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Marilyn K. Klingensmith, 70, of Ellsworth, passed away peacefully Monday, Nov. 29, 2010, at the Kinnic Long Term Care, River Falls, Wis. Marilyn was born on Jan. 26, 1940, in Minneapolis, Minn., to Melvin and Elva (Schardin) Bottolfson. She married LaVerne R. Klingensmith on May 9, 1959, and renewed their marriage on Feb. 18, 1983. Marilyn worked for many years at Hiawatha Bank, Hager City, and later in her retirement kept busy with various odd jobs in the community. She was an active member of Zion Covenant Church and Ellsworth Senior Center.
Lee R. Nopola, 63, of Inver Grove Heights, Minn., passed away on Nov. 16, 2010, in Biwabik, Minn. In 1975, he married Martha "Marti" Richardson, a lifelong resident of River Falls. A celebration of life will be held from 1-4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 11, (program at 2 p.m.) at the Veterans Memorial Community Center in Inver Grove Heights. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorials be given to the BEST Foundation supporting education.
Vilas Strumstad passed away on Monday, Nov. 29, 2010, at Presbyterian Homes of Roseville, Minn. Arrangements are pending with Cashman-Hill Funeral Home in River Falls.
Lucile Hertel Ringel Kitzerow was born in Olivia, Minn., on April 2, 1914, to Ernest and Helena (Miller) Hertel, the youngest of six children. She died on Nov. 29, 2010, at the Lutheran Home in River Falls at the age of 96. After graduation from Olivia High School, she worked for Renville County and the Olivia School District. Her mother died in 1933 and she was the caretaker for her father until his death in 1941. She then moved to Washington D.C where she worked for the federal government. She transferred to Chicago where she married her voice teacher, Dr. Harvey Ringel, on Sept.
Roman Peter Pechacek, age 88, of River Falls, died on Friday, Nov. 26, 2010, at the Lutheran Home in River Falls where he had been a resident for 3-1/2 years. Roman was born a farmer. His father was crippled with polio and Roman took his place at age 12 working with the hired men. On May 14, 1946, he married Dolores Bachel. He bought the family farm where he farmed until retiring from active farming in 2002. Roman never got to go to high school; farming was what he knew. The love of the land was his life's work.
Gordon S. Johnson, 85, was born on March 25, 1925, in Clear Lake, Wis., the son of Thomas and Edith (Vick) Johnson. He graduated from high school in Clear Lake. He joined the United States Navy in 1942 and was honorably discharged in 1946 as an aviation machinist's mate 3rd class. Gordon entered college at River Falls, Wis., in 1947, and married June (Heck) Johnson.
Ray A. LaPorte, age 77, of River Falls, died Friday, Nov. 19, 2010, at the River Falls Area Hospital. He was born the son of Alvin and Goldie (Parise) LaPorte on June 24, 1933, in Glen Flora, Wis. He served his country in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War. On May 8, 1954, Ray married Joan Barker in Ladysmith, Wis. He worked at St. Croix Gas for many years and retired from the City of River Falls Utilities department. Ray was on the Volunteer Fire Department in Prescott and enjoyed outside yard work, tinkering in his back garage, fishing and hunting.
Doris Henrietta Larson (nee DeRoy), age 90, was born to John and Allie DeRoy on Oct. 11, 1920, at their home in Baldwin, Wis. She died peacefully at home with family in Inver Grove Heights on Nov. 20, 2010.
Ralph LeRoy Brown, age 85, born Jan. 10, 1925, died Nov. 16, 2010, at Regions Hospital in St. Paul. Ralph would want to express his gratitude for the kindness, tenderness and love, given him by the hospital staff; also, to the staff at the Deerfield Gables in New Richmond for their wonderful care during the last few months of his life. Ralph was preceded in death by son, Jeffrey Scott Brown; his parents, Ralph and Dorothy Brown; and sister Mae Stalker.
Lavon Margaret Marie Keehr, age 83, died Tuesday evening, Nov. 16, 2010, at her home in Spring Valley, following a short battle with cancer. Lavon was born Nov. 28, 1926, the daughter of Palmer and Gladys (Thompson) Geving in Baldwin. She was baptized Dec. 25, 1926, at the home of her grandparents, Andrew and Mary Thompson. In 1934, the Gevings moved to Spring Valley and Lavon lived there the rest of her life. Lavon attended Spring Valley schools, graduating with the class of 1944. She attended UW-River Falls for 2 years and Minneapolis Business College for 1 year.