Complete obituaries can be found in the Paynesville Press each week.
font size=4 COLOR="BLACK" face="helvetica, arial, sans serif">Sylvan Eliason, 83, Willmar|
Sylvan Nels Eliason, 83, of Willmar, passed away at his home on Thursday, June 22, 2017, with family at his side after a long illness of kidney failure. Funeral services were held at Nordland Lutheran Church in Paynesville on Monday, June 26. Sylvan leaves behind his wife, Cecelia; his daughter, Lisa (Jack) Liebl of Atwater; his son, Joe Eliason of Litchfield; his grandchildren: Jeff (Marcie) Liebl, Nic Liebl, Tiffany (Brent) Hedtke, Zack Liebl, and Gracie Eliason; and his great-grandchildren: Harper, Larkin, and Oliver Hedtke and Henry and Sean Liebl. Sylvan’s sister, Dorothy (Tom) Surma of Avon, also survives him, in addition to numerous nieces, nephews, many other relatives, and friends. Sylvan was preceded in death by his parents, Nils and Sine Eliason; half-brother, Vernon Christenson; and several brother-in-laws and sister-in-laws. Sylvan had attended Nordland Lutheran Church, Willmar Assembly of God Church, River of Life Assembly of God in Cold Spring, and most recently was a part of the Willmar Bible Church congregation. He spent two years active duty in the U.S. army and an additional eighteen years in the army reserves. Sylvan worked many years as a self-employed carpenter and later he worked in maintenance at Willmar Community College and Gander Mountain in St. Cloud. Sylvan grew up south of Lake Koronis near Paynesville. He lived on the family farm for many years with his wife and children. Later he moved to the St. Cloud area for 18 years. One year ago, Sylvan and Cecelia moved to Willmar. Anyone who knew Sylvan will remember him as a gentle and patient man. He was known for his dry sense of humor and his witty remarks. He enjoyed the outdoors, camping, hunting, and fishing. In later years, he honed his wood carving skills. The things that Sylvan would most like you to remember about him is that he knew Jesus Christ as his personal savior and that he loved spending time with his family and speaking Norwegian.
font size=4 COLOR="BLACK" face="helvetica, arial, sans serif">Elizabeth Louis, 97, Paynesville
Elizabeth A. "Betty" Louis, 97, of Paynesville, died on Friday, June 9, 2017, at the Koronis Manor in Paynesville. A Memorial Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Saturday, July 15, at 12 noon, at the St. Louis Catholic Church in Paynesville. Rev. Glenn Krystosek will be the celebrant. Interment was at an earlier date. Visitation will be from 10 a.m. to 12 noon, on Saturday, July 15, at the church. She is survived by her five sons: Dale (Mary Ann) of Breckenridge, Colo., Myron of Buffalo, Minn., Leo (Lou) of Paynesville, Cecil (Mari) of New London, and Adrean (Jean) of Paynesville; 15 grandchildren; 21 great-grandchildren; five step-grandchildren; seven step-great grandchildren; and other relatives and many friends.
font size=4 COLOR="BLACK" face="helvetica, arial, sans serif">James Michaelis, 71, St. Cloud
James Roy Michaelis, 71, of St. Cloud (formerly of Paynesville,) passed away on Wednesday, June 14, 2017, at St. Cloud Hospital. His funeral service was held on Monday, June 19, at Paynesville Lutheran Church. James Michaelis was born on May 12, 1946, in Valley City, N.D. to Raymond and Bernice (Larson) Michaelis. He was baptized and confirmed at West Prairie Lutheran Church in Jessie, N.D. He attended country grade school and Cooperstown High School. On Aug. 4, 1967, he was united in marriage to Loretta Midstokke in Hannaford, N.D. Jim worked as a bricklayer with several contractors and had his own business before joining the bricklayers union in the 70’s, which had him building in many states. In 1989, Jim, Loretta, and family moved to Paynesville, where he continued his masonry business. He retired in 2010 and they moved to St. Cloud. Jim enjoyed gardening, playing cards, hunting trips, spending time at the family farm, and spending time with family. He especially enjoyed his grandchildren and never missed any of Riley’s basketball or baseball games. Jim will be forever missed by his family and all that knew him. He will be deeply missed by his wife of 49 years, Loretta; daughters, Mindy (Lucas) Jones of Sartell and Jami (Kyle) Whitcomb of Sauk Rapids; grandchildren: Riley, Brooklyn, Aiden, Logan, Garrett, and Liberty; siblings: Richard (Linda) of Paynesville, Darrell (Mary) of Cooperstown, N.D., and Sylvia (James) Bergren of Yuma, Ariz.; and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; brother-in-law, Harlan Midstokke; sister-in-law, Gloria Midstokke; nephew, Todd Midstokke; and great-niece, Natalie. Arrangements are with Johnson Funeral Home in Paynesville.
font size=4 COLOR="BLACK" face="helvetica, arial, sans serif">Kenneth Bjerke, 86, Clark, S.D.
