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Esther G. Volk, 97

Sep 14, 2014

Blue Earth Esther G. Volk, 97, of Blue Earth, died Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014, in Fairmont.

Esther Gail (Hiller) Volk was born October 21, 1916 in her grandparents’ home on E. Sixth St. in Blue Earth. She grew up on the farm; first near Guckeen, in Martin County, then northeast of Blue Earth. She told of her mother driving the horse and wagon to take her and her sister to country school, and how she had to sit down by her mother’s feet under blankets to stay warm in the winter.

Esther was baptized at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Blue Earth on Nov. 12, 1916. She was confirmed there on May 29, 1932 and was a lifelong member and was the oldest female parishioner. Her faith in her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ was primary in her life until the Lord took her home on Sept. 9, 2014. She died at an REM Heartland facility in Fairmont after enduring 106 days of pain and suffering.

She attended country school in Martin County and then high school in Blue Earth, graduating on May 30, 1934. She then attended Teacher Training by Ms. Marion Drake in Blue Earth, graduating on June 11, 1937. She taught for seven years in country schools in the Elmore, Frost and Bricelyn areas, loving her precious pupils.

A handsome young farmhand working on the farm next door began courting Esther during her teaching years; finally convincing her to marry. On August 30, 1941, Esther married the love of her life, Henry A. Volk, in a small family service at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Blue Earth.

Henry was inducted into the U.S. Army on Valentine’s Day 1942, leaving his bride to fight in North Africa, Sicily, and Italy. He became seriously wounded in the battle of Santa Maria on May 12, 1944. After a period of recovery, he returned to his bride and they set about establishing a loving Christian home.

Three children were born: Gwen, Roger, and Donnis Volk. Esther was a homemaker during their childhood years, but kept busy teaching Sunday school, Release time, being a Girl Scout Leader and always involved in family and church activities. Once her children were older, she sought employment. She worked at Ray’s Bakery, Viesselman Grocery, The Red Owl Store and Urban’s Caf.

Esther had boundless energy and could do anything. She was always willing to help with any task. She loved to sew, making curtains, drapes and many garments for family members. She helped the St. Paul Lutheran ladies make numerous quilts. She crocheted lace and afghans for many relatives. Her embroidery was flawless and beautiful. She was a good sketcher, also.

She loved her garden, having a vegetable garden and sharing the produce. Her flower gardens were her pride and joy, and she gladly shared plants with everyone. She loved her home and her “pet robins” that came to visit and converse with her each summer. She was also an excellent cook and baker. Every year she canned her garden produce.

She enjoyed visiting friends, relatives and family. Including her numerous nieces, nephews and their children. All children were special to her. She loved taking little trips, going to the Faribault County Fair where she was one of the teachers in the old school house; and going to festivals with her kids.

Besides teaching at St. Paul Lutheran, Esther was also active in Altar Guild, LWML, Ladies Aid and Circle. She spent countless hours volunteering, from church cleaning to planting flowers around the church and weeding and watering.

In later years, Esther was very active in the Senior Center in Blue Earth. She was among the volunteers who packed and moved into the current building. She spent many days cleaning and organizing. She also enjoyed the quality time later, socializing, puzzling and bonding with friends.

In 2009, her daughter Gwen moved home to help make her last years easier. They spent many hours working on puzzles, baking, gardening and visiting.

Esther fell twice in the summer of 2013, receiving a fractured hip each fall. She spent about 1 month post-surgery in nursing homes for physical therapy and returned home to finish healing under the constant help and love of family. She was in her home until a fall on May 23, 2014 resulted in a wrist fracture. On May 27, 2014 she went for bone-setting and cast application and never again returned home.

She is survived by her three children: Gwen Volk of Blue Earth, Roger (Ardith) Volk of Eagan, and Donnis Volk of Blue Earth. Three granddaughters: Marcia (Brian) Marrison of Rosemount, Tanya Volk of Minnetonka, and Denise (Andrew) Carey of Rosemount. Two great-grandchildren: Landon Carey and Cora Marrison and numerous nephews and nieces.

She was preceded in death by her husband Henry A. Volk in 1976, parents William A. and Augusta Hiller, sisters Evelyn Winter and Lillian Anderson, brother William R. Hiller. Brother-in-laws Pious, Mike, and Leo Volk and sister-in-law Bertha Deringer, and an infant grandson.

Esther was the best mother and always said her family meant the world to her. We will miss her loving arms forever

Online condolences can be left at www.winterfuneralhome.com