Ethel, along with two younger brothers, grew up on a farm in the small town of Rapidan, Minnesota. She attended school there until grade nine when she dropped out to stay home and help her mother who’d fallen ill. At the age of sixteen the family moved to Wadena where two years later Ethel met the love of her life, Charles.
Ethel fell head over heels when she literally ran into Charles, dressed in his Army uniform, at the roller rink. It was love at first site. Four months later they were married and were together for 67 great years and raised one daughter, Marge. Charles worked as a custodian for the Wadena School District and Ethel worked a few different jobs including the hospital, Ben Franklin Crafts, and 24 years at JCPenneys. During their time in Wadena they went dancing a lot, a hobby Ethel still has today, and did a fair amount of traveling. They were also gamblers. One time they took a whole month off and traveled around Minnesota with a few other couples and visited all the casinos.
They stayed in the Wadena/Deer Creek area for 65 years until they moved into Shepherd Court Apartments in 2012. With Charles’s health failing, it became too much for Ethel to take care of him by herself in their apartment so he moved into the ACE Rehab and then the nursing home until his passing in 2014. Having all the buildings connected made daily visits to him much easier on Ethel.
Ethel has been living at Good Shepherd for four years now. While she enjoyed Wadena, she doesn’t miss her big house, “this is my home now; it’s nice and warm,” she says. Although it’s difficult being without her husband, she has many friends here. She and her neighbor often check in with each other by phone to make sure the other is doing okay. She enjoys attending church, bible study, exercise class, playing cards and volunteers twice a week at the Northern Delights store. Her daughter helps her out by driving her to doctor’s appointments and the grocery store. Ethel loves living at Good Shepherd, “I’m the happiest one here!”
We are proud to have Ethel call Good Shepherd home.