahu, Hawaii during WWII. She was a teacher in Boulder County, Colo. until retiremenent. A long-time resident of Nederland, Colo., she was active in politics, supported local businesses, and admired her natural surroundings. She is survived by her three children, Jeffrey, Linda Martin, and Ann Quinto; a grandson, Sergey Pitman; and niece, Jean Strohm Parish ’88 and husband Douglas Parish ’88. She was preceded in death by brother John Strohm ’49 and his wife, Patricia.
Hazel Elizabeth Bjorge Preston 86, of Spruce Creek, Summerfield, Fla., died peacefully at 11:30 A.M. on Oct. 10, 2014. Her husband Swanee Preston was at her side at Tuscany Hospice. Hazel was born in Caledonia, Minn. on Aug. 14, 1928 to Olav and Hilda Bjorge.
Hazel was a Phi Beta Kappa from St. Olaf College. She graduated with a B.A. and R.N. in nursing in 1950. She also graduated from Case Western Reserve in Cleveland. She married Dr. Swanee Preston on Jan. 17, 1978. Hazel was an ordained deacon, teacher, and elder in the Presbyterian Church. In her nursing career she specialized in neonatal care. In addition to her husband, she is survived by many friends and relatives, including her sister, brother, nephews, nieces, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. Donations may be made to Marion County Hospice Tuscany House, Summerfield, Fla., or to Trinity Lutheran Church in Summerfield.
*LeRoy Quale, age 93, passed away on Nov. 15, 2014 in Roseville, Minn. LeRoy was born Feb. 15, 1921 in Mondovi, Wis., and was raised in Gilman Valley, Wis. on the family farm. He graduated from St. Olaf College in 1942 and Creighton Law School, Omaha, Neb. in 1948. He served as a Naval Aviator during WWII on the USS Chicago, which was present in Tokyo Bay during the signing of the Japanese surrender. He and his wife Janet were married in 1944 in New York. Roy was a contract lawyer with Honeywell, retiring in 1987 after 35 years. He lived in St. Anthony Park for over 62 years and was active as a volunteer in community and church activities. He enjoyed bowling, gardening, card games, and especially fishing, and taking annual trips to Canada with his good friend Sig Haugan. LeRoy was preceded in death by his parents, John H. and Malene Helgoe Quale; his daughter, Karen Quale Steimann; and his beloved wife, Janet Randall Quale. He is survived by his sons, Frank R. Quale, and Randall H. Quale and wife Heather; daughter, Laura L. Quale; son-in-law, F.J. “Fritz” Steimann and wife Barbara; grand-daughters, Jody DePaemelaere and husband Bill, Kate Quale and husband David Parramon, Katherine Weber and husband Nick, and Stella Quale; great-grandchildren, Luke Foley, Lane Foley, Ivy DePaemelaere, and Belen Parramon-Quale; and niece, Joan Kavanaugh and husband John. Special thanks to the staff at Keystone Communities of Roseville for the outstanding care he received the past three years, and recently from the Health Partners hospice care team. Memorials are preferred to St. Anthony Park Branch Library or St. Anthony Park United Church of Christ.
Sigrid Horneland Quello, age 100, died June 5, 2014, at her home in Saint Paul, Minn. Sigrid was born May 13, 1914, in New Richland, Minn. Sigrid graduated from St. Olaf College, especially enjoying three years singing in the St. Olaf Choir. She loved choral singing and sang in choirs most of her life. She and college classmate Victor Quello ’36 were married after his graduation from Luther Seminary. For 64 years, they shared a faith that gave joyful and meaningful purpose throughout life. Ever a gracious hostess, wonderful cook, artistic decorator, happy gardener, and patient and loving wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, and friend. Sigrid enjoyed creating the 16 homes she and her family shared over the years, in Wisconsin, Minnesota, California, Virginia, and Florida. Her favorite place for renewing body and spirit was Minnesota’s North Shore.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Rev. Victor Quello; parents, Rev. Carl and Marie Mellby Horneland; brother, Olaf Horneland ’32; brother-in-law, Robert Quello ’30 P ’61 and wife Helen; sister-in-law, Esther Quello ’22; sister-in-law, Ardis Quello Bergfald ’24 P ’50 ’53; and brother-in-law, Julius Quello ’33. She will be dearly missed by daughters, Marilynn “Lynn” Quello ’67 and Katherine Quello Pekel ’63; son, Stephen Quello; grandchildren, Troy Quello, Todd Quello, Kent Pekel , and Jean Sanchez; nine great-grandchildren; nieces, Yvonne Horneland Olson ’64 P ’92 and husband Dennis, and Wanda Horneland Jarmon ’62; and many other relatives and friends.
Word has been received that Marka Steffenie Feldman Rawana, age 60, of Burnsville, Minn., formerly of Long Island, N.Y., passed away March 6, 2006. She was preceded in death by former husband, Gavin Engen, and mother, Georgia Feldman. She is survived by daughter, Petra Dewey and husband Andrew; granddaughter, Elia; and father, Benjamin Feldman.
*Sigurd Rimestad, of St. Croix Falls, Wis., died on Sept. 25, 2014. He went to be with his Savior after a lengthy illness. He was born in Hampden, N.D., on May 26, 1927. Sig was the youngest son of Martin and Sanna’s eight children. The family moved to Grand Forks, N.D., where he graduated from high school. At 17 he enlisted in the U.S. Coast Guard, stationed at Treasure Island near San Francisco, serving on the ship Annapolis. After his discharge, he attended St. Olaf College and spent two summers with the U.S. Forest Service in Idaho. He transferred to the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks, where he graduated with a degree in physical education and a minor in history, and his master’s in administration. He was a superintendent of schools for 42 years, starting his career in Pisek, N.D., then on to Munich and Edinburgh, N.D. The family moved to Clearbrook, Minn., where he directed the expansion for a new elementary school and a high school addition and received national recognition through the Department of Commerce for its work in area redevelopment. They then moved to Winnebago, Ill. While in Winnebago, he worked on completing his Doctorate in Administration at Northern Illinois University. After experiencing a tornado, the family decided to move back to Minnesota, residing in Eveleth, where he secured funding to start a vocational school without iron mining funds, which was a first for school districts in the area. In 1973 they moved to Grygla, Minn., where he expanded the school district by establishing a high school. The school offered certified programs in auto mechanics, carpentry, welding, machine shop, and cosmetology. This was also the first school in Minnesota designed for cold weather. Their final move was to Taylors Falls, Minn., where he completed the consolidation between school districts and developed the Small School Model before retiring. Over his career he was invited to guest lecture at various colleges and published articles on rural education.
He was active in church as well as civic organizations, including the Boy Scouts. In his spare time he enjoyed many hobbies, including wood working, hunting, fishing, gardening, reading, and boating. He built a working replica of a Civil War naval cannon, a 36-foot St. Pierre Dory fishing boat for Lake Superior, and a grandfather clock amongst his projects. He took up water coloring painting in his late seventies and was invited to several juried shows. He loved good conversation, either in person or on the telephone, with interest in philosophy, religion, culture, politics, music, and sports – especially hunting. He was a true renaissance man.
He is remembered for his love of his wife, family, the Coast Guard and his Lord. In 1951 he was united in marriage to the love of his life, Marilyn, celebrating 63 years in 2014. Survivors also include five children, Marty and wife Wanda, Kris Lance and spouse Mike, Debbie Motley and husband John, Kathy Westrum and husband Dick, and Sanna Raedeke and husband Dan; 13 grandchildren, Noelle Young and husband Hassan, Lauren Rimestad, Karsten Rimestad, Landen and Braeden Rimestad, Kjersten Lance, Curtis Lance, Brianna Lance, Daenon Scobee and spouse Brian, Luke Westrum and wife Beth, Matthew Westrum, Dominick Raedeke, and Simone Raedeke; and six great-grandchildren. He was preceeded in death by his parents and siblings. The family prefers memorials to Peace Lutheran Church in Dresser, Wis.
Susan Wilson Robinson, of Minneapolis, beloved mother, wife, sister, daughter, aunt, mentor, and coach, left her human form most peacefully on July 6, 2014. She was surrounded by her loving family, siblings, and mother, as well as the kind words, flowers, and love of all the people she’s touched over her 58 years of life on earth. She was born on June 14, 1956 in Eden Prairie, Minn., and attended Eden Prairie Public Schools. She went on to receive her bachelor’s in English and world literature from St. Olaf College. She worked for a number of years as a consultant for Wilson Learning Corporation, The Pecos River Learning Center, and on various projects with her father, Larry Wilson. Most recently, she worked in marketing at Owens Companies. Her life’s passion, however, was coaching. In addition to coaching her three kids in all their sports and adventures from the time each of them was born, she coached tennis at both Breck School and Orono High School. An athlete herself, who toured with the US Women’s Professional Ski Team, she believed in the ability of sports to teach lasting life lessons. You could often see her out on the tennis court, running around Lake of The Isles, or on the sideline of one of her kids’, biological or not, athletic events. Susie was preceded in death by her sister, Mary Kate Wilson, and father, Larry Wilson. Left to mourn for Susie are her husband, George Fulmore Robinson; children, Brandon Michael Robinson, Meghan Cecelia Robinson, and Katherine Anne Robinson; mother, Ann Nugent Wilson; siblings, Hersch Wilson, Bonnie Wilson, Patricia Wilson, Margaret Hesch, and Joseph Wilson; and a host of cousins, nieces, and nephews. In lieu of flowers, Susie has requested that guests make a donation to the American Cancer Society and/or the Livestrong Foundation.
Ann E. Rockwood, formerly of Newington, Conn., died Sept. 10, 2014, in Rochester, Minn. She was 93. Ann was a dietician for three decades at Hartford Hospital. She graduated from St. Olaf College in 1943 and obtained her master’s degree from the University of Minnesota in 1956. Early in her career she did an internship at Lincoln General Hospital in Nebraska before heading to Hartford. Ann moved back to Minnesota in 1997 to be closer to her family. She is survived by her, brother Bob Rockwood and wife Gen; eight nieces and nephews, including Lisa Rockwood Reichelt ’79 P ’03; and their spouses, children, and grandchildren.
Caroline “Norene” Kaasa Rod, 95, of Mason City, Iowa, died April 27, 2014 at the Muse Norris Hospice Inpatient Unit. Caroline Norene Kaasa was born May 29, 1918 in Worth County, Iowa, the eldest daughter of Oscar and Inger Sorbo Kaasa. She was baptized and confirmed at Sion Lutheran Church and graduated from Lake Mills High School in 1935. She attended St. Olaf College, graduating in 1939 with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry and math.
After college, she spent a year substitute teaching in the Lake Mills area. In the fall of 1940, she began teaching full-time in Le Center, Minn. From there she moved to Roland, Iowa, where she taught high school math, served as principal for one year, and coached one girls basketball game—they won. On April 24, 1944 Norene married Lt. Herbert L. Rod at Bergan Lutheran Church in Roland. To this union were born five children: Mary, David Rod ’71, Carolyn, Janice, and Martha. Norene continued teaching until Herb was discharged from the Army. Norene and Herb lived in Iowa City, Iowa and Ames, Iowa before moving to Mason City in 1950. Six years later, they returned to Iowa City while Herb did graduate work at the University of Iowa. From there they moved to Decorah, Iowa, where they spent nine memorable years. The family returned to Mason City in 1967, making their home on Kentucky Court for 34 years.
In her later years, Norene lived at Homestead Assisted Living, Cornerstone Assisted Living, and Good Shepherd Health Center. Norene was a longtime member of Trinity Lutheran Church, a faithful worker at the annual bazaar, and an active participant in women’s groups. For several years, she served as financial recording secretary for the church. Norene was skilled at sewing, knitting, and needlework, creating many beautiful items for family and friends. She was an excellent cook and baker, best known for her kringla and pies. She enjoyed reading, writing letters, and spending time drinking coffee with friends and family. She and Herb travelled to all 48 continental states during their 57 year marriage.
Norene was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, her daughter Mary, her sister Olga, four nephews, a niece, and many friends. Norene is survived by four of her children, David, Carolyn, Janice, and Martha; her sister, Ina; three grandchildren, Charlie and wife Kristen, Joel, and Emily Rod; two great-grandchildren, Caroline and Erick Rod; several nieces and nephews; and special pets, Buffie and Truffie.
*Alfred Roe died on June 14, 2014, after a long illness, in his home in Oceanside, Calif. Al was the fifth of eight children. When he graduated from high school, he joined the Air Force. The Air Force soon learned that he could type, and so his service time was spent in clerical work in the United States and in Korea. At the time he was in Korea, his brother, Louis Roe ’56, and his brother-in-law, Chuck Carlson, were also there.
After his service in Korea ended, he enrolled in St. Olaf College. While a student there, he married Kathryn Reitan Roe ’56. He then earned a doctorate in history from the University of Minnesota. During these years as a student, his and Kathryn’s four sons were born.
He taught in Winona, Minn., until moving his young family in 1962 to Bellingham, Wash. There he taught at Western Washington State College, now Western Washington University. In 1967 he earned a Mellon Fellowship to study banking for a year at Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh. His first marriage ended and he relocated to California, where he began a second career working for San Diego County Social Services. He married Willa Mae Holbrook in 1980. She died in 2001.
He enjoyed all things that engaged his mind and he was an animated conversationalist. His treasured writings for his sisters and brothers and for his sons are his letters, often in the form of an eagerly awaited birthday letter, in topics and language that could be savored.
Two of his four sons – Steven and wife Mavis, and Larry were with him at the time of his death. Joining them very soon after his death were his son, Philip, and his niece, Karen Jacobson. His fourth son, Theo, died in 2012
Al is survived by his three sons, Steven, Larry, and Philip; three daughters-in law; six grandchildren; three sisters, Margaret Roe Vernon ’45, Katherine Roe Jacobson ’45, and Charlotte Roe ’57 and husband Jerome Narveson ’57; one brother, Louis Roe ’56; and nieces and nephews, including Elizabeth Roe ’90, Kari Roe ’92, William Vernon ’79, David Vernon ’79, Anne Jacobson Robertson ’83, Karl Jacobson ’92, Gregory Steenson ’87 and wife Claire Colliander ’88, and Daniel Steenson ’83 P ’18. He was preceded in death by his wife, Willa; parents, Ludwig Roe ’12 and Alpha Larson Roe ’16; and siblings, Elizabeth Roe Carlson ’43 P ’68, and Ellen Roe Schultze ’47.
*Dean K. Roe, of Brookfield, Wis., was born into eternal life May 24, 2014, surrounded by his loving family, at the age of 85. Dean was born in Stanley, Wis. to the late Bernard and Anita Kromery Roe, and attended Stanley High School. At age 17, Dean enlisted in the U.S. Army and served in the WWII Army of Occupation in Japan and Korea. He returned to attend St. Olaf College. After college, he earned a Master’s Degree in Hospital Administration at the University of Minnesota. Upon graduation, he was the associate administrator for Fairview Hospital in Minneapolis, where he met his wife, Carol Smiley ’56. Dean then joined the staff of the Milwaukee Psychiatric Hospital as administrator and after 10 years, became the first president and CEO of Froedtert Hospital in 1970. He retired in 1993. Dean was active in professional, community, and church boards and organizations. He delighted in all of his children and grandchildren’s accomplishments. His activities included golf at Westmoor and in Arizona, and travel with his wife and family. The family wishes to thank his caring medical and hospice staff.
Devoted husband of Carolfor over 57 years, beloved father of Michael Roe ’80, the late Laurie E. Schrubbe, Kristin R. Gibbons, and Jonathan D. Roe, loving grandfather of Jennifer Dzemske, Lisa Baier, Daniel Schrubbe, Sara Schrubbe, Maggie Roe, Justin Gibbons, Shannon Gibbons, Catherine Roe, and Charley Roe, great-grandfather of Rose, Thomas and Lily, brother of deceased Pat Brown, Karen Roe Mulrine ’85, and brother-in-law of John Smiley. He will be greatly missed by many other relatives and friends.
