Bette Proper

May 3, 2013

bette proper bio1709

Feb. 18, 1928 – April 23, 2013

Bette Lavonne Fehrman Proper was born Feb. 18, 1928, in Lake Benton, the daughter of Frank and Ruth Fehrman. Her father was a lifelong farmer with an eighth grade education and her mother was a college graduate with a teaching degree and certificate. She joined her older brother Kenneth. She spent her childhood in that farming community and later attended the Minnesota School of Business, from which she graduated.
She met and married her lifelong husband Lowell Proper while attending business school and they married in 1947. Together they had two children, Elizabeth Ann and James Lowell. Although their first home together was in Minneapolis, they moved to Duluth, Des Moines, Iowa, and Chicago, Ill. as they raised their family. The love and joy of her life was her family.
Bette worked as an administrative assistant to a number of presidents and CEOs. She was treasured as one with admirable business acumen, attention to detail and a gracious personality. Later she offered her skills and gifts to school administrators and then to several Lutheran church offices, where she served faithfully for nearly two decades.
Upon retirement she obtained her real estate license and, for awhile, assisted her husband in selling real estate.
Bette was a gracious and meticulous homemaker and an impeccable dresser; a woman of exquisite and refined taste in both design and fashion. She created environments of welcome, and with her caring, compassionate fervor and her lively, engaging personality she invested herself in the lives of those she loved.She always strived for the best and wished the best for others, too. Always a kid at heart, she cherished the time she had with her children. She could tease and play one minute and compose herself with decorum the next—indeed a twin tribute to both her own parents.
She cherished and faithfully nourished lifelong friendships, her strong Christian faith and her love for playing the piano. In her last years, as she bravely and graciously succumbed to the fog of dementia, she maintained her dignity and her warm spirit. Bette fostered a deep wisdom of life and humbly shared it with any in need. Though that wisdom may have seemed opaque in these last years, it shined through her depth of spirit and love, which nothing could conquer.
Bette is survived by her two children, Elizabeth Ann (Proper) Furgason of Chandler, Ariz., and James Lowell Proper of Long Beach, Calif.; two grandchildren, Amy Schoenfeld and Julie Leaf; three great-grandchildren, Emily, Katherine and Caerwyn; and several loving in-laws, nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband Lowell, her parents Frank and Ruth and her brother Kenneth.
Memorial service will be held on Saturday, May 4, at 10 a.m. at Valley of the Sun Mortuary located at 10940 E. Chandler Heights Road, Chandler, Ariz. View online at
May she rest in peace and rise in glory.

Francis Groeneweg

May 3, 2013

July 26, 1919 – April 23, 2013

Funeral service for Francis Groeneweg, age 93 of Tyler, formerly of Balaton, were Friday, April 26 at 11 a.m. at the Tyler Alliance Church in Tyler. Interment was at Hope Cemetery in Tyler. Visitation was Thursday, 4–7 p.m. with a prayer service at 6:30 p.m. at Hartquist Funeral Home, Utoft-Johansen Chapel in Tyler.
He died Tuesday, April 23 at Tyler Healthcare Center in Tyler.
Arrangements were provided by Hartquist Funeral Home, Utoft-Johansen Chapel in Tyler. Online condolences, registry and tribute may be found at
Francis Willard Groeneweg was born July 26, 1919 to John and Louise (Cox) Groeneweg in Rock Lake Township, rural Balaton. He married Esther (Stensgaard) on March 14, 1945. After a brief illness, he died at Tyler Healthcare Center on April 23.
Francis is survived by his sons Dale (and Wanetta) Groeneweg of Quito, Ecuador, Dennis (and Rene) Groeneweg of Belgrade, Mont., and John (and Sybil) Groeneweg of Arco; seven grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren; sisters Lois (and Chester) Knutson of Huron, S.D. and Ruth (and Fred) Abigt of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He was preceded in death by his wife Esther; parents John and Louise; great-grandson Matthew Loren Groeneweg; brothers Isaac, Chester, Robert and Richard, and a baby sister, Roberta.

