Lavonne Schardin

May 16, 2019

obit lavonneschardinMarch 21, 1949 – May. 11, 2019

Lavonne Joyce (Untiedt) Schardin, age 70 of Grafton, North Dakota, was called to Heaven on Saturday, May 11 at St. Benedict’s Health Center in Dickinson, North Dakota, where she was re­covering from a stroke.
Lavonne Joyce Untiedt was born in Luverne on March 21, 1949, the daughter of the late Paul and Bernice Untiedt. She was the third child of six. Lavonne was raised in Kanaranzi, and began her education in a one-room schoolhouse. She got her work ethic from doing family chores on the farm. Lavonne graduated from Pipestone High School in 1967 and following gradu­ation, she attended Pip­estone Vocational School for bookkeeping.
Lavonne was united in marriage to Robert “Bob” Schardin on Sept. 8, 1968 at St. Paul’s Luther­an Church in Pipestone. The couple made their home in Lake Benton. She worked as bookkeeper for the Pawnee Corpora­tion in Pipestone. In 1970, Lavonne and Bob moved to Hillsboro, North Da­kota, where he began his career with Schwan’s Ice Cream. In October 1972, the couple was blessed with their first child, Ja­son, then in January 1978, they had their second child, Wayne. In February 1978, the couple moved to Duncan, South Carolina for Bob’s work with Schwan’s. In March 1980, they were blessed with their young­est child, Jon. One year later, the couple decided it was time to come back to the Midwest and they settled in Holstein, Iowa for a few years. They later moved to Bemidji, then finally made their home in Grafton, North Dakota in 1989. It was in Grafton that Bob worked contin­ued to work for Schwan’s and Lavonne went to work as a sales clerk for Pamida (Shopko). Lavonne en­joyed her work and espe­cially visiting with all the customers. She retired af­ter 27 years.
Lavonne enjoyed many hobbies, 4-H when younger, bowling, crafts and cross stitch. Most of all, she and Bob enjoyed traveling to see their family. Lavonne loved going to the Twin Cities and watching her granddaughter Jenna play softball and volleyball and participate in many con­certs with band and most recently choir. She also loved going to Wichita, Kansas to see her grand­son Cason celebrate his birthday. Most recently, she traveled in February to celebrate Cason’s fifth birthday. She was looking forward to Jenna’s gradu­ation from high school in 2020 and seeing Cason become involved in school activities.
Lavonne is survived by her three sons— Ja­son (DeAnn) Schardin of Brooklyn Center, Wayne (Katie) Schardin of Wichi­ta, Kansas, and Jon Schar­din of Dickinson, North Da­kota; grandchildren Jenna Nicole and Cason Robert; siblings Donald (Jim Mc­Kee) Untiedt of Plymouth, Barbara (Alan) Spalinger of Kodiak, Alaska, and Pat­sy Kaski of Roanoke, Texas; nieces and nephews Kally (Chris) Hicks, Geoff (Ra­chel) Spalinger, Colin (Jen) Kaski, Amanda (Scott) Wells, Elizabeth (Rob) Venegas and Tim Unruh; several great-nieces and nephews, with the newest one due in June. She is also survived by a sister-in-law, Jane Schardin of Slayton, and special aunt Betty Mann of Luverne, along with many cousins.
She was preceded in death by her husband Bob on Nov. 17, 2017; brother Tom Untiedt on Jan. 15, 2019; brother Howard Untiedt; parents Bernice and Paul Untiedt; grand­parents Freda and John Mann and Emma and Paul Untiedt; mother- and fa­ther-in-law Elizabeth and Bernard Schardin; sister-in-law Ann Untiedt; and several aunts, uncles and cousins.
Lavonne will be greatly missed, and definitely loved forever. Memorial donations are welcomed, but certainly not expected.
Funeral services will be Saturday, May 18, 11 a.m. at Grafton Lutheran Church in Grafton, North Dakota. Visitation will be Friday, May 17, 5-7 p.m. with a prayer service at 7 p.m. at Tollefson Funeral Home of Grafton. Friends may also call at the church on Saturday for one hour prior to the service. Inter­ment will be Sunday, May 19, 2 p.m. at Memorial Hill Cemetery in Lake Benton.
An online guestbook is available at www.tollef­
The Tollefson Funeral Home of Grafton is in charge of the arrange­ments.

