Obits

  • Sat, 12 Apr 2014 15:56:17 +0000: Eunice Dinga - Obituaries
    Eunice Dinga

    Eunice Dinga

    • Funeral Date: 4/15/14
    • Funeral Time: 11:00 AM
    • Date of Birth: 1/07/27
    • Date of Death: 4/12/14
    • Funeral Location: Bethlehem Lutheran Church - Mpls
    Eunice V. Dinga
    Age 87 of Bloomington, Minnesota, died Saturday morning, April 12, 2014 with her husband and family by her side. She was born January 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, shopper, camping in the US and Canada, cruises around the world, dining out, family, knitter, politics, weaver, singer, ceramics, painting with oils, walker… loved talking to everyone, being at the ocean, going barefoot, and warm sunny weather!
    Preceded in death by her parents, Reverend and Mrs. Albert (Viola) Anderson; sisters Ruth (Dean) Lewis, Trudy (Myron) Hoff, Clara Anderson; brother Albert E. Anderson. Survived by loving husband and fellow traveler of 65 years, Gustav Dinga; children – Paul (Dorann Lucas) Dinga, Marc (Marianne) Dinga, Cheryl (Gregg) Feigum, Diane (John) Stratton; brother – Don (Anne) Anderson; sister-in-law – Delores Anderson; grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, cousins, many relatives and friends.
    Funeral service Tuesday 11am, with visitation one hour before, at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, 4100 Lyndale Avenue S., Mpls, MN. Interment Oak Lawn Cemetery, Northfield, MN.
    Memorials are preferred to the “Dr. Gustav and Eunice Dinga Chemistry Scholarship Fund” Concordia College, 901 8th St. S., Moorhead, MN, 56562. Thanks to Wealshire of Bloomington, Pathfinder Care Management and Park Nicollet Methodist Hospital Hospice for their loving and gentle care!
    Arrangements are with the Benson & Langehough Funeral Home.   www.northfieldfuneral.com
  • Sun, 06 Apr 2014 15:41:03 +0000: Gene Hoyord - Obituaries
    Gene Hoyord

    Gene Hoyord

    • Funeral Date: 4/10/14
    • Funeral Time: 3:00 PM
    • Date of Birth: 5/29/32
    • Date of Death: 4/02/14
    • Funeral Location: Chapel of the Northfield Retirement Community

    Gene R. Hoyord, age 81 of Northfield, passed away Wednesday morning, April 2, 2014, at the Care Center of the Northfield Retirement Community.

    Gene was born May 29, 1932, in Amherst Junction, Wisconsin, to Allard and Violet (Clemensen) Hoyord.  He graduated from Rhinelander High School in 1950.

    Survivors include 2 sisters Jeanette Dobberstein of Wisconsin, Judy (Paul) Otten of Marine on St. Croix.  He was preceded in death by his parents.

    A memorial service will be held at 3:00P.M. Thursday, April 10, 2014, at the Chapel of the Northfield Retirement Community.

    Arrangements are with the Benson & Langehough Funeral Home.  www.northfieldfuneral.com

  • Sun, 30 Mar 2014 19:32:37 +0000: Betty Jo Axelson - Obituaries
    Betty Jo Axelson

    Betty Jo Axelson

    • Funeral Date: 4/04/14
    • Funeral Time: 11:00 AM
    • Date of Birth: 4/05/35
    • Date of Death: 3/30/14
    • Funeral Location: Northfield United Methodist Church

    Betty Jo Johnson Axelson was born April 5, 1935, in Braham, Minnesota, to Joseph and Ruth (Carlson)_Johnson.  She was raised in Two Harbors where her parents owned and operated the Flood Bay Motel.  She graduated from Two Harbors High School in 1953 and attended Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter.  While attending the Minnesota School of Business in Minneapolis Betty Jo met her future husband Donald Axelson.  On October 8, 1955, Betty Jo and Don married at Lebanon Lutheran Church in Minneapolis and in 1957 they moved to Don’s hometown of Northfield.  Betty Jo and Don owned and operated Axelson’s on the Square in Northfield.  In 1976, Betty began working in the guidance office at Northfield High School, retiring in 1993.  Don passed away on January 29, 2013.  Betty Jo had been a resident of the Northfield Retirement Community since last September.

    Betty Jo was a member of the United Methodist Church, church choir and at one time Bridge Club.  She enjoyed following high school and U of M sports and especially enjoyed girls basketball and March Madness!  She loved all things Scandinavian and was proud of her 100% Swedish heritage.  Family was truly the center of her life and she always stayed very connected with her children and grandchildren.