Lillian Krogh Roe, age 97, of Niskayuna, N.Y., passed away on Dec. 31, 2014 in the comfort of her home. She had four great passions in her life: church, music, gardening, and her family. She was born to Lutheran missionaries, Johan Krogh and Ida Enger Krogh in Fort Dauphin, Madagascar. When she was five years old, her father became a minister in Little Falls, Minn., where Lillian played the organ during services. As an adult, she was an active member of Union Presbyterian Church in Schenectady, N.Y. for over 50 years, and became an elder in that church. Lillian graduated with a music major from St. Olaf College, where she sang in the chorus and played piano, viola, and baritone horn. After graduation, she taught music in Sauk Center, Minn., and later, in the Niskayuna and Shenendahowa, N.Y. public schools. She served as president of the Etude Club and sang with the Saratoga-Potsdam Chorus. Of all her musical accomplishments, she was most proud of starting Orff music instruction for elementary students at Shenendehowa schools. She extended her Orff expertise to the Union Presbyterian Church, serving as the founder in 1974 and director of the Orff Consort for 38 years. To join music and faith, she set about each year to create and arrange music that could enhance the church services. At the age of 96, she started an Orff ensemble at First Reformed Church. An enthusiastic and gregarious gardener, Lillian was active for years in the Greenhouse and Indoor Plant Association and the Garden Explorers Club. She became a certified master gardener and has passed along many plants, as well as her love of plants, to family members and many garden friends. Love of her family, both immediate and extended, has been a major theme throughout Lillian’s life. She met her future husband, Glenn Roe ’38, at St. Olaf College, and they married in 1942. They both were proud of their Norwegian heritage and traditions. Reunions with the families of her sisters, Helenor Krogh Larson ’37 and husband Frank and Jeannette Krogh Severtson ’40 and husband Murley Severtson ’41, were so important to her, as were the large reunions of the Roe clan. She was a loving mother to her son, David Roe ’71, and his wife, Carol. She was especially fond of telling her friends all about her granddaughters, Maren Arling and husband Joe and Kerry Schaffer and husband Joe. Survivors include her sister, Jeanette; son, David; granddaughters; and brothers-in-law, Paul Roe ’51 P ’77 ’79 ’82 ’85 ’88 and wife Donna Vibber Roe ’52 P ’77 ’79 ’82 ’85 ’88 and Edward Roe ’52 P ’78 ’83 and wife Charlotte Straub Roe ’54 P ’78 ’83. She was preceded in death by her husband and sister Helenor. A special thanks to the Volans family and to the Community Hospice of Schenectady for their loving and compassionate care. The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations in her memory may be made to Opportunity Village in Clear Lake, Iowa.
*Arvid Ronning, of Stanwood, Wash., passed peacefully into God’s eternal home, on May 25, 2014, after a long struggle with dementia. Arvid was born at his parents’ farm home in eastern Montana, to Svend and Katie Ronning. He and his three younger siblings, Avis, Kennet, and Sonja, plus a couple of neighbors, attended the Lamar Country School located on his parents’ property. Arvid graduated from Bainville, Mont. High School in 1954. While a student at St. Olaf College, he took the opportunity to attend the International Summer School in Oslo, Norway. His experiences in Norway that summer greatly enlarged his appreciation for his Norwegian heritage, especially since he had learned to speak Norwegian at home as a child. He received a B.S. degree in biology in 1958 and was a Phi Beta Kappa scholar.
Having decided to become a physician, he applied for an assistantship at the University of South Dakota Medical School in Vermillion, S.D., and spent three years there teaching anatomy, doing medical research, and finishing his first two years of medical school. From there, he went to the University of Washington Medical School in Seattle, receiving his M.D. degree in June 1963. He loved beautiful Seattle, did his medical internship at the US Public Health Hospital, continued on as a physician there, and also joined the Coast Guard. He spent the early summer of 1965 aboard the Kukui, on a mission to the South Pacific.
Arvid married his love and soul-mate, Connie Berg, on Aug. 8, 1965. Five children were born to them– Svend, Arnold, Erik, Sonja, and Olen. Arvid joined the staff of Group Health Cooperative of Puget Sound in 1966, enjoying a huge practice. He also purchased a farm near Stanwood, moving the family there in 1979. Arvid had many talents and was active in church, Scandinavian, and community groups. He and his family performed many Scandinavian musical programs, for which he sewed bunads for the children and later for in-laws, and served as the family MC. A highlight was performing for King Olaf V of Norway in Poulsbo in 1975. He spent his last 10 months at Ashley Gardens of Mt. Vernon, Wash., and received excellent compassionate care from all the staff.
Arvid is survived by wife and children, as well as three grandchildren, Ava, Kristen, and Andreas; sisters, Avis and Sonja; sister-in-law, LaVonne; plus numerous nieces, nephews, cousins, and many friends. He was preceded in death by his brother, Kennet, and nephews, Brian and Larry.
Memorial gifts may be given to “Doctors Without Borders” in New York, or to the charity of choice.
*Vernon Rood, businessman, lay minister, and World War II veteran, of Sparta, Wis., died of heart failure in Viroqua, Wis. on Aug. 24, 2014. He was 87.
Vernon Leroy Rood was born in Bode, Iowa on April 4, 1927 to Joseph and Alice Larson Rood. His first job was as a paperboy, and when he graduated from Bode High School in 1944, he received a “Des Moines Register” scholarship. With this scholarship, he attended Buena Vista College in Iowa for one year. While there, he played on the varsity basketball team.
In early 1945, Vernon enlisted in the U.S. Navy. After basic training, he was stationed in San Francisco, where he remained in the service for some months before and after the end of WWII. Vernon had an excellent tenor voice, and he sang in the Bluejacket Choir in the Navy. He maintained his love of singing throughout his life.
Vernon attended St. Olaf College, where he graduated with a B.A. degree in economics in 1949. While at St. Olaf, he met his future wife, Marilyn “Joyce” Neperud Rood ’49. They were married in 1948, and over the next few years, they had four children, all of whom were educated in the Sparta public schools. Vernon and Joyce celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary in 2008.
Rood worked in the business community of Sparta for over half a century, beginning in 1954 as accountant and office manager for Hiawatha Valley Dairies Cooperative. In 1961, he left that job to start his own accounting firm. While supporting a family of six on his accountant’s income, he saved up, with difficulty, $1,000.
Starting with only that $1,000, Vernon bought the Willgrubs’s ice business. The ice business served as collateral and provided the site for the construction of the motel that he envisioned. Along with a business partner, Vernon built Heritage Motel in 1968. Until its demolition in 2005, it was one of the premier motels in Sparta.
In 1968, Vernon accepted a position as Head of Accounts Receivable with the RCA Corporation in Indianapolis. He moved his family to Indiana and remained there until 1984, when he moved back to Sparta. While in Indiana, he acquired two 60-unit motels. In 1994, he acquired the defunct Kamp Dakota campground in Oakdale, and over several years he built it up into a going concern, which became ultimately a KOA franchise.
Vernon’s business formula was to buy run-down businesses and to build them up into profitable enterprises. Together with his wife Joyce and his son Bill, they provided clean, comfortable, well-maintained rooms and camping sites, together with friendly, courteous service. They were known also for their fair and generous treatment of their employees, for which the governing rule was: “Treat your employees with respect.”
Vernon also served the Sparta business community in a variety of posts, including as president of the local Jaycees. In 1960, the Jaycees voted him the outstanding young businessman for that year. In that same year, he and the Jaycees welcomed Robert Kennedy to Sparta, who at that time was campaigning for his brother John Kennedy in the Wisconsin presidential primary. A photo of Rood, Kennedy, and other Sparta business leaders survives from that occasion.
Vernon was a long-time member of Trinity Lutheran Church, where he served in a number of posts, including Sunday School teacher and superintendent, and as a member of the church council. As a Sunday School teacher, he was dynamic and inspiring. One of his students, David Meissner, later credited Vernon’s teaching with influencing his decision to become a Lutheran minister.
In later years, Vernon gave numerous Sunday morning talks at Christian congregations in the western Wisconsin area on behalf of the Gideons. Eventually, he received training in jail ministry, and he worked as a Gideon lay minister in the Monroe County jail.
Vernon was a lifelong member of the Republican Party, and he served as president of the Monroe County Republicans.
A stroke at age 78 forced Vernon to retire and to sell his businesses. Although in the years after his stroke he was increasingly wheelchair-bound, his mind remained sharp. As always, he was supported by his optimistic outlook and his strong religious faith. He was always quick to smile, joke, and laugh.
Vernon is survived by his four children, Vernon “Paul” Rood ’71 and wife Margaret Goergen-Rood ’72, Darcy Massof and friend Steven Engh, Nancy Goodman and husband Mark, and William Rood; six grandchildren, Joseph Rood and wife Sarah, Julia Rood ’07, Eric Massof, Allison Massof, Natalie Goodman, and James Goodman; and a brother and sister-in-law, Richard and Judy Rood. He was preceded in death by his parents; his brothers Joseph, Orville, and Wilford; and his sister, Erma. His wife of 60 years, Joyce Neperud Rood, died in 2009.
In lieu of flowers, please send memorials in his name to The Gideons International in Nashville, Tenn.
James Arthur Rotramel, long-time Parkrose educator from Portland, Ore., passed away Nov. 20, 2014, from complications following surgery. He was born Aug. 2, 1930 in Morris, Minn. to Lila and Charles Rotramel. He graduated from Morris High School in 1948, and in 1952 received a B.A. from St. Olaf College, where he was a three-year starter in football. He received his M.S. from Oregon State in 1963 and married Susan Robertson in Portland in 1967.
Jim taught science and coached in Franklin, Minn. ’52-’54, and Dayton, Ore. ’54-’56. He spent the next 35 years of his career as a teacher, coach, and administrator in the Parkrose district, serving as athletic director at the high school from 1967 until his retirement in 1991. His leadership in athletic administration was felt at the state as well as district levels. He helped promote soccer, girls’ basketball, and coed gymnastic programs before they were official Oregon School Activities Association sports. Jim was a past President of the Oregon High School Coaches Association and served as first President of the Oregon Athletic Directors Association ’69-’70. He was inducted into the organization’s Hall of Fame in 2011. The OADA has presented a Jim Rotramel Service Award in his honor annually to an athletic director who exemplifies the profession with a life-long commitment to serving youth.
Sue and Jim welcomed their sons James Rotramel ’92 in 1969 and Timothy in 1971. They celebrated the marriage of James to Charissa Hanson in 2011. Lila W. Rotramel arrived in 2012, affording Jim the long-awaited chance to be a proud grandfather.
Jim and Sue raised their family in Portland’s Argay neighborhood. Jim enjoyed traveling and spending time at their home in Manzanita, Ore. He cherished his church and taught a weekly Bible study there for over 20 years. He was devoted to friends from Parkrose and kept close contact with high school pals and college teammates he first met over 60 years ago. He loved bringing people together: organizing parties, planning and attending reunions, Sunday night suppers with the family. His family was his pride and his joy.
He was predeceased by his parents and by his brother, Robert Rotramel. He is survived by his devoted wife, Sue; sons, Jim and wife Charissa, and Tim; granddaughter, Lila; and his brother, William Rotramel ’50.
Donations may be made in Jim’s memory to Faithful Savior Lutheran Church, specifying “Family Fun Day Project.”
Margaret Sandberg Ryberg, of Wauwatosa, Wis., died at age 94 on Dec. 5, 2014. Margaret Emily Sandberg was born April 19, 1920 in Pine City, Minn., to Hilma and Arthur Sandberg. Her father died shortly after her birth, and Hilma and Margaret, with the help of her four Swedish grandparents and many loving aunts, uncles, and adored cousins, made their way living in several small Minnesota communities, including Esko and Cloquet. Margaret graduated from St. Olaf College at age 20 and moved to New York, where she graduated from Columbia University with a master of social work degree in 1942. She worked in adoption placement for Lutheran Social Services in Manhattan and Brooklyn, N.Y. In 1949, Margaret married Ralph Ryberg at Holy Trinity Church in New York. They moved to Chicago, where he completed theology school. In their nearly six decades together, Ralph served congregations in Chicago; Ft. Wayne, Ind.; Columbus, Ohio; Anna and Mt. Morris, Ill.; Milwaukee; Pembroke Pines, Fla.; and Janesville, Wis.. Margaret raised their children and pursued her social work career when she could, including several years with Milwaukee Public Schools. Her children realize that had she been born in a later time, Margaret would have combined motherhood and an impressive career with great ease and enthusiasm. Margaret Emily Sandberg Ryberg will be remembered by her family and friends as an intelligent, discerning, kind, and truly gracious person of unwavering faith and good will. She was preceded in death by her husband of 57 years, the Rev. Ralph Ryberg. She was much beloved by her three surviving children: Eric Ryberg, Christine Scotton and husband James, and Jon Ryberg and wife Sally Truitt. She and Ralph lost their beloved youngest child Karen, who died at age 30 in 1990. She was the adored grandmother of Amanda Ryberg-Catlin and husband Todd, Kyle Ryberg and fiancé Alicia Zumpino, Rob, Kristin, and Jonny Ryberg, and Tony Scotton; dear great-grandmother of Adeleine, Brinn, and Ellie Catlin, and Genevieve Cecchinelli; cherished aunt of Sandra McMillian and Patricia Aslan; dear cousin of Jenalda Ranum; and beloved friend of Sally Burke. The family wants to thank Margaret’s longtime physician Dr. Daniel Jankins for his ability to see and treat our mother as the dignified and intelligent person she was. She appreciated his honesty and his humor, even as they sparred. We also will never forget the compassion and kindness given to Margaret by Luther Manor’s RCAC team, led by nurses Kim Dobernig and Mike Fortin. They and their team of aides offered Margaret highly skilled assistance, delivered with affection and good cheer for several years. We appreciate the wonderfully warm and professional staffs of Froedtert Hospital, Floor 4NE; and of Luther Manor Hospice Care. And finally, to Luther Manor: What a remarkable place this was for both Ralph for the last two years of his life and for Margaret for a decade. Memorials to Redemption Lutheran Church, Wauwatosa, Wis.; Luther Manor; or Trinity Lutheran Chuch, Mt. Morris, Ill. would be appreciated.
Gerald L. Rygh, 85, of North Aurora, Ill., passed away July 5, 2014. He was born Oct. 24, 1928 in Des Moines, Iowa, son of the late Lars and Leah Rygh. Following graduation from East High School in Des Moines, he attended St. Olaf College (class of 1950), and Luther Theological Seminary (class of 1954), after which he was ordained June 6, 1954. Rev. Rygh later earned a doctorate from Luther Theological Seminary in 1982.
Pastor Rygh served parishes in Milwaukee, Chicago, St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Aurora, Ill., and following his retirement, as an assistant pastor at Our Savior Lutheran Church in Aurora. He also served for the past nine years as the Aurora Fire Department Chaplain. At the time of his death, he was a member and Pastor Emeritus at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church. He was committed to his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and was able to touch countless lives by showing genuine kindness, concern, and compassion to all.
He is survived by his wife, Maybelle “May” Sampson, whom he married the same year he was ordained and has just celebrated 60 years of marriage with; children, David Rygh ’78 and wife Sharon, Paul Rygh and wife Patti, and Rebekah Lehman and husband John S.; grandchildren, Leah Bohr and husband Doug, Nathan Rygh, Luke Rygh, Daniel Rygh, Kenny Rygh, Katy Rygh, Marin Lehman, Brynn Lehman, Jillian Lehman, and Anya Lehman; great-grandchildren, Avery Rygh, Odin Rygh, Ben, Evan, and Ellie Bohr; and his golden doodle, Charlie. Along with his parents, he was preceded in death by his brothers, Leonard and Malvin Rygh.