Clara Oxholm

April 22, 2013

Aug. 15, 1906 – April 15, 2013

Funeral services for Clara Oxholm, age 106 of Tyler, will be Wednesday, April 17 at 2 p.m. at Danebod Lutheran Church in Tyler. Visitation is one hour prior to the service at the church. Burial will be in Danebod Cemetery.
She died Monday, April 15 at Sunrise Manor Nursing Home in Tyler.
Arrangements are provided by Hartquist Funeral Home, Utoft-Johansen Chapel of Tyler. Send on-line condolences at
Clara Marie Oxholm was born to Soren and Karen Marie (Christensen) Jensen on Aug. 15, 1906 in Tyler. She married Arthur Nissen in 1923; he died in 1949. In 1952 she married Arnold Oxholm, who died in 1975.
Clara is lovingly remembered by her daughters Anitra Lewko of Minneapolis and Donna Svendsen of Tyler; sons, Howard Nissen and his wife Dorene of Kasson and Arthur Lee Nissen and his wife Diane of Sioux Falls, S.D.; eight grandchildren, 16 great-grandchildren and nine great-great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husbands Arthur Nissen and Arnold Oxholm; her three brothers, Chris, Einer and Sophus Jensen; her three sisters, Olivia Rasmusen, Olga Stromberg and Edna Feldman; and sons-in-law Harry Lewko and Allen Svendsen.

Charles Skaug

April 22, 2013

March 10, 1918- April 13, 2013

Funeral service for Charles Skaug, age 95 of Balaton, formerly of Russell, will be Wednesday, April 17 at 11 a.m. at Sillerud Lutheran Church in rural Balaton. Visitation was Tuesday, 4–7 p.m., at Sillerud Lutheran Church. Burial will be in Sillerud Lutheran Church Cemetery.
Charles died Saturday, April 13 at Colonial Manor Nursing Home in Balaton.
Arrangements are provided by Hartquist Funeral Home, Utoft-Johansen Chapel in Tyler. On-line registry and condolences may be found at
Charles Ludwig Herman Skaug was born March 10, 1918 to Martin and Ellen (Miller) Skaug on the family farm in Rock Lake Township, Lyon County. In 1944 Charles married Audrey Squashingroff in St. Paul.
Charles is lovingly remembered by his wife Audrey of Balaton; his children, Judy Baumann and her husband James of Hastings, Terry Skaug of Slayton and Lori Grant and her husband Greg of Russell; five grandchildren and a great-grandchild. He was preceded in death by his parents; his brothers Chester, Harold and Clarence, and his sisters Dora Nelson, Mabel Pehrson, Agnes Taggart, Helen Duff, Edna Welsand and Irene Chantry.

Rita Carter

April 15, 2013

obit Rita Carter

Feb. 9, 1947 – Jan. 30, 2013

Memorial services for Rita Mildred (Petersen) Carter will be held on April 20 at 10:30 a.m. at the Lighthouse Assembly of God Church by Lake Benton. Interment will be at St. John’s Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery at Verdi. She passed away on Jan. 30 in Portland, Ore.
On Feb. 9, 1947, Rita Mildred was born to Olaf and Mildred Petersen in southwestern Minnesota. She grew up on their family farm in the small town of Lake Benton with her brothers Pete, Virgil, Harlan, and Mark; and sisters Connie, Karen and Marie. She was baptized in 1947 and confirmed in 1961 at St. John’s Lutheran Church, Lake Benton. She graduated from Lake Benton High School in 1965 and soon moved to Minneapolis to pursue life in the big city.
Rita began her career at Boise Cascade as a secretary and was offered the chance to transfer to Portland, Ore. when the company moved in 1967. This brought her West, where she was continually promoted, eventually working as a computer programmer before the company moved away many years later.
It was shortly after arriving in Oregon when she met Russ Carter, who was living in the same apartment complex she had moved into. They dated for the next few years and in 1970 were married at a small church in Tigard, Ore. After saving for three years, they were able to buy a house together in Aloha, Ore., where they remained for the rest of her days.
Russ and Rita were very excited when, on July 4, 1981, their son Ryan Christian Carter was born. The next decades were dedicated to raising “her joy and sunshine” and watching him grow into a young man. They took many memorable trips to visit family in Minnesota and elsewhere, finding adventure along the way. Ryan began his earliest schooling at Beaverton Christian Church, where the family attended regularly.
When Ryan started school, Rita returned to the workplace as a customer service representative and trainer for Norm Thompson Outfitters. She found many new friends and close connections over the years she worked there, until she retired (again) when the company moved out of state.
She became an avid collector of many things, starting with clocks, moving to Hallmark ornaments and eventually focusing on antique dolls. During this time she formed her own business, Rita’s Collectibles, where she bought and sold items both online and around the state, meeting many new friends and having new adventures in the process.
In May 2009, Rita’s great pride in being a mom was surpassed when she became a Grandma to Ryan and Jamie’s baby boy Cyrus Tristan Carter. He quickly became her new inspiration and a joy and a deep bond developed between the two. They were best friends, spending time with each other weekly as Rita taught him about the world and helped him to grow from a baby into the happy, healthy, intelligent little boy he is today. Her presence was part of the foundation of who Cyrus will become and he will carry her love and devotion with him throughout his life.
Rita cherished her friends and family, always sharing pictures and stories of the siblings, nieces, nephews and others who were a part of her rich life. She was an embodiment of caring and selflessness who placed the needs of others before her own. In her last months, though struggling with the burden which her body had become, she took comfort in knowing that beyond this fleeting pain was an eternity of Peace and Love with Jesus. She had her assurance that, while in this world we may find temporary suffering, the next would contain an unending joy greater than could be imagined. She knows that joy in full.
We will all miss her dearly, but know that we will see her again, shining with the radiance of God.
We love you Rita!
Rita was preceded in death by her parents Olaf and Mildred (Koster) Petersen and her brother Mark Petersen.
Rita is survived by her loving husband Russ Carter; son Ryan Carter (special friend Jamie); grandson Cyrus Carter of Aloha, Ore.; brothers Marlian “Pete” (Marge) Petersen of Lake Benton, Virgil (Shon) Petersen of Woodbury, Harlan (Kathy) Petersen of Clarksville, Tenn.; sisters Connie (Jay) Mincher of Idaho Falls, Idaho, Karen Nielsen of Lake Benton and Marie (Don) Nadeau of Greenwich, N.Y.

