ELAINE GRETCHEN ELLIANElaine Gretchen Ellian, 85, of Duluth, passed away Sunday, Jan. 15, 2012, in Bayshore Health Center surrounded by her family.
Elaine Gretchen Ellian, 85, of Duluth, passed away Sunday, Jan. 15, 2012 at Bayshore Health Center surrounded by her family.
Elaine was born July 1, 1926, in Duluth, the daughter of Dr. Roy and Margie Pfeiffer.
She graduated from Stanbrook Hall in 1942 and went on to get her nursing degree from St. Scholastica. After graduating in 1949 she went on to teach nursing as an RN at St. Mary's in Rochester. It was there she met and married John D. Ellian in 1951. They lived in Alexandria and Albert Lea before moving back to Duluth in 1958 to raise their family. After her husband died in 1967, Elaine resumed her nursing career for a time and worked at Surf and Sand Nursing Home on Park Point.
Elaine was a woman of many talents. She had an independent and adventurous spirit, and in her 20's she became a licensed pilot and flew for several years while in Rochester. She was also a classically trained pianist, an avid gardener, a fabulous cook, and she loved to travel. She loved animals and served as a foster home for many years for the Lake Superior Humane Society. But she was most well known for her volunteering over the last 25 years. She served on the board for numerous organizations, and was very active in Matinee Musicale, the Preservation Alliance, Historical Society, the Depot, Lake Superior & Mississippi Railroad, and the Duluth Figure Skating Club. She was also a lifelong member of Lakeside Presbyterian Church and dedicated many years of service to the church in many capacities. She was nominated for the Volunteer Hall of Fame Award in 1992 in recognition of her years of service to the community.
Elaine was preceded in death by her husband John in 1967; her parents, and an infant son.
She is survived by her children Karen (Donn) of Duluth, Robin Ostertag (Eldred) of Cloquet, John of Plymouth Minn., and Susan Radtke of Two Harbors; seven grandchildren, Jamie, Nikki, Tyler, Scotti, Amanda, Christopher, and Courtney, and one great granddaughter, Callie.
SERVICE AND CELEBRATION OF LIFE: 3 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 19, 2012 in Lakeside Presbyterian Church in Duluth. A time of coffee and fellowship will follow in the church. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Animal Allies Humane Society in Duluth.
On line tributes at www.cremationsocietyofmn.com
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