Chad Schmitz


Chad Edward Schmitz age 42, passed away on September 9, 2014. He was born on September 5, 1972 in Sleepy Eye, MN the son of Alfred and Janice Disque Schmitz. He grew up in Sleepy Eye and graduated from Sleepy Eye Public High School in 1991. He attended Willmar Vocational School graduating in 1993. Chad was baptized and confirmed at St. Mary’s Catholic Church. He married Jessica Anderson on August 16, 2000, they later divorced in 2008. They were blessed with three children who Chad loved and adored with all of his heart and soul.

Survivors include his children, Megan, Riley and Kyle, Waterville MN, his parents, Alfred and Janice Schmitz of Sleepy Eye, siblings and their family, Craig and Recarda Schmitz (Kasey and Kedar) of New Ulm,MN, Cory and Sara Schmitz (Caitlin and Abigail) LeCenter, MN and Chris and Steve Domser (Addison) Killeen, TX and many aunts, uncles and cousins. He was preceded in death by his grandparents, Edward and Hildegard Schmitz and August and Velma Disque, aunt, Violet Disque-Dietz, uncle, Richard Disque, uncle Neal Balfany and cousin Jimmy Dietz.

Christine Nelson


Christine M. Nelson, age 95, of Sleepy Eye, MN died on September 14, 2014, at Divine Providence Community Home in Sleepy Eye, MN.

Visitation will be on Wednesday, September 17, 2014 from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm and will continue on Thursday from 7:30 am until 9:00 am at the Sturm Funeral Home in Sleepy Eye Chapel.

Service will be held at the Divine Providence Community Chapel in Sleepy Eye on Thursday, September 18, 2014 at 9:30 am

The clergy will be Father John Pearson. Interment will be at the St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery in Sleepy Eye, MN.

Arrangements are with the Sturm Funeral Home in Sleepy Eye, MN. On line condolences may be left for the family at

Marian Fischer


Marian Eleanor Fischer , age 85, of Sleepy Eye died on September 9, 2014, at Divine Providence Community Home in Sleepy Eye.

Visitation will be on Thursday, September 11, 2014 from 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm at the Sturm Funeral Home, Sleepy Eye Chapel and will continue on Friday from 7:30 am until 11:00 am at the Sturm Funeral Home, Sleepy Eye Chapel. There will be a Parish Prayer Service Thursday at 7:00 p.m. at the funeral home. Service will be held at the St. Mary’s Catholic Church-Sleepy Eye, on Friday, September 12, 2014 at 11:30 amThe clergy will be Monsignor Eugene Lozinski.Interment will be at the St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery, in Sleepy Eye. Arrangements are with the Sturm Funeral Home in Sleepy Eye. On line condolences may be left for the family at

Marian E. Portner Fischer passed away on September 9, 2014 at Divine Providence Community Home in Sleepy Eye with her family by her side.Marian E. (Portner) Fischer was born on May 12, 1929 in Brown County, MN at home to Theodore & Eleanor (Waibel) Portner. Marian married Ervin Fischer on June 6, 1950 at Cathedral of the Holy Trinity in New Ulm. Ervin & Marian farmed for 50 years on their farm in Eden Township. In 2008, they moved to their present home in Sleepy Eye. Marian enjoyed spending time with her family, grandchildren and great grandchildren. She enjoyed playing cards, fishing, baking, gardening, needlework and was an avid fan of the MN Twins and following her grandchildren’s sports.

Marian is survived by her children, Allen (Carol) of Sleepy Eye, Kelvin (Judy) of New Ulm, Nancy of Sleepy Eye, Beverly of New Ulm, 11 grandchildren, 20 great grandchildren, sister, Jody Wieland, brothers, Kenneth (LaVonne) Portner and Ted Portner. She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, Ervin in 2011, grandson, Shane Fischer in 2013, sister, Delores, brothers-in-law, Kenneth Wieland and Ted Helget and sister-in-law, Shirley Portner.

Charles Okerman

Charles Ray Okerman, of Sleepy Eye, died on Saturday, Sept. 6, 2014, at the Sleepy Eye Care Center.

Private graveside services will be held at a later date.

