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Serving Northern St. Louis County, Minnesota

Obituaries - March 15, 2019


Neil R. Mayo

Neil Russell Mayo, 37, of Cloquet, died on Thursday, March 7, 2019, in his home, after a hard-fought battle with cancer. Funeral services were held on Thursday, March 14 in Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Cloquet. Arrangements were with Atkins-Northland Funeral Home in Cloquet. The family would like to thank the doctors, nurses, and staff of Essentia Oncology, Mayo Clinic and Caring Edge Hospice for the excellent and compassionate care given to Neil.

He was born on July 21, 1981, in Virginia, the son of Thomas and Katherine Mayo. Neil was a 1999 graduate of Tower High School and graduated from Hibbing Community College in 2004 with a business degree.

Neil was employed at Northern Communities Credit Union for 12 years. He was a member of Immanuel Lutheran Church in Tower and was the drummer for the Dirty Apes band. Neil loved spending time at the cabin on Duffy Island on Lake Vermillion.

Neil is survived by his wife, Bethany; children, Hendrix, Aili and Charlie; parents, Tom and Katy Mayo; brothers, Aaron (Becky) and Thomas Jr.; in-laws, Debra (Bill) Kucera and Dennis (Kristi) Johnson; aunts and uncles; 11 nieces and nephews; numerous extended family and friends, including his Northern Communities Credit Union family; and his beloved cat, Colonel.

He was preceded in death by a brother, Richard James Mayo; and grandparents, Archie and Babs Larsen and Thomas and Bertha Mayo.

Rita J. Myntti

Rita J. Beron Myntti, 92, of Duluth, died on Tuesday, March 5, 2019, at the Hospice at St. Luke’s Hospital in Duluth from complications of a fall. A celebration of Rita’s life will be held at 11 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 12 at the Benedictine Health Center Chapel in Duluth, with visitation prior to the service. Burial will follow at the Scandia Cemetery in Duluth. Arrangements are by the Cremation Society of Minnesota. Memorial donations may be made to the Hospice at St. Luke’s Hospital in Duluth; the University of Evansville in Evansville, Ind. (Office of Development); or Mercy Corps in Prescott, Ariz.

The family would like to thank Dr. Luke Midlo, Dr. Kruti Patel, and the extraordinary staff at the Hospice at St. Luke’s Hospital. The family would also like to thank Rita’s wonderful friends and the loving staff at Westwood and Marywood of the Benedictine Living Community of Duluth.

Rita was born to Raymond and Gilberte (Lachance) Beron on April 7, 1927, at home, in Proctor. She graduated from Proctor High School in the class of 1945. Rita married Donald C. Myntti on Nov. 26, 1947, at St. Rose Catholic Church in Proctor. Yvonne McDonald, of Proctor, and Sigurd Olson Jr., of Ely, were attendants. Over their married life, Rita and Don had five children and moved 25 times, cross-crossing the United States following Don’s mining and naval careers.

Rita married at the age of 20 before she finished college, always with the knowledge that she would finish when time permitted. After accumulating credits toward a degree from several institutions, she finally received her Bachelor’s Degree, summa cum laude, in 1990 from the University of Evansville in Evansville, Ind. She was inducted into the Phi Kappa Phi honor society that year. In May 2006, at the age of 79, Rita graduated with a Masters of Liberal Studies from the University of Minnesota-Duluth (UMD).

Rita worked as a professional model, travel agent, and stockbroker, but her twin passions were painting and writing. She wrote travel articles, children’s stories, and three novels (under her maiden name Rita J. Beron): The Monet Deception (2000), Family Voices (2003), and The Breath of the Dragon (2010). She was a member of the American Association of University Women, and various opera, book and public affairs discussion groups. She was also a member of the Kitchi Gammi Club, University for Seniors at UMD, and she volunteered at the Damiano Center and the Salvation Army.

Her greatest joys in life were her husband, children, grandchildren, and new great-grandson. Her friends universally describe her as elegant, kind and intelligent.

Survivors include her husband of 72 years, Donald of Duluth; four daughters, Dr. Cynthia Myntti and her husband Dr. Norbert Hirschhorn of London, England; Valerie Myntti and her husband Frank Sherman of Ely; Andrea Myntti-Groom and her husband Michael Groom of Mabank, Texas; and Laura Myntti of Madison, Wis.; one son, Charles Myntti of Da Nang, Vietnam; one brother, Richard Beron of Proctor; seven grandchildren, Patrick Groom, Agatha Venters, Rebekah Sherman-Myntti, Ivie Myntti, Kirsi Myntti, Beron Selkregg and Mills Selkregg; one great-grandchild, Charles Venters; and beloved relatives, Steve Myntti and John Prola.