Memorials may be made to St. Mark’s Lutheran Church or Danny McCue Aurora Firefighters Scholarship Endowment Fund, c/o Community Foundation of the Fox River Valley in Aurora.
*Eric Ian Saffell, of Colorado Springs, Colo., entered Eternal Life on April 26, 2014, with his wife, Joyce Hanagan, and one of First Lutheran Church’s pastors, Mark Patzke, at his side. Eric was born Nov. 5, 1947, in Richland Center, Wis., to Carroll Saffell ’36, a music store owner, and Naomi Louse Saffell, a homemaker. He was the oldest of four children. Eric was a member of St. John’s Lutheran Church in Richland Center, Wis., where his family worshipped; he was baptized in 1947 and confirmed in 1960. He grew up in a musical environment and began taking piano lessons at his father’s music store at the age of six. By age 13, he was playing organ for St. John’s Lutheran Church in Richland Center under the direction of his father, a choir director. He served as organist for the church until he graduated from high school high, and his love of organ music continued throughout his life. Eric was active in the Boy Scouts of America, achieving the rank of Eagle Scout in Troop 81, and earning the highest scout honor provided by the Lutheran church, the Pro Dei et Patria. He attended Richland Center schools and graduated from Richland Center High School in 1965.
Eric attended St. Olaf College and was a member of the St. Olaf Orchestra. The highlight of his years at St. Olaf was traveling with the orchestra for a concert tour of Norway. He graduated in 1969 with a bachelor of arts in music education. On Sept. 18, 1969, Eric enlisted in the U.S. Air Force and completed basic training at Lackland Air Force Base. On Nov. 6, 1969, Eric arrived at the USAF Academy, where he served as an instrumentalist in the Academy Band, playing tuba and keyboards for 20 years and five months. During his Academy career, he was keyboardist for the Falconaires, Blue Steel, and Moods in Blue bands; leader of the Peregrine and Blue Steel bands; tuba in the Academy marching band; musician in the production of “Zorba the Greek”; as well as copyist, arranger, and instrument repairman. He also traveled to the Azores with the small concert band in 1973. During Eric’s military career, he received the Air Force Training Ribbon, Longevity Service Award Ribbon with four bronze oak leaf clusters, the National Defense Service Medal, the Good Conduct Medal with one silver oak leaf cluster, the Organizational Excellence Award, and the Outstanding Unit Award with one bronze leaf cluster. Eric retired from the Air Force in 1990.
Following retirement, Eric joined the Broadmoor Trio. He also taught private piano, gave brass workshops in area schools, and often accompanied students performing in solo and ensemble music festivals. Eric had a gift for working with children as teacher and as accompanist. Additionally, Eric was one of the founding members of the Fountain Creek Brass Band. He played tuba and served as the band librarian. He was involved in the local casual music scene as well. As a piano soloist and as a member of the Springs Band, Western Band, and One More Shot, Eric performed at the Garden of the Gods Club and many other local venues. He also played keyboard with other groups on a more casual basis. He was a member of the Air Force Musicians Association, and co-founder with Joyce Hanagan of the St. Andrew’s Episcopal Recital Series in Manitou Springs. Eric and Joyce met while playing in the pit orchestra for a show at the Fine Arts Center. They became friends with many common interests; music, of course, hiking, camping, travel, opera, and attending classical and rock concerts. They were married on July 26, 2001.
Eric loved everything about music. When he wasn’t playing, he spent time composing and arranging. He was also interested in the history of Rock and Roll, spending time researching the subject and on occasion was a guest lecturer for rock and roll history in college level music history courses. Beyond music, Eric read extensively about the Civil War, the history of World War II, and local history, and wrote several novellas that reflected these interests. He was a train enthusiast, enjoying model trains, historical trains, and train rides. Also an avid outdoorsman, Eric enjoyed hiking, snowshoeing, and motorcycling. He loved travel, taking numerous trips to visit family and friends in Wisconsin, San Antonio, Texas, and Washington, DC. He toured Germany and Austria with his father in 1997 and traveled to Mexico and Belize with Joyce in 2003. His dream of seeing Scotland was fulfilled when Joyce and Rebecca joined him on a trip there in 2006.
In 2007, Eric became seriously ill and endured a lengthy hospitalization. His determination to recover was motivated by the desire to play again with fellow musicians. He felt blessed to have had this time for music, friends, and to be with his family. In early in 2013, Eric´s health began a steady decline until he was admitted to Penrose Hospital on March 31, 2014.
Eric was kind and generous, a great friend to many. He was a gifted, passionate musician and a gentle yet insistent teacher. He faced the many challenges in his life with strength and great courage. A devoted husband and father, he deeply loved his family.
Eric is survived by sisters, Ann Brewer and Karen Saffell, and their families; wife, Joyce; daughter, Tara McCraw; and step-daughter, Rebecca Atkinson. He was preceded in death by his brother, David; parents; and aunt, Ruth Saffell Westland ’44 and husband Robert.
In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate contributions in Eric’s name to the Memorial Fund of First Lutheran Church, Fountain Creek Brass Band, or a charity of your choice.
Word has been received that Carol Reep Salvatore passed away on Dec. 24, 1999. She is survived by her daughter, Anne Salvatore Carpenter ’72 and husband John, and granddaughter Erin Carpenter Weiser ’97 and husband Christopher.
*Albert Collin Samuelson, age 94, of Cottage Grove, Minn., died Sept. 28, 2014.
Born Nov. 12, 1919 in Elgin, Ill., Albert grew up in the Chicago area. He graduated from St. Olaf College and also earned an MBA at the University of Illinois. In 1941 he married Jeanlyn Gunderson Samuelson ’40, to whom he remained married until her death earlier in 2014.
Albert started his career as an accountant for Arthur Andersen, LLC, then went to Ford Motor Company, and finally to Skelly Oil Company in Tulsa, Okla., where he became Financial Vice President. He was listed in “Who’s Who in America,” active in the Lutheran church, and also a WWII veteran. He retired to Colorado Springs, Colo..
He is survived by his children, Dr. Stephen Samuelson, John Samuelson, and Dr. Mary Kristin Samuelson; grandchildren, Derek, Nic, Holly Samuelson ’10 and husband Cody Venzke ’10, Leslie, Robert, and Janine; and two great-grandchildren.
James E. Sandum, of Wayzata, Minn., died at the age of 76 on Nov. 5, 2014, surrounded by his loving family. He was the husband of Lois “Aggie” Stoltenberg Sandum ’62 for almost 50 years and is survived by his two children: son, Per, and daughter, Nina Sandum McNally ’93 and husband Kevin; and grandchildren, Kelby and Beckham. He will forever be remembered by his many nieces and nephews, including Steven Sperling ’80, Suzanne Moore Greer ’90, and Rachel Sandum Tune ’82 P ’17, and extended family. He was preceded in death by his parents, Howard and Gladys; brother, Howard Sandum ’51 and wife Evangeline Olson Sandum ’53; sisters, Avis Sperling and Beatrice Sandum Moore ’58; father-in-law, Jerome Stoltenberg ’36; sister-in-law, Mary Stoltenberg Tollefson ’65 P ’90 ’92 ’97 and husband Dennis Tollefson ’61 P ’90 ’92 ’97; and niece, Kyrie. Memorials can be made to Camp Knutson or Westwood Foundation.
Geneva Ileen Lilleskov Schenk, age 96, of Minneapolis, died Jan 10, 2014. She was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Frederick Schenk ’38, and her infant brother, Harold. She is survived by her daughter, Kathryn Schenk; son-in-law, Allan Mahnke; sister, Eleanor Gallagher; and beloved friends in the Central Lutheran Floral Guild. The family gives special thanks to the staff at Walker Methodist Health Center for her remarkable care. Her dear roommate, Marion Engman, was a special blessing. Memorials are preferred to the Walker Methodist Foundation-spiritual care, or the Central Lutheran Church Foundation.
Delphine G. Kiphuth Schleif, age 91, of Buffalo, Minn., passed away on Oct. 16, 2014 at The Buffalo Hospital. She was born on Feb. 16, 1923 in Buffalo, the daughter of John and Emma Splittstozer Kiphuth. Delphine was baptized and confirmed at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Hanover, Minn. Delphine graduated from nursing school at Fairview in 1944.
On May 12, 1945, Delphine Kiphuth and Vincent Schleif were joined in holy marriage at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Hanover. God blessed their marriage with a son, John Schleif ’68. Delphine and Vincent lived on the Kiphuth homestead between Hanover and Rockford, Minn. for many years prior to moving to Buffalo.
Delphine was formerly employed at The Buffalo Hospital for many years in the Med Surgical Unit and the OB Department. She was a faithful, lifelong member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Hanover.
Delphine is survived by a son, John V. Schleif; nieces; nephews; cousins; and many friends. She was preceded in death by her husband, Vincent, and by her parents, John and Emma Kiphuth.
Memorials are preferred to St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Hanover or St. Olaf College.
Ila was born on Dec. 6, 1919 in Worth County, Iowa, the daughter of Iver and Jennie Johnson Iverson. She attended and graduated from Northwood High School and then St. Olaf College and Nurses Training at Fairview Hospital in Minneapolis. Ila entered the US Army Nurses Corp shortly after, where she was stationed in Salina, Kan., Australia, and the Philippine Islands After her discharge Ila moved back to Freeborn County and started her career at Naeve Hospital as the nurses night supervisor. On Nov. 3, 1973 Ila was united in marriage to Dr. Ruben Schmidt at the Silver Lake Lutheran Church. She enjoyed sewing, embroidery, counted cross stitch, making quilts, photography, gardening, and her study club. Ila’s friends and her step-grandchildren gave her much happiness. She was a member of the Women’s Veterans of Minn., Freeborn County Women in Service, a life member of the Red Cross, the retired Nurses and Naeve Hospital Auxiliary, the National WWII Memorial, and the American Legion. She was a member of Silver Lake Lutheran Church and Redeemer Lutheran Church.
Ila is survived by her step-children, Rebecca Schmidt Taibl ’70 and husband Glenn, Rachel Schmidt Bhattacharyya ’72, and David Kim Schmidt and wife Margaret; step-grandchildren, Erika Taibl ’98 and husband Andrew Wilkowske, Rita Bhattacharyya, Nina Bhattacharyya, Isaac Schmidt, Aaron Schmidt, and Jay Bhattacharyya; step-great-grandchildren, Annika Maj and Jackson Christopher Wilkowske; nephews, Stuart and wife Alice, Keith and wife Janet, Iver Iverson ‘74, James and wife Jorene, Peter, and Jim Iverson; nieces, Dorothy Burtness and husband Hamlin, Sharon Bornfleth, Jane Howland, Lucy Howland and husband Jack, Gennell Iverson, Margaret Iverson, and Janell Iverson; and many great-nieces and nephews.
Ila was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Dr. Ruben Schmidt; brothers, E. Sophus Iverson and wife Tena, Simon Iverson and wife Gertrude, Jay Iverson and wife Agnes, and Kermit Iverson and wife Helen; niece, Sylvia Iverson; and nephews, Paul, Loren, Mark, and Jon Iverson.
Memorials preferred to the Redeemer Lutheran Church 2013 Property Project Fund, the Redeemer Lutheran Endowment Fund, or the donor’s choice.
*Daniel S. Schoeneman, age 74, of Albert Lea, Minn., died Sept. 10, 2014, in Owatonna, Minn. He was born Nov. 30, 1939, in Hutchinson, Minn., to Rufus and Leora Tollefson Schoeneman. Daniel was a graduate Owatonna High Class of 1958. He received an undergrad degree from St. Olaf College, where he met the love of his life, Lois Christensen Schoeneman ’62; they were married Oct. 25, 1965. He received his DDS degree from the University of Minnesota. He served the U.S. Army for two years in Fort Irwin, Calif. He raised his family and practiced dentistry in Albert Lea for 38 years. Dan will be lovingly remembered for his contagious smile and gift of conversation. He was a passionate outdoorsman and adventure seeker. Daniel is survived by his wife, Lois; son, Michael Schoeneman ’88 and wife Diane Wallner Schoeneman; daughter, Kristen Schoeneman Thurber ’91 and husband Matthew Thurber ’91; grandsons, David and Daniel Schoeneman; brother John Schoeneman; and brother-in-law, Gary Christensen ’65 and wife Anne Iverson Christensen ’65. In lieu of flowers, memorials suggested to Leukemia and Lymphoma Society or donor’s choice.
*Burnell W. Schubbe, 84, passed away peacefully with his family by his side on Jan. 9, 2015, in Sarasota, Fla. Bernie was born on July 2, 1930, to Herman and Lilah Schubbe in Blue Earth County, Minn. Farm life was not for Bernie so after high school, Bernie attended and graduated from St. Olaf College. He then served four years in the U.S. Navy as an officer and navigator on a Destroyer during the Korean Conflict. In 1956, Bernie was hired by the Kimberly-Clark Corp. He was a Senior VP of Human Resources and was employed there for 36 years, mainly in the Neenah, Wis. area.
Bernie met his first wife, Betty DeMoulin, in the choir at First English Lutheran Church in Appleton, Wis. They were married for 30 years until Betty’s passing in 1987. In 1989, Bernie married high school classmate Vivian Hislop-Pettit. They spent their time between Mankato, Minn. and Sarasota, Fla. Bernie and Viv enjoyed traveling, golf, church activities, and the warm Florida sunshine.
His parents, his sister, Bonita Mensing, and his first wife, Betty, preceded Bernie in death. Bernie is survived by his wife, Vivian; a daughter, Anne Schubbe Wegge ’85 and husband Tom; sons, Phil Schubbe, Dr. Peter Schubbe and wife Jackie, and Drs. John and Amy Schubbe; grandchildren, Morgan, Calvin, Hope, Sam, Charlie, and Lizzie; as well as many cousins, nieces, nephews, brothers, and sisters-in law. His mother-in-law Rachel Dumke also survives him.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorial contributions be sent to Beauford United Methodist Church, Mapleton, Wis.
Flora “Flo” Skaar Schulz, 73, of Bismarck, S.D., died June 11, 2014, at St. Alexius Medical Center, Bismarck, with family and friends by her side. Flo was born in Bismarck on May 11, 1941, the daughter of Nels and Florence Skaar. Following graduation from Bismarck High School in 1959, she attended St. Olaf College and graduated from the University of North Dakota, with a degree in elementary education. After performing with the Bismarck High School choir in Colorado Springs, Colo., she decided that was where she wanted to live. She was fortunate to receive a first-grade teaching position in Colorado Springs from 1963-66. She continued her teaching career in Santa Clara, Calif.
She married Dennis Schulz in 1968, moved back to her home town of Bismarck, and continued her teaching career at Highland Acres Elementary. Her son Jeff was born in 1970 and son Brad was born in 1973. Flo decided to stay home with her children for the next 10 years. After her children were in school, Flo returned to teaching first grade at both Roosevelt and Will-Moore, retiring in 2000. She always felt so blessed to have been in a career where she enjoyed going to work every day.
Flo enjoyed being with her children and attending their activities. She had a passion for teaching, loved playing bridge, spent hours ice skating, and was involved with her music. At Trinity Lutheran Church, she was active in Mother’s Club, served on the Board of Parish Education, taught Sunday school and music, and accompanied the Cherub Choir for 15 years. She was also active in Bible Study groups at both Trinity Lutheran and Charity Lutheran. Her faith was very important in her life and she lived her faith each day.
In her retirement, she volunteered at the Trinity Lutheran Banquet, Papa’s Pumpkin Patch, and numerous other volunteer jobs. She also enjoyed playing bridge, dancing, music, and travel. Flo and Dennis traveled to Alaska, China, South America, the Panama Canal, and numerous other locations. She also enjoyed organizing class reunions, family reunions, and wherever else she could use her talents. For the past several years, Dennis and Flo have wintered in Mesa, Ariz. In 2012, they purchased a home in Trilogy, at Power Ranch, Gilbert, Ariz. It was then that Flo took up playing Pickleball and developed an absolute passion for the game. She played almost every day throughout the winter and returned to Bismarck this spring, where she continued playing the game three times a week.