There will be an informal gathering in his honor 3-8 p.m., Wednesday, Sept.10, at his home, 101 Linden St. SE, Sleepy Eye. All who knew him are invited for a time of remembrance. Please no flowers or plants. Memorials preferred to the Brown County Humane Society, New Ulm.

He is survived by his wife, Karen; sons, Matthew, Andy and Ray; and sister, Sandra Maeyaert.

He was born on Sept. 28, 1948, in Slayton, to Herman and Marian Okerman.

Roy Jacobsen


Roy A. Jacobsen, age 96, of Sleepy Eye, MN died on September 4, 2014, at Divine Providence Community Home in Sleepy Eye.

Visitation will be on Wednesday from 5 to 8 pm at the Sturm Funeral Home, Sleepy Eye and will continue on Thursday for one hour prior to the service at the church.

Service will be held at the St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church, Evan, MN, on Thursday, September 11, 2014 at 10:30 am.

The clergy will be Pastor Rebecca Krogstad.

Interment will be at the Prairieville Cemetery, rural Evan, MN.

Arrangements are with the Sturm Funeral Home in Sleepy Eye, MN.

On line condolences may be left for the family at

Roy Albert Jacobsen was born on September 27, 1917 in Eden Township, the son of Hans and Stella (Johnson) Jacobsen. Roy graduated from Sleepy Eye Public High School in 1936. Roy farmed the family farm near Evan all his life and in 1965 started working for Kraft Foods in New Ulm part time. He continued to work for Kraft Foods taking care of the yard and many numerous flower gardens that received many compliments from all who visited Kraft Foods. He retired from Kraft at age 86. Roy and wife Leoris resided on the family farm until moving to Sleepy Eye in 1978. He was a member of the Masonic Temple, St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church, and the Prairieland Flywheelers tractor club. Roy enjoyed watching the tractor pulls at various towns, collecting and fixing antique tractors, and gardening. He was semi active in the farming events until his health prevented him from doing so.

Roy was a very loving husband, father, and grandfather. Roy is survived by Thomas Jacobsen of Evan and Neal and Audrey Jacobsen of Sleepy Eye. Grandchildren – Jennifer Pidde, Jon (Kate) Jacobsen, Erin (Bryan) Zempel, Derrick Jacobsen, and KaCee (Chris) Zeimer, plus 6 great grandchildren. Roy is also survived by his brother in law – Roger Kleinschmidt of Florida.

Babette Marks


First Visitation

WhenFriday, September 5th, 2014, 10:00am – 11:00am
Sturm Funeral Home, Sleepy Eye Chapel

Service Information

Friday, September 5th, 2014, 11:00am
Pastor John Mitchem
Sturm Funeral Home, Sleepy Eye Chapel

Babette Nadine Marks was born on August 5, 1960 in Redwood Falls, MN to Gerald and Oradell (Haenze) Fischer. After graduating in 1979 she moved to Hutchinson, MN and worked at Burns Manor, Nash Finch for 18 years and WalMart until her health failed. She liked to play bingo, loved animals, especially her cat Archie and collected Winnie the Pooh and stuffed animals.

She is survived by her mother, Oradell Fischer of Sleepy Eye, brothers, Troy Fischer of Sleepy Eye and Terry Marks of New Ulm. She is also survived by nieces, nephews, aunts and uncles. She was preceded in death by her father, Gerald Marks, step-father, Pork Fischer, brother, Preston Marks in 2011 and her grandparents.

Randall Berkner


Randall John Berkner , age 89, of Sleepy Eye, MN died on September 2, 2014, at Divine Providence Community Home in Sleepy Eye.

Visitation will be on Monday from 4 to 7 pm and will continue on Tuesday from 7:30 until 11:00 am at the Sturm Funeral Home, Sleepy Eye. There will be KC Rosary at 4pm and a Parish Prayer Service at 7pm, both Monday at the funeral home.

Service will be held at the St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Sleepy Eye, on Tuesday, September 9, 2014 at 11:30 am.

The clergy will be Msgr. Eugene Lozinski.

Interment will be at the St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery, in Sleepy Eye.

