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Elaine H. Cottew, 92

May 12, 2019

Elaine Cottew

Fairmont Services for Elaine H. (Cyphers) Cottew, age 92, of Fairmont, were Thursday, May 9, 2019, at the St. Paul Lutheran Church in Fairmont with burial following the service in Lakeside Cemetery. Elaine passed away on Thursday afternoon, May 2, 2019, at her home at Goldfinch Estates in Fairmont. The Lakeview Funeral Home and Cremation Service of Fairmont assisted the family with arrangements.

Elaine Hilma Erikson (Cyphers) Cottew was born the twelfth child of Erik and Hilma (Palmquist) Erikson on March 18, 1927. Elaine attended grade school in a one-room schoolhouse and graduated grammar school in 1940; the same year her father passed away. She began high school in Canova, South Dakota, then moved to Blue Earth. She continued until the last semester of her senior year when she joined her sister in California and graduated from Inglewood High School in California. Elaine returned to Blue Earth for Teacher’s Training and taught country school for two years. She married Howard Charles Cyphers on Dec. 27, 1946 and was confirmed into the Lutheran Missouri Synod Church in Blue Earth on March 27, 1947. Howard and Elaine farmed for 20 years near Lakota and Thompson, Iowa; and during this time had eight children. In 1970, they moved to Fairmont where they owned and operated the FairMall Texaco service station and joined St. Paul Lutheran Church. After closing the station in 1976, Elaine was a favorite cook at the Fairmont Community Hospital and worked at 3M. Howard died on Aug. 6, 1988.

In 1997, Elaine was united in marriage to Darvin Dean Cottew in Fairmont, where they continued to reside. Darvin passed away on July 1, 2012. Elaine’s strength was evident in her fight with her illnesses as she was a cancer survivor, quintuple bypass success story and rallied for life after fighting off MRSA in her lungs. She was an expert seamstress, making most all the clothing for her children as they grew. Crocheting was her passion and she knitted as well-making doilies, afghans, sweaters and her famous slippersgiving away most of what she made; and enjoyed seeing the homes of her children and grandchildren littered with her handywork. She thoroughly enjoyed playing various card games, cribbage and most recently dominos. She loved her Goldfinch family, both staff and residents, especially her good friend Rose Bancks who is now 103 years old. But most of all, her family meant the most to her. She had a knack of making each feel as though they were the only one on her mind, always loving each like a mother, grandmother, great grandmother can only love.

Elaine is survived by her eight children and their families: Glenn (Jane) Cyphers, of Cedar Falls, Iowa, Becky (John) Wolford, of Monticello, Nora Voss, of North Mankato, Eddy Cyphers, of Montana, LeAnn (Michael) McCormick, of Oregon City, Oregon, Ruth Cyphers (Kevin Theobald), of Fairmont, Carol (Mike) Nowicki, of East Chain, Shirley (Kip) Willis, of Kalispell, Montana; 20 grandchildren; 27 great-grandchildren and Darvin’s children: Bruce, Helen and Elaine and their families. Elaine was proceeded in death by both of her husbands, parents, 11 siblings, two step-brothers, son-in-law, Tom Voss and two grandchildren.