Caring Announcements

Hello Friends

A celebration of Tom Sietsema's life will be held on Sat. August 31 at 2 PM on the patio at the Birch Terrace.  Please come to share stories and celebrate Tom's life.

Ronald Ege,78, of Little Marais died on Saturday, August 17, 2013 at Diamond Willow Lester Park Assisted Living in Duluth.

Services will be held at 1 PM on Monday, August 26, 2013 in the Community Room “The Link” at Diamond Willow Lester Park Assisted Living.

Bertha Kretzschmar Toftey, 104, community leader and spouse of prominent North Shore artist, Adolph (Ade) Toftey, died Tuesday, August 13, at the North Shore Care Center in Grand Marais.

For nearly four decades, she and her husband published the Cook County News-Herald. Bertha was born in Sibley County, Minnesota, on November 24, 1908, to Josephine and the Rev. Martin Kretzschmar. She was baptized on December 6, 1908, at Evangelical Lutheran St. Johannes Kirche, Deep, ND, and confirmed on May 21, 1922, at Evangelical Lutheran Immanuel Kirche, Pleasant Valley, MN. She graduated from Rochester High School and attended Winona State Teachers’ College, receiving a diploma in elementary education. Her love for learning took her to the University of Colorado and University of Minnesota-Duluth for summer sessions. She taught elementary grades in Swanville, Spring Valley, and Grand Marais, Minnesota.

In 1995 she was honored at the 60th class reunion of one of her first grade classes in Swanville.

She married Ade Toftey on June 18, 1937, at Evangelical Lutheran Emmanuel Church, Gaylord, Minnesota. They lived in Grand Marais where they were co-owners of the Cook County News-Herald with the Hubert Scotts. Bertha served as bookkeeper, proof-reader, reporter, and columnist for the newspaper. Her column, “Shorelines,” was a favorite of many.

Bertha was an active member of Bethlehem Lutheran Church for 76 years, serving as Sunday School superintendent, teacher, charter member of the “Bookies” book club, and president of the WELCA. In 1998 she was selected as the “Angel of the Year.”

Community activities were important to her. She had leadership roles in the Grand Marais Garden Club, Symphonians, Cook County Historical Society, and she was a fervent supporter of the Grand Marais Art Colony.

From: Hutche's brother Ken

It is with much sadness that I have to convey that our beloved sister Lynn has lost her valiant battle and passed away at 9:00 PM tonight.  Lynn put up an incredible fight and gave everything she had to try and overcome many obstacles. Lynn is now at peace and searching for new trails to hike and rivers to paddle. We are confident she was welcomed with open arms by her parents, Rog and Lu and they are now watching over us all.

Greg, Nancy, Kathy and I would like to extend our sincerest thanks to all for the outpouring of support that has been sent Lynn's way these past few weeks.

We will be planning a memorial service and celebration of Lynn's wonderful life in the very near future. Details will be posted here and by word of mouth when final arrangements have been made.

Thank you again to everyone for  all the kind words and prayers.

From: Mark Abrahamson

Best Friend Forever! Hutch lived her dream retiring and moving to Cook County and rennovating the lovely Pincushion B&B with her friend Ruby. We relished our semi-retirement together and she was so enjoying becoming involved with community organizations, most recently Captain for the WTIP Dragon Boat . Harry the dog and all the rest of her many, many friends and relatives will miss our hiking, berry picking  and  canoe trips together. May you be happy, may you be free from suffering, and now may you find peace.

Gerhard Meissner, 93, of Grand Marais died Monday, July 29, 2013 at the Cook County North Shore Care Center.

He was born on December 28, 1919 to Hermann and Helena (Kuhl) Meissner in Berlin, Germany. Gerhard grew up in Berlin/Neukoeln and was drafted into WWII and sent to the western front to fight against the Russians. He was a Russian POW until his escape in 1949. He married Annemarie Lipek in 1950. They lived in Berlin with his parents until they decided to immigrate to the United States to make a better life for a family. Gerhard came over in 1952 and his wife and son joined him in Chicago in 1953.

Gerhard was a moldmaker by trade and later on decided he could design better molds than the engineers were coming up with. So he established his own design company named “Plastic Mold Design” which was his dream job. In 1982, Plastic Mold Design was retired and Gerhard with Annemarie moved up to Gunflint Lake to enjoy a Northwoods lifestyle at their cabin that they bought. In 1998 they moved in with their daughter, Regine and they all enjoyed a remarkable life’s journey together.

He enjoyed reading, writing memoirs and telling stories of his life’s experiences. All who met him were entertained by his ability to tell a story about the war or whatever came to mind. He had a real gift for that. His other passion, especially in his youth was bike riding. For him that was the ultimate form of freedom and travel.

Gerhard is preceded in death by his parents and a brother. He is survived by his wife, Annemarie; son, Wolfgang; daughter, Regine; daughter, Gabriele and her husband Randy, children Annemarie, Gerhard and Nathaniel; daughter Anna and her husband James, children Steven and David.

Memorial services will be held at a later date.

On Sunday evening July 28 Lynn was admitted to St Luke's Hospital in Duluth, MN with what was later to be determined to be a bleeding ulcer. She currently is in critical condition and is being monitored by the minute in an ICU unit at the hospital.

We are very grateful for all the prayers and support family and friends have received and ask that you keep Lynn in your thoughts and prayers.

 A Caring Bridge website connection has been set up by family for updates and to send "Hutch" messages.

