Obituaries

Tue
22
Jan

Elizabeth “Betty” Povhe, 69. dies

Elizabeth “Betty” Povhe, 69, passed away on January 18, 2019. She was born on October 15, 1949 in Ely, Minnesota to Angela (Flake) and Rudy Scufsa. She graduated from Ely Memorial High School, attended Vermilion Community College, and then went on to beauty school in Duluth. She moved back to Ely and worked at Town and Country beauty shop and the Hairstyling Corner. After that, Betty and Carolyn Johnson owned and operated Guys n Gals beauty shop until she retired. Betty was known for her cooking, baking, sewing, and crocheting. Her favorite pasttime was driving around in the convertible with her beloved husband, Jim. Another favorite past time was bowling. In 1992 she bowled a perfect game and to the best of her knowledge, was still the only woman in Ely to have done so.

Fri
18
Jan

Dorothy (Jiacik) Stember of Red Wing, MN dies

Dorothy (Jiacik) Stember of Red Wing, MN died peacefully at home on Jan. 4, 2019 at age 86.
Dorothy is survived by her husband, Daniel; three daughters: Ann Patrick of Tucson, AZ, Ellen Stember of Red Wing,, MN; granddaughter Kaitlin Niebeling and Dorothy’s sister Carol Janeksala and brother Richie Jiacik of Ely. Dorothy requested there be no funeral services.

Tue
15
Jan

Sharon J. Dimich, 65, of Babbitt, dies

Sharon Jeanne (Whiting) Dimich, 65, of Babbitt, passed away on Sunday, January 13, 2019 at the Boundary Waters Care Center in Ely. She is survived by her husband William Dimich of Babbitt; children: Bruce Dietrich of Ely, Craig (Jen) Dietrich of Houston, TX; sisters: Julie (Dave) Rhein, Diane (Paul) Myers, brother: Jerome (Brenda) Whiting; granddaughters: Morgan Dietrich, Kaela Dietrich and great granddaughter Wynter; several nieces, nephews and cousins, step children: Heather Jackson, step grandsons Austin Hayes and Magus Jackson. A celebration of life will be held at a later date. Family arrangements have been entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.

Tue
15
Jan

Leora Wetzel, 90, of Ely, dies

Leora Wetzel, 90, of Ely, passed away on Sunday, January 13, 2019 at Essentia Health- St. Mary’s Medical Center in Duluth.
Leora was one of 14 children born to Albert and Selma Jaeger in Merrill, Wisconsin. She learned to bake and cook at her mother’s side and used that talent to bless the family she stayed with while attending high school. After graduation, she was a stenographer. Then she fell in love with Arn at church. Leora and Arnold Wetzel were married on October 8, 1949 in Wausau, Wisconsin. The couple moved to Wells, Minnesota where they raised chickens and hogs. Together they had one son, Thomas. Leora was a housewife on the farm and taught Sunday School at Wells Assembly of God Church.
Lee had the gift of hospitality and shared her culinary talents with everyone Grandpa Arn invited over to the house.

Sat
12
Jan

Thomas “Tom” Martin Rukavina, 68, dies

Thomas “Tom” Martin Rukavina, 68, of Pike Township, died on Monday, January 7, 2019, at the University of Minnesota Medical Center in Minneapolis after a battle with leukemia. The family would like to thank the talented staff at the University of Minnesota Medical Center for their extraordinary care of Tom during his stay. Funeral services will be on Saturday, January 19, at Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Virginia, at 11 a.m., with visitation beginning at 9:30 a.m. Visitation will also be held on Friday, January 18, from 5-7 p.m. at Range Funeral Home in Virginia. In lieu of flowers, remembrances may be made to the Tom Rukavina Scholarship Fund c/o Mesabi Range College Foundation, 1001 W Chestnut St., Virginia, MN 55792.
Tom was born to Martin “Benny” and Martha Rukavina in Virginia on August 23, 1950. He grew up on northside in an ethnically diverse neighborhood with a close immediate and extended family which positively shaped his life forever.

