Bernice  Olson

Bernice Leona Olson

1925 - 2020

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Obituary of Bernice Leona Olson

Bernice L Olson age 95, of Saint James, Minnesota died on October 10, 2020, at Pleasant View Good Samaritan Center- St. James, Minnesota. Honoring her life's work in pharmacy and her ever concern for the health and well-being of others, a private graveside service will be held at the Mt. Hope Cemetery, St. James. The clergy will be Rev. Lyla Klee. Interment will be at the Mt. Hope Cemetery, in St. James, Minnesota. Arrangements are with the Sturm Funeral Home in St. James, Minnesota. Online condolences may be left for the family at and Bernice's family would greatly appreciate memory sharing. Bernice Leona Bertilson Olson was born to John and Ronnaug “Rena” (Wold) Bertilson, in Odin Township, Watonwan County on February 4th, 1925. She was baptized, confirmed and married in the Norwegian Lutheran Church. Bernice graduated from Madelia High School, class of 1943. On August 19, 1945, she was united in marriage to Emmett Duane Olson at LaSalle Lutheran Church and they resided in St. James all of their married years. Bernice was a member of Augustana Lutheran Church, active in the Women's Circle, Choir, Sewing Circle and especially enjoyed the preparations for the annual St. Lucia festival with the Lefse baking crew. Other than Church and Family, Bernice took great pride in her work at the local Drug Store beginning her pharmacy work at Knutson's Drug Store, which became Hageman's Drug Store and finally Paul's Pharmacy. She took great joy in serving her customers across the counter with a warm and genuine conversation. She retired her pharmacy career after working in the business for 45 years at the age of 79. Emmett and Bernice were married for 57 years, raising three children before Emmett passed away in 2002. After Emmett's passing, she moved to Homestead Cooperative Housing, where she enjoyed many happy years. At the age of 87, a highlight was her return to her Mother's homeland in Norway where she spent two weeks visiting family and touring the country she loved with her two daughters. Everywhere she went, she brought her quick wit and sense of humor along for others to enjoy. The COVID isolation took its toll on her social nature as her health declined over the past few months at Pleasant View Nursing Home. Bernice passed peacefully there on October 10th, 2020. Left behind to enjoy wonderful memories of their Mom, Grandma or Nama B, is her daughter, Shirley Gail Moody and husband Jim, of Butterfield, MN, daughter, Debbra Ricci and husband Bob of Andover, MN. Four grandchildren, Kari Shumaker and husband Paul of Paynesville, MN, Trond Moody and wife, Katie of Oak Park, IL, Abby Storms and husband Cory of Elk River, MN and Aaron Schmoldt and wife Amanda of Plymouth, MN. She proudly claimed nine great-grandchildren, Teagan, Mari and Emma Shumaker, Cecilia, Fiona and Hunter Moody, Brenna and Kylie Storms and Brady Schmoldt. She is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews. Preceded in death by her parents, husband Emmett, son Darryl and ten brothers and sisters. Gratitude and love to all those at Pleasant View Nursing Home and the Hospice Team for their friendship, thoughtfulness and all the loving care they so unselfishly gave Bernice and others every day. The family requests that in lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to her beloved Augustana Lutheran Church of St. James, Pleasant View Good Samaritan Center or any charity meaningful to you. "Those who live in the Lord never see each other for the last time."
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