Elma Lesmeister, age 93 of Park Rapids, passed away unexpectedly at her home near Park Rapids on Thursday, March 31, 2011.
Elma was born on Sept. 15, 1917 to Harry and Inga (Dale) Eklund at her grandparent's farm near Chokio. The family moved to Morris when Elma was 14 years old. She attended the Morris High School and graduated as the salutatorian with the class of 1935. After graduation, Elma worked at the local dime store for several years. Elma was united in marriage to John Joseph Lesmeister on June 21, 1937. This union was blessed with 4 children: Leila, LaVonne, Gary and Curtis. In November of 1937, Elma and John purchased the Koehl Bros. Trucking Service and renamed it Morris Truck Service. Elma worked alongside her husband as the bookkeeper for many years. In 1945, after World War II, John's brother, Urban became a partner in the trucking business. In 1957, John and Elma sold their interest to Urban and purchased a farm south of Dorset, on Stony Lake. They farmed for 8 years and then sold the farm and purchased the adjoining Hottinger property. Elma endured the heartache of losing her husband, John in 1978. She became the Hubbard Township Assessor in 1979 and enjoyed this work until her retirement in 1989. Elma was a faithful parishioner of the Our Lady Of the Pines Catholic Church in Nevis where she was a member of the ladies guild. She was also a long time member of the East Long Lake Pollyanna Homemaker's Club, Stony Lake Homeowner's Association and the Hubbard Senior Citizens Club.
She will be lovingly remembered by her daughter, Leila (Nicholas) Wilder of Francestown, N.H.; her two sons: Gary (Carol) Lesmeister of Hayward, Calif. and Curtis (Julie) Lesmeister of Maple Grove; her son-in-law, Dean Kimball of Park Rapids; 3 sisters: Lillian Lesmeister of Morris, Marilyn Wilson of Burnsville, and Jeannine (Earl) Hemmerich of Nisswa; 11 grandchildren; 13 precious great grandchildren, a brother-in-law, Don Farl and many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
Elma was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, John; her daughter, LaVonne; 5 sisters: Nettie, Irene, Lauretta, Audrey and Bernadine; brothers-in-law, Martin Boettcher, Urban Lesmeister, George Kill and Bob Wilson.
Funeral services will be held at 12 p.m. on Friday, April 8, 2011 at Our Lady of the Pines Catholic Church in Nevis, with Father Duane Pribula officiating. Casketbearers will be grandsons and one great grandson: Jonathan Kimball, Patrick Kimball, James Kimball, William Kimball, Colin Wilder and Joseph Adamec. Honorary casket bearers will be her granddaughters and one grandson: Sherry Kimball, Janet Adamec LaDonna Hanson, Paige Wilder, Lori Kee and Brad Lesmeister. Interment will be held at the Lesmeister family plot in the Our Lady of the Pines Catholic Cemetery in Nevis. A luncheon will be held for all following the service. Visitation will be held from 5-8 p.m., with a prayer service at 7 p.m., on Thursday, April 7, 2011 at Our Lady of the Pines Catholic Cemetery in Nevis. To leave online condolences, please visit www.jonespearson.com