Willie Oltmans

May 9, 2019

obit Oltmans WillieJune 29, 1926 – Feb. 1, 2019

Willie H. Oltmans, age 92 of Luverne, formerly of Lake Benton, passed away Feb. 1 at the Minne­sota Veterans Home in Lu­verne. A memorial service with military honors will be held Monday, May 13, 11 a.m. at Grace Lutheran Church in Lake Benton. Visitation will be held one hour prior to the service at church. To view Willie’s full life history or sign an online registry please vis­it
Willie Henry Oltmans was born to Fred and Min­nie (Ahliets) Oltmans on June 29, 1926 in Rush­more. He was raised and attended grade school there. At the age of 17, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy. He had his training from May-August 1944, then spent time serving on three ships—USS Winged Arrow (AP-170), a troop carrier, from August 1944-March 1945; USS Mere­dosia (IX-193), a tanker, from March-July 1945; and lastly, aboard USS Point Cruz (CVE-119), an aircraft carrier, from July 1945-May 1946. He was injured during the Janu­ary 1945 invasion of Lin­gayen Gulf, Philippines, which eventually led to his honorable discharge in May 1946.
On Feb. 12, 1949 Willie was united in marriage to Elsie Ann Schmidt in Flandreau, South Dakota. The couple settled in Lu­verne. Willie worked at a service station before the couple moved to Tracy. In 1959, he started building the Tyler Motel in Tyler, and it opened in 1960. Willie and Elsie Ann ran the motel side by side for 15 years. He also worked at the nearby Amoco sta­tion. They then moved to Slayton and operated a bar and restaurant for a few years until ultimately moving to Lake Benton, and doing odd jobs until retirement.
Elsie preceded Willie in death on April 11, 2000. He was reunited with her on Feb. 1, when he died at the Minnesota Veter­ans Home in Luverne at the age of 92 years, seven months, and two days.
Willie was a dedicated member of the American Legion and earned his Certificate of Continuous Service for 73 years. He enjoyed golfing, fishing, hunting, woodworking, card playing and making soup, including one of his specialties – turtle soup!
Willie is survived by his son, Steven Oltmans of Arvada, Colorado; grand­daughters Lori (Brad) Kautzer and Jessica (Matt) Lynch; grandson Anthony (Rebecca) Dressen; and great-grandchildren Cole, Lexi, Fletcher, Isabelle, Sophia and Wyatt. He was preceded in death by his wife Elsie Ann; his par­ents; three brothers; and his daughter Lou Ann.

Susan Barber

May 9, 2019

Oct. 14, 1956 – May 1, 2019

Sue Barber, age 62 of Tyler, passed away Wednesday, May 1 at Sun­rise Manor Nursing Home in Tyler. Memorial service will be Monday, May 13, 5 p.m. at Tyler Alliance Church, 202 Linwood St., Tyler. Visitation will be one hour prior to servic­es. Private burial will be at a later date. Online con­dolences may be placed at
Susan “Sue” Kay (Gor­don) Barber was born to Manley and Betty (Kerr) Gordon on Oct. 14, 1956 in San Jose, California. The family moved to Tyler in 1964. On Jan. 14, 1984 Sue married Bill Barber, and their marriage was blessed with three chil­dren.
Sue is survived by her children—Amber (Da­mon) Gomez of Perry, Kansas, Brittany (Marc) Venekamp of Elkton, South Dakota, and Buck (Heidi) Barber of Au­rora, South Dakota; five grandchildren; brothers Gary (Pat), Alan (Diane), and James; sisters Kathi (Harvey) Dressen, Mar­lene Lazerenko, and Rita (Gary) Heldt; and many cousins and nephews and nieces.
She was preceded in death by her parents and grandparents, sister Pa­tricia and grandchild Ella Barber.

