Archive for April, 2015


Sue Ann Carol Ness ~ Mantorville

Sunday, April 26th, 2015

Ness, Sue Ann 2

Sue Ann Carol Ness, 61, of Mantorville, died peacefully on April 24, 2015, at the home of Tony and Monica Brossard in rural Pine Island.
Ms. Ness was born on April 23, 1954, in Rochester to Stanley and Alice (Boyum) Ness.
She graduated from Kasson-Mantorville High School in 1972. Sue Ann continued her education at the University of Minnesota, where she earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing with high distinction on June 10, 1978.
Sue Ann had a passion for horses, which included watching harness racing. She also loved selling lefse on Saturday mornings at the Rochester Downtown Farmers’ Market. She was a member of St. John’s Lutheran Church, where weekly she enjoyed quilting and fellowship.
Sue Ann is survived by two brothers, Sterling (Sue) and Tom (Mary Adam); nephews, Todd (Jeri) Ness, Craig (Victoria Hale) and Tim Ness; great-nephews, Zachary, Joshua, Cody, and Coltan; great-niece, Morgan and loving aunts, uncles, cousins and close friends. She was preceded in death by her parents.
Visitation will be at Dibble Funeral Home, 213 W. Main St., Kasson, MN, on Tuesday, April 28, from 5:00-7:00 pm and at St. John’s Lutheran Church, 301 8th Ave NW, Kasson, MN, on Wednesday from 10:00-11:00 am. Funeral services will be held Wednesday, April 29, at 11:00 am at St. John’s Lutheran Church with Pastor Randy Fett officiating. Burial will follow at South Zumbro Lutheran Church in rural Kasson.
Memorials are preferred to the donor’s choice.

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Margot L. Ballard ~ Rochester

Sunday, April 19th, 2015

Ballard, Margot

Mrs. Margot L. Ballard, 77, of Rochester, MN passed away in her home surrounded by family on April 17, 2015, after a 21-month battle with brain cancer.
Margot was born to A. Hubert and Erna (Schneider) Lievertz in Detroit, MI, on October 8, 1937. In 1938, her family moved to Allen Park, MI. She graduated from Allen Park High School in 1955 and attended Marygrove College in Detroit, MI, for two years. On November 28, 1959, she married James E. Ballard, also of Allen Park, MI, and together they had two children. The couple resided in the Detroit area and Portage, IN, where she worked for the Ford Motor Company. In 1962, they moved to Boulder, CO, where she was first employed by the Granville-Phillips Company and later by the National Center for Atmospheric Research. She was also a Campfire Girls Leader and volunteered in the Boulder Schools.
In 1976, the family moved to Rochester, MN, where she was employed by the Rochester Post-Bulletin as the assistant to the Editor. In 1978, they moved to the home they were building just outside Mantorville, MN. In 1987, Margot received her B.A. in Business Management from the College of St. Teresa, Winona, while continuing her work at the PB. Not too long after that, she became the Director of the Dodge County Historical Society; a position she held for a few years before moving on to become the Curator at the Olmsted County Historical Society. She retired in 1999 and soon moved back to Rochester.
Margot was a member of the Widowed Persons Service in Rochester and served on the Board of Directors for the Mantorville Theatre Company and spent many years on the committee for the Zumbro Bend Rendezvous. She loved archery, sewing, making cordage with her lucet and reading historical novels of both non-fiction and fiction. She was quite the “foodie”; always up for trying a new place and would often plan trips around restaurants she wanted to visit. She enjoyed taking cruises and seeing new sights. Margot was particularly proud of the work she did with both the Olmsted County Historical Society and the Zumbro Bend Rendezvous, putting on a legendary chili feed for the participants year after year. Known as the “Lucet Lady”, she attended many rendezvous in the Minnesota-Wisconsin area and will be sorely missed by that community. She will always be remembered for how vivacious she was.
She was preceded in death by her husband, James E. Ballard; parents, Adam Hubert and Erna Lievertz; niece, Kimberly Bergstrom and great-grandson, Andrew Karnes.
Margot is survived by her daughters, Suzanne A. Ballard of Austin, MN and Christiana (Robin) Maxson of Rochester; granddaughters, Robyn M. Hawkins, T. Lynn Fricker and Trisha A. Bergdale; six great-grandchildren; sister, Dorothea E. Shea of CA and her family; brothers, Alfred Lievertz of FL and Randolph W. Lievertz of IN and their families; and brother-in-law, Gary Ballard of IN and his family.
A memorial service will be held Saturday, April 25, 2015, at 11:00 am at the Dibble Funeral Chapel, 213 W. Main St, Kasson, MN, followed by an Irish Wake with food and drink at the Hubbell House in Mantorville, MN from noon to 3:00 pm. Visitation will one hour prior to the service at the funeral home. There will be no reviewal. Burial will be at Glenwood Cemetery, Wayne, MI at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, the family prefers memorials be directed to them for distribution according to their wishes at a later date.