Military honors by the Sleepy Eye Honor Guard.

Arrangements are with the Sturm Funeral Home in Sleepy Eye.

On line condolences may be left for the family at

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials to St. Mary’s School or Church or Divine Providence Community Home.

Randall (Randy) was born on March 5,1925 in Osakis, MN to Harold and Catherine (Huiras) Berkner. As a small child, the family moved to Sleepy Eye where his father started a family farm. He attended St. Mary’s Catholic Schools graduating in 1943. Randy enlisted in the United States Army on March 6, 1945, serving in the Pacific Theater. On October 11, 1950, he was united in marriage to Delores (Dolly) Goldschmidt at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Sleepy Eye. He began working as a mechanic at Del Monte Corporation until he moved onto and bought a family farm. Along with being a grain farmer, he also raised a variety of livestock, focusing mainly on hogs. He retired from farming in 1987. Randy and Dolly spent many summers at their cabin on Potato Lake in Park Rapids, MN. He truly enjoyed fishing and family time around the campfire. In his retirement years he took up golf and was always eager to challenge his sons in a round of golf. He was a quiet, gentle man with a wonderful sense of humor. When he lost Dolly in 1999, he took on many of Dolly’s talents of cooking and gardening. Most of all, his greatest joy was the company of his family. Randy was a lifetime member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, the Catholic Order of Foresters, Knights of Columbus, VFW, American Legion, and Fraternal Order of Eagles.

Randy is survived by his six children: Allan (Bonnie) Streamwood, IL, Renae (Neil) Bock, Park Rapids, Dale (Dianne), Brandon, SD, Cindy (Charles) Sobocinski, Park Rapids, Patrick (Patty), and Lynn both of Sleepy Eye, eleven grandchildren, four great grandsons, four step grandchildren, two step great grandchildren, and one step great-great grandson, sister, Ramona Ricke of Blue Earth, two step brothers David (Sandy) Runing, White Bear Lake, and Curt Runing, Coggon, IA, several nieces and nephews. Randy is also survived by Dolly’s family: brothers-in-law: Gerald (Olive) Hutchinson, Marvin (Bernice) St. James, Milo (Rosie) Lake Lillian and sisters, Carol Jean (Roger) Hengel and Sister Audrey Goldschmidt, both of Sleepy Eye, brothers-in-law, Eddie Jungers, El Centro, CA, and Tom Haas, Camarillo, CA. He is preceded in death by his loving wife of 49 years, Dolly, his parents and step mother Cecilia (Runing), brothers and sisters-in-law, Myron (Pearl) and Richard (Barbara), and sister Barbara (Bernard Bertrand / Linus Grathwohl), brother-in-law Bill Ricke, step sister-in-law Mary Runing and infant sister Rosemary. Also preceding him in death from Dolly’s family are her parents, Leo and Elizabeth Goldschmidt, sisters-in-law: Rollie Jungers and Darlene Haas, brother-in-law Jim Goldschmidt, Dolly’s infant brother Donald, and her nephew Steve Goldschmidt.

Lester Flom


Lester Edward Flom, age 88 of rural Dennison, died at his home on Saturday, August 16, 2014 of pulmonary fibrosis.
Lester was born July 21, 1926 on the family farm in rural Dennison near Sogn to John L. and Inga (Kolstad) Flom. He was the grandson of Lars and Ingeborg Flom and Christian and Gertrude Kolstad, both pioneer settlers in the Little Cannon Valley.
He was sure he grew up in the best place a boy could. He had hills and woods to explore, hunt and ski. The river was for swimming, fishing and skating.
Lester attended school at District 52, a one room country school. Later he attended high school in Cannon Falls and the School of Agriculture in St. Paul. He spent seven years in the U.S. Navy and was an overseas veteran of WWII and the Korean Conflict. He traveled the Pacific from Alaska to Australia and from California to China with many interesting stops. Lester was in China before it became a communist country. In the spring of 1945 diplomats from all over the world gathered in San Francisco to form a new worldwide organization. Lester was assigned to a group providing security and support for them. The new organization was called the United Nations. They were sure this organization could prevent wars in the future.
In 1948 he was involved in the testing of atomic bombs six, seven and eight in the Marshall Islands.
Lester began farming March 15, 1952 on the land where his parents and grandparents farmed before him. On June 21, 1952 Lester married Doris Quam at Urland Church. They were truly farming partners.
Lester enjoyed many fly-in fishing trips to Canada. He also enjoyed hunting caribou, elk, deer and antelope. He was a Twins and Vikings fan.
Lester was an avid reader. Even as a boy he thought a book was a great gift. Since retiring he had checked out more than 1500 books from the Cannon Falls Public Library.
He is survived by Doris, his wife of 62 years; five children, Julie (Gary) Warner, Pam (Steve) Tralle, Kathy (Daryl) Bergs, Eric (Melanie) Flom, and Evan (Mary Ann) Flom; six grandchildren, four step grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren and five step great-grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; sisters, Gladys Berquam, Emma Berquam, Alice Ross, and Myrtle Cummings; and brothers, twins Joseph and Johnny Flom.

