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Serving Northern St. Louis County, Minnesota

Obituaries: August 11, 2023


JoAnne G. Connell
JoAnne G. Connell, 86, formerly of Lake Vermilion-Tower, passed away on Wednesday, Aug. 2, 2023, at Heritage Manor Nursing Home in Chisholm. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 14 at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Tower with Pastor Liz Cheney officiating. Visitation will be for one hour prior to the service at the church. Arrangements are with Landmark Funeral Home in Virginia.
JoAnne was born on Nov. 3, 1936, in Minocqua, Wis., to Albert and Mildred (Varney) Riebe. JoAnne married Jerry Connell on March 8, 1969, in Virginia. She was an active member and leader of St. James Presbyterian Church in Tower where she sang in the choir, shared in the operations of the church, gave sermons, and organized Vacation Bible School. She enjoyed gardening, raising vegetables for many years while focusing on flowers later in life. JoAnne also enjoyed macramé, knitting, watching birds and other wildlife, and was a regular for morning coffee at the Good Ol’ Days.
She is survived by her three children, daughter Sheryl (Dr. Steve) Redmond of Westport, S.D., son Larry Sonsthagen (spouse Bob Shepherd) of Minneapolis and son Michael (Sonja) Connell of Bemidji; as well as grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Albert and Mildred; husband, Jerry Connell; sister, Madge Matz; and nephew, Bob Matz.

Ralph L. Friesner
Ralph L. Friesner, 62, longtime resident of Embarrass and formerly of Tower, died on Saturday, June 24, 2023, in an automobile accident near his home. Visitation will be from 1 p.m. until the 2 p.m. celebration of life on Friday, Aug. 25 at Bauman-Vermilion Funeral Home in Tower. Greg Anderson will be the celebrant. Inurnment will be at a later date in Warroad.
He is survived by his siblings, Glen Friesner of Hinckley, Claudia Mastin of Detroit Lakes, Tim (Shiela) Friesner of Roosevelt, Clyde (Connie) Friesner of Warroad and David (Karn) Friesner of Muskego, Wis.; and numerous extended family and friends.

Carl S. Schultz
Carl Selby Schultz, 79, of Angora, passed away on Tuesday, Aug. 1, 2023, of natural causes. Interment will be at Idington Cemetery in Angora at a later date. Arrangements are with Range Funeral Home in Virginia.
He is survived by his sons, Scott (Karen) Schultz of Angora and Kurt (Melanie) Schultz of Mt. Iron; sister, Margaret (Leroy) Soyring of South Grove; grandchildren, Jared (Samantha) Schultz, Matthew (Emily Baraga) Schultz and Angela (Will Fischer) Schultz; great-grandsons, Brooks and coming soon Eli; great-granddaughter, Kamryn; former spouse, Barbara Schultz; step-granddaughters; step-great-grandchildren; numerous nieces and nephews; and all his great friends and neighbors in the Angora area.

Helen M. Huovinen
Helen Marie Palo Doran Huovinen, 81, of Ely, originally of Soudan, peacefully passed away at home with her children by her side on Sunday, July 9, 2023. Funeral services will be held at Grace Lutheran Church in Ely on Saturday, Aug. 19 at 11 a.m. with visitation at 10 a.m. Family services have been entrusted to Landmark Funeral Home in Virginia.
She is survived by her daughters, Robin Braun and Ann (Jeffrey) Reese; son, Michael (March) Doran; grandchildren, Louise and Ben Reese and Scout, Darcy, Wrenn and Patrick Doran; brothers-in-law, Wendell Wilson and Anthony Shikonya; sisters-in-law, Genevieve Palo and Etta Palo; godchildren, Vicky Podominick, William Jr. Palo and David Mosher; many nephews, nieces and their children.

SueEllen Nelson
SueEllen “Toog” Novak Nelson, 63, of Babbitt and Ely, passed away peacefully on Sunday, July 23, 2023, at Ely-Bloomenson Community Hospital surrounded by her loving family. She requested there be no funeral, however there will be a celebration of life at a later date. To share condolences, cards may be sent to Family of Sue Nelson, 120 W Chapman St., Ely, MN 55731. Funeral arrangements are entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.
She is survived by her daughters, Desirae Nelson (Rob Burgess) of Duluth and Destinee Nelson (Josh Grotberg) of Ely; grandchildren, Peyton and Aubrey Gregory and Brody Grotberg, all of Ely; sisters, Roberta Novak and Diane (Lee) Aho and brother, Jim Novak, all of Babbitt; longtime friends, Wendy and Corrine; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.