Elva Plueger

April 15, 2013

obit Elva Plueger

Feb. 7, 1917 – April 4, 2013

Elva Plueger, age 96 of Brookings, S.D., died Thursday, April 4 at the Golden Living Center in Arlington, S.D. Funeral services were at 10:30 a.m. Monday, April 8 at Mt. Calvary Lutheran Church in Brookings, S.D. with interment at Fairlawn Cemetery in Aurora, S.D. Visitations was from 4-7 p.m. Sunday, April 7 at Eidsness Funeral Home in Brookings, S.D.
Elva Ann (Pecks) Plueger was born Feb. 7, 1917 in LeMars, Iowa to Gerd and Dora E. (Weber) Pecks. She grew up in the LeMars area and attended country school. On Aug. 18, 1938 she married Roy Plueger at Brunsville, Iowa. Following their marriage the Pluegers farmed near LeMars until 1956 when they moved to a farm near Verdi. They moved to Lake Ida at Alexandria in 1981 and to Brookings in 1983. Roy died Nov. 1, 1998.
Elva had been a member of Grace Lutheran Church in Lake Benton and was active in the ladies aid. In Brookings she was a member of Mt. Calvary Lutheran Church. She enjoyed fishing and watching softball games.
Survivors include her three sons, Ron (Jean) Plueger of LaCrosse, Wisc., Bob (Barb) Plueger of Tomah, Wisc., and Jim (Deb) Plueger of Verdi; a daughter, Shirley (Keith) Renkly of Bruce, S.D.; 17 grandchildren, 24 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild. She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, two brothers, a sister and two grandchildren.

Jerry Whipple

April 5, 2013

Oct. 4, 1960 – March 24, 2013

Jerry Whipple, age 52 of Pipestone, died Sunday, March 24 at the Pipestone County Hospice House.
Visitation was Wednesday, March 27, 4-8 p.m. at Christ the King Lutheran Church in Pipestone. Funeral services were Thursday, March 28, 10 a.m. at St. James Lutheran Church in Holland with burial at New Lawn Cemetery in Pipestone. Hartquist Funeral Home, Pipestone Chapel, was in charge of the arrangements.
Jerry was born to Glenn and Olympia (Trujillo) Whipple on Oct. 4, 1960 and grew up in Pipestone.
He is survived by his wife Doraine Whipple of Pipestone; sisters Betty Cardon of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., Dorothy LeBrun of Chanhassen, Linda Wise of Minnetonka, Lois Greenig of Detroit Lakes and Glenda Hewitt of Apple Valley; brothers Richard Whipple of Pipestone, Jim Whipple of Pipesstone, Dennis Whipple of Vermillion, S.D., John Whipple of Pipestone and Bill Whipple of Cheyenne, Wyo.