Visitation will be Friday, August 22 from 5-8 p.m. at Lundberg Funeral Home in Cannon Falls. Funeral service will be held on Saturday at 11:00 a.m., with visitation from 10-11 a.m., at Urland Lutheran Church in rural Cannon Falls, where he was baptized, confirmed and married. Interment with military honors will follow at the church cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to Urland Lutheran Church.

Active pallbearers will be nephews, Darryl Flom, Robert Flom, Richard Berquam, Robert Banks, David Flom and Jeffrey Jacobson. Honorary pallbearers will be Harland Berquam, Jim Berquam, Allen Berquam, John Flom, Leslie Flom, and his Godchildren, Nancy Flom Ryan, Dennis Flom, Russell Urevig, Beth Sviggum Kapner, Debbie Fremouw Huber, and Becky Quam Phillips. – See more at:

Verna Armbruster


Verna Armbruster, 92, of Comfrey, died on Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014, at Divine Providence Community Home in Sleepy Eye.

Funeral service will be held at the New Hope Lutheran Church in Comfrey on Monday, Sept. 1, 2014 at 11 a.m. The clergy will be Pastor Brian Nehring. Interment will be in the Sanborn City Cemetery in Sanborn.

Visitation will be on Monday, Sept. 1, 2014, from 9:30 to 11:00 am at the New Hope Lutheran Church in Comfrey.

Arrangements are with the Sturm Funeral Home in Springfield. On line condolences may be left for the family at

Born in Sanborn on June 21, 1922, Verna Amanda (Leopold) Armbruster was the seventh of nine children of John and Hulda (Ringle)Leopold. She graduated from Sanborn High School in 1939. She passed away peacefully at Divine Providence Nursing Home in Sleepy Eye on Aug. 28, 2014.

She married Floyd Armbruster in New Ulm on June 7, 1942. Floyd entered the Army six weeks later, and they didn’t see each other for three and one-half years until he was discharged in 1945. During World War II she worked as a riveter (once honored as Comfrey’s own “Rosie, the Riveter”) in an airplane factory in San Diego. She said the factory was so loud that you had to shout at the person next to you to be heard. Hearing protection was unknown at the time, and working in this environment may have contributed to her significant hearing loss in later years.

After Floyd was discharged from the Army, they moved to Fairmont where they made many lifelong friends. Their marriage was blessed with four children, Jim, Diane, Jan, and Randy. When her children were young, many yearly fishing trips were taken to the Alexandria area for a summer vacation. In 1958 they moved to Comfrey where Verna remained after Floyd passed away in 1981.

Verna was a life long homemaker, She was an excellent cook, baker, and house cleaner. She and Floyd always enjoyed playing cards with their many friends. When unexpected company or a family member stopped by to visit her, she could always come up with a savory snack and coffee, or a whole meal within the hour. She enjoyed visiting with family and her many friends, and missed that greatly when her hearing loss made those conversations difficult to understand what was being said.

