Obituaries

Tue
09
Dec

Marie Seme, 99, of Winton, dies

Marie Seme, 99, a lifelong resident of Winton, MN passed away peacefully in her home on Monday, December 8, 2014.
She was born on July 27, 1915, in Ely to Albert and Carrie (Hanson) Okstad. She was a graduate of Ely Memorial High School and a member of St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Ely.
In 1937, she married Frank Seme and lived in Winton and started their family. Upon Frank’s death in 1951, Marie dedicated her life to raising her two children.
Marie loved to bake and garden; she had the ability to make anything grow. She worked as a clerk at Sears in Ely until her retirement. She had a kind heart and caring soul who left an impact on everyone who was lucky enough to know her.

Fri
28
Nov

William Valentine LaBuda, 88, dies

William Valentine LaBuda, 88 of Cloquet passed away Tuesday, November 25, 2014 in his home at Evergreen Knoll. He was born February 14, 1926 in Duluth to Joseph and Elizabeth LaBuda. He grew up in Duluth. Bill married Maureen “Dorothy” Ettinger on June 19, 1953 and they were married for 29 years before her death in 1983. On November 2, 1985 Bill married Mary Ellen Kantonen and was married for 22 years before her death in 2007.
Bill worked for US Steel in Duluth for over 30 years until retiring in 1977. He was a member of St. Francis Catholic Church, Moose Lodge, the American Legion  and the NRA. He served in the Navy during WWII and the Korean Conflict.
Bill was a jack of all trades. He built his log home at Birch Lake in Ely, loved hunting, fishing and being outdoors. He enjoyed playing cribbage and having a sip of brandy. Bill enjoyed spending time with his family and especially his grandchildren.

Wed
26
Nov

Rose Lassi, 92, of Ely, dies

Rose Caroline Lassi, 92, of Ely, recently of Carefree Living in Babbitt, passed away on Wednesday, Nov. 26. She was born April 12, 1922 in Ely to John and Mary (Poderzay) Omerza.
She was a lifelong Ely resident and a member of St. Anthony’s Catholic Church.
She is survived by her children: Richard (Jeannette) Lassi, Maple Grove; Thomas (Lucy) Lassi, Babbitt; Roseann Lekatz, St. Michael; Harold (Sue) Lassi, Duluth; grandchildren: Brent Lassi, Brandi (Andy) Merfeld, Jeannette (Lee) Newton, Nancy (Pat) Orcutt, Scott Lekatz, Keith (Elizabeth) Lekatz, Jeffrey (Mindi) Lekatz, Sarah Lekatz (Austin Sargent), Candy (Jevon) Moore, Jodi Godinez, Jamie Aker and Sue (Brian) Lund; great grandchildren: Camdree, Kali, Cody, Samantha, Tiarra, Kloey, Kali-Kay, Kurtis, Shaelin, Kieran, Waylon, Josie, Luke, Jeylin, Zoe, Ivan, Sydney, Camden and Megan; and great-great granddaughter Macie Jo.

Wed
26
Nov

JoAnn Merlyn Bradley, 84, dies

JoAnn Merlyn Bradley, 84, of Duluth, passed away on Monday, Nov. 17 at Edgewood Vista after a courageous seven month battle against breast cancer. She is survived by three daughters including Leslie (Bob) Hamilton of Ely and five grandchildren including Ryan and Kyle Kratt of Ely. Services were held Wednesday, Nov. 26 in the Faith Baptist Church in Hermantown.

Tue
25
Nov

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.

Mon
24
Nov

Sharon L. Johnson, 67, of Babbitt, dies

Sharon L. Johnson, 67, of Babbitt, passed away on Monday, November 24, 2014 at the Ely Bloomenson Community Hospital. Family arrangements have been entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.

Mon
24
Nov

Ronald Mavetz, 78, of Ely, dies

Ronald Mavetz, 78, of Ely, passed away Monday, November 24, 2014 at the Boundary Waters Care Center in Ely.
Ron was born in Ely to Frank and Frances (Scufsa) Mavetz.  He worked for the Ely Post Office for 35 years, retiring as Postmaster. He served in the U.S.Army from 1959 to 1960. Ron was a member of St. Anthony’s Catholic Church and the Ely Kiwanis Club. He loved to hunt, fish, travel and spend time with his family.
He is survived by his wife Mary Jo (Lobe) Mavetz;  children: Kim (Doug) Sanders of El Dorado Hills, CA, and their children: Austin and Skyler Sanders; Ron (Carol) Mavetz Jr. of Eagan, MN, and their child: Brady Mavetz;  Mike (Kelly) Mavetz of Lino Lakes, MN and their children: Brooke, Morgan and Taylor Mavetz; and Connie Jo (Pat) Coughlin of Orono, MN and their children: McKenna, Rachel and Kate Coughlin; brother: Edward Mavetz of Chicago and sister: Julia Calhoun of Milwaukee.

Thu
20
Nov

Violet May Aldrich, 80, of Ely, dies

Violet May (Wadsworth) Aldrich, 80, of Ely, passed away on Wednesday, November 19, 2014 at her home surrounded by her family. She was born July 2, 1934 in Coldwater, Michigan. Her parents were Ralph Wadsworth, Allie May Williams, and stepfather Matthew Offenbecher.
Violet graduated from Union City High School with the Class of 1952. On April 16, 1955 she married Douglas L. Aldrich. She had lived in Ely since January 1973. Prior to living in Ely, the Aldrich family resided in Athens, Michigan where Violet raised her three children and worked as a legal secretary for Transamerica Insurance. She was very active in her children’s lives, serving as a Cub Scout den mother and working with her daughter Catherine in the 4-H organization. Throughout her life, Violet was active in her church and taught Sunday school for many years.

Mon
17
Nov

Charlene Anne (DeToffol) Pope, 73, of Ely, dies

Charlene Anne (DeToffol) Pope, 73 of Ely, was called to Heaven on November 16, 2014 at Boundary Waters Care Center after enduring a long battle with numerous illnesses. She was born October 12, 1941 in Joliet, Illinois. She is preceded in death by her husband, Frank Pope; her parents Fred and Anne DeToffol; brother Gary DeToffol and great-grandson Owen Proznik.
She leaves behind a loving family she had a tremendous impact on. Her family includes: Laurie (Bill) Slaughter, Mike (Ellen) Pope; granddaughter Christy (Aaron) Garcia; Mary (Bill) Proznik; Kevin (Jessica) Pope; Samantha Dodd; Anthony Pope; granddaughter Michelle (Oliver) Cervantes; Teresa (Dave) Archer; great grandchildren: Austin Garcia, Madalyn Pope, Naomi Archer, Olivia Proznik, Landon Pope and Ava Proznik.

Mon
17
Nov

Rosemary Richards Colby, 75, dies

Rosemary Richards Colby passed away peacefully in her home on October 31, 2014. She was born on November 23,1939 to Mary (Pechaver) Loisel and Edward Richard.
Rosemary is survived by her daughter Kathy; special friend Deke Adams; grandchildren: Alexandra, Mason, Tyler and Breeanna; son-in-law Mike Selka; sister Charlotte (Tony) Colarich; brothers: Joe Loisel, Mike (Connie) Loisel; nephews: Peter, Ben and Joe Colarich, Erik and Todd Loisel; niece: Allyson Murray; a very special cousin Darinka Sodja and special friend Roberta Stepan.
She was preceded in death by her parents, stepfather Joe Loisel and Kathy’s father Frank Sjolie. A service will be held in Lakewood, CO and then she will be brought home to be interred with her parents in the Ely Cemetery.

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