Mary Elizabeth (Berg) Westphal, age 99, of Brainerd, formerly of Howard Lake, died Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2019, at Northern Lakes Senior Living in Brainerd.
Funeral services will take place Friday, Oct. 11 at 10:30 a.m. at First Lutheran Church in Brainerd with Pastor Nate Lundgren officiating. There will be visitation at the church, one hour prior to the services. Burial will be in Minnesota State Veterans Cemetery.
Memorials preferred to First Lutheran Church.
Arrangements are with Nelson-Doran Funeral Home, Brainerd.
Mary was born Nov. 16, 1919, in Howard Lake, the daughter of William O. and Blanche (Varner) Berg. She was baptized and confirmed at Mt. Hermon Evangelical Lutheran Church in rural Annandale.
Mary graduated from Howard Lake High School in 1937, and Buffalo Teachers’ Training in 1938. She was a teacher in Wright County schools for seven years when the love of her life, Wilfred A. Westphal, returned from overseas in World War II. They were united in marriage March 31, 1945, at the church where Mary was confirmed.
Wilfred and Mary were blessed with three sons: William, Scott, and John. Minneapolis was their home until 1958, when they moved to Grand Forks, ND, where Will became the first civilian fire chief at the air base. This was their home for almost 40 years.
Mary loved being involved with her church, where she taught Sunday school and Bible school for 25 years, served on the church council and church women’s board, and was secretary of Church Women United.
She delivered home meals for 17 years, and served on the Valley Memorial Homes board.
Being involved with her family’s activities was dearly cherished by Mary. She and Wilfred enjoyed traveling, golfing, square dancing, biking, and walking.
In 1997, after they recovered from the flood, they moved to Baxter, to be near family.
Will and Mary celebrated 71 years of beautiful married life in March of 2016.
Mary will be lovingly remembered by her sons, William (Susan) of Iola, WI; Scott (Marilyn) of Marysville, WA; and John (Jie) of Baxter; as well as by her 10 grandchildren: Jessica, Rebecca, Mara, Abby, Leia, Sera, Josh, Jordan, Jacob, and Ryan; 10 great-grandchildren; and friends.
She was preceded in death by her loving husband, Will, in May 2016; her parents; a brother, John; and a sister, Betty Lehtola.