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Devils Lake Journal - Devils Lake, ND
  • Obit: Hermena Larson

  • Hermena Larson's life ended on August 30, 2013 at Altru Hospital in Grand Forks, N.D., after living 102 years on this earth.
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  • Hermena Larson's life ended on August 30, 2013 at Altru Hospital in Grand Forks, N.D., after living 102 years on this earth.
      She was born on June 21, 1911, becoming the second child and oldest daughter of Ferdinand and Mathilda (Peter) Duft.  Her parents were immigrants from Switzerland.  They homesteaded land near Starkweather, N.D., where Hermena and her siblings were born in the farmstead house. She attended eight grades of school in a nearby country school.  She remained at home and worked for neighboring farm families.  At harvest time, she worked in the cook car for threshing crews. She always had pleasant memories of these work experiences and of the people working the harvest season. She attributed her longevity to the hard work she did over her lifetime.
    She started dating Melvin Larson after he bought her pie at a school pie social. They married in October, 1932. Hermena was a lifetime resident of Ramsey County, N.D., first living at Starkweather, then Derrick (no longer in existence), and later on a farm three miles east of Devils Lake. After retirement from farming she and Melvin moved to Devils Lake. She was a long-time member of St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Devils Lake.
    Hermena and Melvin farmed all of their working years. They began farming in the depression and drought years of the 1930's and they managed to survive these tough years.  Hermena raised a huge garden and raised chickens to feed the family. She was a wonderful cook and one could always find buns and caramel rolls in her freezer. Her hobbies included crocheting, crossword puzzles, card playing and flower gardening. Two sons, Dr. Donald Larson and Dr. Gerald Larson, were born to Hermena and Melvin when they lived near Derrick. A daughter, Karen Davis, and a third son, Keith Larson, were born to them when living near Devils Lake. After the children were older, Hermena worked as a waitress at Grandma's cafe, the Dime Store lunch counter and the Happy Hour cafe.
    Hermena and her siblings remained in close contact with each other and much of her social life involved her family and the neighboring farm families. At one time Hermena and three of her sisters were all residents of the Odd Fellows Assisted Living Care Center in Devils Lake.
     She is survived by all of her children, Donald (Joyce Reinhardt) Larson, Fargo, ND, Gerald (Joyce Tollefson) Larson, Park River, ND, Karen (William) Davis, Sun Prairie, WI, and Keith (Peggy Klocke) Larson, Carrington, ND. She is survived by one sister, Cecilia Benson, Vancouver, Washington.
    Her husband, Melvin, passed away in June, 1992. Her brother, Verner Duft and three sisters, Leonarda ?Dodie? Adams, Mathilda ?Tillie? Larson and Rose Gulseth, have preceded her in death.
    She is survived by ten grandchildren, Dr. Eric Larson, Providence, RI, Heidi (Brian) Solos, Woodbury, MN, Dr. Brian (Kim) Larson, Park River, ND, Dr. Tom (Jean) Larson, Fergus Falls, MN, Jay (Dawn) Larson, Fargo, ND, Susan (Todd) Bickett, Carrington, ND. Christi Winchell, Sun Prairie, WI, William Davis II, Lake Mills, WI. Kari (Tyler) Lura, Bozeman, MT, Kinsey Larson, Carrington, ND.  
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    She was also survived by numerous great grandchildren: Cassidy and Amanda Davis, Carli and Samantha Stephan, Jaycee Winchell, Emily and Hannah Frovarp, Brittany, Grant, Cierra and Ali Larson, Derek, David and Max Larson, Brady, Garrett and Josh Bickett, Piper and Grant Solos, Aspen and Raina Lura and Grayson Zieman.  In addition she is survived by numerous nieces and nephews.
     A visitation will be held at the Gilbertson Funeral Home, Devils Lake, Saturday, Sept. 7, from 3-5. Visitation will continue from 1-2 p.m. Sunday followed by the funeral service at 2:00 p.m. at Gilbertson Funeral Home. Interment will be at the Devils Lake Cemetery.
    Gilbertson Funeral Home, Devils Lake, is in charge of arrangements.
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