Mary Ann Ertz

March 28, 2013

July 11, 1939 – March 20, 2013

Mary Ann Ertz died Monday, March 20 at Avera McKennan Hospital in Sioux Falls, S.D.
Mass of Christian Burial Benton, Ruthton, Balaton, and recently Heron Lake, was Monday, March 25, 11 a.m. at St. Genevieve Catholic Church in Lake Benton. Visitation was one hour prior to the Mass at the church and interment was at St. Genevieve Catholic Cemetery, Lake Benton. Arrangements were provided by Hartquist Funeral Home, Utoft-Johansen Chapel in Lake Benton. On-line registry and condolences may be found at
Mary Ann was born July 11, 1939 to Jens and Doris (Hokins) North on a farm four miles west of Ruthton. On June 4, 1961 she was united in marriage to Clarence Ertz at St. Genevieve Catholic Church in Lake Benton.
She will be lovingly remembered by her children: David (Karla) Ertz of Mountain Lake, Robert Ertz of Ruthton, Daniel (Theresa) Ertz of North Mankato, Anna (Kenneth) Heern of Jackson, James Ertz of Ruthton and Russell Ertz of Ruthton; 15 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren; sister Iola Broin of Willmar and brother Mel (Molly) North of Janesville, Wisc.; She was preceded in death by her husband Clarence; parents Jens and Doris; siblings Bill, LeRoy and David North and Eunice Anderson.

Gary L. Thorson

March 28, 2013

June 2, 1942 – March 21, 2013

Gary L. Thorson, age 70 of St. Francis, passed away peacefully March 21.
Funeral services are Wednesday, March 27, at 11 a.m. with visitation one hour prior at Thurston- DeShaw Funeral Home Funeral Home, 13817 Jay St. NW, Andover. Online information can be found at
Gary is survived by his wife Ardith; children Lee (Kristi) Thorson, Lynn Fellerman and Teri Thorson, and seven grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his brothers Jim and Lloyd.
In lieu of flowers memorials preferred to MN Teen Challenge.

Harvey Reynolds

March 21, 2013

obit REYNOLDS, Harvey
June 3, 1918 – March 10, 2013

EDGEMONT, S.D. —Harvey A. Reynolds, 94, formerly of Verdi, passed away Sunday, March 10 at Riverview Health Services in Flandreau, S.D.
Memorial services will be at 1 p.m. on Saturday, June 1 at Verdi United Methodist Church with burial in Memorial Hill Cemetery, Lake Benton. Visit on-line at
He was born June 3, 1918 to Thomas C. and Martha (Rasmussen) Reynolds at their farm home near Verdi. He attended school at Verdi and helped his father with the farming. In 1934 he moved with his family to a farm near Balaton. Harvey married Dorothy Mae Freeburg on March 31, 1944 in Slayton. He farmed at Balaton until the fall of 1946, when they moved to Verdi. Besides farming he was in partnership with his brother Tom in the livestock trucking business. He was awarded truck driving awards for safety and performance. In 1959 Harvey, Dorothy Mae and their children moved to a farm south of Hendricks, where they lived until 1976. Then they moved to Verdi and lived there until the fall of 1980 when Harvey retired and moved to the Black Hills in South Dakota. They lived at St. Onge, S.D. for a number of years then at Edgemont, S.D. His wife Dorothy Mae passed away April 15, 2007. Harvey resided the past five years with his daughters Diane and Darlene. Harvey spent the last five weeks of his life at Riverview Health Services, Flandreau, S.D.
Harvey loved horses, raised many and also enjoyed riding them. When he was younger he liked to hunt and fish.
Harvey is survived by daughter Darlene Anderson of Belle Plaine, son David Reynolds of Hot Springs, S.D., son Dennis Reynolds of Newcastle, Wyo., daughter Diane (Steve) Hammer of Elkton, S.D., grandchildren, great-grandchildren, brother Howard (Rosemary) Reynolds of Pipestone, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Harvey was preceded in death by his wife Dorothy Mae, his parents, his sisters Dorothy Gust and Velma Coyle, brothers Martin, Clay, Archie, Frank, Thomas Jr. and Richard, and son-in-law Leroy Anderson.