She is survived by her husband, Dennis; her sons, Jeff and Brad; her sister, Jan; her brother, Don; her niece, Angie; and nephews, Scott and Paul. She was preceded in death by her parents, Nels and Florence Skaar; her brother, Dean; and sister, Linda.
Memorials may be sent to Neighbors Network in Bismarck, N.D.
Steven R. Seidel, 62, a resident of Houghton, Mich., passed away on the morning of June 26, 2014, at home. He was born on July 31, 1951 in Evanston, Ill., a son of the late Roland and Natalie Gatzke Seidel. Steven was raised in Des Plaines, Ill. and Kankakee, Ill. After graduating from Westview High School, Steven earned a B.A. in mathematics from St. Olaf College. He went on to complete a Ph.D. from the University of Iowa in computer science. Dr. Seidel began his teaching career at Virginia Commonwealth University. In 1984, he joined the faculty at Michigan Technological University. He retired as a professor this past March. On Jan. 5, 1974, he was united in marriage to Ellen Yurista Seidel ’73. Dr. Seidel was a member of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church of Houghton. He had many interests, including music and art, but truly enjoyed anything automotive and especially trains.
Survivors include his wife, Ellen; children, Hannah and Carl; grandchildren, Sophia, Eva, and Violet; brother, Charles; and an extended family of aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and cousins.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations be made to the Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Houghton; Doctors without Borders; or a charity of the donor’s choosing.
*Marvin Selnes, 80, of Sioux Falls, S.D., and formerly of Faulkton, SD, died July 12, 2014 at Dow-Rummel Village in Sioux Falls.
Marvin D. Selnes was born Dec. 10, 1933 in Aberdeen, S.D., the son of Jack and Jennie Mae Deady Selnes. In 1938, he moved with his family to Faulkton, S.D. where he received his education, graduating from Faulkton High School in 1951. He attended one year each at St. Olaf College and South Dakota State University in Brookings, S.D., prior to entering military service. In January of 1954, he entered the US Army and served at Ft Bliss, Texas until receiving his honorable discharge on Jan. 20, 1956. Upon his return from the Army, he furthered his education at Northern State University in Aberdeen, graduating with highest honors with a B.S. in education in 1957 and M.S. in education in 1958, with emphasis in science and math. He later attended summer school at the University of South Dakota in Vermillion, State College of Iowa in Cedar Falls, the University of Iowa in Iowa City, the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, and the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Wash.
On March 1, 1956, Marvin was united in marriage with Donna Finney, also of Faulkton, at First Methodist in Aberdeen. They moved to Sioux Falls in August 1958 after Marvin received his B.S. and M.S. degrees.
Marvin was very passionate about teaching, particularly teaching science. He served as a science teacher, department chairman, and athletic coach at Patrick Henry Junior High in Sioux Falls from 1958-1986. He was a chemistry teacher at Lincoln Senior High School from 1986-1991; was Science Supervisor for the Sioux Falls Schools from 1989-1992; and middle school science teacher from 1992-1998, when he finished at Patrick Henry, where his career began 40 years earlier. Marvin was a summer and night school math and science instructor for Augustana College, South Dakota State University, University of South Dakota, Northern State University, University of Arizona, University of Florida, and the University of Northern Iowa. In addition to teaching, he was a science textbook consultant and book and article writer and reviewer for several publishers. Marvin also officiated football and basketball games in the area and officiated at Howard Relays for many years.
Marvin was a member of the SFEA, which he served as president; SDEA; NEA; NSTA; the South Dakota Academy of Science, which he served as president; South Dakota Science Teachers Association, which he also served as president; South Dakota Coordinator for the National Energy Foundation; and the Association of Presidential Award Winners in Science Teaching. Marvin was also a member of Phi Delta Kappa.
Marvin received several teaching awards during his career. In April 1966, the Sioux Falls Jaycees named him the Outstanding Young Educator of Sioux Falls. He received the South Dakota Outstanding Physical Science Teacher Award in 1982. In 1983, the science inquiry program at Patrick Henry Junior High was honored as one of 40 of the best secondary science programs in the nation and Marvin was recognized as being responsible for that program. Many of his students entered science competitions and won more than their share of awards. An Executive Proclamation by William Janklow, South Dakota Governor named March 4, 1983 Marvin Selnes Day. This was prompted by one of his students requesting special recognition for his favorite teacher. From the proclamation: “…with special respect for an instructor who brings class into the classroom and puts fun back into fundamentals.” He received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science Teaching in 1984. In 1985, Marvin was awarded the 1985 Master Teacher Award from the South Dakota Academy of Science, NSF Consortium. On May 14, 1992 Marvin received the Thomas H. Brown Distinguished Service Medal from Minnehaha Masonic Lodge No. 5.
Marvin spent many hours volunteering. He was a Junior Hi-Y leader in Sioux Falls. A very active 4-H leader in Minnehaha County, he also served as 4-H camp counselor and superintendent of a 4-H exhibit building at the Sioux Empire Fair for many years and was very supportive of Minnehaha County 4-H Band, serving on the Band Committee and driving 4-H members to band practice and concerts. He was also a charter member of Apple Core of Siouxland and a member of First United Methodist Church in Sioux Falls, being involved in Christian education in various ways including teaching church school and serving as children’s co-coordinator. For most of his life Marvin also enjoyed photography. He took pictures for family get-togethers and church functions, with many photos selected for use in Methodist teacher’s guides, 4-H events, and at various other activities. During the early years of his retirement, Marvin volunteered at the Kirby Science Discovery Center at the Washington Pavilion.
Grateful for having shared his life are his son, Robert; his daughter, Pamela Selnes; his granddaughter, Becca Widmer and husband Kyle; and three great-grandchildren, Joe, Ella, and Holden. He was preceded in death by his wife, Donna, on Sept. 20, 2008; his brother Carol on March 10, 2008; and his parents.
The family requests that memorials be directed to science programs through the Sioux Falls Education Foundation. Please indicate “for science” in the memo field of your check.
Gwen Lee Sherrod of Boston, formerly of Paw Paw, Mich., died peacefully on Nov. 26, 2014 from complications of Parkinson’s disease. Gwen was born in Grand Forks, N.D. and raised in Bottineau, N.D. She earned her B.A. in chemistry at St. Olaf College. She spent many years teaching high school chemistry, first in Minnesota and then in Michigan. Although she ventured into other fields later in her career, it was her years teaching she looked back on most fondly. Gwen had a number of diverse interests. She was an avid reader and a music enthusiast, who enjoyed playing piano and organ. She wrote poetry and short stories, loved to cook, and could spend hours on end futzing with her computers. What Gwen cherished above all was her family and friends. She will be greatly missed by all those who loved her. She is survived by her son, Eric Sherrod; her daughter and son-in-law, Shea and Ben Asfaw; her four grandchildren, Shawntae and Darius Sherrod and Zere and Ella Asfaw; and her three great-grandchildren, Isaiah, Eli, and Alex Sherrod. She is preceded in death by her husband, Henry Sherrod, and her parents, Walter and Pearl Lee. In lieu of flowers, contributions in memory of Gwen can be made to the National Parkinson Foundation.
*John Sibole passed away April 13, 2014, in Tulsa, Okla. Born May 29, 1922, in Tulsa, he attended Osage, Lee, Horace Mann, and Central High School. Upon high school graduation, three comrades and he fulfilled a boyhood dream. They built a boat and traveled on the Arkansas and Mississippi Rivers from Tulsa to New Orleans—a 1200 mile trip–in 28 days. During WWII, he was a 2nd Lt. Bombardier. Following the war, he met Lois Larsen ’48 at St. Olaf College. After graduation, they were married in 1949. He worked for The Williams Companies in Human Resources for 33 years. He was the Choir Director at First Lutheran Church and also directed the Area Lutheran MESSIAH Presentation for 40 years. Presently a member of Joy Lutheran Church. In both churches, he was a Sunday School Teacher. He directed the men’s chorus at Joy Lutheran Church and also a men’s chorus at Inverness Village, his residence since 2003. He was also a volunteer at St. John Hospital.
Preceded in death by parents, Barton and Hildegarde Sibole; wife, Lois; and sister, Elizabeth. Survived by three sons, Steven, David, and Philip; Philip’s wife, Jill; four grandchildren, Stephanie, Natalie, Hillery, and Landon; and brother-in-law, Gustav Larsen ’50 and wife Eulalie Engen Larsen ’50. In lieu of flowers, friends may contribute to Joy Lutheran Church Organ Fund.
*Vincent Silverthorne, age 90, of Nashville, Tenn., died Nov. 23, 2013.
Born in Orfordville, Wis., Mr. Silverthorne graduated from the University of Minnesota and served as a Second Lieutenant in the Army Air Corp during World War II. In 1951 he married Katie Mai Beals of Nashville, Tenn. They were married for 51 years before her death in 2002.
Mr. Silverthorne was a financial planner and retired from Waddell & Reed after many years of service. He was a long time member of the Donelson-Hermitage Rotary Club and Hickory Bend United Methodist Church.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Jewel Sophia Onsgard and Harry F. Silverthorne; brother, Harry “Gus” Silverthorne ’39; and sisters, Ina Silverthorne Long ’29 and Carrie Silverthorne ’39. He is survived by several nieces and nephews, including Sandra Long ’65.
Memorial contributions may be made to Sycamores Terrace, Nashville or Guardian Hospice.
Joanne Anderson Simpson, of Yuma, Ariz., died on March 14, 2014, at 80 years of age. She was born and raised in Cromwell, Minn., and then later was an English teacher at the school and also the wife of former Lutheran pastor, William Simpson ’54. Survivors include her husband.
Palma Mark Sirr, of Cottage Grove, Minn., passed away at home on April 29, 2014. Formerly of Rice Lake, Wis., she was born Feb. 26, 1938. Polly was a graduate of St. Olaf College, with a B.A. in chemistry and mathematics, University of Wisconsin with an M.A. in mathematics education, and University of St. Thomas with an M.A. in gifted education. She worked as resource coordinator of gifted student services and retired from the Rosemount School District in 1996.
Polly was preceded in death by her parents, Louis and Vera Norwick Mark, and her first husband, Ray Burrows. She is survived by husband of 38 years, Robert Sirr; daughters, Susan Burrows ’91 and Ann Adkinson; and friend, Violet Imhof Meek ’60 and husband Don Dell. In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to All Saints Lutheran, Heifer International, or Friends In Need Food Bank.
*Norris Joseph Skogerboe, age 98, of Crystal, Minn., died peacefully at home on Dec. 27, 2014. He was a graduate of St. Olaf College, New York University Law School, where he also did graduate work in tax law, and the Pacific Gunnery School. He joined the Navy Dec. 8, 1941 and served until 1946, reaching the rank of Lt. Commander. He served two years at sea in the Pacific Ocean. He owned and ran a business in Venezuela for seven years, and practiced law in New York and later Minnesota until age 91. He was known to be good with horses, a lover of Labradors, an excellent wing shot, a great cook, and could get around in three languages. He had a quick mind and a strong will to the last day. He was preceded in death by his father, Rev Ananias Skogerboe, a Norwegian immigrant; his mother, Anna Grinde; his wife of 51 years, Elsa Westby Skogerboe ’40; sisters, Judith Skogerboe Hyland ’34 and husband Philip Hyland ’38, and Alpha Mork; and brother, Rudy Skogerboe, M.D. Norris was also preceded in death by his daughter, Jean Hansen; his son and law partner, David Skogerboe ’72; and a sister-in-law, E. Arona Olsted Skogerboe ’42. He is survived by his brother, Col. Arvid Skogerboe; sister-in-law, Pat Skogerboe; his son Rolf Skogerboe, M.D.; and daughters-in-law, Heather Skogerboe and Nancy Lange ’74. He is also survived by 12 grandchildren, including Peter Hansen ’97 and wife Michelle Boulay Hansen ’97, David Hansen ’06 and wife Lindsey Thoreson Hansen ’06, and Eric Skogerboe ’10; 20 great-grandchildren; and nieces and nephews, including Phyllis Hyland Larson ’69 P ’99, Ruth Hyland Forsythe ’73, Rebecca Hyland Heikenen ’75 and husband Charles Heikenen ’73, and Lois Hyland Sonstegard ’69. Memorials preferred to David’s Christian Learning Center, Columbia Heights, Minn.
Marsha Landgraf Smith, age 65, passed away peacefully in St. Paul, Minn., on Nov. 6, 2014. She was preceded in death by her parents, Stanley and Priscilla Landgraf, and her sister, Jennifer Mason. Marsha is survived by her husband of 29 years, Kent; her daughter, Abigail Hawthorne and husband William; her brothers Bruce Landgraf, Keith Landgraf and wife Ingrid, and Eric Landgraf and wife Cathy; many other relatives; and countless loving friends. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made in Marsha’s name to the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund or the National M.S. Society, Upper Midwest Chapter. Grateful thanks to all who loved and cared for Marsha, including the staff of United Hospital, Minnesota Oncology, and Allina Health Hospice.
Valborg Margaret Vadheim Smith, 50-year resident of Willmar, Minn. and 10-year resident of Marquette, Mich., died peacefully May 25, 2014 at home, cared for by her family, Private Duty Aides, and Hospice R.N.s from Upper Peninsula Home Health Hospice and Private Duty. Val was 1003/4 years old, born Sept. 4, 1913 to Christine Breen Vadheim and Dr. Alfred Lyman Vadheim in the prairie town of Tyler, Minn. She was able to join in reciting the Lord’s Prayer and 23rd Psalm until the last weeks of her life, when Pastors Dave Van Kley and Amanda Kossow of Messiah Lutheran Church carried these words for her. She died of old age and exhaustion following a chest cold.
Val’s formal education was in Minnesota, graduating from Tyler High School, then attending St. Olaf College for one year in preparation for nurses’ training (R.N.) at Fairview Hospital in Minneapolis, which she completed in 1935. She met her husband, Dr. Lloyd A. Smith (deceased 1991), at Fairview. They were married Nov. 21, 1936 in Val’s parents’ home in Tyler, by Reverend Nesheim of First English Lutheran Church. They practiced medicine for a time in a small upstairs clinic in nearby Balaton and in Tyler. Val remembered vividly the Tyler tornado of August 1918, which destroyed her father’s downtown clinic and five bed hospital. Her father garnered support from the surrounding areas and rebuilt the hospital, where Val eventually became nursing supervisor. The Hospital became the A.L. Vadheim Memorial Hospital, and today is the Tyler Healthcare Center/Avera.
In 1953, Val and Lloyd moved to Willmar, Minn., where they lived the rest of his life. She was nursing supervisor at the Willmar Nursing Home for many years and Lloyd practiced medicine at the Willmar State Hospital. They were members of Vinje Lutheran Church, where Val’s activity included the Vinje Christmas Bazaar, for which buyers came from Dayton’s department store in Minneapolis to purchase for resale the beautiful Christmas handwork of Val and her Vinje friends. Frequently a leader, Val volunteered at a Shelter Workshop for disadvantaged individuals, at Rice Memorial Hospital as a One-on-One cancer counselor, as an R.N. assistant for school vaccinations, and as a Boy Scout Den Mother and Girl Scout mother. She was an active member of Ladies Aid, a hat club, a bridge club, community theater, and judged flower arrangements at the county fair. She was an antiquer and basket weaver. In summer, she entertained her weaving group at her and Lloyd’s little cottage on Diamond Lake. In town, she entertained State Hospital women employees at Christmastime with her homemade cookies, candies, tea, coffee, and elegant table settings, and she and Lloyd entertained colleagues and friends on the 4th of July. At 85, she walked the Brooklyn Bridge both ways. At Val’s 90th birthday family reunion, her niece Gretchen thanked Val for being someone that could hold individuals and groups together during very trying times.