    Survivors include 3 children: Debra Blumer of Eagan, Laurie and husband Dave Amundson of Bloomington, Jay and wife Cheryl of Newport Beach, California; 7 grandchildren: Melissa and Ryan Willy and their children Sarah and Nicholas, Heather and Rick DeGree and their daughter Jocelyn, Emily and Erik Amundson, Grace, Sophia and Ava Axelson; 5 sisters-in-law: Janet (Tom) Pritchard of Northfield, Judy Johnson of West St. Paul, Bobbi Axelson of Bloomington, Carol Axelson of Chicago, Adelaide Axelson of Edina; her brother-in-law, Norman (Arlene) Axelson of Bloomington; nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.  She was preceded in death by her husband of 57 years Don, her parents, her brother Dick Johnson, her brothers-in-law Lawrence, Jim and Tom Axelson and beloved nephew Steve Johnson.

    With her children by her side, Betty Jo passed away Sunday afternoon, March 30, 2014, at the Northfield Hospital, at the age of 78.

    A celebration of Betty Jo’s life will be held at 11:00AM Friday, April 4, 2014, at the United Methodist Church in Northfield with Rev. Marty Raths officiating. Music will be provided by Carmen, Kimberly and Anna Jo Skwira, Tor Johnson and Donna Paulsen. A lunch reception will follow.  Interment will be in Oaklawn Cemetery.  Honorary pall bearers are her loving grandchildren.  Visitation will be at the church on Friday one hour prior to the service.

    Arrangements are with the Benson & Langehough Funeral Home.  www.northfieldfuneral.com

  • Thu, 27 Mar 2014 17:02:11 +0000: Juris Zankevics - Obituaries
    Juris Zankevics

    Juris Zankevics

    • Funeral Date: 4/04/14
    • Funeral Time: 11:00 AM
    • Date of Birth: 6/04/33
    • Date of Death: 3/26/14
    • Funeral Location: Latvian Ev. Lutheran Church - Minneapolis

    Juris Andris Zankevics was born June 4, 1933, in Riga, Latvia, to Juris and Erna (Feils) Zankevics.  He was raised in Riga and at the age of 10 moved with his parents to Germany.  At the age of 14, Juris left his parents when the opportunity came to move to America and settle with a family in Minnesota.  Following graduation from Patrick Henry High School Juris enlisted in the US Army and was stationed in Germany. While in Germany he was able to reunite for a time with his parents.  Following his honorable discharge he returned to Minnesota and attended the University of Minnesota, receiving his Bachelor’s Degree.  He moved for a time to New York, later returning to Minnesota.  He married Vaira Deme in 1962.  After marriage they bought a farm in Bridgewater Township, where together Juris and Vaira spent many years breeding and showing sheep.  Juris worked for the Minnesota Department of Transportation until retiring in 1996.  Vaira passed away on December 11, 2009.  He enjoyed sports, visiting with people, politics, reading and animals.  Juris was hardworking, a devoted husband, and at heart – a true Latvian.

    Survivors include his cousins Amalda Zake of Riga, Latvia, Beatrice Trueblood of Mexico City, Baiba Kelley of Clarksville, Tennessee, Ineze Zake of Riga, Edwina Burns of Mexico City, Adrian Burns of Mexico City, Daniel (Christine) Kelley of Nerstrand, Christina (Christopher) Burawa of Clarksville; his nephew Richard (Deborah) Deme of Prescott, Wisconsin; his god-daughter Marta Zake of Riga;  other relatives and many friends.  He was preceded in death by his wife, his parents and his sister.

    Juris passed away with his family and friends by his side on Wednesday afternoon, March 26, 2014, at the Northfield Hospital Long Term Care Center, at the age of 80.

    A memorial service will be held at 11:00AM, Friday, April 4, 2014, at Latvian Ev. Lutheran Church in Minneapolis with Rev. Dag Demandt officiating.  Visitation will be at the church one hour prior to the service.

    Arrangements are with the Benson & Langehough Funeral Home.  www.northfieldfuneral.com

  • Mon, 24 Mar 2014 23:54:49 +0000: Harold Cook Jr. - Obituaries
    Harold Cook Jr.

    Harold Cook Jr.

    • Funeral Date: 3/28/14
    • Funeral Time: 10:30AM
    • Date of Birth: 9/02/34
    • Date of Death: 3/24/14
    • Funeral Location: Church of St. Dominic - Northfield

    Harold Andrew Cook Jr. passed away Monday morning, March 24, 2014.  Harold was born September 2, 1934, at the old Northfield Hospital on Water Street, the first child and only son of Harold and Vera (Ozmun) Cook.  He attended the country school on Wall Street Road before boarding at Rosary School with other country children under the care of the School Sisters of Notre Dame.  He served St. Dominic’s Church as an altar server with full Latin responses.  He was employed in food service of both Carleton and St. Olaf Colleges during his life, as well as at Castle Gardens Club when his parents owned the club.
    Harold was a compassionate caregiver for his aging parents and became the recipient of the same compassionate care himself during the seven months he was at the Care Center of the Northfield Retirement Community.  Harold was blessed with the unwavering attention of his cousin, Ray Ozmun, who served Harold as much more than the word guardian implies.

