Archive for the ‘Obituaries’ Category


Margaret A. “Maggie” Lien ~ Kasson

Thursday, February 14th, 2013

Lien, Margaret

Margaret Ann “Maggie” Lien, 74, died unexpectedly on February 12, 2013, in Kasson, Minnesota. A memorial service will be held on Saturday, February 23, at 11:00 A.M. at the United Methodist Church, 801 – 5th Ave. NW, Kasson, Minnesota with
Rev. Karen Seavey officiating. Visitation will be at 10:00 A.M. before the service with no reviewal. Internment will be in Evergreen Cemetery in Mantorville, Minnesota at a later date.
Born on October 5, 1938, at St. Mary’s Hospital in Rochester, Minnesota, Maggie was the daughter of Lester and Maxine (Smalley) Lien. Except for a few years in Rochester, Maggie lived her entire life in Kasson. She attended school in Kasson and graduated from Kasson High School in 1956. She then attended Rochester Junior College. Maggie was employed by the Mayo Clinic in Rochester until her retirement
48 years later. She began in the General Service Dept. and later transferred to the ECG Lab, becoming assistant supervisor.
Maggie was a member of the Eastern Star for many years. She was also a member of the Argent Society, Degree of Honor, Kasson American Legion Auxiliary, Dodge County Historical Society, Kasson Alliance Restoration (preservation of the 1918 Kasson School), and NRA. Maggie deeply cared about her community. She was a proud Republican who believed in working hard and paying your own way. She helped with delivery of Meals on Wheels. She was a volunteer for Dodge County Faith in Action which provides support and assistance to people with challenges to independence. She was baptized and was a life long active member of the Kasson United Methodist Church. The last activity that Maggie was engaged in was helping with a pancake supper at her church.
Although Maggie never married, she had a large “family“. Her nieces, nephews, grand-nieces, grand-nephews, and friends’ children were doted on as if they were her own grandchildren. She delighted in sending letters, jokes, pictures, recipes, newspaper articles, and presents to people. She let you know that you were in her thoughts. Maggie always had a positive attitude, could talk to anybody, loved to have fun, and was fun to be around. She loved to cook, especially soup, which she would give away to her friends and family. How we will miss her laugh and impish smile!
How can we honor her memory? Live without fear, love unconditionally, and laugh at yourself and life’s funny moments. Blessed be her memory.
Survivors include her brother David “Butch“ (Bonnie) Lien of Kasson, sister-in-law Shirley Derby Lien of rural West Concord, nieces Stephanie (Grant) Thorne of Eudora, Kansas; Kim Westphal of Chatfield; Joyce (Kevin) Borgen of Chatfield; and nephews Chris Lien (and special friend Bev) of Oronoco; Mark (Paulette) Lien of Chatfield; and Thor Lien (and special friend Gerry) of Burnsville, Mn. Maggie was preceded in death by her parents, her brother Lester “Denne” Lien, grand-nephew Anthony Palmer Lien, and grand-niece Amber Jean Lien.
Memorials are preferred to the Kasson United Methodist Church, American Heart Association, or a charity of your choice.
Dibble Funeral Home of Kasson is in charge of funeral arrangements.

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Russell Tompkins ~ Kasson

Monday, February 11th, 2013

Tompkins, Russell

The service for Russell C. Tompkins will be held at 2:00 pm on Friday, February 15, 2013 at the Byron United Methodist Church, 507 – 1st Ave NW, Byron, MN with Pastor Sharon Nelson officiating. Visitation will be on Thursday, February 14, 2013 from 5:00-7:00 pm and one hour prior to the service at the church. There will be no reviewal. Russell passed away Saturday, February 9, 2013 at St. Mary’s Hospital in Rochester, MN.
He enjoyed boating on the river, vacationing in Florida, hunting, and spending time on the farm where he grew up. He retired in 1991 after 34-1/2 years with IBM. He was born May 29, 1936 to Clarence and Hilda Tompkins.
He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Deanna; three children, Mark Tompkins of Rochester, MN, Michelle (Greg) Donley of Byron, Jay (Barb) Tompkins of Kasson; one brother and three sisters, Don (Stevie) Tompkins of Austin TX, Evelyn (Iver) Beck of Minnetonka, Kay (Gary) Kalis of Cedar Rapids, IA and Susan Fiyalko of Seminole, FL. He is also survived by five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents and his twin brother.
The family prefers memorials to Mayo Hospice.

