Dena Connie Stokke, 82, Cannon Falls, died on Wednesday evening, October 30, 2013 at her home at the View Senior Living.
Born on February 10, 1931 in Barron, WI, Dena was the daughter of Clarence and Alma "Emily" (Lauritsen) Knutson. She grew up on a farm and attended rural country school. After grade eight, she left school and joined the workforce to help support her family. She worked in Minneapolis, western Minnesota and the Twin Cities area, before moving to Cannon Falls in 1970 with her five young children. Dena chose to settle in a small town to provide roots for her children.
Returning to school, she received her G.E.D. so she could obtain her beautician's certificate. After graduation, Dena worked in Zumbrota for a short time before opening her own salon in the Cannon Mall.
Dena worked as a beautician until the age of 79. She spent her time working at her own shop, the nursing home and at the homes of many who were homebound. Her clientele were friends, which she spent time visiting and assisting with tasks in their homes. She always wanted the elderly to be treated with dignity and respect, and made herself available to give them the attention and care they needed. In giving to her community, she received the 1997 Community Spirit Award sponsored by Community Resource Bank.
She will be greatly missed by her five children, Sheryl (Gary) Otto of Cannon Falls; Randy (Janet) Karasch of Le Center; Paulette (Leon) Hanson of Cannon Falls; Maurice Karasch of Lakeville and Bonnie Mahoney of Farmington; step-son, Steve Stokke of Hastings; nine grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren; brother, Kenneth (Sandy) Knutson of Hugo; sister, Leanne (Elvin) Yngsdal of Northfield; two nieces and one nephew.
She was preceded in death by her parents; aunt and uncle, Archie and Inez Peterson; and husband, Henry "Hank" Stokke.
A Memorial Mass of Christian Burial was held on Saturday, November 2 at St. Pius V Catholic Church in Cannon Falls. Interment followed at the Cannon Falls Cemetery.
Arrangements by Lundberg Funeral Home, Cannon Falls. On-line condolences may be directed to www.lundbergfuneral.com.