Kenneth Olaf Bjerke was born on July 13, 1930, to Carl and Olga (Warwick) Bjerke at his grandparents’ (Warwick) home on Cottonwood Lake in Lily, S.D. He passed away at the age of 86, on May 5, 2017, while living at the Fay Wookey Memorial Assisted Living Home in Clark, S.D. Services will be held at the Crocker Lutheran Church in Crocker, S.D., at 11 a.m. on June 17, with a luncheon following at the Bradley Community Center in Bradley, S.D. Kenny graduated from Augustana Academy in Canton, S.D., in the spring of 1949. It was during his first year there that he received Christ as his Savior, which changed the course of his life forever. He thoroughly enjoyed playing sports while at the Academy – especially basketball. It was also while at Augustana that he met the love of his life, Nelda Marie Stump. They were married on April 29, 1950, in Lily, S.D. For the majority of his career, he worked as a pressman at the Star Tribune in Minneapolis. He also tried his hand at real estate and cement business. Over the years, he and Nelda lived in South Dakota, Wisconsin, Minnesota (Duluth, Minneapolis, Buffalo, Anoka, Madilia, and Paynesville), Arkansas, and France. Later in life, they wintered in Arizona. He loved hunting, gardening, playing cards, skiing, polka dancing, square dancing, and taking family vacations. He also enjoyed coaching little league, teaching Sunday school, and working with the senior teens at church. His greatest desire in this life was to see his family, friends, and co-workers accept Christ as their Savior, so he could see us all again someday in Heaven. Encouraged by his daughters, he wrote a book, “Prairie Boy,” depicting the stories he would tell them about his early life growing up on the farm in South Dakota. He loved reminiscing about his youth on the farm – he couldn't wait to hear the Meadow Lark song in the spring and the pheasants in the fall. He always said he couldn't have dreamt of a better way to live. He will be deeply missed by his loving wife of 67 years, Nelda; five daughters: Debbie (Dean) Markuson of Pequot Lakes, Minn.; Sandra (Grayling) Trees of Marseille, France; Marcia Englund of St. Paul; Becky Ann (Jeff) Olson of Hollister, Mo.; Bonnie (Lionel) Callies of Hollister, Mo.; 11 grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren; one great-great grandchild; sister, Dorey Gross of Clark, S.D.; brother, Dunk (Elva) Bjerke of Watertown, S.D.; sister, Roxy (Dale) Streckfuss of Mansfield, S.D.; sister-in-law, Sharon Bjerke of Clark, S.D.; brother-in-law, Bill Schaefbauer of Souix Falls, S.D.; sister-in-law, Joann (Rev. Arnold) Jergenson of Silverdale, Wash.; many nieces, nephews, and other relatives and friends. He was preceeded in death by: parents, Carl and Olga Bjerke; brother, Little Joey Bjerke; sister, Faye Johnson; brother, Jim Bjerke; sister, Becky Schaefbauer; brother-in-law, John Johnson; brother-in-law, John Gross; and in-laws, Reverend Joseph and Nelda Stump.
font size=4 COLOR="BLACK" face="helvetica, arial, sans serif">Anoma Bottin, 72, Watkins.