Willie Oltmans

May 2, 2019

Willie H. Oltmans, age 92 of Luverne, formerly of Lake Benton, passed away on Feb. 1 at the Min­nesota Veterans Home in Luverne.
A memorial service with military honors will be held May 13, 11 a.m. at Grace Lutheran Church in Lake Benton. Visitation will be held one hour prior to the service at church.
To view Willie’s full life history or sign an online registry please visit

Clara Persoon

May 2, 2019

obit Persoon ClaraAug. 21, 1923 – April 17, 2019

It is with sadness we announce the passing of Clara, our loving mother and friend to all whose lives she touched, on April 17.
Clara was born at home near Ivanhoe on Aug. 21, 1923 to Peter and Anna Lipinski Otto. She was one of 10 children in the Otto family.
Clara and Raymond Persoon were married the morning of Jan. 28, 1947 at St. John Cantius Catholic Church in Wilno. True to Minnesota winter weather, there was a bliz­zard that afternoon. Clara and Ray were married 41 years before Ray’s pass­ing.
Upon moving into Tyler after Ray’s passing, Clara was employed at May­nard’s Grocery. Working at Maynard’s was one of the highlights in her life. Clara loved greeting ev­eryone who shopped at the store, giving out hugs, smiles, and words of wis­dom with a twinkle in her eye. Her work ethic was unmatched.
The number one love in Clara’s life was her fam­ily. She was always so proud of all of them. Her children are Gerald and wife Charlotte of Olym­pia, Washington; Kenneth and wife Phyllis of Cotton­wood; Richard and wife Joyce of Marshall; Ronald and wife Patricia of Tyler; and Julie and husband Curt (deceased) of Cen­tralia, Washington.
Clara’s grandchildren and great-grandchildren were her pride and joy. They are Amie and Brian Bartholomew and Sarah, Emily and Owen; Rebec­ca and Russell Olsen and Alex; Drew Persoon and Lindy McCarthy; Dawn and Ryan Arends and Bryce, Cole and Lane; Ryan and Kellee Persoon and Rayel and Kenden; Scott and Kim Persoon and Hanna, Benett and Gracelynn; Stacy and Jeff James and Landyn and Kylee; Carissa and Greg Redenius and Austin, Kayla, Brynlee and Everly; and Stephanie and Justin Habel and Foster, Willa and Bodie.
Quilting was Clara’s passion. She always had a quilting project going and loved to show visitors all her completed quilts. Clara gifted every one of her children, grandchil­dren and great-grand­children with many quilts over the years.
The funeral mass for Clara will be held Friday, May 3, 10:30 a.m. at St. Dionysius Catholic Church in Tyler. Visitation will be Thursday, May 2, 4-7 p.m. at Hartquist Funeral Home Tyler Chapel with a prayer service at 6:30 p.m.
The family requests that donations in Clara’s name may be given to the Amer­ican Cancer Society or a charity of your choice.
Clara lived a full life as a wonderful wife, moth­er, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend. She will be remembered for her smile, the twinkle in her eyes and the love in her heart.

Larry Kelley

April 26, 2019

obit Larry Kelley 7781246May 3, 1938 – April 10, 2019

Larry Charles Kelley passed away peacefully April 10 in Palm Desert, California.
He was born May 3, 1938 in Tyler to Cecil and Evangeline Kelley and studied music at St. John’s University in Minnesota, South Dakota State Uni­versity, University of Oregon, and continued post-masters music stud­ies at University Olden­burg, Germany. After his studies, Larry settled in the Iowa City, Iowa area and was Choral Director at Iowa City West High School from 1969 to 1997. Over the years, he direct­ed the West High Varsity Singers, Good Time Com­pany and Chamber Choir, earning much recogni­tion, as well as appearing on KGAN (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) for a television spe­cial. In the 1980s he also co-directed a Christmas album produced by Delta Records. There has been an outpouring of loving wishes from Larry’s stu­dents, whom he mentored over the years, reminding us how he touched the lives of many through his beloved music career.
In retirement, Larry settled in Palm Desert, California, where he and partner Ronald Wheat spent their remaining years. Larry loved to travel, cared for a beauti­ful rose garden, and kept active with a local swim club.
Larry is survived by his sisters Donna Hodges of Spring Valley, California and Nancy Wolfe of Ap­ple Valley; and brothers Richard Kelley of Golden Valley and John Kelley of Marion, Kansas. Larry was predeceased by his sister Georgi MacDougal of Pomona, California, and his partner Ronald Wheat, beloved partner in life.
The Fitz Henry Wiefels Funeral Home in Palm Desert, California was in charge of the arrange­ments.

