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Leona L. DeMaris, 76

Leona L. (Torma) DeMaris, age 76, of Delano, passed away peacefully Thursday, Sept. 3, 2009, in Minneapolis.

She was born Aug. 9, 1933, in rural Menahga, MN to Samuel and Hilma (Hyrkas) Torma.

Leona grew up on a farm in rural Menahga. She was the tomboy, working outside beside her father and brothers.

She graduated from Menahga High School, and worked in the Twin Cities area before marrying the love of her life, Bert DeMaris Nov. 16, 1957, at First English Lutheran Church in Menahga. They were together almost 52 years, and their marriage was blessed with five children.

Leona and Bert lived on the Iron Range, mostly in Babbitt, for many years until retiring to Waskish, Lester Prairie, Rockford, Buffalo, and Delano.

Always together, they enjoyed fishing, hunting, berry picking, gardening, playing bingo, and watching their sons and later, the grandchildren in sports.

Leona never knew a stranger because she talked to everyone as if she had known them her entire life. She touched many lives.

Leona loved her search-a-word puzzles and took them with her everywhere she went. She was very crafty and could fix just about anything she got her hands on, and enjoyed building things.

Leona was a go-getter, never wanting to just sit down and rest. There was always something to do. She was active in the churches that she belonged to, the American Legion, serving as the chaplain for the Delano Legion; and in the assisted living facilities that she lived in.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Sam and Hilma; an infant son, Kurt; siblings Uno, Bill, twin brother Leo, Elmer and his twin, Sylvia, and Melvin; nieces; nephews; brothers; and sisters-in-law.

Leona is survived by her loving husband, Bert; her children, Robert (Catherine) DeMaris of Victoria, MN, Renee (Bradly) Tostenson of Rockford, Bruce (Julie) DeMaris, and Darrell (Sue) DeMaris, all of Delano; and grandchildren Benjamin and Emma DeMaris, Tyler Tostenson, Dustin andCassie DeMaris, Ryan Meyer, and Nicole Limberis.

She is further survived by sisters Hazel Eskola of Ponsford, MN and Hilma (Reuben) Tretbar of Osage, MN; sisters-in-law Joyce Bruhn of Hibbing, Patricia (Ike) George, Morna Sabins, all of Park Rapids, Marlene (Odin) Anderson of Foley, and Janice Hensel of Frazee; and many nieces, nephews and friends.

Funeral services took place Tuesday, Sept. 8 at 11 a.m. at Our Father’s Lutheran Church in Rockford with the Rev. Bill Hillyer officiating.

Visitation was Monday, Sept. 7 from 4 to 8 p.m. at The Peterson Chapel in Buffalo.

Honorary pallbearers were Emma DeMaris, Cassie DeMaris, and Nicole Limberis. Pallbearers were Robert DeMaris, Bruce DeMaris, Darrell DeMaris, Benjamin DeMaris, Tyler Tostenson, Dustin DeMaris, and Ryan Meyer.

The Peterson Chapel in Buffalo served the family. Online condolences may be made to www.thepetersonchapel.com