Val and Lloyd were blessed with two children, Dr. Richard V. Smith and Suzanne M. Harding, and later blessed with two more children, niece Robbin A. Maves and her brother, nephew Robert A. Maves, D.D.S. Val and Lloyd often spoke of their daughters and sons.
Val’s last residence in Willmar was Sunrise Village Independent Living, for seven years. In September 2003, age 90, on her own initiative, she gave her car to a grandchild, her driver’s license to permanent storage, and moved to Marquette, Mich., to live with her daughter, Suzanne, son-in-law Howard Harding, and granddaughter, Sophia. She was sad to leave Willmar, and missed her friends and the lay of the land, but within weeks she had joined the Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) knitters and knit quilt assemblers. She had her hair done once a week and was happy driving along on errands and pick-ups and drop-offs of her busy 12-year-old granddaughter, Sophie. She chose St. Mark’s Lutheran Church because it looked so much like the church of her childhood and young adult years in Tyler, and it was Lutheran. She joined St. Mark’s quilting group and cherished her friends there. Years later, she followed Pastor Van Kley to Messiah Lutheran Church, the wonderful guardian of her spirit for the remainder of her life. She was grateful for the pastors’ many visits, and notes, both written and sung, that she received from church members. Val said she had plenty to do, that her recovery time was much longer than it used to be. In the first years at Marquette, she flew with the Hardings to visit her son in California, and drove with her daughter to Prairie Farm, Wis. to find her Grandfather Breen’s farm.
Val was preceded in death by her parents, Christine and Alfred; stepmother, Gladys L. Donovan Vadheim; siblings, Dr. James L. and Mrs. Jeanne Vadheim, Dr. Robert A., Sr., and Mrs. Anitra L. Vadheim Maves, and Dr. Robert H. Vadheim; stepsister and brother in-law, Mr. Duane G. and Mrs. Dorothy M. Donovan Rude; husband, Lloyd; son, Robert, Jr and daughter-in-law, Lucy Parra Smith. Val is survived by her children, Richard, Robbin A. Maves Rendahl, and Suzanne; daughters-in-law, Linda Maves Maguire and Terry Karro Maves; godchild, Alfred L. Rude; grandchildren, Stephanie Smith Salky, Dr. Chelsea Smith, Dr. Ryan Maves, Brenden Maves, Brenda Rendahl Dellaneva, Sophia M. Harding, and Connor Rude; great grandchildren, Maya and Samantha Salky, Lily and Landon Maves, Astrid, Robert and Jonathan Maves, and Haley and Anthony Dellaneva; and nieces and nephews, Anitra, Gretchen, James, Connie, Tim, and Nancy. She is also survived by her nurses’ training friend of 70 years, Gladys Schennum, soon to be 102 years old.
Donald Sneen, 84, of Sioux Falls, S.D., died Sept. 5, 2014 in Sioux Falls. He was born in Eau Claire, Wis. on July 5, 1930, and was the youngest of six children. The family lived on a farm near Elk Mound, Wis. He graduated from high school in Menomonie, Wis. and went to college at Eau Claire State for three years before transferring to St. Olaf College, where he graduated in 1952. Postgraduate he attended Luther Seminary and Princeton Theological Seminary, where he received his Doctorate of Theology.
Don and Jean Jensen ’54 were married on Aug. 29, 1954 and recently celebrated their 60th anniversary. After graduation, they accepted a call to the parish of North Valley Lutheran in Milltown, Wis. and Laketown Lutheran in Cushing, Wis. In 1960, they moved to Yardley, Pa. while he attended Princeton Seminary. After graduation, they moved to Sioux Falls, where he taught religion at Augustana College for 33 years and served as interim pastor at Hope Lutheran for four years. He authored four books, including the history of Augustana College.
Don is survived by his wife, Jean; his children, David and wife Kathy, Cathy and husband Cary, and Beth and husband Robert; eight grandchildren, Melissa Burke and husband Ryan, and Sarabeth Kelly and husband Joe, Stephanie and Mallory Wencil, and Chris, Katie, Anna, and Michael Vroman; and four great-grandchildren, Lyla and Kieran Burke and Izziahna and Ayvalyn Anderson. He was preceded in death by his parents and five siblings. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to Augustana College, Lutheran World Relief, or First Lutheran Board of Outreach.
Joyce Evelyn Strand Sorensen, of Tallahassee, Fla., a devoted and loving wife, mother, grandmother, musician, and inspiration to all, joined her beloved husband on Aug. 19, 2014 and is ‘together again’ with him in heaven. Born prematurely in Great Falls, Mont. on June 2, 1933, to Lawrence and Agnes Marie Albjerg Strand, she was not expected to live and was blessed in the hospital immediately.
Joyce was a fighter from the beginning, both in health and spirit. Her two favorite sayings were “perseverance wins” and “accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative.” Up to the end of her life, she got great joy reaching out to others spiritually, such as her dear friend, Geoffrey Coppin. With her own actions, Joyce showed all what it means to believe in God and the immense love Jesus Christ has for all.
A graduate of Great Falls High School 1951, she graduated from St. Olaf College in 1955 on a full music scholarship. From there she got an MBA scholarship to attend the University of Washington, Seattle.
In 1955, she met the love of her life, Philip Edward Sorensen, who was stationed at Malmstrom AFB. Two years later they married on Sept. 9, 1957 and remained happily married for 54 years. Joyce worked for the Atomic Energy Commission under Edward Teller when they were first married until their first son, Eric was born. She was a devoted piano teacher for 55 years and led classes at Laguna Blanca private school in Santa Barbara, Calif. She was still receiving fond letters and updates from her students the week she died.
During her life, Joyce sang with a number of major community and church choirs, most importantly the FSU Symphony Chorus under Dr. Andre Thomas and was conducted by world renowned choral conductor Robert Shaw. Mom was an active member of the Tallahassee Music Guild and was passionate about the scholarship funding for dedicated and talented musicians. She especially loved the Handel’s Messiah fundraiser each year.
She will be forever remembered as a champion of the less fortunate; volunteering her time to Meals on Wheels and countless church charities and causes that exemplified her Lutheran faith. Joyce lead by example and didn’t think anything done half-way was acceptable. She loved to cook and present delicious, home-cooked meals and always welcomed the unexpected guests that often appeared. Her cinnamon rolls were legendary.
During her tenure as a music teacher, she brought her beloved students with her to nursing homes on many occasions, where young performers and elderly patients became cherished friends. These recitals became the highlight of all their studies and practice. A member of the American Lung Association in its early days, she fought tirelessly for smoke free air indoors.
With direct family members as decorated veterans, she never forgot the sacrifice of our soldiers. She was a patriot and loved America.
Joyce was such an inspiration – she was so humble, loving, and empathetic. All that knew her were touched by her. Joyce will be missed, but her family is comforted that she is back into the arms of Philip and they know they will see her again.
Joyce was preceded in death by her “perfect” husband, Philip Edward; parents, Lawrence and Agnes Strand; a sister, Edith; and two brothers, Larry and Phillip. She is survived by her sister, Phyllis Barrett; her children, Eric Christian and wife Judy, Thomas Edward and wife Celia, and Mary Kristin Sorensen Prudent and husband Lance; seven grandchildren: Michael, Shelby, John, Thomas, Malena, Maggie, and David; and by her beloved companion, Nibbles. Because sweet Joyce truly loved all creatures great and small, in lieu of flowers, please send donations to Cache Humane Society, in North Logan, Utah in her name.
Arne Benjamin Sovik, age 96, of Minneapolis, passed away on Sept. 16, 2014. He was born at Kikungshan (now Jigongshan), China, to Norwegian-born American missionaries. Arne graduated from St. Olaf College in 1939 and from Luther Theological Seminary in St. Paul, Minn. in 1943, then was ordained and called to the China mission in Henan province. Displaced by Japanese action, he spent the last year of the war in Chongqing, working in the National Student Relief Committee, an ecumenical organization serving students who had fled to West China. He left China in 1947. After a year of teaching at Concordia College in Moorhead, Minn., and traveling in missions promotion, Sovik received a Ph. D. from Yale University in 1952 with a study on church and state relations in modern China. Since return to China was impossible, Sovik was sent to Taiwan, where for three years he chaired the Taiwan Lutheran Mission and helped to establish the indigenously led Taiwan Lutheran Church.
In 1955, he began work at the world mission program of the Lutheran World Federation (LWF), Geneva, Switzerland, with 25 years of work there broken by four years heading the world mission offices of the Lutheran Church in America in New York. He participated in a 1963 conference on the Church and the Jews, which led to widespread work on the subject. Beginning in 1971, he headed a unit on Christian relationships with other faiths and ideologies, including the then-aggressive Maoist form of Marxism in an isolationist China. As a result of a World Council of Churches conference on Salvation Today in 1973, he wrote a book of the same name for use in North America churches. A linguist himself, he wrote articles that were translated and published in various languages.
Following retirement in 1984, he did some work for the evangelization of Chinese in France, lectured for short terms in a seminary in Indonesia, and edited a newsletter about China. After moving from Geneva to Minneapolis in 1992, he continued speaking on the church in China. During 2004-5, he taught English at a university in Chongqing.
Sovik was preceded in death by his parents, including father Edward Sovik ’11; daughter, Ann Sovik Brandenberg ’72; Ruth Johnson Sovik ’50, his wife of 50 years who died in 2000; and his twin brother, Edward Sovik ’39 and first wife Genevieve Hendrickson Sovik ’44. He is succeeded by his wife, Ellen, whom he married in 2003; his three other children with Ruth: Nord and wife Maureen, Liv, and Nathan Sovik ’75; sister, Gudrun “Margaret” Sovik Lindell ’39; sister-in-law, Anne Running Sovik ’68; and many nephews and nieces, including Rolf Sovik ’69 and Martin Sovik ’71.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Central Lutheran, Luther Seminary, St. Olaf College, or as may be preferred.
*Edward Anders Sovik, of Northfield, Minn., died May 4, 2014. He was 95. Born of Lutheran missionaries in Henan Province, China, he left at 17 to enroll in St. Olaf College, along with a twin brother, Arne Sovik ’39, and an older sister, Gudrun “Margaret” Sovik Lindell ’39, graduating in 1939. He went on to study painting at the Art Students League in New York, and later theology at Luther Seminary in Saint Paul, Minn. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, he enlisted in the Marine Corps, serving as a night fighter pilot in the Pacific; he was awarded a Purple Heart and Distinguished Flying Cross. In 1946, he married Genevieve Hendrickson Sovik ’44, who died in 2000. In 1949, he earned his architecture degree from Yale University, and began an architectural practice in Northfield and a teaching career in the St. Olaf art department. While churches were a focus of his practice, his work ranged widely, including many buildings for St. Olaf, Carleton, Concordia-Moorhead, and Stevens Colleges, the University of Minnesota, and other institutional projects. He was a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects, a president of the Minnesota Society of the AIA, and a recipient of its Gold Medal. His book, Architecture for Worship, was published in 1973, and he wrote numerous professional articles and monographs. In 2001, he married Anne Running ’68. He was a man of many interests and talents, including drawing and poetry, and will be further remembered for his good will, eloquence, and quiet generosity.
He is survived by his wife, Anne; sons Rolf Sovik ’69 and wife Mary, Martin Sovik ’71, and Peter Sovik; stepchildren, Julia and Andrew Tabbut; granddaughters, Amanda Sovik-Johnston and Katherine Schultz; three great-grandsons; brother, Arne and wife Ellen; sister, Margaret; and his nieces and nephews, including Ann Brandenberg-Sovik ’72, Nathan Sovik ’75, Nord Sovik, and Liv Sovik. He was preceded in death by his first wife, Genevieve; his father, Edward Sovik ’11; his brother-in-law, Paul Lindell; and his sister-in-law, Ruth Sovik ’50. The family extends heartfelt thanks to the devoted staff at the Northfield Hospital Long Term Care Center for their professional and loving care.
Memorials preferred to St. John’s Lutheran Church, St. Olaf College, Luther Seminary, Concordia College, or Habitat for Humanity.
Christine “Chris” Stark-Christopherson, of Posen, Mich., passed away June 10, 2014. In our minds’ eye, we can see Chris once again on her daily run down Leer Road, taking the hills with ease and exuberance, and we can see her nimble fingers caressing her violin as soaring melodies fill the air. Nearly eight years ago, a brain aneurysm stole those skills, but her persistent will did not abandon her. In the following years, with her ever-faithful husband, Jon, always at her side, she struggled to walk, do laundry, cook, and take care of her own needs, never completely succumbing to being “disabled.” As her body became less and less cooperative, she kept exploring what she still might be able to do; she became a whiz at the Alpena News crosswords and Jumbles. She was an avid reader of John Grisham on her Nook, and even went for a couple of rides on Jon’s Harley. Chris joined the local quilt guild and with trembling hands made quilts for sons and charities.
Chris is survived by her husband, Jon and her sons, Sean and Jesse. Just two weeks ago, Chris spent time with Jesse, Sean, and fiancee, Julianne, at Touch of Country Care Home playing Trivial pursuit, showing her sons she was still a force to be dealt with. Others grieving the loss of Chris are her parents, Henry and Lois Stark, her sister, Valerie Hinz and family, her brother, Dan Stark and his family, and sisters in-law, Anne Potter and Linda Pletcher and their families.
Jeffry D. Strandemo, age 64, of Edina, Minn., died of natural causes on Dec. 29, 2014. He was preceded in death by parents, A. Donald and Dorothy M. Strandemo. He is survived by sister, Linda Schroeder ’70 and husband Eric Schroeder ’70; nieces, Cameron Spier and husband David and Courtney García and husband Luis; a grandniece and a grandnephew; and other family members and lifelong friends who cared about him and his welfare over the years. Jeff was a devoted son and a seeker of God’s will in the ministry of world peace.
Herbert Edward Strom died on Sept. 6, 2014 in St. Paul, Minn. Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Jan. 2, 1929, he was the son of Edward Herman Strom and Ingrid Jacoba Bendixen Strom. He attended PS185 and graduated from Brooklyn Technical High School in 1946. He earned his B.A. from St. Olaf College in 1950 and did graduate work at Columbia University (1950-51), Luther Seminary 1951-55 (Graduate in Theology), and Yale University (S.T.M), 1968-69. He met and married Kathryn Jean Mattill Strom ’53 in 1955. A summer working with the Forest Service in Trout Creek, Mont., in 1948 gave him a deep appreciation for the West. He served as a ministerial intern in Missoula, Mont., at St. Paul Lutheran Church. His first call after seminary in 1955 was to Messiah Lutheran Church in Red Lodge, Mont. In 1960 he received a call as Lutheran campus minister to Montana State College (later Montana State University) in Bozeman, where he remained until his retirement in 1995. His work in campus ministry at MSU spanned a period of enormous change for the university, religious life, and ecumenical relations. He enjoyed hiking, backpacking, and Nordic skiing, and found ways to combine his love of the outdoors with his dedication to ministry with young people. After retirement, he and Kathryn traveled widely, especially to family and grandchildren. He remained active in the Lutheran church and continued to pursue interests in history, current events, and hiking. Following the death of Kathryn in 2012, he moved to St. Paul to be near his son, Tim, and his family, who cared for him. He is survived by three sons, David Strom ’80 and wife Katja Heide, Tim and wife Pam, and Jonathan Strom ’84 and wife Siri Olson ’84; five grandchildren, Johannes and wife Kathryn Schumacher, Robbie, Solveig, Liza, and Sam; two nieces, Ann Holum and Kathryn Holum; six grandnieces and nephews, Sara, Ryan, Marlee, Julia, Daniel, and David; two sisters-in-law, Barbara Mattill ’52 and Phyllis Mattill ’57; and a brother-in-law, John Holum. He was preceded in death by his wife, Kathryn; a sister-in-law, Mary Mattill Holum ’50; and a niece Liz Johnson. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Lutheran Campus Ministry (MSU Bozeman) or Lyngblomsten Care Center in St. Paul.
