Karen Jean Tollefson, 72, of Devils Lake, ND, passed away early Thursday morning, Jan. 23, 2020, at CHI, St. Alexius Health, Devils Lake Hospital with loving family at her side.
Karen Jean Tollefson, 72, of Devils Lake, ND, passed away early Thursday morning, Jan. 23, 2020, at CHI, St. Alexius Health, Devils Lake Hospital with loving family at her side. Funeral Services for Karen will be held on Monday, Jan. 27 at 2 p.m. at St. Olaf Lutheran Church, Devils Lake with Reverend Jim Paulson officiating. Burial will be in the Devils Lake Cemetery. Visitation will be held at the Gilbertson Funeral Home, Devils Lake on Sunday, Jan. 26 from 4 until 7 p.m. with a Prayer Service and time of remembrance at 7 p.m. Visitation on Monday will be at the church one hour prior to the funeral service. Karen Jean Tollefson was born March 15, 1947, to Hilma (Swanson) and Lloyd Alvin Borstad in Devils Lake and was raised in Warwick. She graduated from Warwick High School. On Jan. 25, 1969, Karen married Kenneth Tollefson. They made their first home in Churchs Ferry, ND, moved to Brinsmade, ND, for a period of time and eventually moved back to Churchs Ferry, where they raised their two children, Kimberly and Kori. In 1999, Karen and Ken moved to Devils Lake. Karen was a devoted wife, mom, grandma, daughter, sister, cousin, aunt, godmother and friend. Karen spent the majority of her life as a caregiver, first as a caregiver to her younger siblings, then to residents while working in the Lake Region Lutheran Home in Devils Lake and to Kim and Kori. She also provided day care for her grandchildren and in her later years cared for her husband, Ken, following his stroke in 2014. Karen was a member of WELCA at Zion Lutheran Church (Churchs Ferry) and St. Olaf Church (Devils Lake). She was an active member of the CHI St. Alexius Devils Lake Hospital Auxillary. She had a passion for her garden and flowers, especially red geraniums. Family, her grandchildren in particular, were of utmost importance to her. Traveling with family and her husband to the beach were always filled with great memories. Trips to the casinos were a special source of enjoyment, and she always looked forward to her lunch get togethers with her friends. Karen is survived by; Kenneth, husband of almost 51 years of Devils Lake; daughter, Kimberly (Kyle) Nelsen of Leeds, ND; and son, Kori (Lisa) Tollefson of Grand Forks, ND; grandchildren, Keaton, Kearyn and Kaden Nelsen of Leeds, and Sydney, Peyton and Cooper Tollefson of Grand Forks. Karen’s surviving siblings are; Allan (Jane) Borstad of Fergus Falls MN, Darlene Borstad of Vail, CO, Debra (Raymond) Bertsch of Devils Lake, Lawren Borstad of Spicer, MN, Cindy Geller (Al Geller) of Devils Lake, Sherri (Rene) Ouellette of Devils Lake and Todd Bertsch (David Alfani) of Muskego WI; brother-in-law, Dennis (Pat) Tollefson of Pelican Lake, MN; and sister-in-law, Connie (Joe) Gierszewski of Grand Forks, along with many nieces and nephews. Karen was preceded in death by; her mother, Hilma (Swanson) Joramo; father, Lloyd Alvin Borstad; siblings, Helen Ann Borstad, Bonnie Lou Borstad, and Bennett Borstad; father-in-law, Kermit Tollefson; and mother-in-law, Mildred Tollefson; nephew, Jeffrey Borstad; and beloved family pet, Tutton.