Edna Davis

April 26, 2019

Edna Davis, age 95 of Ty­ler, formerly of Lake Ben­ton and Pipestone, died at her home on Easter Sun­day, April 21.
Visitation will be 5-8 p.m. Thursday, April 25 at Hartquist Funeral Home-Pipestone Chapel. Funeral service will be 10 a.m. Friday, April 26 at Christ the King Free Lutheran Church in Pipestone. Buri­al in New Woodlawn Cem­etery, Pipestone. Hartquist Funeral Home-Pipestone Chapel is in charge of ar­rangements.
To view obit or sign an online registry go to

Clara Persoon

April 26, 2019

Clara A. Persoon, age 95, passed away Wednesday, April 17 at Sunrise Manor in Tyler.
A memorial visitation will be held Thursday, May 2, 4-6:30 p.m. at Hartquist Funeral Home–Tyler Cha­pel. A prayer service will follow at 6:30 p.m. A Me­morial Mass of Christian Burial will be Friday, May 3, 10:30 a.m. at St. Diony­sius Catholic Church in Tyler. Interment will be in St. Dionysius Catholic Cemetery.
To view Clara’s full life history, please visit

Gary Johnson

April 18, 2019

Oct. 29, 1944 – April 11, 2019

Gary Johnson, age 74 of Tyler, passed away un­expectedly on Thursday, April 11 at the Avera Tyler Hospital. Memorial visita­tion will be held Friday, April 26, 4-6:30 p.m. at Hartquist Funeral Chapel in Tyler. A prayer service will follow at 6:30 p.m. A memorial service will be held Saturday, April 27, 10:30 a.m. at Grace Lutheran Church in Lake Benton. To view Gary’s full life history, please vis­it www.hartquistfuneral. com.
Gary William Johnson was born Oct. 29, 1944 to George and Elsa (Maus) Johnson in Montevideo. He married Susan Long on June 7, 1985 at First Eng­lish Church in Tyler.
Gary is survived by his wife Susan; children David and Angie Johnson; step-children Blake Long (Victo­ria Spencer), Sheila (Craig) Minett, and Mitchell Long; 12 grandchildren; brothers Eugene (Yvonne), Dennis, David (Carol), and Mark (Janalee); brother-in-law Jim (June) Herrington; and many nieces, nephews, and other relatives. He was preceded in death by his parents; brother Leroy (Gerri) Johnson; parents-in-law Donald and Shirley Herrington; and step-son Shannon Long.

Jeffrey Fehl

March 28, 2019

Feb. 20, 1959- March 21, 2019

Jeffrey G. Fehl, age 60 of Lake Benton, passed away Thursday, March 21 at Avera Sunrise Manor in Tyler.
Visitation was Monday, March 25, 1-2 p.m. at the Hartquist Funeral Home in Lake Benton. A funeral service followed at 2:30 p.m. at the funeral home. Interment will be in St. Genevieve Catholic Cem­etery. To view Jeffrey’s life history or sign an online registry please visit
Jeffrey George Fehl was born Feb. 20, 1959 to Mor­ris and Irene (Wichern) Fehl in Tyler.
Jeff is survived by his children, John (Jing Guan) Fehl of Elmwood Park, Illi­nois, Megan (Nick) Jopson of Egan, South Dakota, and Mike Fehl of Canby; five grandchildren; his father Morris Fehl of Lake Ben­ton; and siblings, Steve (Billie) Fehl, Gary (Becky) Fehl , Randy (Lori) Fehl, Sherry Fehl, Teresa (Bill) Bunkers, Tom (Robin) Fehl, and Jeanette Kir­meier. He was preceded in death by his mother Irene and brothers Richard and Jerry Fehl.