After Floyd passed away, she contented herself with working at the church where she and others made hundreds of quilts for distribution to third world countries. One quilt especially designated for Green Lake Bible Camp and stored temporarily in Salem Lutheran Church somehow miraculously survived the tornado of 1998 while the rest of the church was destroyed. Her Lutheran upbringing was an important part of her life, and she was a member of New Hope Lutheran Church where she attended regularly. She sang alto in the church choir and enjoyed many types of music.

She was a caring and devoted mother, and a wonderful grandmother to her many grandchildren. She faithfully attended many of her children’s and grandchildren’s school and sporting events, and also enjoyed watching the Twins games. In later years, even though her verbal skills had deteriorated, her eyesight was poor, and she was nearly deaf, she still enjoyed playing catch with a nerf ball and was quite good at it. She also logged many miles in her Geri chair walking the hallways at St John Lutheran Home. Since February 2008, she had lived in the memory care unit of St John Lutheran Home in Springfield, and transferred to Divine Providence Nursing Home in Sleepy Eye in May 2014.

She is survived by Jim (Nancy) of Mankato, Diane (Steve) Wisniewski Grzybowski of St. Cloud, and Randy (Roxanne) of Sleepy Eye, grandchildren Kelly (Dan) Schepers, Lani (Lee) Vogel, Nathan Wisniewski, Grant (Megan) Wisniewski, Kertrina (Tyler) Richter, Kasandra and Tyler Wisniewski Gryzbowski, Dr. Adam (Dr. Karlyn) Armbruster, Chad (Samantha) Armbruster, Krista (Michael) Moeller, Angela Armbruster, and great grandchildren Tyler, Tommy, Norah, Alexis, Sierra, Scarlett, Harper, Alex, Tessa, and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, husband Floyd, daughter Jan, a stillborn daughter Patricia, son-in-law Michael Wisniewski, brothers Edwin, Marvin, Leon, Ewald, Gerhardt, John Glen, Bruce, and one sister, Charlotte Springer.

Memorials may be directed to New Hope Lutheran Church of Comfrey.


Donald Radel


Donald P. Radel , age 89, of Evan, MN died on August 28, 2014, at Autumn Grace Senior Living in Mankato, MN.

Visitation will be on Tuesday from 5 to 7 pm at the Sturm Funeral Home, Sleepy Eye Chapel and will continue on Wednesday for an hour prior to the service.

Service will be held at the St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church, Sleepy Eye, on Wednesday, September 3, 2014 at 11:00 am. 

The clergy will be Pastor Chris Cordes.

Interment will be at the Home Cemetery, in Sleepy Eye, MN with military rites by the Sleepy Eye Honor Guard.

Arrangements are with the Sturm Funeral Home in Sleepy Eye, MN. 

On line condolences may be left for the family at

Don was born on March 25, 1925 in New Ulm, MN, the son of Paul and Elma (Neumann) Radel and grew up in rural Sanborn, MN. He served as a World War II combat soldier in Europe and as a courtroom honor guard at the famous Nurnberg Military Tribunal in 1946. He was a lifetime member of the V.F.W. Don married Alice Maas on March 6, 1948 at St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Sleepy Eye. They made their home in rural Sanborn for a few years before moving to their farm on the south edge of Evan. Don enjoyed farming and his work as Brown County ditch inspector. His interests included attending church, serving as congregation president and in other roles, spending summer weekends at Lake Mary fishing walleyes, ice fishing, hunting, golfing, playing checkers, cribbage, card and dice games, gardening , dancing, and wintering in Arizona. Don’s greatest joy was family, especially delighting in the young children. He is survived by children Gary (Jayne) of Eden Prairie, Marc (Sue) of Evan, and Carol (Dave) Jacobson of Wells; grandchildren Jason, Travis, Josh, Jacob, and Kevin Radel, Rob and Jeff Jacobson, Laurie Borris, their spouses, twelve great grandchildren; sister Cynthia (Lou) Balgaard, sister-in-law LaVerne Radel, and brother-in-law Lester (Lois) Maas. He was preceded in death by his wife of 55 years, Alice, parents, daughter-in-law Janice, brothers Melvin (& Helen), Ray (& Dolores), Orville, Vernon (& Arvis), sister Sylvia, sister-in-law Lucille Neal, and brother-in-law Gilbert (& Mildred) Maas.