    Harold’s friendliness and hearty laugh will be missed by many in the Northfield community. Harold was preceded in death by his parents Harold Andrew Cook Sr. and Vera Mary Cook, and brother-in-law Richard Edell.  He is Survived by three sisters: Helen (Cook) Edell of Montgomery, Minnesota, Patricia (Cook) McMorrow and husband Denis of Atlanta, Georgia, and their children Anne Marie, Sheila, Daniel, Denise, Brian and Andrew, Kathleen (Cook) Van Horn and husband Scott of Methuen, Massachusetts, and their sons Andrew and Jonathan.  Also surviving are an aunt and uncle, Leona (Ozmun) Belden and Robert Ozmun, both of Winona, cousins, and dear caregivers Ray Ozmun of Northfield and Roger Cook of St. Paul.

    Mass of Christian Burial will be 10:30AM Friday, March 28, 2014, at the Church of St. Dominic in Northfield with Fr. Dennis Dempsey officiating.  Interment will be in Calvary Cemetery, Northfield.  Casket bearers will be Scott Van Horn, Ray Ozmun, Daniel McMorrow, Brian McMorrow, Andrew McMorrow and Mark Dukatz. Visitation will be 4-7PM Thursday, March 27, 2014, at the Benson & Langehough Funeral Home.  Visitation will continue at the church on Friday one hour prior to the service.

    Memorials are preferred to St. Dominic Catholic Church.

    Arrangements are  with the Benson & Langehough Funeral Home.  www.northfieldfuneral.com

  • Sun, 23 Mar 2014 23:27:09 +0000: Ruth Ferguson - Obituaries
    Ruth Ferguson

    Ruth Ferguson

    • Funeral Date: 4/05/14
    • Funeral Time: 11:00 AM
    • Date of Birth: 2/23/43
    • Date of Death: 3/23/14
    • Funeral Location: St. John's Lutheran Church - Northfield

    Ruth Ann Hofstad Ferguson – February 23, 1943 – March 23, 2014

    Ruth Ann Hofstad Ferguson died peacefully in the morning of March 23, 2014, at the Three Links nursing home in Northfield, MN, after a prolonged struggle with Alzheimer’s disease.
    Ruth and her brother and sister were raised on a dairy farm close to the town of Eagle Bend, MN. She attended Concordia College, Moorhead, MN majoring in music education, with a minor in religion. While at Concordia she discovered the pipe organ, took lessons, and soon was serving churches as a substitute organist. Upon graduation she taught elementary music in Hawley, MN and in summers continued her organ studies with the legendary Arthur Poister at Syracuse University. Poister encouraged her evolving dream to become a full time church musician and she was accepted for graduate study in organ at the Eastman School of Music, where she obtained a Masters in organ performance, studying with another legend in the field, Russell Saunders.
    During her first summer at Eastman she met her husband to be, John Ferguson. Ruth and John married in August 1971, moving to Kent, OH, where she worked as an adjunct faculty member at Kent State University and served as associate organist at the Kent United Church of Christ. In 1976 they welcomed with great delight their son, Christopher. In 1978, the family moved to Minneapolis, where John was appointed organist and director of music at Central Lutheran Church and Ruth as assistant organist. The family then moved to Northfield in 1983. In Northfield, Ruth served as organist at St. John’s Lutheran Church for 25 years, and later was their music coordinator. She also taught organ for fifteen years at St. Olaf College as an adjunct faculty member.
    Ruth was a superb cook and hostess, who will be remembered for her laughter, quick wit, cheerful smile, gracious, gentle, and caring nature, and her “Cantorei Brownies” and Swedish Cream Wafers. She loved socializing with family and friends, hosting annual Thanksgiving dinners and yearly reunions with her brother and sister and their families in Bemidji and Grand Forks. Ruth also made her home a welcoming environment for thousands of St. Olaf students, hosting annual events for both choir and organ students. At St. John’s she served for many years as a Stephen Minister and also was active in her WELCA circle, treasuring the monthly meetings and Bible studies.
    She is survived by her husband, John; her son Christopher (Sarah) of Auburn, Alabama; granddaughter, Lucy; her sister Ardis Braaton (David) of Grand Forks; and her brother, Philip Hofstad (Carole) of Bemidji; several nieces and nephews, and other relatives and friends. She was preceded in death by her parents, John and Lillian Hofstad.
    Funeral services will be at 11:00AM, Saturday, April 5 at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Northfield. A reception will follow and visitation will be at the church on Saturday one hour prior to the service.

