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Esther Beckala, 102

Esther Beckala, age 102, of Cokato, passed away Thursday, Oct. 11, 2012, at the Dassel Lakeside Care Center.

She was born Sept. 6, 1910, in Corona, SD. When she was 3, the family moved to Summit, SD; and when she was 9, the family moved to Milaca, MN.

They moved to Cokato in 1923, when Esther was 13. She attended Riverside School, later re-named Melquist School, where she finished eighth grade.

Esther met and married Rognar Beckala, also of Cokato, in 1932. Two children were born to this union, son Vernon and daughter Phyllis. They farmed north of Cokato for most of their life. In 1967, they moved to town.

Esther was a 4-H leader for many years, belonged to Home Extension, and also the Order of the Eastern Star.

She worked at Green Giant for a number of years, and Richwell Furniture until retirement.

A very hard worker, Esther was the “queen” of recyclers, before recycling ever came into existence.

She made many miles of rag rugs; pounding the loom for over 70 years. Her most popular rug was made of denim. Esther’s rugs went to many parts of the world, and the shuttles on the loom have now been stilled.

An avid Minnesota Twins fan, Esther never missed a game on the radio.

She and her husband spent 10 summers north of Park Rapids.

Esther was preceded in death by her husband, Rognar; daughter, Phyllis Davidson; son-in-law Dale; her parents, Otto and Minnie Evers; brothers Ernest and Carl Evers; sisters-in-law Elvira and Mary Lou Evers; and brothers-in-law James Haapala, Donald Skoog, and Daniel Ceske.

She is survived by her son, Vernon, and his wife, Jeanette: seven grandchildren: Debi (Tom) Menard and Chad (Denise) Beckala of Cokato, Kent (Robin) Davidson of Annandale, Kelly (Shelly) Davidson of St. Cloud, Dawnine Beckala and Stacy (Michael) Blackmun of Sioux Falls, SD, and Jamie (Denise) Beckala of Toddville, IA; 10 great-grandchildren; two great-great-grandchildren; many nieces and nephews; and by her sisters, Mildred Happala of Cokato, and Pearl Ceske of Hutchinson.

A service of Christian Burial took place Monday, Oct. 15 at the First Apostolic Lutheran Church of Dassel, with Pastor Mark Koivisto officiating. Diane Grangroth was the organist. Interment was in the Cokato Finnish Cemetery, rural Cokato.

The pallbearers were Kent Davidson, Kelly Davidson, Jamie Beckala, Chad Beckala, Michael Blackmun, and Tom Menard.

The Swanson Funeral Home in Cokato handled the arrangements.