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Elsie Johnson, 86

Elsie Marie Johnson, 86, died November 21, 2013 at Grand Arbor in Alexandria.

Elsie was born October 12, 1927 in Alexandria, the daughter of Frank J. and Mary (Svondr) Kalina. She was baptized and confirmed into the Lutheran faith and graduated from Alexandria High School in 1944. Elsie taught country school at District #14 (Lake Mary Township) and Pocket Lake (Holmes City Township). She then furthered her education and received her Teachers Certificate from St. Cloud State College. Elsie continued teaching in Glenwood and Alexandria.

On September 26, 1951, Elsie was married to Warren Johnson at the First Lutheran Church in Alexandria. They had two children, Mary and Walt. Elsie helped her husband with the NAC Cream Station, where she candled eggs and kept the books. She then was the bookkeeper for Warrens wholesale fur business for many years.

Elsie was a wonderful mother and grandmother. She always thought of others first and was a hard worker, ready to help with any chore. She had a kind heart and cherished time spent with children and grandchildren. Some memories from Elsies family include Elsie telling bedtime stories, gardening, and quilting, having a good sense of humor, and making time spent with her fun. Other memories included Elsie walking her grandchildren to and from grade school, playing games along the way, sending goodie packages to her grandchildren for special occasions, and the smile she always wore. She was a long-term member of Calvary Church, where she taught Sunday school and supported missions work.

She will be missed by her family and friends. Elsie is survived by her daughter, Mary (Michael) Kessler of Carmichael, CA; son, Walter (Lynn) Johnson of Alexandria; grandchildren, Crystal Johnson of Rochester, Joey (Brooke) Johnson of Big Lake, Paul Kessler, and Benjamin Kessler, both of Carmichael, CA; and brother, Bennie (Marjorie) Kalina of Alexandria.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Warren; brothers, Robert, Wencil and Frank B. Kalina; and her sister, Henrietta McCrory.

A funeral service was held Monday, November 25 at Calvary Lutheran Church in Alexandria with the Rev. Rollen Halvorson officiating. Amy Engel served as the organist and Patrick Kalina and Carrie Ahern as vocalists, accompanied by Margaret Kalina. Interment was at Independent Bohemian Cemetery in Lake Mary Township with Darrel Kalina, Duane Kalina, Michael Kessler, Kenny Thurk, Paul Kessler and Joey Johnson serving as pallbearers. Robert McCrory served as an honorary pallbearer.

Memorials are preferred to the American Cancer Society.

Arrangements are with Anderson Funeral Home in Alexandria;