William“Bill” K. Loe, 77, dies

William“Bill” K. Loe, 77 passed away peacefully on Dec. 12, 2017 at Little Hospice in Edina. He died from complications of ALS. Preceded in death by his parents and brother, Terry. He is survived by wife, Alice; son, Mark (Skye); daughter, Jessica; granddaughter, Kiley; brother, Rodney (Mae Kathryn); sister, Janice (Arvid) Behrens and many nieces and nephews.
Bill attended school in Slayton and Ely, MN. He worked at Reserve Mining in Babbitt and owned and operated the Dray Freight Line in Ely for several years until he graduated from Ely Jr. College, and then went onto St. Cloud State University to graduate Summa Cum Laude. He pursued his career in human relations and labor negotiations with several corporations domestically and internationally.
In later years he owned and successfully operated a para medical business. He also was a certified appraiser of classic autos.


George D. Zembal, 63, of Ely, dies

George D. Zembal, 63, of Ely, passed away on Tuesday, December 12, 2017 at Ely Bloomenson Community Hospital. George loved to cook for people and make them laugh. He had friends everywhere he went and would never hesitate to help someone out. His food and jokes will be missed, especially his famous grilled pizza.
He is survived by his wife of 29 years, Lori; daughter and son-in-law, Samantha and Kyler Hauschildt; father-in-law, George Ryktyo; siblings, Jerry (Nancy) Zembal, Jack (Joette) Zembal, and sister Jeanne Zembal; and many wonderful friends, especially Dean Hanninen.
Preceded in death by his parents, Peter and Gladys Zembal; brother, Tommy Zembal; and mother-in-law, Nancy Rykyto.
Funeral services will be held on Saturday, December 16, 2017 at 4:00 p.m. at Kerntz Funeral Home in Ely with visitation taking place one half hour prior to the service at the funeral home.
Family arrangements have been entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.


Renee Marie Lutwinko, 68, of Chisholm, dies

Renee Marie Lutwinko, 68, of Chisholm, returned peacefully to the Lord Thursday, December 7, 2017, at home. She was born May 4, 1949, in Ely, MN, to Thomas C. and Louise E. (Warner) LeRoy. She obtained a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Minnesota Duluth and retired from NTS as an Environmental Laboratory Manager.
Renee was united in marriage on July 17, 1992, in Hibbing to Clifford L. Lutwinko. She was a member of Chisholm Baptist Church and enjoyed planning events for family get-togethers, gardening, the outdoors, travelling around the world with her husband, and volunteering for Hospice and Habitat for Humanity.


William L. Herzberg, 82, of Ely, dies

William L. Herzberg, 82, of Ely, passed away at his home on Friday, December 8, 2017. Family arrangements have been entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.


Mildred Eva (Kowalski) Randall, 89, dies

Mildred Eva (Kowalski) Randall, 89, passed away peacefully on Dec 7, 2017 in Burnsville, MN, after a courageous battle with Parkinson's and Alzheimers. Millie has been reunited with her husband Bill, daughter Marlys and infant son, brothers: Donald, Clarence, Louis Kowalski, sister Delores, and parents Stephen and Edith Kowalksi. Survived by daughters: Karen Nelson, Ann Tess, Jean Alaspa, Loretta (Jeffrey) Benedict, and Brenda Sweet (Dale Boltz); 13 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren, her brother Richard Kowalski and many other family and friends. A celebration of life will be held Tuesday, December 12, at 11am White Funeral Home, Burnsville MN.


William (Billy) Mayerle, of Ely, dies

William “Billy” Frank Mayerle, 67, of Ely died Thursday, December 7, 2017 at Essentia Health Virginia Care Center.
William was born July 18, 1950 to Frank and Edith Margaret (Nichols) Mayerle in Virginia, MN and grew up and was a life- long resident of Ely, graduating in the Class of 1969.
Upon graduation he worked for James G-Men for a short period and then as an equipment operator for the City of Ely until his retirement, and also was a member of the Ely Volunteer Fire Department.
Billy had a passion for fishing on Basswood Lake since he was a child, and he and his friends went almost every Saturday from fishing opener until after Labor Day. He also enjoyed ice fishing and snowmobiling, but most of all he loved his family and grandsons.
Billy is survived by his daughter Kathie (Shawn) Hill, four grandsons, Timothy, Adam, Bryce Williamson and Easton Hill, all of Winton, MN. Along with many close friends.


Carol Delores (Ostlund) Austreng, 83, dies

Carol Delores (Ostlund) Austreng, 83, longtime Babbitt resident, died December 7, 2017 at Carefree Living in Babbitt. Family arrangements are by Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.


Ralph Frank Sershen, 85, of West St. Paul, MN formerly of Ely, dies

Ralph Frank Sershen, 85, of West St. Paul, MN formerly of Ely, passed away on December 5, 2017.
Survived by wife Elizabeth (Birch) Sershen, son Frank (Sue) Sershen, daughters: Barb (Chuck) Elliott, Marie (Chris) Coyne and Jean Sershen (Chris Tomhave), 8 grandchildren and four great grandchildren. Ralph was preceded in death by mother and father, Frank and Mary (Vertnik) Sershen and brother, Donald Sershen.


Alice Pamela Starkman, 87, dies

Alice Pamela Starkman, 87, passed away peacefully on Monday December 4 at Southview Senior Living Center in West St. Paul, MN. She was born in St. Paul, MN to Phillip and Olga Keeling on Apil 5, 1930. In her early life Alice was a school teacher in South St. Paul MN, Rawlings WY, Tower MN and the Section 30 School. She married Kenneth Starkman on February 15, 1958 in St. Paul, MN. They owned and operated several businesses throughout the years, most notably the Starkman Oil Company in Ely, MN.
Alice and Ken spent their retirement years in Apache Junction, AZ and St. Paul, MN. Alice loved to read, work crossword puzzles as well as play cribbage and she spent many hours of her retirement doing just that.
She was preceded in death by her husband Kenneth Starkman. Alice is survived by sons: Ken Starkman and Jeff Starkman (Jessica); brother Keith Keeling; and grandsons: Hunter Starkman and Garrett Starkman.


George Rukavina, 89, of Ely, dies

George Rukavina passed away on December 6, 2017, in his home. He was born to Steve Rukavina and Kathryn (Karakas) Rukavina on January 26, 1928.
George attended the Ely Schools until he quit in 1946 to go to work and take care of the family. He started work for the Forest Service in 1944, the following year he worked for the DMIR railroad, joined the Army in 1946, putting one year in Korea, was honorably discharged and returned to work on the railroad. He was a part of a team of three that then started an Army Reserve unit, the 982nd Construction Battalion from Ely, Minnesota, which was 3 years inactive, then activated for two years during the Korean War in August 1950.
In 1952 he was discharged again and started work for the Oliver Mining Company at Pioneer Mine for two years.
He began work for the Reserve Mining Company in 1954, running jet-piercing machines and rottary drills for 34 years, and two years for Cyprus Minerals, after which he retired.


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