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Gary Lee Gabriel, 73, Alexandria, died Easter Sunday, April 12, 2009 at his home. Gary was born in Britton, South Dakota on April 14, 1935, the son of Reuben and Ruth (Oberg) Gabriel. He graduated from Britton High School in 1953 and attended Northern State University in Aberdeen, South Dakota, where he played football. Gary's schooling was interrupted when he left to spend four years serving his country in the United States Air Force. He served virtually all of his military time during peacetime on base in Gila Bend, Arizona.
The Rev. Harold "Eric" Erickson, 61, passed away peacefully on April 2, 2009 at Rochester Methodist Hospital after living with brain cancer for almost 22 months. Eric was born December 15, 1947 in Minneapolis to Gertrude Margaret (Hovland) and Alexander Louis Erickson. His father died when Eric was 5 years old and his mother raised her three sons in their home on Ridgewood Avenue in Minneapolis. After graduating from West High School in Minneapolis, Eric attended California Lutheran Bible School in Los Angeles, receiving a diploma in 1967.
Merlin Kenneth Berglin, 91, Alexandria, formerly of Glenwood, died Wednesday, April 8, 2009 at Douglas County Hospital in Alexandria. Merlin was born April 13, 1917 in Douglas County to Adolf and Matilda (Erickson) Berglin. He grew up on a farm near Holmes City and attended Oscar Lake Church. Merlin went to country school in Douglas County then to Alexandria High School, from which he graduated.
Mayme "May" Howells, 95, and her husband, Lewis Howells, 79, of Huron, South Dakota, both died Tuesday, April 7, 2009 at Huron Regional Medical Center. Their funeral service was held Monday, April 13 at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Huron. Burial was at Moe Heights Cemetery near Alexandria on Tuesday, April 14. Memorials may be directed to the Beadle County Humane Society or the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Huron. Mayme F. Howells was born September 5, 1913 in Moe Township to Hjalmar and Maria (Haabala) Olson.
Robert T. Hawkins, 78, Burnsville, formerly of Alexandria, died April 4, 2009 at Hennepin County Medical Center, surrounded by family. Bob spent his early years in Tulna, North Dakota before moving to Minnesota with his parents. After high school he enlisted in the Army and served in the Korean War. He was honorably discharged in 1952. He married Jackie Barthelemy on December 18, 1954. After returning to Alexandria in 1955, "Hawk" played semi-pro baseball (catcher) with the Alexandria Clippers. He was often referred to as the "burly receiver" who had a big bat and a rifle arm.
Wayne Thomas Zimmerman, 55, Brandon, died April 4, 2009. Wayne was born July 16, 1953 in Appleton to Delmar and Virginia (Schnitzler) Zimmerman. He attended school in Donnelly, Danvers and Crystal. In 1964, his family moved to Morris, where he completed his education, graduating from Morris High School in 1972. On June 20, 1975 Wayne was united in marriage to Kelly Bogenreif. The couple was blessed with three children, Nicole, Michael and Randi. Early on Wayne worked briefly for Hancock Concrete, West Central Steel and Michaelson's.
Marion Ruth Stone, 91, died April 6, 2009. Marion was born August 18, 1917 in Brewster to Gerd and Grace (Heiderbrink) Behrens. As a young child she moved to Bushnall, South Dakota. Her family then moved to Hendricks, where she attended school through the 4th grade. She completed her schooling at Rushmore and began work doing childcare and housekeeping. Marion held several jobs throughout her life. She worked in hotels and laundries. She worked for many years as a carpenter. Marion worked for seven years serving senior meals in LaGrange, MO and then moved to Alexandria.
Ramona Ione Oletzke, 91, went to the Lord on April 4, 2009. Ramona was born September 14, 1917 to Roscoe Grover Heim and Grace (Lipe) Heim at home on their farm in Montgomery County near Raymond, IL. Ramona attended country schools. About the time Ramona completed the 8th grade her family moved to Morris. At age 16 her family moved to Annandale. She graduated from high school in 1935. Ramona continued to work for her father in the pool hall in Annandale. He bought a resort and land in 1936, where the family raised cows and chickens. They sold milk, eggs and chickens.
Marion Estelle Johansen, 80, Alexandria, died April 3, 2009. Marion was born May 18, 1928 in Minneapolis to Raymond and Estelle (Cullen) Mahady. Marion attended school in Minneapolis and graduated from South High School in 1947. Marion began work as a telephone operator at AT&T. On November 4, 1950 Marion was united in marriage to Roy Johansen. The couple made their home in South Minneapolis, where they were blessed with six children. Marion later worked as a telephone operator for Fairview Hospital and St. Mary's Hospital.