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Donald Close ~ Rochester

Monday, February 11th, 2013

Close, Donald Current

Close, Donald Older View

Donald Leighton Close, age 92, passed away peacefully on Saturday, February 9, 2013, at Season’s Hospice in Rochester, MN after living with prostate cancer for several years. He was born June 9, 1920, in Byron MN to Edwin and Patrina Close. He graduated from Byron High School in 1938. He was employed in the whole sale food business until enlisting in the Armed Forces in 1942. He served in the army combat engineers on the Aleutian Islands and was discharged in 1945. Don married Eileen Leuhrs on April 27, 1947. He operated heavy transportation and construction equipment in Rochester before becoming a carpenter. He later formed his own construction company developing Forest Hills, the Forest Hills Water Company and later joining the Cascade Corporation development (Elton Hills, Crescent Park). In 1971, he terminated the business and entered employment with the Olmsted County Code Enforcement Division from which he retired in 1980. He and Eileen moved to Rogers, Arkansas where they built a home on Beaver Lake. They thoroughly enjoyed their twenty-five years in Arkansas before returning to Rochester in 2005, when Eileen’s health began to deteriorate, taking up residency at Shorewood Senior Campus. Some of Don’s fondest memories were of the many lengthy trips he and Eileen spent traveling by boat along the Mississippi River. Upon their return to Minnesota, Don continued to spend time on the river, enjoying boating and fishing out of the Wabasha Marina.
Don was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Eileen, son Craig, his brothers Victor and Gordon Close, and his sister, Mary Hadley. He is survived by two sons, Tracy (Kristin Peterson) of Duluth, MN and Kerry (Kris) of Eagan ,MN as well as , his seven grandchildren Kevin, Kristin, Karin (Phil) Sollom, Susie (Raphael) Gottardi, and Barbie Close.
The family would like to thank Dr. Rachel Havyer, the staff at Season’s hospice, and his friends at Shorewood for taking such good care of Don these past few months.
A celebration of Don’s life will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, February 16th at Byron United Methodist Church, 507 – 1st Ave NW, Byron, MN with Pastor Sharon Nelson officiating. Friends may call one hour prior to the service at the church. A luncheon will follow the service. In lieu of flowers, Don would have wished you to make a contribution to the Salvation Army. In the case of inclement weather, please call the church at 507.775.6610 to determine if the service will be postponed.

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Rosemary Kraetsch ~ Kasson

Thursday, February 7th, 2013

Kraetsch, Rosemary BW

Rosemary Elizabeth Denning Randall Kraetsch, age 89, of Kasson, MN died on February 6, 2013. She was preceded in death by her husband, Gerald.

She is survived by son, James Randall; grandchildren, Kristina, James and Robyn; great-grandchildren, Blake, Alexis, Ambrosia and Audra; and many other family and friends.

Funeral services will be held at the First Presbyterian Church, 101 6th Ave. NW, Kasson, MN on February 12, 2013 at 12:30 pm, with Pastor Clint Patterson officiating. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service.

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Sidney “Frank” Weeks ~ Kasson

Tuesday, February 5th, 2013

Weeks, Sidney Frank

Sidney Frank Weeks died of natural causes on Monday, February 4, 2013 at Fairview Care Center in Dodge Center. A family and friends time will be at Sunwood Manor in Kasson on Wednesday, February 6, from 6:00-8:00 pm. A memorial service will be held on Thursday, February 7, 2013 at 1:00 pm at the First Congregational Church, 515 Walnut Street, Mantorville, MN with Pastor Brian Egelston officiating. Friends may call one hour prior to the service. Burial will be at Wildwood Cemetery in Wasioja, MN at a later date.

Sidney Frank Weeks was born July 2, 1920, in Wasioja Township, Dodge County, MN the only son of 4 children of Sidney and Ruby Weeks. His sisters were Leona Foster, Lavina Andrist and Gladys Schultz. He spent alot of his childhood time with the Oscar Suhr family on their farm. He enlisted in the military during World War II and taught radio repair at Scott Air Force Base.

On April 12, 1950 he married Frances Rosella Peterson at her parents’ home. The couple farmed in Goodhue, Olmsted and Dodge Counties until 1974 when they purchased a feed store in Kasson, Frank’s Feed and Seed. They moved to Wasioja in 1983 and then to Kasson Sunwood Manor in 1999.