Earl Anderson passed away at the North Shore Care Center in Grand Marais on June 22, 2013. Services will be held on Monday, July 8th at the Bethlehem Lutheran Church. Visitation begins at 10am followed by the service at 11am. A link to his obituary can be found here.

The Memorial Service for Jurine Schellberg (October 18, 1925 - March 11, 2013) will be held at Trinity Lutheran Church, 4957 E. Hwy 61, on Monday, July 8, at 1 p.m.

Please join us as we thank God for the life of Jurine and praise God for the assurance of Resurrection life.

On June 13 our family and this community lost an amazing young man. We will be holding a memorial service and celebration of his life on Tuesday, June 18th at our home at 313 5th Ave. West from 1 PM until dark. We are going to do this Dylan Style, so come as you are! Flowers will be accepted at our home and donations in Dylan’s name can be made at the North Shore Federal Credit Union (NSFC).

Dylan Marshall age 14 passed away due to an accident on June 13th 2013.  Donations for the Marshall family would be greatly appreciated in this time of sadness and need. There is an account set up at the North Shore Federal credit Union for the Marshall Family.  Any amount will be accepted with gratitude. Checks should be written out to the NSFC.  Thank you very much, all of you.

Betty Backlund passed away on June 7th, 2013 at the the North Shore Hospital in Grand Marais.

A memorial service celebrating her life will be held at 3pm, June 14th at Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Grand Marais.

Here is a link to her obituary in the Duluth News Tribune


A gathering to celebrate the life of Eric Thomas will be held on Saturday, June 15 from 1:00 to 4:00 pm. at the East Bay Suites Stones Throw Room in Grand Marais.  All are welcome to join the family in remembering Eric. 

A memorial fund in Eric's name has been set up at the Cook County Historical Society to support renovation of the Bally Blacksmith Shop.  To contribute, go to and search Eric Thomas Memorial or contact the museum at 218-387-2883.

CONTACT: Leah Thomas
PHONE: 218-387-9709


A Memorial service for Larry Abelman, who died at age 86 on Decembe 15, 2012, will be held Saturday, June 15, 2:00 p.m.  The service will be  at Trinity Lutheran Church of Hovland, 4957 E. Highway 61.  

Gathering of family and friends following the service at the Hovland Town Hall, next door to Trinity.  

If you have questions, please call 475-2439.


A memorial service for Bud (Ellis) Tormondsen will be held at  Zoar Lutheran Church in Tofte on Saturday, June 8th at 11am.  Bud passed away on Feb. 15. 

An obituary for Bud can be found here

Funeral service for Janet will be at Our Saviors Lutheran Church in Solon Springs, Wisconsin on Saturday June 8, 2013. Visitation 10:00 am to 11:00 noon, Service 11:00 noon. There will be a memorial service held in Lutsen at a later date to be determined this summer.

Here is a link to Janet's obituary.

Phyllis Yahraes Schierenbeck passed away at the Cook County Hospital in Grand Marais, MN.  She was diagnosed with Colon Cancer in 2009 and it took her life on June 1st.  She was born in Woodbury, NJ. on July 31, 1956.  A Service will be held for Phyllis at the Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Grand Marais on Friday, June 7 at 4:00 PM and a "celebration of life" get together will be held at "The Landing" on DevilsTrack Lake at 6:30 PM. 

A Celebration of Howard Houglum's Life will be held Sunday, June 2nd 3:00 at the
Cook County Senior Center. Please join us to honor him in memory.

Here is a link to Howard's obituary.

Happy birthday to all my birthday brothers and sisters today! Syttende Mai!!

Grampa & Janie.

Paul David Anderson, 87, of Grand Marais, passed away on May 14 at the Veteran's Home in Silver Bay. Services will be held on June 22, at 2 p.m. at the First Congregational Church of Grand Marais. Memorials preferred to Care Partners of Cook County.

Floyd W. Peterson Jr. 73 of Schroeder passed away suddenly Thursday, April 4, 2013 at the Cook County North Shore Hospital in Grand Marais, MN.

Floyd was born in Duluth, MN to Floyd Peterson and Lorraine Ruidl.  He grew up in Hermantown, moved to Cook County in 1956 and graduated from Cook County High School in 1958.  After graduating he worked for the US Forest Service for a year.  In May of 1959 Floyd was employed by a major mining company at the Taconite Harbor Power Plant and Ore Docks until his retirement in May 1999.

Floyd enjoyed being in the woods, camping, exploring old abandoned homesteads, snowmobiling, 4 wheeling, cross-country skiing, chatting with neighbors, and spending time with his children and grandchildren.  Floyd was interested in history and visited many historical areas across the country.  He was a member of the Schroeder Area Historical Society where he was always eager to lend a hand.

Floyd was preceded in death by a brother James, son, Scott, and father, Floyd Sr. (Bill).  He is survived by his mother, Lorraine Peterson of Grand Marais, sister, Lynn (Mike) Rose of Lutsen, wife, Elizabeth Peterson of Schroeder, daughters, Shelly (Russell) Olson of Kennewick, WA, Tracy Peterson of Everett, WA, and step-daughter, Angela Cook of Schroeder, 5 grandchildren and 4 great-grandchildren.

A memorial service is planned for Saturday April 13, 2013 at 11:30 a.m. at Zoar Lutheran Church in Tofte, MN with Reverend Deborah Lunde officiating.  A lunch will follow the service.