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Dorothy R. Klitzke, 88

Dorothy Ruby Klitzke, age 88, of Hutchinson, died Monday, Dec. 19, 2011, at the Burns Manor Nursing Home in Hutchinson.

She was born Aug. 14, 1923, in rural Buffalo Lake, Renville County, the daughter of William and Minnie (Beack) Schaefer. Dorothy was baptized as an infant, and later confirmed in her faith as a youth at Trinity Lutheran Church in Brookfield Township, Hector.

She received her education in Hector, and was a graduate of the Hector High School class of 1942.

Dorothy was united in marriage to Wendell Klitzke June 25, 1948, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Brookfield Township, rural Hector. This marriage was blessed with four children, David, Steve, Debra and Richard.

Dorothy and Wendell resided in Hutchinson, and shared 40 years of marriage until Wendell passed away May 24, 1988.

A loving wife, mother and homemaker, Dorothy was a self-taught organist who had the unique talent of being able to play all her organ music by ear. In addition to playing for her own personal and family’s enjoyment, Dorothy volunteered her time playing at many community social events, as well as playing professionally.

She loved going for walks, reading, and enjoyed watching Minnesota Twins baseball and Minnesota Timberwolves basketball games. Dorothy also enjoyed gardening, and her cooking and baking skills were enjoyed by all.

Dorothy especially cherished the time she spent with her family, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and friends. Those who knew Dorothy came to appreciate her quick wit and ever-present sense of humor.

As a member of Faith Lutheran Church in Hutchinson, Dorothy was active in the church Women’s Circle Bible Study and taught Sunday school.

She is survived by her children, David Klitzke and his wife, Kathy of Lester Prairie, Steven Klitzke of Hutchinson, Debra Bleckinger and her husband, Mike of Cottage Grove, and Richard Klitzke of Hutchinson; grandchildren Matthew Klitzke and his wife, Amy, Nathan Klitzke and his wife, Sara, Kristopher Klitzke and his wife Amy, Megan Bleckinger, Sara Bleckinger, Eric Bleckinger, Luke Klitzke and his wife, Kati, Kayla Klitzke, and Emily Klitzke; and great-grandchildren Sophie Klitzke, Kaya Klitzke, and Emmitt Klitzke.

Dorothy is further survived by her sisters-in-law, Ruth Meier, Hazel Neuman, and Mary Ann Schaefer, all of Hutchinson; nieces, nephews, and many other relatives and friends.

In addition to her husband, Dorothy was preceded in death by her parents, William and Minnie Schaefer; stepfather Richard Schaefer; brothers Clarence Schaefer, Kenneth Schaefer, and Floyd “Jim” Schaefer; and brothers-in-law Harold Meier, and Mike Conrin and his wife, Doris.

A memorial service took place Friday, Dec. 23 at 11 a.m. at Faith Lutheran Church in Hutchinson with the Rev. Randy Freund officiating. Organist was Shirley Holtz, and congregational hymns were “My Hope Is Built On Nothing Less,” “This Is My Father’s World,” “Precious Lord, Take My Hand,” and “I Am So Glad Each Christmas Eve.” Interment was at Oakland Cemetery in Hutchinson.

Dorothy’s grandsons were her urn bearers: Luke Klitzke, Eric Bleckinger, and Matthew Klitzke. Honorary urn bearers were Kayla Klitzke, Emily Klitzke, Megan Bleckinger, Sara Bleckinger, Nathan Klitzke, and Kristopher Klitzke.

Arrangements were by the Dobratz-Hantge Chapel in Hutchinson. Online obituaries and guest book are available at www.hantge.com; click on Obituaries/Guest Book.