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Oscar Hilliard ~ Kasson

Wednesday, April 8th, 2015

Hilliard, Oscar

Oscar Hilliard, 77, passed away peacefully in his sleep on April 4, 2015 at Fairview Nursing Home, Dodge Center, Minnesota.
He was born to Ross Emerson Hilliard and Josephine Marie Maxson on November 9, 1937 in Kasson, Minnesota. Oscar was baptized on 12-24-1939 at the United Methodist Church, Kasson, Minnesota. He graduated from high school on 5-29-1957 and then went to Austin Area Vocational School for carpentry, graduating on 6-3-1959.
Oscar married Janice Kozialek in1975. They were later divorced. He was a carpenter in the Kasson area for many years and also worked for Crenlo, in Rochester, Minnesota. He moved to Sterling, Virginia, where he continued his work as a carpenter. During his time there, he suffered a serious stroke from which he never fully recovered. Oscar moved back to the Senior Apartments, in Kasson, Minnesota until January 31,2007, when he became a resident of Fairview Nursing Home, in Dodge Center, Minnesota.
Oscar’s hobbies were fishing, carpentry, watching TV and listening to Country and Western Music.
He is survived by a brother Bob & Dorthy (Peterson) Hilliard of Kasson; sisters Mary Peterson of Kasson, and Joan Simonson of Novi, Michigan; sister-in-law Evelyn Dostal of Kasson & many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, brother Charles Hilliard, sister Agnus (Peggy) Starkson and nephew Randy Hilliard.
A graveside service will be held at Maple Grove Cemetery in Kasson, MN on Friday, April 17, 2015, at 10:00 AM.

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Robert A. Lechner ~ Mantorville