Anoma Faye Bottin, 72, of Watkins, died on Sunday, June 4, 2017, at her home. A time of fellowship will be held between 10 and 11 a.m., on Saturday, June 17, at Grace United Methodist Church in Paynesville. A memorial service will follow at 11 a.m., officiated by pastor Bob Kandels. Interment of cremains will be at the Worthington Cemetery. She was born on Aug. 31, 1944, in Adrian, to Herman and Joyce Bottin. She was the youngest of four children. Anoma lived with her parents until the age of 19. In 1963, she moved to Cambridge, Minn. Anoma moved to Lake Owasso Children’s Home in 1964 and later moved back to Cambridge. In 1974, she moved to St. Cloud, and she attended the Stearns County DAC in Waite Park. She later moved to the Valley Rest Home in Eden Valley. Anoma attended the DAC in Cold Spring, from 1978 to 1986. She moved to the adult foster care home in rural Eden Valley in 1996. At this time, she began attending the Meeker County DAC in Litchfield, which later changed its name to Pro Works, Inc. in 2002. She moved to the adult foster care home of Kayla and Brad Winings on July 1, 2002. Anoma resumed vocational services at Pro Works, Inc. She was a member of the Grace United Methodist Church in Paynesville. Anoma is survived by her family: Brad and Kayla Winings of Watkins; Jaren (Amy) Winings and their son, Landon of Litchfield; Brittany Winings of Watkins; cousin, Mardella (Ken) Claussen of Minneapolis; and niece, Lisa McCarthy of Rosemount. She was preceded in death by her mother, Joyce V. Pinz; step-father, Harry; father, Herman Bottin; two brothers, Virgil and Dale Bottin; and a sister, LaVonne (Bonnie) Baker. Services are entrusted to Dingmann Funeral Home & Cremation Services in Worthington.
font size=4 COLOR="BLACK" face="helvetica, arial, sans serif">David Thomas, 90, Marion, Kan..
David Dale Thomas, 90, of Marion, Kan., passed away on the evening of Thursday, Dec. 8, 2016. Graveside services and military honors will be held at Salem Historical Church Cemetery near Paynesville, on Saturday, June 24, at 10:30 am. He was born on May 11, 1926, in Sheridan, Ill. He was the son of Rev. W.R. and Essie Friend Thomas. Since his dad was a pastor, they lived in many places while growing up including Brainerd, Minn., where he attended grade school. Later, his family moved to Maple Grove and he went to high school in Osseo, Minn. He enlisted in the navy on his birthday, May 11, 1944, shortly before high school graduation. He served in the pacific (specifically Okinawa) and was discharged honorably as a coxswain on June 1, 1946. The following fall he entered Westmar College in LeMars, Iowa, where he met Virginia Hayen. The following year they were married and made their home in Osseo, Minn. They had three children: Jacquelyn, W.R. ‘Tom,’ and Michael. In 1953, they moved to Marion, Kas. He was a State Farm Insurance agent, Field Man for the Herington Livestock Exchange, and a driver for AMPI Dairy. He attended the Youngstown United Methodist Church years ago and in recent times attended the Marion Presbyterian Church, where he sang in the men’s chorus and served as an elder. He enjoyed working with Jerry Harp on ambulance runs, and during those years they formed the first EMT service in Marion. He especially enjoyed the Marion County Fair since his children were in 4-H. They showed beef cattle and horses at the fair. He was a project adult leader for 4-H. He was also a member of VFW Post #6958. He is survived by his children: Jackie Magee and her husband, Dave of Guffey, Colo.; ‘Tom’ Thomas and his wife, Patti of Marion; and Mike Thomas and his wife, Gayle of Marion; six grandchildren: Adam Thomas, Ryan Thomas, Joel Thomas, Leann Klenda, Charles Magee, and Crystal Magee; six great-grandchildren: Ashley Magee, Rylee Thomas, Clayton Thomas, Kollin Klenda, Wesley Klenda, and Wiley Thomas; siblings: James Thomas of St. Paul, Minn., Carolyn Reeck of St. Peter, Minn., and Catherine Hayen of Topeka; and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Margaret Simard; and brother-in-laws, Warren Reeck and Ernie Simard.
font size=4 COLOR="BLACK" face="helvetica, arial, sans serif">Marie Vogelpohl, 79, Watkins
Marie Vogelpohl, 79, of Watkins, formerly of Paynesville, died on Friday, June 9, 2017. Memorial services will be held on Wednesday, June 21, at 2 p.m., at Hilltop Care Health Care Center (Gethsemane Chapel), in Watkins. Visitation will be one hour prior to services. She is survived by many nieces and nephews. Arrangements by Ertl Funeral Home, Watkins.
font size=4 COLOR="BLACK" face="helvetica, arial, sans serif">Marie Donald Kruger, 85, Discovery Bay, Calif.
Donald Kruger, 85, of Discovery Bay, Calif., formerly of Paynesville, died on Sunday, May 14, 2017. He is survived by his wife, Claire; children: Marsha, Mark, and Diane; and three grandchildren. Donald attended Paynesville Area High School and graduated in 1950. Burial will be on Friday, June 16, at 1:30 p.m., at the Paynesville Cemetary.