Besides their three children, Dennis, Sam and Teresa Hacker, the couple helped raise nephews David Schultz and George Foster. Frank was active with the Wildwood Cemetery for years as a board member and also caretaker along with his wife. His interests were fishing, hunting, cards and other games, and cooking. He was known for cooking for other residents of Sunwood on the weekends. He was an active member of the Claremont American Legion. He loved talking with people.

Survivors include two sons, Denny (Sherry) of Owatonna and Sam (Joyce) of Claremont; a daughter, Teresa Hacker of Wasioja; five grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren; and 3 great-great grandchildren. His wife and three sisters and a grandson preceded him in death.

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Daniel H. Schandorff ~ Kasson

Wednesday, January 30th, 2013

Schandorff, Daniel

Daniel Harold Schandorff, born on June 16, 1944, died of natural causes on January 29, 2013 at St. Mary’s Hospital.
Daniel served in the military during the Korean War. He was honorably discharged. Following his service, he had various types of jobs. But his favorite was working on the farm and assisting with church functions. He was born and raised here in Minnesota, spent 10 years in Texas, where he met his current wife, and returned home to be with his family 18 years ago. He was a family man who adored playing with his grandchildren.
His parents were Claude and Olga (Rubin) Schandorff. Dan is survived by his wife Sherral of Kasson, 4 children, Jane Elizabeth (Cleo) Schandorff-Coles of Georgia , Dan Schandorff of Stewartville, Casey Schandorff of Colorado, and Bonny Schandorff (Mike Olerich) of Denver, IA, 4 grandchildren, Elisabella Raum, Daniel Phillip Coles, Sofia Schandorff, and Elizabeth Raye Coles, his sister Catherine Hanenburger of Kasson, and 5 brothers, Claude “Red” Schandorff of Dodge Center, Gerald (Audrey) Schandorff of Rochester, David (Carol) Schandorff of Wilmar, Russell (Gail) Schandorff of Stewartville, and Terry (Carolee) Schandorff of Kasson. Daniel was preceded in dead by his parents, 2 sisters, 1 brother, and 4 nephews.
There will be a Memorial Service at First Congregational Church, 515 Walnut Street, Mantorville, MN on Saturday, February 2nd at 2 PM with Pastor Brian Egelston officiating. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service at the church.

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Charles Ramthun ~ Byron

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

Charles “Chuck” Herbert Ramthun, 82, of Byron, passed away Sunday, January 20, 2013, at St. Mary’s Hospital in Rochester due to respiratory failure after suffering from Parkinson’s and Lewy bodies disease for 9 years. He had resided at Fairview Care Center in Dodge Center the last 2 years. He was a loving husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather.

Charles was born August 14, 1930, the youngest of 13 children, to Albert and Verna (Postier) Ramthun in Byron, MN. He graduated from Byron High School in 1948. On June 18, 1949, he married Carol Clark. They lived together in Rochester for five years before moving to Byron and building their first home in 1954. Charles worked for three of his building contractor brothers before starting his own home building and development business in Byron.

In high school, he was very active in sports, excelling in football and basketball. This love of high school sports continued as he and his wife became faithful followers of the athletic events at Byron High School, with a special love for track and field. He was the volunteer #1 picker at the track meet finishing line and headed up the chain gang on the football field for over 40 years, donated his services in building the press box (crow’s nest) on the Byron football field and gave 2 BHS sports scholarships for 34 years. His volunteerism and generosity lead to his receiving the Distinguished Service Award at the Minnesota Athletic Directors Association state meeting in 1993. In 2001, he received the Byron High School Distinguished Service Award for his 40 years of service and in 2009, he was inducted into the inaugural Byron Sports Hall of Fame for his volunteerism and service to Byron High School sports.

His love of snowmobiling and his generosity also lead him into being a founding and lifetime member of the Byron Snowbears Snowmobile Club and organizing the annual snowmobile fundraiser for the March of Dimes. Charles will be remembered for his love of flying and accomplished his dream of getting his pilot’s license and owning his own 4-passenger Cessna plane. He was a member of EAA for 30 years. He and his wife loved their fishing trips to Manitoba with their boat and motor home. Charles also loved hunting, dancing, joking, and spending time with family, especially his grandchildren and great grandsons. He was a member of the Byron United Methodist Church.

