Mabel Ruth (Bonniwell) Hlavka, age 98, of Silver Lake, passed away Thursday, Dec. 19, 2019, at Harmony River Living Center in Hutchinson.
She was born May 21, 1921, to Glenn and Laura (Gosswiller) Bonniwell. Mabel was baptized at the Congregational Church in Hutchinson.
She attended a country school through the eighth grade, and then worked numerous jobs as a housekeeper for other families or doing manual labor in the creamery in Owatonna during World War II.
Mabel was united in marriage to Donald Hlavka May 21, 1947, at the Congregational Church in Hutchinson. Mabel and Donald made their home on the family farm in Rich Valley Township until 1997, when they moved to Silver Lake.
They raised four children and were blessed with nine grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren. Mabel and Donald shared almost 60 years of marriage before Donald passed away April 11, 2007.
In addition to being a loving wife, mother, and homemaker, Mabel helped on the family farm.
She was an active member of Faith Presbyterian Church in Silver Lake since her marriage to Don. As her ministry to the church, Mabel had served as an elder, deacon, and member of the Presbyterian Women for many years.
Mabel and Don volunteered faithfully at the McLeod County Food Shelf. Mabel was also a member of the Farm Bureau Women’s Group, County Home Extension, and the Silver Lake American Legion Auxiliary Post 141 over her lifetime.
She enjoyed baking, especially her various Christmas cookies; stamp collecting, coin collecting, and putting puzzles together. She cherished the time spent with her family and friends.
Mabel is survived by her daughters, Jackie Paul and her husband, DuWayne, of Alexandria, and Barbara Wawrzyniak and her husband, Harlan, of Silver Lake; son, Jim Hlavka and his wife, Candy, of Lester Prairie; eight grandchildren: Katie Robertson and her husband, Dan, Chris Paul and his wife, Corinne, Suzy Paul, Denise Hlavka-Adams and her husband, Bill, Jamie Degen and her husband, Dustin, Scott Wawrzyniak, Kristi Stiles and her husband, Brian, and Marc Wawrzyniak; 13 great-grandchildren; a brother, Clark Bonniwell and his wife, Marcia, of Casa Grande, AZ; son-in-law, Andy Gaffaney of Forney, TX; nieces, nephews, other relatives, and many friends.
In addition to her husband, Don, Mabel was preceded in death by her parents, Glenn and Laura Bonniwell; a daughter, Fern Lane Gaffaney; son-in-law Douglas Lane; grandson Daniel Lane; and sisters and brothers-in-law, Verna and Ed Karg, Nettie and Milton Studeman.
Mabel’s funeral service took place Friday, Dec. 27 at 11 a.m. at Faith Presbyterian Church in Silver Lake, with interment at Fort Snelling National Cemetery in Minneapolis.
There was visitation from 9:30 to 11 a.m., prior to the service at the church.
Memorials are preferred to the McLeod County Food Shelf or the charity of your choice.