She was preceded in death by her parents; and brothers, Raymond and Giles.

Warren A. Carlson

Warren Aldrich Carlson, 86, of Kugler Township, passed away peacefully on Saturday, March 9, 2019, at St. Raphael’s Health and Rehabilitation Center in Eveleth. A Celebration of Life will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, March 15 at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Tower with Pastor Liz Cheney officiating. A gathering of family and friends will be for one hour prior to the service at the church. Burial will be in Lakeview Cemetery in Tower at a later date. Arrangements are with Landmark Funeral Home of Virginia.

He is survived by his children, Connie (Mark) Maki of Buhl, Jon Carlson of Soudan, Cindy (Ken) Macdiarmid of McGregor, Michael (Cara) Carlson and Eric Carlson, both of Tower; grandchildren, Sheila, Amber, Shannon, Jared, Brennan, Brooke, Marty, Michael and Ava; ten great-grandchildren; brother, Roy Carlson of Ely; and numerous nieces, nephews and friends.

Albert Dietz Jr.

Albert “Al” Dietz Jr., 75, of Ely, passed away on Sunday, March 10, 2019, at the Boundary Waters Care Center. He was a devout Catholic and his faith sustained him as he lived courageously and hopefully with lymphoma. A Mass of Christian Burial was held on Wednesday, March 13 at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Ely. Family arrangements were entrusted to Kerntz Funeral Home in Ely.

He is survived by his sister, Caroline Dietz-Carlson (Johan Carlson); brother, Michael Dietz (special friend Tammy Sellner); and many friends.

Paul V. Thesenvitz

Paul Vernon Thesenvitz, 65, of Embarrass, passed away on Saturday, March 9, 2019. Paul’s family would like to thank the staff at Essentia Health St. Mary’s Hospital and Dr. James Montana of the Essentia Health Ely Clinic for their exceptional care and compassion. Paul will be laid to rest at the Minnesota State Veterans Cemetery in Duluth and a memorial service will be held later this year. Please consider sending memorial donations to the KI Sawyer Heritage Air Museum in Marquette, Mich.

He is survived by his loving wife of 41 years, Dee Dee; daughter, Laura (Jeff) Stella; grandsons, Paul and Jack; sister, Nancy (Jon) Kusler; brother, Dale (Judith) Thesenvitz; niece, Kitty (Brad) Hofman; and numerous cousins, nieces, nephews, and friends.

Allen D. Kemppainen

Allen D. Kemppainen, 61, of Iron, died on Thursday, March 7, 2019, in his home. A Celebration of Life will be held from 2-5 p.m. on Saturday, March 16 at the Clinton Town Hall. Family services are provided by Bauman-Cron, a Bauman Family Funeral Home in Virginia.

He is survived by his children, Nathan (Sara) Kemppainen of Iron and Kate (Adam) Rice of West Jordan, Utah; granddaughter, Natalie Kemppainen; siblings, Doug (Barbara) Kemppainen of Hill City, Linda (David) Petersen and Bonnie Kemppainen (Jeanne Pons), both of Virginia, and Dawn (Mark) Olson of Tower; lifelong friend, Brenda Bowman; and numerous extended family and friends.

Harry O. Holter

Harry Oscar Holter, 88, of Cook, passed away on Tuesday, March 5, 2019, at the Cook Care Center. Funeral services were held on Saturday, March 9 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Cook. Military honors were accorded by the Cook VFW Post 1757 Honor Guard and the Orr American Legion Post 480 Honor Guard. Arrangements were with Mlaker Funeral Home of Cook.

Donald E. Church

Donald E. Church, 87, of Ely, passed away surrounded by family and friends on Friday, March 1, 2019, after a lengthy illness. Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. on Friday, March 15 at Ely First Lutheran Church. Visitation will be for one prior to the service at the church. Private burial will be at a future date. Memorials are preferred to the family. Arrangements are by Kerntz Funeral Home of Ely.

He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Frances; children, Elaine (Wayne) and Edward (Margie); grandchildren, Sara (Ben), Emily (Mike), Zachary (Gretchen) and Dylan; great-grandchildren, Carter and Caylee; sisters, Mary, Shirley, Roberta (Cliff) and Lucille (Bob); and several nieces and nephews.


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