Mildred “Millie” Alice Soderberg Cooley, 102, dies

Mildred “Millie” Alice Soderberg Cooley passed away peacefully on November 29 2018, in Ely, MN at the age of 102. “Millie” was born in Soudan, MN, on August 1, 1916, one of 12 children. Her father, Gustaf “Charles” and Mother Signe Soderberg were Swedish immigrants who took advantage of the mining opportunities that were available on the Iron Range.
An independent person, Millie left the Iron Range in her late teens, and some years later, married James Cooley from South Dakota. WWII created some challenges but during the war, the US Navy moved them to Philadelphia, PA, followed by a move to Long Beach, CA. After the war, they made their home in Whittier, CA, area where they raised their two children, Linda and James.
In 1979, after the death of her husband, Millie returned to the Iron Range and made her home in Ely. Millie was a member of the Ely Hospital Auxiliary for 29 1/2 years, a volunteer at the Ely Nursing Home for 29 1/2 years, a member of the 1st Presbyterian Church Sarah Circle. She enjoyed baking, sewing, gardening and entertaining. She was loved and respected by many, many Ely friends.
Millie will be missed by her relatives who have acknowledged that she is the oldest living Soderberg - ever! She is survived by her brother: Roy Soderberg, daughter: Linda Cooley Duffer, son: James Cooley, grandsons: Don Duffer, Jr. and Mark Duffer, great grandson: David Duffer. Her nieces: Lois Golobich Connor, Karen Soderberg Karni, Patti Soderberg Buffington, Nancy Soderberg Przybylski and Mary Gail Pucel. Her nephews: Tom Soderberg, Kurt Soderberg, Terry Soderberg, John Pucel and Bill Pucel. She will be missed by all.
God bless you “Millie” for all of the good you have done in your life. We all will miss your ready smile, your tenacity for enjoying life to its fullest and your strong association to family and friends.
A memorial service will be held on July 27, 2019, at the 1st Presbyterian Church in Ely, MN. Following the memorial service, internment will be at the Ely Cemetery. Reception will be at the Grand Ely Lodge Conference Center. Family arrangements entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home.