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Veronica "Ronnie" Gradert

1927 - 2015 Obituary Condolences
Veronica "Ronnie" Gradert Obituary
Veronica "Ronnie" Gradert

VERONICA "RONNIE" GRADERT, age 88, of Luverne, died Monday, November 16, 2015, at the Wealshire of Bloomington. She was born November 3, 1927, on a farm near Larchwood, IA, to Gerard and Mathilda Kerkvliet. She attended St. Mary's Catholic School in Larchwood. After graduation in 1945, she went to Nettleton School of Business in Sioux Falls, SD. She was a secretary for a law firm and for Midland National Life.

Ronnie met the love of her life, Eldon Gradert at the Arkota Ballroom in Sioux Falls. They married on April 26, 1952, while Eldon was home on leave before shipping off to Korea.

Upon Eldon's return, they lived near Ellsworth, MN. They had two sons while living there, Brock and Bryce. Then, they moved to a farm near Alvord, IA. Three daughters were added to the family there, Karla, Lisa and Lynda.

In 1968, Eldon took over the family farm southeast of Luverne, when his parents, Carl and Martha, retired. Ronnie had a big garden, froze and canned a lot of food. Ronnie worked at the Farm Bureau, and as a teacher's assistant in the Luverne Schools. Some of the happiest years of their lives were spent in their house on Carol St. in Luverne when Ronnie and Eldon retired in 1998. She was a very active volunteer at St. Catherine's, the Hinkley House, etc. She loved spending time with her family. She was a wonderful grandma. She enjoyed traveling, going to the casino, dancing, bowling, playing cards, going for walks and meeting friends for coffee.

Ronnie is preceded in death by her parents; husband Eldon, on March 9, 2012; son Brockton; siblings: Rose (Lee) Honrath, Ferd (Jean) Kerkvliet, Bill (Eileen) Kervliet, Marcella (Frank) Bennett, Mary Swanson, Bob (Jenny) Kerkvliet; brother-in-law Irwin Friedrich, brother-in-law and sister-in-law Torlief and Arlene Thompson.

Ronnie is survived by children, Bryce (Patti) Gradert, Coupeville, WA, Karla (Dave) McKenzie, Apple Valley, MN, Lisa (Doug) LeMay, Roseville, MN, Lynda Gradert, Minneapolis, MN. Grandchildren, Meghan (Steve) Ross, Katie (Justin) Twergo, John (Jessica) Gradert, and Caleb Gradert; Chris (Lindsey) McKenzie, Ann McKenzie, Stephanie (Dustin) Nord; Brian, Ben and Brandon LeMay; along with seven great-grandchildren; sister Agnes Friedrich, brother-in-law Harvey Swanson, brother-in-law and sister-in-law Marvin and DonnaLee Gradert, many nieces and nephews.

In honor of Mom's family nickname of "Brown", we encourage people to wear brown to the visitation.

Visitation will be from 4-7 pm Thursday, with parish prayers at 6:30 pm, at the Dingmann Funeral Home in Luverne. Visitation also from 9:30 to 10:30 am Friday at St. Catherine Catholic Church in Luverne. Funeral Mass will be 10:30 am Friday at St. Catherine Catholic Church, in Luverne, officiated by Fr. Thomas Jennings. Burial will be in the St. Catherine Cemetery in Luverne.

In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to St. Catherine's Catholic Church of Luverne or the at or Minnesota-North Dakota, 7900 West 78th St. Suite 100, Minneapolis, MN 55439.

To view an online obituary or order flowers, please visit

Published in The Argus Leader on Nov. 19, 2015
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