Majel Dorothy Sophie (Harms) Benkowski, age 86, of Lester Prairie, passed away Sunday, Aug. 16, 2020, at GlenFields Living with Care in Glencoe.
Majel was born June 29, 1934, in Norwood. She was the daughter of Frederick “Fred” C. and Ella D. (Gruenhagen) Harms.
Majel was baptized as an infant July 15, 1934, by Rev. Herman AmEnd, and was later confirmed in her faith as a youth March 21, 1948, by Rev. Rottmann, both at Zion Lutheran Church in Benton Township, Cologne. Her confirmation verse was Romans 1:16.
Majel received her education in Norwood Young America, graduating with the Central High School class of 1952.
Majel was united in marriage to Norman Herman Benkowski at Zion Lutheran Church in Benton Township, June 20, 1958.
Majel and Norman made their home in Lester Prairie. Their marriage was blessed with two children, Randi and Rhonda. Majel and Norman shared more than 60 years of marriage, until Norman passed away Aug. 24, 2018.
Majel worked as a payroll clerk and did data entry at Schwartz Manufacturing in Lester Prairie, and Young America Corporation in Norwood Young America.
She was an active member of St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Lester Prairie. As her ministry to the church, she proudly served as the church secretary, on St. Peter’s LWML, and the ice cream social committee.
Majel enjoyed crossword puzzles, picture puzzles, reading, and music. She loved to entertain, especially hosting holiday gatherings.
Majel always put others first, and cherished the time spent with her friends, family, and babysitting her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Majel is survived by her: children, Randi Benkowski of Norwood Young America, Rhonda Schauer and her husband, John, of Green Isle; grandchildren, Jodi Michaelis of Glencoe, Lindsey Drexler and her husband, Sean, of Arlington, Jacob “J.J.” Schauer and his wife, Kari, of Green Isle, Cole Benkowski and his wife, Danara, of Sparks, NV, Carter Benkowski of Norwood Young America, Cameron Benkowski of Norwood Young America, Cailey Benkowski of Norwood Young America; great-grandchildren, Tarin Michaelis, Cody Michaelis, Riley Drexler, Harper Drexler, Nathan Schauer, Makenna Schauer; sister, Marilyn Lenzen of Cologne; sister-in-law, Ruth Harms of Norwood Young America; nephews, nieces, other relatives, and many friends.
Majel was preceded in death by her parents, Frederick “Fred” and Ella Harms; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Albert and Gertrude Benkowski; grandson-in-law, Dustin Michaelis; brothers, Mervin Harms, Maynard Harms, and his wife, Enid; and brother-in-law, Dennis Lenzen.
Funeral services took place Monday, Aug. 24, at 2:30 p.m., at the Paul-McBride Funeral Chapel in Lester Prairie, with interment following at the church cemetery. Pastor Joshua Arndt officiated.
Special music was by Rhonda Schauer, Jodi Michaelis, Lindsey Drexler, “How Great Thou Art.” Julie Schwartz was keyboardist.
Honorary casket bearers were Jodi Michaelis, Lindsey Drexler, and Cailey Benkowski.
Casket bearers were Jacob Schauer, Carter Benkowski, Cameron Benkowski, Jason Harms, David Harms, and Jeff Lenzen.
Arrangements were by the Paul-McBride Funeral Chapel of Lester Prairie, www.mcbridechapel.com.