She was born Evelyn Grace Eastvold on Nov. 28, 1916, in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, Canada, to Joseph and Verna Grace Eastvold. Her early years were spent in Moose Jaw, until her father became a Lutheran pastor and they lived in North Dakota and Minnesota. She graduated from St. Olaf College in 1939. Evie then moved to Calamus, Iowa, to take a high school teaching position, where she met Victor Stueland. They were married on Dec. 27, 1940, in Colorado Springs, Colo., with her father officiating.
Evie and Vic were lifelong residents of Clinton County, Iowa, where they farmed north of Grand Mound and raised their two children, Linda Lee and John Brent. Evie taught Sunday School, led Bible studies, and served as a 4-H leader. She was a founding member of Faith Lutheran Church in Calamus. Evie was very involved with American Lutheran Church Women, serving on statewide and national committees and traveling to Japan and Europe. Vic and Evie started an evergreen tree farm and enjoyed many fishing trips to Minnesota and Canada. They celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in Hawaii, and also traveled to the Holy Land. Evie also assisted Vic when he served five terms as an Iowa State Legislator. For many years, they wintered in Orange Harbor, Fla.
For the past 20 years, Evie has been virtually blind from macular degeneration. The day she died would have been her 74th wedding anniversary. She is now celebrating her resurrection with fully restored sight, rejoicing with her Savior Jesus Christ, and having a grand reunion with her husband, parents, children, and siblings.
She is survived by her grandchildren, Tracy Knipper, Delhi, Tonya Stricker and husband Randy, and Steve Hansen; several grandchildren and great-grandchildren; her sister, Esther Alcorn; sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Geraldine and Robert Jacobi; a cousin, June Eastvold ’54; and numerous nephews and nieces.
Evelyn was preceded in death by her husband Vic in 2005; her son, John, USAF, in 1974; her daughter, Linda, in 1997; a great-grandson, Dylan; her brother, Stirling Eastvold ’38; sisters-in-law, Francis and Gertrude Eastvold; brother, Carl Eastvold; sister and brother-in-law, Naomi Eastvold Benson ’41 and the Rev. Clarence Benson; cousins, including Donald Eastvold ’41, and Eleanor Eastvold Holian ’43 and husband Darwin Holian ’45; and aunts and uncles, including Stella Eastvold Fjaere ’22, Susan Eastvold Hestenes ’28, Seth Eastvold ’16, Carl Eastvold, Jr. ’19, Harold Eastvold ’23, and Isaac Eastvold ’23.
Melvin Rogers Sucher, 93, of Perham, Minn., passed away on June 8, 2014 at Prairie View Assisted Living in Perham. Melvin was born April 4, 1921 in Big Fork, Minn. to Clyde and Ida Sucher. At age two his mother died and Melvin went to live on a farm with his Great-Uncle Nels Nelson and family near Albion, Iowa, where he later graduated from high school. He attended three colleges – Luther College and Waldorf Junior College in Iowa, and St. Olaf College in Minnesota – and Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minn.
On June 8, 1947, exactly 67 years before his death, Melvin was ordained as a Lutheran minister in Story City, Iowa. Three weeks later he married Phyllis M. Carlson in Jamestown, N.Y. Over the next 39 years Melvin served five parishes: Bear River, Minn. at Bear River, Silverdale, and Celina churches; Warren, Minn. at Our Savior’s, McCrae, and Melo churches; Benson, Minn. at Our Redeemer’s Lutheran Church; rural Lanesboro, Minn. at North Prairie and Pilot Mound churches; and rural Clarks Grove, Minn. at Central Freeborn and North Freeborn Lutheran churches.
In 1986, Melvin retired from the ministry, though he continued with many family weddings and baptisms and ministry of family and friends even after retirement. After retirement they moved to Story City, Iowa and later to Perham, with winters in Mesa, Ariz. Mel loved to travel, visiting the Holy Land, Germany, Scandinavian countries, Hawaii, and many places throughout the U.S.; deer hunting – he shot a deer at age 91 – fishing, gardening, playing softball – pitching well into his 60s – music, and playing cards were some of his many pastimes. Watching all sports on TV and doing crosswords kept his mind active in later years. During his 93 years, Melvin touched the lives of many across the nation.
Mel is preceded in death by his parents, foster parents, six siblings, daughter Karol Clemens at age 31, and great-granddaughter Larissa Kirchenwitz at age three months. He is survived by wife, Phyllis; son Timothy Sucher and wife Paula; daughters, Miriam Hatlevig and husband Jim, Mary Beth Royer and husband Bruce, and Kathy Eason and husband Randy. He is also survived by 17 grandchildren: Kersten Buskirk and husband Kyle, Megan Kirchenwtiz and husband Justin, Annalise Shippee and husband Aaron, Bethany Anderson and husband Bill, Kyle Sucher and wife Sara, Rachel Garcia, Cameron Davis and spouse Jamie, Courtney Davis, Matt Royer and wife Shannon, Philip Royer and wife Vanessa, Luke Stevens-Royer and wife Jenna, Paul Clemens and wife Julia, Rachel Cuthbert and husband Ben, Dan Clemens, Anna Clemens, Tiffany Linck and husband Andy, and Karissa Thunselle; 19 great-grandchildren: Kael Buskirk, Kaylie and Emily Kirchenwitz, Sadie, Carter, and Lilliana Shippee, Madisyn Garcia, Archer and Erika Davis, Elle and Andre Royer, Olivia and Elyse Royer, Louisa Royer, Jonah, Thatcher, and Oliver Cuthbert, Kinley Linck, and Kayden Carothers; and numerous nieces and nephews.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to Calvary Lutheran Church or Waldorf College Foundation, Forest City, Iowa.
Carol Ann Sundahl passed away, in Billings, Mont., on May 27, 2014. She was born on Jan. 9, 1946, and lived in Billings most of her life. She graduated from St. Olaf College with a degree in English and music in 1968. She was active in the American Lutheran Church by playing her recorder, singing in the choir, and participating in the bell choir. She contributed her time generously to the residents of St. John’s Nursing Home, playing the piano for them.
She is preceded in death by her parents, Clarence and Edna Sundahl, and her stepmother, Ada Sundahl. She is survived by her brother, John, as well as two nephews and one great-niece.
*Rueben Clifford Svingen, 94, passed away on Easter morning, April 20, 2014, at Mill Street Residence in Fergus Falls, Minn. He was born Dec. 6, 1919 in rural Swift County, Minn., to Christ and Johanna Svingen. He was baptized and confirmed at Lake Hazel Lutheran Church in rural Benson, Minn. He attended country school there, learning to speak English, in addition to the Norwegian spoken at home. He continued to speak Norwegian until the day before he died, singing “Easter Morning” in that language to his son, Kris.
After graduating from Benson High School in 1938, he attended St. Olaf College, where he sang in the Viking Chorus. Singing, especially hymns, was very important to him. He enjoyed talking about being part of the Lake Hazel Quartet, along with his brother Thor, and how they would sing at the Swift County Fair.
After graduating from St. Olaf in 1942, Rueben joined the U.S. Navy, serving in the South Pacific during WWII, rising to the rank of chief petty officer. After his discharge in 1946, he began teaching science in the Worthington, Minn. school system, where he continued until his retirement in 1979. He began full-time carpentry work with Johnson and Sons in Worthington, for whom he had worked summers for many years.
On June 24, 1949, he married Ruth Tripp at the First Presbyterian Church in Worthington. Together they raised two sons, and he employed his carpentry skills in expanding their home over the years. He lived at the same address for 63 years, until his move t0 Fergus Falls in 2012.
Rueben was a life-long sports fan, serving as scorekeeper and announcer for high school athletics. He enjoyed golfing with friends, coaching youth baseball and football, and seldom missed an inning of a Twins game. He greatly enjoyed his weekly pinochle games. He was a member of the Golden Key Kiwanis Club and First Lutheran Church in Worthington.
Rueben was preceded in death by his wife Ruth, in 2003; his parents; and his six siblings and their spouses. He is survived by his sons, Rueben Svingen ’72 and Bruce Svingen ’75; three grandchildren, Thea, John, and Elisabeth; and five great-grandchildren, Natalie, Kristian, Maura, Annelise, and Leo.
Rueben was a loving family man, an excellent teacher, a generous friend and neighbor, and a person who quietly expressed his Christian faith every day of his life.
*Ira Jacob “Duke” Tanner, 86, passed away on Jan. 9, 2015, surrounded by his family at his home in Granite Bay, Calif., where he lived with his wife of 62 years, June Halsor Tanner ’52. Ira was born on July 12, 1928 in Minneapolis. He graduated from Oconomowac High School in 1946 and from St. Olaf College in 1950 where he was a popular trumpet player. He then went into the Navy and upon his discharge, married his college sweetheart, June Halsor, in 1952. Following the Navy Ira attended Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minn., graduating in 1956. He then served as a pastor in Greenwood, Wis. before venturing west with his young family to start a mission church in Orangevale, Calif. – Christ the King Lutheran Church. Ira served 14 years in the ministry in Orangevale before attending Sacramento State University, where he completed his master’s degree in marriage and family counseling in 1971. Ira worked in many capacities throughout the years. He was a licensed practicing counselor in the Sacramento area and authored three books: Loneliness: The Fear of Love; Trust: The Key to Lasting Relationships; The Gift of Grief: Healing the Pain of Everyday Losses. Ira also worked as a part-time pastor at many churches, instructed at local colleges and upon retirement enjoyed volunteering at Kaiser Hospital in Roseville, Calif. He is remembered as a friendly character who loved to talk to people. Over Ira’s lifetime he enjoyed hiking, running, reading, listening to jazz music, singing, and being with his family. He and June spent their summers with family and friends at Ottertail Lake in Ottertail County, Minn. Ira is survived by his wife, June Halsor Tanner; his four daughters, Constance Tanner Huggett ’76 and husband Rand, Kristi Wyant and husband Jeff, Kathy Ynclan, and Mary Titus and husband Mark; seven grandchildren, Joshua and Kyle Huggett, Jessica and Rachele Wyant, Shane Ynclan, and Haley and Drew Titus; and two great-grandchildren, Caitlynn and Madelynn Huggett. He is also survived by his sister, Jean Tanner Harney ’53, and sisters-in-law, Carol Halsor Hembre ’54 P ’76 ’85 and husband Donald Hembre ’54 P ’76 ’85 and Lois Halsor ’55. Ira is preceded in death by his father, Idar Tanner; mother, Judith Romstad Tanner ’23; and son-in-law, Bill Ynclan. Memory gifts may be made to the American Heart Association, Sacramento, Calif.
Norman Squier Temple was born June 15, 1928 in Minneapolis, son of Harold and Edna Squier Temple. His family lived in Minneapolis until he was four and then moved to Northfield, Minn., where he attended school, graduating from Northfield High School in 1946. He then enlisted in the Army and was stationed in Japan with the Occupational Forces during the end of WWII.
Following his discharge he enrolled at St Olaf College. On Jan. 27, 1951 he was united in marriage at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Northfield to Helen Marshall Temple ’51, whom he met at St. Olaf. Their first home was in Northfield, followed by a move to Cottage Grove, Minn., where they lived for many years. Norman worked first for Economics Laboratories (ECO Labs) in St. Paul, Minn. and then for the State of Minnesota as a Technical Writer in Purchasing.
Retirement in 1987 took them to their long time hobby farm near West Concord, where Norman kept busy on many projects. He loved his animals and being with his family, and enjoyed playing board games, cribbage, and bridge with his sisters. Trips to the North Shore for fishing and hiking in the Rocky Mountains, especially in Montana, were special times for Norman and Helen. He was a man of God and his Christian faith was always an important part of his life. He served as a Gideon for 25 years.
Norman Temple is survived by his wife, Helen; sons Daniel Temple and wife Marge, and Nathan Temple and wife Margo; daughter, Nina Gieser and husband Dan; sisters, Bernadine Temple Reese ’55 and husband Bert, Patricia Temple Day ’60 and husband John, and Sharon Engdahl and husband Dick; sister-in-law, Ellie Temple; grandchildren, Mike, Mindy, Travis, Joshua, and Jacob Temple, Cassandra Gilgenbach, Derek Ritter, Taylor Rose, and Jackson and Samuel Gieser; and great-grandchildren, Tommy, Dakota, Peyton, Abe, Vada, Joshy, Lukie, Zachary, Levi, Annabelle, and Lucy. He was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Nadine Temple; brother, Duane Temple ’54; nephew, David Day; and sister and brother-in-law, Virginia and Garfield Jentlie.
Sylvia Mikelson Textor, of Palm Desert, Calif., died of complications from Alzheimer’s disease on July 20, 2014. She was 89 years old. Sylvia was born in 1925 to Selmer and Mabel Mikelson in Clarkfield, Minn. Music was her talent, singing and playing trumpet throughout her years in Clarkfield and continuing on to St. Olaf College, where she sang and toured with the famous St. Olaf Choir under F. Melius Christiansen. In the spring of 1946 at St. Olaf, Sylvia joined a vocal quintet called the Honey Dreamers, formed on campus by fellow students. Upon graduation, the group turned professional, singing for radio and television shows and performing at nightclubs in Chicago. In 1949, she married Keith Textor ’43, leader of the Honey Dreamers, and soon moved with the group to New York. Sylvia and Keith went on to become a featured duo on the Fred Waring Pennsylvanians television show that was broadcast nationally on Sunday nights. They proceeded to join the Sid Caesar/Imogene Coca “Your Show of Shows” and later, with friends, formed Scott-Textor Productions, applying their talents to television and radio commercials, TV shows, and record albums for the next 30 years. In 1986, Sylvia and Keith retired to Palm Desert, Calif. Sylvia is survived by her husband; two children, Thomas Textor ’74 and Terry Textor Platz ’77; and three grandchildren, Samuel Schrader, Jacob Textor, and Willem Platz. She was preceded in death by siblings, Lester Mikelson ’33 and Eunice Mikelson McKibben ’45, and siblings-in-law, including Doris Fevold Mikelson ’42 and Robert McKibben ’47. Sylvia will be sorely missed by family and friends.
Ruth Serene Aamoth Thomack, 88, of Monroe, Mich., formerly of Litchfield, Ill., passed away into the joy and peace of her Lord on Oct. 16, 2014 at 6:56 a.m. in The Lutheran Home in Monroe. She was born on April 10, 1926 in St. Paul, Minn., a daughter of Walter I. and Mabel S. Onsgaard Aamoth. Ruth graduated from St. Olaf College in 1948 with a bachelor of arts degree in sociology and religion. She married Alwin W. Thomack on June 25, 1948 in Our Savior’s Lutheran Church on Iola, Wis. She supported her husband through seminary and served a long side him in seven different Lutheran churches throughout the Midwest. Their last parish was Trinity Lutheran in Litchfield, Ill. She was a member of Zion Lutheran Church in Litchfield. He preceded her in death on Sept. 26, 2009. Ruth was a dedicated homemaker and mother of five. She is survived by four sons, Luther Thomack and wife Barbara, Walter Thomack and wife Yvonne, John Thomack ’78 and wife Colette, and Ernest Thomack ’80 and wife Jan; one daughter, Ruth Phillips and husband John; one sister, Elizabeth Stadem; 12 grandchildren, Rachel Zapata, Nathan, Sarah, Andrew, Timothy, and Anna Thomack, and Lisa, Joel, Kimberly, Etenesh, Emebet, and Rebecca Phillips; and two great-grandsons, James and Peter Thomack. She was preceded in death by her parents; husband; brother, Robert Aamoth ’48; sister, Marie Sleeper; and granddaughter, Christina Windoffer. The family suggests memorials to The Lutheran Hour or Board for Mission Services of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod.
Dick was born in Cokato, Minn. He was a graduate of Washburn High School in 1955, St Olaf College in 1959, and University of Minnesota Dental School in 1963. He married Kitty in 1970 and they had two children.