Charles is survived by his loving wife, Carol Ramthun, of Byron; and their three daughters, Debra (Dave) Ramsey, of Minneapolis, Michelle (Glenn) Seibel, of Bemidji, and Teresa (Jeff) Greene, of Byron. He is also survived by three grandchildren: Paul (Tara) Greene, Brianna (Drew) Cooper, and Tiffany Seibel, and two great-grandchildren: Ethan and Logan Greene.

He is preceded in death by his parents, seven sisters, and five brothers.

Visitation will be from 5:00 to 7:30 p.m. on Friday evening and 1 hour before the service at the Byron United Methodist Church. A funeral service will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday at the church.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Charles Ramthun Byron athletic fund.

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Herbert Grovdahl ~ Kasson

Sunday, January 20th, 2013


Herbert “Herb” Grovdahl of Kasson, Minnesota died of pancreatic cancer on January 17, 2013 while a patient at St. Mary’s Hospital in Rochester, Minnesota.  He was under the care of Mayo Hospice.


Herb was born on December 16, 1942 in Kasson to Henry and Mabel (Carlson) Grovdahl and raised on a farm in Hayfield, Minnesota.  He grew up with sister, Joyce, and brother, Donald, and graduated from Hayfield High School in 1960.  He was drafted into the U.S. Army (Infantry) in April, 1964 and received an honorable discharge in April, 1966.  He served 9-1/2 months in Viet Nam, was wounded, received a Purple Heart, and returned home with shrapnel in his leg.  He was a truck driver and worked for local concrete/cement organizations for about 40 years, retiring in 2005.


Herb was united in marriage to Ardis Fjerstad at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Kasson on April 22, 1967 and two daughters, Keri and Alyssa, were born and raised in Kasson.  He treasured his two daughters and the enjoyment, activity, marriages, and grandchildren that followed.  He was a member of Evanger Lutheran Church in Sargeant until becoming a member at St. John’s Lutheran in Kasson in 1967.  He served on the Church Council and Ushers Group.  Herb enjoyed all things with cars, hunting, carpentry, laying block and brick, gardening, lawn work and especially his flower beds.  He enjoyed all his magazines and was a member of many car, gun and hunting organizations, some being the Kasson Gun Club and Trap Shooting League (held many offices), NRS (life member).  For many years, Herb and Ardis enjoyed dancing and were part of the Relay Club Dance Group.  Herb enjoyed hunting “up north” with Al and attending any and all tractor, car, threshing events with his brother, Don, and cousin, Paul, all activities with his children and grandchildren, animals, camping, Erdman’s Coffee Crew, the mini-reunions with his “Class of 60”, and the many friends, relatives and buddies who visited and prayed.


He is survived by his wife, Ardis; daughters, Keri (Aaron) Babcock of Rochester and Alyssa (Rich) Trow of Mantorville; four grandchildren, Ella and Grady Babcock and Samuel and Addison Trow; brother, Don (Jennifer) Grovdahl of Hayfield; and brother-in-law, Everette Hettinger of Dodge Center.  He was redeceased by his parents; sister, Joyce; infant niece and nephew, Scott and Joy Grovdahl; niece, Robin Grovdahl; father-in-law, Burton Fjerstad, Sr.; and his hunting partner for many years, Al Moen.  Also surviving are his in-laws, Melvina Fjerstad (mother-in-law), Sharon and Tink Larson of Waseca, Denny and Donna Head of Kasson, Burt, Jr. and Enner Fjerstad of kasson, Mike and Eileen O’Connor of Brownsdale, and Mike and Lavonne Berge of Kasson.  Survivors also include many cousins and over 100 nieces, nephews and great-nieces and nephews.


Herb’s funeral will be Friday, January 25, 2013 at 11:00 am at St. John’s Lutheran Church, 301 8th Avenue NW, Kasson, MN with Pastor Randy Fett officiating.  Visitation will be at the church on Thursday, January 24 from 5:00-8:00 pm and one hour prior to the service on Friday.  Burial with military rites conducted by the Kasson American Legion and Mantorville VFW will be at Maple Grove Cemetery in Kasson.


In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to the family for distribution to their choice of charity, to St. John’s Lutheran Church.

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Duane Buck ~ Kasson

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013

Duane Walter Buck, 83, of Kasson, died peacefully at his home on Tuesday, January 15, 2013 surrounded by his family. Duane was formerly from West Concord and was a retired farmer. He and his wife, Marcella, moved to Kasson in 2005.