Monday, April 6th, 2015

Lechner, Robert Lrg
Robert “Bob” Arnold Lechner passed away at his home April 3, 2015 at the age of 86.
Robert was born December 19, 1928, to Otto and Winifred Lechner on the family farm in Washburn, North Dakota. He graduated from Washburn High School in 1946. After high school, he worked on the family farm and on the Garrison Dam. He then attended NDSU for three years; returning to the family farm. Robert served in the US Army from 1954-1956. After his military service, he returned and graduated from NDSU.
In 1958, he began working for IBM at the Grand Forks Air Force Base (SAGE). While in Grand Forks, he met M. Loretta Gerszewski-Sevigny. They were married on December 26, 1959, at St. Michael’s Church in Grand Forks. In 1962, Robert transferred to the IBM plant in San Jose, California. In 1973, he transferred to Rochester, MN. In 1978, Robert was transferred to Vermont and earned his Master’s Degree, transferring back to Rochester, MN in 1979. Robert retired from IBM in 1990.
Robert became involved in the Boy Scouts in 1963. He was the leader of Cub Scout Pack 376 in San Jose, CA from 1964-67. In 1968, he became assistant scout master. In 1969, Robert became a scoutmaster. He remained a scoutmaster in both San Jose and Mantorville until 1994 (8 years after his youngest son was out of scouting). In 1995, he was awarded the Silver Beaver Award; one of Boy Scouts highest adult honors. Robert was awarded the Scouters Key in 1977. In 1979, Robert was awarded “Scouter of the Year” for the district. He was also a member of the “Order of the Arrow”.
Robert was a member of the Knights of Columbus (4th degree) for many years. At Christ the King Church, he was a trustee as well as a CCD teacher. Robert was also a reader for the church. He called bingo for the church and for the Knights of Columbus. Robert was a member of MCCL (right to life) for over 25 years. He was also involved with the American Legion for over 30 years. He served as Commander of Post 333 in Kasson. Robert also served in many state and district Legion positions over the years.
Robert is survived by his wife, Loretta; son, Dale, of Rosemount, MN; daughter, Jane (Mark) Senn and their children Corinna and Mitchell of Fountain City, WI; son, Raymond (Jen) Lechner and their children Naomi, Shelby, Sonny and Joseph of Laurel, Maryland; son, Mark Sevigny of Rochester, MN; son, Paul Sevigny of Acworth, GA; son, Isidore (Patty) Sevigny of Alpine, WY; granddaughter, Marilee (Mark) Chomos and children Brittany and Brianna of Las Vegas, NV; granddaughter, Jessica Sevigny of Ashville, NC; grandson, Robert Sevigny of Kenai, Alaska; great-granddaughters, Bryjitte, Tessa, and Izibelle. He is also survived by sisters, Betty and Mavis (Wilbur) Pfenning and brother, Curtis (Jean) Lechner. He was preceded in death by his father, mother, son, Dean Lechner and granddaughter Rhoda.
Robert was a loving father who was very family oriented. He loved visiting family and friends. He also loved nature and was an avid outdoorsman.
Mass of the Christian Burial will be held at 9:00 a.m. on Friday, April 10, 2015, at Christ the King Catholic Church, 202 4th St. NW, Byron MN. Visitation will be at the church from 5:00-7:00 pm on Thursday, April 9, 2015 and one hour prior to the service on Friday. Burial will follow the service at Ft. Snelling National Cemetery, Minneapolis, MN at 12:15 pm.
In lieu of flowers, the family prefers memorials be directed to them to be distributed according to their wishes at a later time.
Dibble Funeral Home & Cremation Service is in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be shared at

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Pearl K. Swenson ~ Kasson

Wednesday, April 1st, 2015

Swenson, Pearl

Pearl Kathryn Swenson passed away on March 19, 2015, at Prairie Meadows Senior Living in Kasson. She was 94 years old. Pearl was born on August 24, 1920 in Norseland, MN to Martin and Hattie Annexstad. She grew up on Lake Park Farm, the family farm, in a close bond with her two siblings and many nearby cousins. She was proud of her Norwegian heritage and often reminded people, “I’m Norwegian you know.” She graduated from St. Peter High School and Mankato Commercial College, then went on to work in the government office in St. Peter and at Honeywell in Minneapolis.
On December 15, 1945 she married Warren E. Swenson at Scandian Grove Lutheran Church in Norseland, MN. They moved to Kasson in 1955 where they operated Warren’s Variety Stores, Inc., with stores in Kasson and Fridley. Warren and Pearl knew each other all of their lives and were only separated by WWII, and his death on July 21st, 2009.
In her earlier years, Pearl loved to bowl and was active as an adult leader in both the girl and boy scouts. She was an avid Minnesota Viking Fan, loved playing 500, “digging in the dirt” with her flowers, and spending time at the lake, or on the family boat. She was an avid walker, enjoyed her volunteer work, and, with her great sense of humor, was always upbeat and positive. She was an example of a life well lived to her family and countless others.
She and Warren were members of St. John’s Lutheran Church for almost 60 years, where she enjoyed working on various church committees, especially the annual Lutefisk Dinner. She served on the board of the Dodge County American Cancer Society and along with Warren, introduced the Relay for Life to Dodge County in the mid 90’s. She was a long time member of the American Legion Auxiliary, a Past Worthy Matron of the Eastern Star for which she was a member for over 50 years, and a member of the Bethel Guardian Council of Job’s Daughters.
Pearl is survived by son Kirk (Marilee) Swenson of Mantorville, daughter Kathy (John) Kruger of Stamford, CT. and numerous nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, brother and sister.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, April 14th at St. John’s Lutheran Church, 301 8th Ave NW in Kasson. Visitation will be held from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Monday, April 13th, at the church. A private family burial will be held at Scandian Grove Cemetery in Norseland.
In lieu of flowers, the family prefers memorials in Pearl’s name to the American Cancer Society, Seasons Hospice or St. John’s Lutheran Church.

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