After dental school, he served two years in the Army. Dick volunteered as a dental missionary in Nepal and Papua New Guinea in the 1960s. He taught dental hygienists and assistants at Normandale Community College for 10 years. After teaching, he was a private practice dentist in Columbia Heights and Fridley, Minn. Dick retired from dentistry in 1997.
Dick was an avid woodworker; his favorite projects included a wood strip canoe, a dollhouse, a crib, toy trucks, and bookcases. He enjoyed biking across Europe and leading youth bike trips after college. He enjoyed farming in Morris, Minn., and golf everywhere.
Dick was blessed with a transplanted heart in 2009. The new heart gave him the opportunity to see his son married, and the birth of his two grandsons.
Dick is survived by his wife, Kitty; his daughter, Sandra Thompson ’93; his son, Richard Thompson II ’95; daughter-in-law, Jaye; grandsons, Palmer and Neil; and brother, Robert Thompson. He is preceded in death by his parents, Dr. Arthur and Hazel Thompson.
Ethel Muriel Solum Thoresen, age 83, of Bloomington, Minn., passed away April 22, 2014. Ethel grew up on a dairy farm in Spring Grove, Minn., attended St. Olaf College, and was retired from the ELCA Board of Pensions.
She was preceded in death by first husband of 46 years, John Thoresen. She is survived by husband, William Morgan ’57; children, Deborah Rickard, John Jr. “Jack”, and Bruce; grandchildren, Nathan, Michelle, Kari, Kelsey, Colten, David, and Laura; eight great-grandchildren; and sister-in-law, Lorraine Solum.
Richard Edward Toensing, of Longmont, Colo., died of pancreatic cancer on July 2, 2014. He was a prize-winning composer, a respected teacher, an accomplished choral conductor, a lover of good music, and an avid gardener, with a special weakness for irises. Toensing was born and raised in Saint Paul, Minn. In his youth, he decided that he wanted to create music as well as conduct others performing it. Together, these two passions were the centerpiece of his professional life. Toensing received his bachelor of music degree, with honors, from St. Olaf College, and his M.M. and D.M.A. degrees from the University of Michigan, where he studied with Ross Lee Finney and Leslie Bassett, two of the great American composers of the 20th century. At both St. Olaf and Michigan, he also received formal training in choral conducting.
His first teaching job was in the fine arts department at Uppsala College, in East Orange, N.J. In 1973, Toensing joined the faculty of the College of Music at the University of Colorado, where he taught composition, as well as music analysis and theory, until his retirement in 2005. At the College of Music, he served at various times as director of the New Music Ensemble, head of the Electronic Music Studio, and convener of the CU Festival of New Music. He trained dozens of undergraduate and graduate students who went on to successful careers as composers and musicians. He was well known at the College for his high academic and musical standards and his professional integrity, and he became a mentor to younger colleagues. He was chair of his department from 1984-2001, and was named professor emeritus upon retirement. Toensing’s compositions span a variety of styles, from the gestural, free atonal work of the 1960s and 1970s to a renewed interest in various forms of diatonic music in more recent years. He has written numerous works for chorus, chamber music in various genres, and works for large ensembles. His later compositions, particularly from the late 1990s onward, are informed by his careful study of the Orthodox Christian sacred musical tradition and suffused with his deep religious faith. Reviewers of Toensing’s works, sacred and otherwise, have said that the listener is struck by a transparency of sound, a simplicity that exists inside complexity, and a sparkling clarity of parts. Toensing won numerous awards for composition, including the Joseph H. Bearnes Prize from Columbia University, two BMI student composer awards, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and a commission from the National Endowment for the Arts. He was named a MacDowell Colony Fellow three times. To date, Toensing’s music has been performed on four continents and in such US venues as Carnegie Hall and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. With the help of grants and private donations, he released several recordings of his compositions. His sacred music has been featured on National Public Radio and local stations. In the summer of 1998, the choir at the Church of St. Luke in the Fields in New York recorded the Responsoria, a complete setting of the Tenebrae services sung at Roman Catholic worship during Holy Week since the sixth century. Toensing called this work a “vast, three-movement choral symphony”; it follows in the tradition of several medieval, Renaissance, and early modern composers who have set parts or all of the responsory texts. The Responsoria was released as a set of three compact discs in 2000. Cappella Romana, a professional group based in Portland, Oregon, recorded a second major choral work, the Kontakion of the Nativity of Christ, for the Orthodox Christmas season of January 2009. In addition to his work in his studio and the classroom, Toensing served as choir director at Atonement Lutheran Church and Grace Lutheran Church, both in Boulder, Colo., and more recently at St. Luke’s Orthodox Church in Erie, Colo. In later life, he wrote several pieces intended for Orthodox Church choirs.
Richard Toensing is survived by his beloved wife Carol; his sons, Christopher and Peter Toensing ’92; his grandchildren, Jessica, Lauren, Andrew, and Kathryn; his daughter-in-law, Kari Nelson Toensing ’92; his sister, Marjorie Toensing ’68; and numerous friends. He is preceded in death by his father, Waldemar Toensing ’35. He will be long remembered with tremendous love and great respect. Memorial gifts may be made to St. Luke’s Orthodox Church, Erie.
*Orlan Norman Tollefson, 92, of Minot, N.D., longtime Minot businessman, passed into God’s loving arms on Oct. 18, 2014, at Trinity Hospital with his family at his side.
He was born March 6, 1922, in Sanish, N.D., the oldest son of Ole T. and Myrtle Nygaard Tollefson. They moved to Minot in 1924. On Oct. 23, 1949, he married Rosella Berge.
He is a 1947 graduate of St. Olaf College. Orlan served in the Army Air Force during WWII from 1942 to 1946, when he was honorably discharged. He and his son Roger were honored and privileged to be a part of the Roughrider Honor Flight from North Dakota on a trip to Washington, D.C. in May of 2011.
Orlan and his brother Duane bought Tollefson’s Furniture from their father, Ole, in 1953. They grew their business in many ways with several different business ventures – Depot Sales, Kenmare Furniture, Warehouse Furniture Sales, Tollefson’s Carpetland, The Carpet Garage, and started an Import Wig business. In 1988, Orlan’s son Roger and Duane’s son Mark bought the business from them, becoming the third generation of Tollefson’s to continue the family business.
Orlan has been a faithful member of Bethany Lutheran Church since 1922. He was baptized and confirmed at Bethany and throughout the years he served in various capacities, including teaching Sunday school, treasurer of the church, and three terms on the council. He was a founding member and secretary of the Bethany Foundation Board. He always gave willingly and freely and generously of his time and talents.
He has been an active member of the Minot community and involved in many organizations. He was a member of the American Legion since 1949, Kiwanis Club member for 62 years, Diplomats, Eagles Aerie, Elks Lodge, SCORE, and Sons of Norway. He joined the Shriners in 1954 because the Shriners Hospital was very important to him. He was one of the original founding committee members and later the operations manager of the Norsk Hostfest. He was the Treasurer of the Hostfest for 32 years.
He served on the Board of Directors for the Red Cross, Chamber of Commerce, Union National Bank (First Bank), and Norsk Hostfest.
He was a proud conservative and member of the Republican Party and worked and headed various local and state committees and boards for many years. He was honored to be a delegate to the National Republican convention when Reagan was nominated.
He had a passion for reading news and learning and was fortunate to be able to travel the world extensively. Orlan, along with a friend, also bought and developed Sunset Bay at Lake Metigoshe in the 50s. He was a man of many interests: playing bridge, fishing, hunting, collecting, golfing, and especially the Rolling Acres farm.
His loving family includes his wife of 65 years, Rosella; children, Rosann Wold and husband Mike, and Roger Tollefson and wife Michelle; six grandchildren, Christian Wold and wife Jana, Charles Wold, Scott Wold, Emily Mackner and husband John, Brent Tollefson and wife Denise, and Hanna Tollefson; five great-grandchildren, Riley and Kaylin Wold, Ella and Mara Mackner, and Crosby Tollefson; siblings, Duane Tollefson and wife Sharlene, and Phyllis Kempkes and husband Neville; his uncle George Nygaard, age 104; cousin, Charlotte Tollefson Mosqueira ’59 and husband Victor; and many beloved sisters-in-law, brothers-in-law, nieces, and nephews.
Memorials are preferred to Bethany Lutheran Church Foundation, Hostfest-Heritage Foundation, and Shriners Hospitals for Children.
*Raymond H. Traeger, of Savannah, Ga., passed away on July 18, 2014 at St. Joseph’s Hospital after a lengthy illness. He was born on Aug. 24, 1928 in Wausau, Wis., to the late Herman J. Traeger and Alice Hansen Traeger. He is a graduate of Wausau High School and attended St. Olaf College before entering the Air Force. Ray retired after 20 years of service in the Air Force. He served in the Korean and the Vietnam War. He then was with Konter Reality for 10 years and Lutheran Brotherhood Insurance for six years. He was a member of the Military Order of World Wars (MOWW) and past president of the Savannah Area Military Officer Association (SAMOA). After retirement, Ray and wife Della were volunteers at the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum and worked there for several years. They also enjoyed travelling all over the country. Ray is a member of Trinity Lutheran Church. He was much loved by his family and will be missed very much. He was predeceased by his brother, Cliff Traeger, and sisters, Ethel Field and Junette Brietbarth. He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Della Agee Traeger; son, Jeffrey Traeger and wife Tricia; daughters, Carrie Traeger and husband Watson, and Julie Drucker and husband Kile; grandchildren, Callie Traeger, Sarah Traeger, Rachel Drucker, and Harris Drucker; and step-grandson, Brian Watson. In lieu of flowers, please donate to Hospice Savannah or Trinity Lutheran Church.
On the evening of Sept. 8, 2014, David Verbarg, of Burbank, Wash., passed away peacefully at the age of 77, after a five year struggle with Alzheimer’s. David was being visited and comforted by family members at Legacy Village in Layton, Utah at the time of his passing.
David was born in 1936 in Yugoslavia, the child of David and Eliza Schimpf. At the age of 14, after the death of his Yugoslavian parents, he and his younger brother and sister were adopted by Americans, Edward and Beatrice Verbarg of Minneapolis, and in 1949 they moved to the States, where he learned English and became a U.S. citizen.
After graduating from high school, David went on to St. Olaf College, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in education. In 1960 he moved to Sisseton, S.D., where he was hired to teach high school history. There he met Beverly Parker and in 1963 they married. Soon after, he earned a master’s in education from University of Northern Colorado.
In 1968, David and Beverly moved to Pasco, Wash., where he accepted a high school teaching position in the Pasco School District. There he spent the remainder of his teaching career sharing his passion for history with thousands of students over the course of 35 years. He retired in 2003.
Those who knew David appreciated his kindness, sense of humor, and ability to listen. He supported his family, friends, and students unequivocally, and he will always be remembered for the positive impact that he made on so many people. Although he will be deeply missed, he leaves us with an immeasurable appreciation for everything he did for us.
David is preceded in death by his parents, David and Eliza Schimpf and Edward and Beatrice Verbarg. He leaves behind his wife, Beverly, of 51 years; daughter, Bethany Pierce and her husband Kevin; son, Jason Verbarg and his wife Laura; his sister, Kathy Jacoby and her husband Bob; brother, Mike Verbarg; four grandchildren, Corey Adorin, Kayla Verbarg, and Hannah and Abby Pierce; great-granddaughter, Charlotte; and numerous nieces and nephews. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association or your local PBS station.
Paige Torgerson Verwolf passed away in Larkspur, Colo. on May 5, 2014. She was born Sept. 18, 1971, in Rochester, Minn., to Dr. Robert and Patricia Torgerson. Growing up, she divided her time between dozens of activities, including tennis, soccer, softball, skiing, hiking, and spending time with family and friends at the family’s cabin at Big Sky Lake. Paige was known to have an amazing sense of humor and fiercely competitive nature, which complemented her personality. Paige graduated from Hellgate High School in 1990, spending much of her free time perfecting her love of tennis. She played tennis at St. Olaf College, eventually following her heart back to Missoula, where she played college tennis for the Lady Griz at the University of Montana. She graduated from the University of Montana in 1994, with a degree in health and human performance.
Paige and Curt Verwolf married in July 1994 and relocated to Charlotte, N.C. It was here that she began her substantial career with Microsoft. On Nov. 10, 2004, Paige and Curt were blessed with the birth of their beautiful daughter, Kylie, who was the absolute love of Paige’s life. A few years later, the family moved to Larkspur with their two dogs, Duncan and Barkley. Paige worked as a technical account manager and was an employee of Microsoft for 17 years. While working with Microsoft, Paige met her fiancé, Don Coffey, in 2007, in Idaho. Don and his children, Collin and Ashley, joined Paige and Kylie in Larkspur in 2008. Paige, Don, and their family frequently enjoyed hiking, skiing, and adventuring around Colorado with their Bernese Mountain Dogs, Bella and Koda. Don and Paige were engaged to be married in September 2013.
Paige obtained her master’s degree in business administration and information technology in only 14 months in September 2013. She volunteered as a children’s soccer coach for the Larkspur Bobcats and spent many hours supporting after school enrichment programs at Larkspur Elementary School. She also realized her dream of founding a nonprofit, Epic Mobile Labs. Paige’s vision for Epic was to break down technological barriers for stay-at-home mothers and school children by providing access to tools in the field of information technology.
Paige was a truly thoughtful person, a loving mother, and a dedicated friend. She will be forever missed by her parents, sisters, extended family, and friends, and by her beautiful daughter Kylie. Paige is survived by her daughter, Kylie Verwolf; Donald Coffey and his children, Ashley and Collin; Curt Verwolf and his wife Lisa; parents Bob and Pat Torgerson; sisters Courtney Trevor Erickson, and Lindsey Torgerson and her fiancé Ross Peterson; nephews, Owen and Eli Erickson; grandmother, Wynona Pearl Torgerson; and many aunts, uncles, and cousins.
A. Jane Maland Vinger, of Rochester, Minn., passed away on Dec. 18, 2014 at Madonna Towers. She was born in Minneapolis on March 9, 1932 to Julius Maland ’28 and Donna Cooley Maland. She was baptized on July 24, 1932. Her family soon moved to Williston, N.D. Jane graduated from Williston High School in 1950 and from St. Olaf College in 1954, where she sang in the St. Olaf Choir for three years. She had a beautiful alto voice.
On Jan. 15, 1955, Jane and Theodore Vinger ’50 were married at Westwood Lutheran Church in Saint Louis Park, Minn., where Jane was a parish worker after college graduation. Over time, they were blessed with three wonderful children: Timothy John (1958), Sara Jane (1961), and Mary Lizabeth (1964).
Over the years she sang in and directed church choirs. During the years they lived in Saint Paul, Minn., she worked in the Pioneer Press library for 10 years.
In 2009 she was diagnosed with P.S.P. (Progressive Supranuclear Palsy) and spent her final years in the Madonna Towers Nursing Care Unit in Rochester, Minn.
Jane was preceded in death by her parents. She is survived by her husband and their three children.
Fred LeRoy Wagner was born on July 4, 1933, to Fred S. and Marion Badman Wagner in Eau Claire, Wis. He graduated from Eau Claire Senior High School in 1951. On Aug. 14, 1954, he married Marlys Sherman. Fred received a bachelor of arts degree at St. Olaf College in 1955 and then attended the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire, receiving a degree in teaching. Fred taught Latin in Black River Falls, Wis. for 11 years. He left teaching to pursue a career in labor relations and personnel in Dubuque, Iowa. In 1978, Fred became the Director of Labor Relations and Personal in Rochester. He was a member and past president of the Minnesota Public Employee Labor Relations Association, and served as a member of the National Board. Fred was a Rotarian for many years, and the United Way Board. He was an active member of Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in Rochester and served as president for two years. He was an avid Green Bay Packers fan.