Duane was born on April 3, 1929, in Zumbrota, MN, to Ray and Esther Buck. He grew up in the area and attended country school in White Willow, near Zumbrota. Following school, he met Marcella (Sally) Briggs of Spring Valley and they were married on April 21, 1950, in Spring Valley.

Duane joined the Army in 1949 and was stationed in Fort Rucker, Alabama, until 1952. He was a member of the 204th Medical BTN Ambulance Company. After the service, Duane and Marcella moved back to Minnesota where Duane began working for the Mayo Clinic in Janitorial Services. He then left the Mayo Clinic to take up farming in the West Concord area. He and Marcella raised six children; Richard (the late Rhonda) Buck of West Concord, Debbie (Kent) Ruport of Kasson, Judy (Roger) Quimby of West Concord, Dorothy (Carvel) Munnikhuysen of Dodge Center, Jim (the late Lori) Buck of West Concord, and Bob (Jill) Buck of Kasson.

He is survived by his children and 18 grandchildren and 29 great-grandchildren; two sisters, Marilyn Schumacher of Zumbrota, Carol (Pervin) Floen of Rochester; and two brothers, Roger (Ardell) of Owatonna, and Jerry Buck of Lake City. He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife, two sisters, one brother, one granddaughter, one great-granddaughter and two daughters-in-law.

Duane enjoyed farming, playing cards, going to the casino, fishing in northern Minnesota and spending time with his family and friends.

A visitation will be held on Friday, January 18, from 5:00-7:00 pm at Dibble Funeral Home in Kasson and one hour prior to the service on Saturday.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday, January 19, at 11:00 am at Trinity Lutheran Church, in West Concord with Pastor Chris Brekke officiating. Burial will be at the Concord Cemetery in Old Concord, MN.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials to the Alzheimer’s Research Foundation, Season’s Hospice or the charity of choice.

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David L. Bradford ~ Kasson

Tuesday, January 15th, 2013

David Lloyd Bradford, a former long time resident of Kasson, died at Season’s Hospice in Rochester on Friday, January, 11, 2013.

Dave was born January 27, 1933 in Berne, MN to Lloyd and Jessie Bradford. He grew up in the Kasson-Mantorville area and spent many a day peeling potatoes and washing dishes at “Brad’s Diner” which was a family owned business.

In October of 1953, Dave married his childhood sweetheart, Phyllis Johnston, of Wasioja, MN in Kasson. Soon after, Dave joined the Army and the newlyweds moved to Arizona. Dave learned to be a mechanic while in the service. He was stationed in Korea from 1954-56 and honorably discharged in 1961. Dave and his new family moved back home to Kasson. He worked at Folkstad’s Garage for a few years and then went to work for UPS in Rochester as a fleet mechanic. He retired after 21 years in 1986. He soon discovered that retirement was not for him (or for Phyllis). He went back to work for the Dodge County Sheriff’s Department and kept the cruisers running in tip top shape. He retired for keeps in 1998.

Dave is survived by his wife, Phyllis. They celebrated 59 years of marriage on October 10, 2012. Also surviving are three daughters; Vickie (Stephanie) Hallisy of Rochester, Cindra Nordstrom of Austin, and Jody (Randy) Liudahl of Rochester; and one sister, Nancy (Lyle) Gronvold of Kasson. He leaves behind 6 grandchildren, 4 great-grandchildren, cousins, nieces, nephews, and friends.

Dave was preceded in death by his parents and brothers, Richard, Royce and Larry.

Dave lived a full and active life with his wife, daughters and friends. Many summers were spent on the lake near Faribault camping, boating, water skiing and, of course, fishing. Dave was a great fisherman, and he shared his passion with his kids, grandkids and friends. He was a long time member of the VFW, the American Legion and the Snowdrifter’s Club. Dave, though short in stature, was a big character. He wanted to make sure everyone was having a good time and would share a beer with friends; luckier ones might also get some fish! He enjoyed his grandkids and great-grandkids and they, in turn, will miss their “Grandpa Pete”.

There will be no funeral service at this time. The family will host a reception on January 27, 2013 at the VFW in Mantorville from 1:00-4:00 pm in Mantorville. All friends and family are welcome to come and share some “Dave” stories.

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