Margaret June Perttula passed away peacefully on December 24, 2015, at the age of 92. Margaret started her life on June 26, 1923, in Blue Earth, Minnesota. She was the only child to Grace Karels. During her early years, Margaret attended school in a one-room school house. She graduated high school at the age of 17.
In 1943, she married Maynard Hewitt. Maynard worked for a manufacturer and was an A-1 aircraft trouble shooter for the B-24 bomber air crafts during WWII. Maynard's job during the war moved them to many locations. In wartime, Margaret worked as a file clerk and in the shipping service(commissary). After the war, Maynard and Margaret moved back to Minnesota. In 1950, Maynard contracted Bulbar Polio and died a short time later making Margaret a widow at age 27. This prompted Margaret to go back to school at Mankato Teacher's College in Minnesota. In 1952, Margaret, along with her best friends Phyllis, Georgine, and her mother Grace made a trip to Bakersfield, California where Margaret was offered a teaching position, Delano. That same year, Margaret met a handsome young corporal named Rueben Perttula in a honky tonk in Bakersfield. They fell in love and married on May 30, 1953, in Las Vegas, Nevada. A little over a year later, they had a daughter, Greta Ann followed by another daughter Marianne, and a son Mark John.
While raising three young kids, Margaret went back to teaching full-time during the day and taking classes on nights and weekends. She received her teaching credential from California State University, Fresno. Rueben was a glazier by trade. In 1971, Rueben, with the support of Margaret, founded American Glass Company. While Rueben ran the company, Margaret continued to work as a teacher and a Curriculum Specialist at Mt. Vernon Elementary until she retired in 1986 just before her favorite person in the world was born, her grandson Adam.
Margaret's life was always shrouded in mystery. She was the only child of Grace Karels but she didn't know the name of her father. Then in the mid 1970's, Margaret's mother gave her her birth certificate-something she had never seen before. She found out her father's name, Gunder Kjolberg. It wasn't until at the age of 81, Margaret found that she had a whole new family from her fathers side in Canada-four brothers, two sisters and numerous nephews and nieces. Although her two sisters were already deceased, Margaret was able to create a bond with her four surviving brothers and their families. This new family gave her so much joy and comfort.
Margaret is survived by her husband of 62 years, Rueben Perttula, her two daughters, Greta (Buddy) Pretzer and Marianne Perttula, her son Mark John Perttula, and her grandson Adam Jonathan Pretzer all of Bakersfield. She is also survived by her brother Kenneth(Colleen)Kjolberg, and numerous nephews and nieces from both the Perttula and Kjolberg families.
Margaret had a wonderful 63 years in Bakersfield. She had numerous friends and colleagues throughout the years. She loved to read and she loved to travel. She was lucky enough to have traveled to all 50 states, England, France, Italy, Estonia, Germany, Switzerland, Russia, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Austria, and, of course, the Netherlands. She made most of these trips with her entire family. We would like to thank the lovely people of her last residence, Divine Mercy, and the caregivers of Hoffman Hospice for keeping her comfortable.
Services for Margaret will be held on Saturday January 30th at Redeemer Lutheran Church 2525 Belle Terrace Ave. at 11:00 am.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the California Retired Teachers Association, or California Lutheran University, Thousand Oaks, CA
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