Gene Hartfield, 102, of Babbitt, dies

Gene Rae Hartfield, 102, died peacefully at the Boundary Waters Care Center in Ely, Minnesota, on November 24, 2014.
She was born on February 27, 1912, in St. Francesville, Illinois, to Mike and Irene Lockman. Gene’s mother died soon after giving birth and Gene and her brother Don were raised by their grandparents who were tragically killed in a train accident when Gene was 13. Gene then went to live with her father and step-mother in Hammond, Indiana, where, years later, she would meet her husband of 67 years, Carl Hartfield.
Gene and Carl owned two businesses together: Hartfield’s Superette grocery store in Lansing, Illinois, and Wolf Lake Resort near Ely.
Gene was a member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Lansing, Illinois, First Lutheran Church in Ely, West Linn Lutheran Church in West Linn, Oregon, and Oak Knoll Lutheran Church in Minnetonka, Minnesota.
Gene was active in the Ely Chamber of Commerce and various church organizations. She served as organist and choir director at First Lutheran Church in Ely for many years. She was a born leader and a true Renaissance woman as a writer, artist and musician. She made friends wherever she lived and was in touch with people who had stayed at the resort for years afterward.
Gene was preceded in death by her mother, father, and brother, husband Carl, and son-in-law Harry Haapala. She is survived by daughters: Ina Haapala, Barbara Hartfield (Jim Stoltz) and Irene Hartfield, and son Michael (Wanda) Hartfield, 10 grandchildren, 24 great grandchildren and 11 great-great grandchildren.
A memorial service is planned for Saturday, November 29 at 3 p.m. at First Lutheran Church in Ely. Family arrangements have been entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.