Left to cherish his memory are his wife of 60 years, Marlys; three daughters, Cynthia Nichols, Ann Petersen and husband David, and Karoline Gittus and husband Gregg; six grandchildren, Jeremie Nichols and wife Kristi, Derek and Zachary Petersen, Grant and Evan Gittus, and Lindsay Doland and husband Nick; four great-granddaughters; special family friends, Dan Nichols and Sue Balsamo; sister, Linda Brophy; and brother-in-law, Dale Sherman and wife Ardy. Fred is preceded in death by his parents, Fred and Marion Wagner; granddaughter, Dagmar Petersen; brother-in-law, Paul Brophy; sister-in-law, Lois DeRusha and husband Gene; and niece, Mary DeRusha.
In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to Bear Creek Services, Lupus Foundation, or Gloria Dei Lutheran Church.
Helen Ruth Langeness Walters, age 82, of Monticello, Minn., passed away on Nov. 19, 2013 at CentraCare Health. Helen was born on Jan. 6, 1931 at home on the family farm in Cherry Grove Township, near Kenyon, Minn., to Richard and Gina Quam Langeness. She attended country school for eight years, and then school in Kenyon for grades 9 – 12, graduating in 1948. She then attended St. Olaf College, receiving a B.A. in business education in 1952. On June 12, 1954 she was united in marriage to Gene Walters at Dale Lutheran Church in Kenyon, Minn. From 1952 to 1956, she was a teacher in Sandstone, Minn., where she met Gene, also a teacher there. The couple moved to Monticello in 1956, where they started a cabinet shop and their family. Helen worked as an elementary and middle school secretary from 1973 to 1994. Helen enjoyed playing bridge, cooking, and baking. She was very family-oriented, and loved spending time with family and friends. She was a member of the Monticello American Legion Auxiliary, and a longtime member of Trinity Lutheran Church, where she was active in various church groups.
Helen was preceded in death by her husband, Gene; son Steven; grandson Andrew; her parents; and all her siblings. She is survived by her three sons, Dennis, Bruce, and Charles; and six grandchildren, Miranda Walters, Zachary Walters, Isaac Walters, Abigail Walters, Ryan Walters, and Benjamin Heigl.
Michael Ward, of Washington, D.C., 63, passed away on Aug. 27, 2014. He was a longtime television executive and a key figure in WMAQ-Channel 5’s news operation for 10 years, remembered as a valued colleague and mentor.
“To say that Mike Ward impacted a generation of television news professionals is not an overstatement,” marketing consultant Martin Gould, a former TV reporter and producer, wrote in an online tribute. “He mentored, taught, cultivated and celebrated the professional development of dozens — maybe hundreds — of people whose work was made better under his tutelage.”
Lisa Churchville, former director of sales at the NBC-owned station, wrote: “Michael knew everything and had a perspective on it all that was fresh, unique and cut through the noise. What a privilege to know him, work with him, argue with him, pick his brain and play a few rounds.”
Starting as executive producer of NBC 5’s 10 p.m. newscast in 1985, Ward moved up to assistant news director the following year and served as news director from 1991 to 1995. In 1992, he was credited with leading the late news (then anchored by Ron Magers and Carol Marin) to its first Nielsen victory in more than 20 years. But the station soon fell back to its familiar second place.
Ward continued his career with NBC as vice president of creative services and programming at WCAU-TV in Philadelphia and as president and general manager of WNCN-TV in Raleigh/Durham, N.C.
His last job as news director of WUSA-TV, the Gannett-owned CBS affiliate in Washington, was cut short after 14 months in 2008. Reports at the time say he clashed with bosses over a restructuring of the newsroom and the firing of an anchor. Two weeks later Ward suffered what was described as a catastrophic stroke.
A native of Sioux Falls, S.D., Ward attended St. Olaf College and began his career in 1975 as a news photographer at KSFY-TV, the ABC affiliate in Sioux Falls. He later worked for WEWS-TV, the ABC affiliate in Cleveland, where he rose from photographer to assistant news director.
Survivors include his wife, Maureen, his mother, Eileen Schuett Ward, and three brothers.
*Gilbert Daniel “Gib” Wenger, 95, of Centralia, Mo., died in Salina, Kan. on Feb. 21, 2015 at Salina Presbyterian Manor after a short illness.
Gib was born in Wayland, Iowa on June 20, 1919, to Joseph T. and Josephine Widmer Wenger. He married Erma Maurine Clark, of Wayland, Iowa, on Sept. 16, 1943. She preceded him in death March 8, 1996. He married Elizabeth Neff Beck on Jan. 5, 1997, and she preceded him as well Sept. 5, 2011.
Gib served in WWII as a Captain in the U.S. Army, first in northern Africa and then in Italy until the end of the war. He graduated with a B.A. in economics from St. Olaf College in 1948, and received further certification as a member of the real estate Appraisal Institute (M.A.I.) in 1968.
After finishing college, Gib and Erma lived in Sioux Falls, S.D., then moved to Salina in 1950. He began Wenger Agency, selling insurance with his brother Ed. Soon after, he added real estate and became a realtor and broker; he mentored multiple realtors, sales staff, and appraisers for more than 50 years. The current Coldwell Banker Antrim-Piper Wenger Realtors still bears his name.
During his time in business, Gib served as president of Salina Insurance Board, president of Kansas Association of Mutual Insurance Agents, president of Salina Board of Realtors, president of Kansas Association of Realtors, board member for National Association of Realtors, president of Kansas Chapter of the American Institute of Real Estate Appraisers, and was the organizing president for the creation of Salina Multiple Listing Service. He was awarded “Realtor of the Year” by Salina Board of Realtors in 1975, and “Realtor of the Year” by Kansas Association of Realtors in 1981.
He was active in Salina Chamber of Commerce, president of the YMCA, organizing president of Salina Toastmaster’s Club, and campaign chairman of Salina United Way. He was regional vice president of Kansas Association of Commerce and Industry and served as chairman of Salina Planning and Zoning Commission for many years. He helped found the Fellowship of Christian Athletes chapter for youth in Salina and was a retired member of the Downtown Lions Club. Gib was a devoted member and choir director for Immanuel Lutheran Church for many years, and later he and Liz joined First Covenant Church.
In addition to Erma and Liz, Gib was preceded in death by his parents; four brothers, Homer, Ed, Harry, and Elmer; and four sisters, Kathryn Suter Anderson, Esther Brown, Anna Alliman, and Mabel Cain. He is survived by three children: Stan Wenger and wife Janelle, Ron Wenger and wife Linda, and Janice Wenger and husband Lynn Behrns; stepchildren, Robert Beck and Jana Lapel Denis; five grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; and dozens of nieces and nephews.
Memorials are suggested to First Covenant Church, Gideons International, or Salina Area United Way, in care of Ryan Mortuary.
*Robert Wayne “Bob” Wilken, 83, of Eugene, Ore., formerly of Fairmont, Minn., passed away Aug. 8, 2014. Bob was born June 4, 1931 in Fairmont, to Alvin and Melva Wilken. Bob attended Fairmont schools, graduating as valedictorian from Fairmont High School. He excelled not only in academics, but in sports as well, achieving 12 varsity letters. He went on to St. Olaf College, and then to the University of Minnesota Medical School. He pursued the specialty of Radiology at the Mayo Clinic. He served in the U.S. Air Force for two years and was a member of the U.S. bobsled team. He and his family moved to Eugene in 1963. He joined Radiology Associates, PC, and practiced in Eugene for 30 years. He served as head of the Radiology Department at Sacred Heart Hospital for four years. He was active in the American Cancer Society, and was a long-time member of the Eugene Country Club. Bob’s first wife, Marilyn Monson Wilken ’57, passed away in 1973, and in 1976, he married Illona “Lona” Lehto. They combined their families and Bob adopted Lona’s three children. They were married for 38 years. Together, they enjoyed their family, travel, golf, duck decoy, and antique collecting, and of course football, basketball, and track. He leaves behind a host of friends, not only in Eugene, but back in Minnesota, and his family, who loved and adored him.
He is survived by his wife, Lona; children, Kathryn, Kristen, David, Eric, Lisa, Daniel, and Alec; and 17 grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents; two older brothers, Vincent and Roger; first wife, Marilyn; and his daughter, Teri. In lieu of flowers, please remember Hospice of Sacred Heart and the Willamette Valley Cancer Center.
Joan Evenson Winn died March 27, 2014, after an extended illness. She was born Dec. 11, 1932, in Rochester, Minn. A retired certified registered nurse anesthetist, Joan was a graduate of Roosevelt High School, St. Olaf College, Fairview School of Nursing, and the Mayo Clinic Nurse Anesthetist program. During retirement, Joan was a dedicated volunteer with hospice, the Senior Federation Prescription Drug Task Force, and most recently, the Ronald McDonald House. She was a remarkable woman, who will be lovingly remembered by family and friends. Joan is preceded in death by husband, Thomas Winn, and parents, Joel and Alma Evenson.
Don Wright was born on Aug. 13, 1944 in Fremont to parents Donald H. Wright and Eva M. Wright. He lived with his family in Ames until moving to Fremont in 1953. In 1962 Wright graduated from Fremont High School, where he excelled in football and track. After high school, he attended Midland Lutheran College for a year before transferring to St. Olaf College. He completed the ROTC program at St. Olaf and upon graduating in 1966 he was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Air Force.
Wright went through pilot training at Reese Air Force Base in Lubbock, Texas from 1966 through 1968 and served in Vietnam from January 1968 until January 1969. He married his first wife, Linda Jenkins, and the couple’s only child, a daughter, was born in 1970. The couple divorced in 1980.
Wright’s illustrious military career continued at Offutt Air Force Base in Omaha, Neb., where he was stationed from 1969 through 1971. From there he transferred to Eielson Air Force Base in Fairbanks, Alaska. In 1975, he was stationed at Andrews Air Force Base and piloted dignitaries from around the world, flying to over 90 different countries. During George H. W. Bush’s tenure as vice president, Wright frequently flew Air Force Two and also served as a backup pilot for Air Force One.
In the 1970s, Wright was the mission commander and chief pilot of the first United States military plane allowed to land in Mainland China since World War II. During his time in Alaska, Wright was a standardization board chief pilot responsible for certifying pilots flying the RC-135. In 1980, Wright was the mission commander for the United States Air Force involved in transporting the Iran hostages from Europe to Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland.
In 1982, Wright married his second wife, Robin Latenser of Omaha. Upon retiring from the Air Force as a major in 1986, Don Wright flew commercially into the early 2000s for Presidential Airlines and Sun Country Airlines. He retired in Forest Lake.
Around 2012, Wright became the driving force in resurrecting and rehabilitating The Dr. Darleen Ritter and Skip Anderson Class of 1962 Memorial Scholarship Fund, which was founded by longtime Fremont resident and civic leader James Ebers. The fund supports education by benefitting students from his alma mater, Fremont High School.
Donald J. Wright is survived by his daughter, Lesa Wright McHale and her her husband, Greg; grandchildren, Cavan and Lulu; and his sole sibling, sister JoAnne Wright Malmgren ‘68 and her husband, Dick Malmgren.
Memorial donations can be made to The Dr. Darleen Ritter and Skip Anderson Class of 1962 Memorial Scholarship Fund at The Fremont Area Community Foundation.
*John J. Yaeger, M.D., of Pueblo, Colo., passed away July 27, 2014, at St. Mary Corwin Hospital where he served as a physician from 1951 to 1991, including a stint as Chief of Staff. He was born July 27, 1921, in Sanborn, Minn. John was a graduate of St. Olaf College and the University of Minnesota Medical School, as well as a veteran of WWII Army Medical Corp.
John came to Pueblo in 1951 to set up practice in the height of a polio epidemic. He was pediatrician to many of Pueblo’s baby boomers. He was an avid fisherman, bird watcher, sports enthusiast, and world traveler. As a lifelong learner, he built furniture and radios and learned the art of wine making and gardening. Upon retirement he took part in Elderhostel studies and audited college courses. As an active volunteer before and after retirement, his activities included conducting the official weigh-ins for Pueblo’s wrestlers for many years, instructing Pueblo West school children through Junior Achievement, and playing the butler as a docent at Rosemount Museum, to name a few. He was a founding board member of the Nature and Raptor Center. He faithfully attended grandchildren’s events whether locally, on the east coast, or in England.
The family wishes to express thanks to the staff at St. Mary Corwin Hospital. John passed away peacefully surrounded by family on his 93rd birthday in a room that happened to be near the Pediatric Ward at the hospital, completing life’s full circle.
John is survived by beloved wife of 69 years, Betty Jane Topel Yaeger, who passed away September of 2014; children, Jane Keightley and husband Steve, Mark Yaeger ’72 and wife Barbara Hanson Yaeger ’73, John and wife Diane, Peggy Christie and husband Alex, and Amy Paul and husband Rich; 16 grandchildren, including Colin Christie ’07; and six great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by infant son, Stephan Charles; parents, Walter David and Luretta E. Ripley Yaeger; and sister, Mary Lou Galbraith. As a long-time member of Ascension Episcopal Church, memorials may be made to the Ascension Church Education Fund in Pueblo, Colo., or directly to the charity of donor’s choice.
Renee J. Solid Zager, age 40, was welcomed into the joys of heaven unexpectedly on Feb. 15, 2013, following complications of her long battle with Myasthenia-Gravis, while hospitalized at Froedert Hospital in Milwaukee. Renee was born on Dec. 31, 1972, in Fond du Lac, Wis. Renee worked for Aurora Healthcare in several positions as a staff nurse and Clinical Nurse Specialist before becoming a nursing instructor at MATC. Renee will be sadly missed by her husband, Scott Zager, and precious daughter, Joanna; her mother and father, Mary Jo and David Solid; her sisters, Shawna Solid Knutson ’97 and husband Wade Knutson ’97, and Allison Solid; her mother-in-law, Patricia McCune; her father-in-law, Donald Zager and wife Janet; three sisters-in-law; as well as aunts, uncles, cousins, and many friends. In lieu of flowers, a memorial in Renee’s name will be established for her daughter Joanna’s college fund.
Jerry Zank, 70, of Coral Gables, Fla., passed away peacefully in the company of family on May 27, 2014. Survivors include his wife, Catherine Hanus-Zank.
*Charles W. “Charlie” Ziemer, age 99, of Minneapolis, died peacefully on the afternoon of July 4, 2014, surrounded by family and friends. Charlie grew up on a farm near Waltham, Minn., the youngest of six children, and received a B.A. from St. Olaf College, an M.A. in music from the University of Minnesota, and an honorary doctorate in music from the University of Nevada -Reno. As a young man, he enlisted in the Navy Reserve during WWII, and served as a Lieutenant Jr. Grade on the staff of 3rd fleet commander Admiral W. F. Halsey, for which he was awarded a Bronze Star medal and a Gold Star for meritorious service in the Pacific theater. Upon discharge in 1946, he embarked on a career teaching music in Minnesota schools, notably choir at Virginia High School, 1947-1954, and Richfield High School, 1954-1974, tutoring piano lessons, 1931-1985, and performing as an organist and choir director, notably Woodlake Lutheran Church, 1954-1971, and First Church Christ Science, 1972-2012. He will always be remembered for his amazing keyboard skills, and for sharing his love of classical music to thousands of students, parishioners, and friends for over 80 years. He was a loving father and devoted husband..
Charlie was preceded in death by parents, John and Cora; brothers, Raymond, Harold, Gilbert, and Kenneth; sister, Florence; son, David Ziemer ’66; and first wife, Connie. He is survived by loving wife, Delores; sons, Paul Ziemer ’70 and partner Gael, and James Ziemer ’75 and wife Rosa; daughter-in-law, Carol Ziemer; grandchildren, Daniel and wife Michelle, Christine and husband Stephen, Bradley and wife Cindy, Elizabeth and husband Jamie, Matthew, Emily, Theodore and wife Katie, Sasha, Christopher, and Sarah; and eight great-grandchildren.
Memorials are preferred to the American Diabetes Association or Park Nicollet Methodist Hospice program.