Fri
11
Jan

The Rev. Roger Edward Carlson, 90, dies

The Rev. Roger Edward Carlson a resident of Cottagewood Homes, Rochester, MN entered into his heavenly home on December 26, 2018 after a multi-year battle with Lewy Body Dementia.
Roger was born on September 3, 1928 in Jamestown, NY to Gustav and Ella (Carlson) Carlson. He is predeceased by his parents and sisters Rita Johnson and Edna Strobeck. He was educated in the public schools of Jamestown, NY and at Augustana College and Seminary, Rock Island, IL.
Roger was married June 4, 1955 to Lois (Sjovall) who survives. They were blessed with four children: Camille Martin, Gilbert, AZ, Craig, Vadnais Heights, Brian, Rochester and Curtis, Shoreview, MN; 7 grandchildren and 2 great-grandchildren. Roger is also survived by nieces and nephews in Minnesota, New York and Ohio.

Wed
09
Jan

Paul Leonard Lassila, 86, dies

Paul Leonard Lassila passed away peacefully on December 21, 2018 at the age of 86 after a long battle with COPD while wintering in Desert Hot Springs, California.
Paul was born in Embarrass, Minnesota to Paul and Hilja Lassila and was the youngest of six children. When he was young the family moved to Ely and he graduated in 1950 from Ely High School. In 1952 he was invited to join the U.S. Army and proudly served his country as a member of the Elite 10th Special Forces Group, (Airborne) through 1954. After fulfilling his military service he attended Trinidad State College and earned his associate degree in gunsmithing. He returned to Ely and operated his gunsmithing business while employed as a diesel mechanic at Reserve Mining Company. In Paul’s younger years he guided many canoe trips. He was an avid outdoorsman as camping, hunting and fishing were his passion.

Wed
09
Jan

Steven Anthony Tekautz, 42, of Owatonna, dies

Steven Anthony Tekautz, 42, of Owatonna, formerly of Hastings and Silver Bay, passed away suddenly on January 7, 2019.
He was born Sept. 28, 1976 to Anthony and Gail (Ebert) Tekautz.
Steve is dearly missed, by his wife, Kelly of Owatonna; children, Cayce and Alex of Owatonna; parents Anthony and Gail, Chisholm, MN; Sisters, Tara Tyo of Brimson, MN, Tracey (John) Fenske of Ely, MN; nieces and nephews, Travis, Jenny, Dylan, Ryan and countless friends.
Some of Steve’s ashes will be spread at the places he loved best, the cabin at White Iron Lake and the hunting shack. Burial will be in the family plot in the Ely Cemetery. A celebration of Steve’s life will take place at the cabin early this upcoming summer, when the fish are biting. For more information or to leave an online condolence message go to www.brick-megerfuneralhome.com

Tue
08
Jan

Joretta Pollock, 87, of Ely, dies

Joretta Pollock, 87, of Ely, passed away on Tuesday, January 8, 2019 at Carefree Assisted Living in Ely. Family arrangements have been entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.

Tue
08
Jan

Charles "Cherla" Merhar, 80, dies

Charles John Merhar, aka Charlie or Cherla, born January 18, 1938, passed away peacefully on January 8, 2019 with family at his side, after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease. He was 80. The “voice” of Ace Hardware could always be heard greeting his customers with “How can I help you?”
He graduated from Ely High School in 1956 where he was an accomplished athlete in both baseball and football. He worked with his father at Ace Hardware and apprenticed to become a licensed plumber and well installer. His civic life included serving on the Ely Volunteer Fire Department for over 20 years, the Ely Jaycees and was a supporter of Ducks Unlimited. He married his High School sweetheart, Judy Mahoney in 1961 and built their home on White Iron Lake in 1962 where they remained for over 40 years. Judy and Cherla took over successful management of Merhar Ace Hardware in 1992 until when management passed to Mark and Chris Merhar being the 4th generation to own the business.

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