    Memorials are preferred to St. John’s Lutheran Church Music Fund.

    Arrangements are with the Benson & Langehough Funeral Home.  www.northfieldfuneral.com

  • Tue, 18 Mar 2014 01:09:48 +0000: Leo Bjorlie - Obituaries
    Rev. Leo Bjorlie

    Rev. Leo Bjorlie

    • Funeral Date: 3/29/14
    • Funeral Time: 11:00 AM
    • Date of Birth: 8/23/22
    • Date of Death: 3/17/14
    • Funeral Location: St. John's Lutheran Church - Northfield

    Pastor Leo O. Bjorlie, age 91, child of God, died peacefully surrounded by family on Monday, March 17, in the Care Center of the Northfield Retirement Community. A gentle man with an impish soul, Bjorlie was widely known for his love of music, poetry, literature (especially Shakespeare), and family. He was always quick with a story and a warm handshake or embrace for everyone he met. He used his story-telling to make those around him feel welcome and loved.
    Bjorlie was born August 23, 1922, in Emmons, Minn. He grew up in Albert Lea, Minn., graduating from Albert Lea High School in 1940. He attended St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn., as an English major, graduating in 1944, where he met the woman who was to become his wife of nearly 70 years, Lois Brenna. They served together in parishes in Slater, Iowa; New Hampton, Iowa; Crane Creek, Iowa; Northwood, Iowa; Minot, N. Dak.; Kathryn, N. Dak.; St. Paul, Minn.; Hope, Minn.; and Albert Lea, Minn. While a student at St. Olaf, he served as a radio personality for WCAL, the first radio station in the nation and a founding member of National Public Radio. Bjorlie was also ready to serve his country during World War II, but was honorably discharged for medical reasons.
    A good and faithful servant, music was integral to his life and ministry. He built a lifetime of making a joyful noise unto the Lord. He was an accomplished tuba, accordion and piano player. While serving at Memorial Lutheran Church in St. Paul, he was a mainstay as one of the three Wise Men in the annual city-wide Christmas pageant. He was an example of servant-leadership, unafraid to serve his congregations whether from the boiler room or the kitchen sink or the pulpit. He had a poem for every occasion whether silly, joyful or sad.
    Leo and Lois Bjorlie raised six wonderful children and they were always enthusiastic supporters of their children, 16 grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren. He is survived by his children: Ellen (James) Ellickson of Eden Valley, Minn.; Leo (Carol) Bjorlie of Asheville, N. Car.; John (Cynthia) Bjorlie of Gloucester, Mass.; Lois Bjorlie (Corey Mohan) of St. Paul, Minn.; Ruthie (David) Neuger of Northfield, Minn; sister-in-law Esther Burmeister of Harmony, Minn., and numerous nieces, nephews, grandchildren and great grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his wife Lois Brenna Bjorlie; parents Lars and Karen Marie Bjorlie; and son Mark Bjorlie.
    L. O. Bjorlie will forever be remembered for his wisdom, kind words, deep and abiding faith, and acceptance of all people. Known to his family as Grandpa Pancakes, he was a spilliwinker full of the dickens who experienced life with a twinkle in his eyes. His Christian faith – reflecting gratitude, forgiveness and mercy – was a model for all who knew him.
    His funeral will be held at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Northfield, at 11 a.m. on Saturday, March 29, 2014, with visitation from 4 – 7 p.m. on Friday, March 28, 2014, at Benson & Langehough Funeral Home in Northfield. Memorials may be directed toward St. John’s Lutheran Church, Northfield, Minn., in lieu of flowers.
    Arrangements are with the Benson & Langehough Funeral Home. www.northfieldfuneral.com

  • Thu, 14 Nov 2013 17:11:45 +0000: Mary F. Carson - Obituaries

    Mary. F. Carson, 98, died on November 4, 2013 in Northfield, Minnesota.  Born in 1915 Mary grew up in south Minneapolis, the daughter of Clarence and Bessie Chaney. After graduating from Washburn HS and Cornell University she married K. Paul Carson Jr. They built a house in Edina in 1940, raised their four children, and continued to live there until 2006.

    Mary had two major focuses in her life – her family and community, and the large embroideries at Plymouth Congregational Church in Minneapolis.  She was also a lifetime member of the League of Women Voters and the study group Peripatetics, and a strong supporter of the MN Land Trust, Second Harvest Food Shelf, and the student exchange program AFS. She is survived by her four children, seven grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

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