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Ethel Margaret Klima, 96, of Dassel

Ethel Klima
Ethel Margaret Hendrickson Klima, 96, of Dassel, formerly of Hutchinson, died Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015, at Dassel Lakeside Nursing Home in Dassel. 
Funeral services were held Saturday, Oct. 24, at Bethlehem United Methodist Church in Hutchinson with the Rev. Paul Baker officiating. Bev Wangerin was the organist. Soloist Sheldon Hedin, accompanied by Janet Moberg, sang “I’ll Hold You in My Heart.” Soloist Bobbi Ludewig sang “I Can Only Imagine.” Special music by Delores Kessel was “Beautiful Savior.” Congregational hymns were “Great is Thy Faithfulness” and “Doxology.”
Casket bearers were her grandchildren, Jeremy Kessel, Tatjana Ravnik, Leah Honsey, Nathaniel Kessel, Jesse Louden, Majalisa McDonald, Carrie Mohs, Amanda Engler and Erik Diaz-Hendrickson.
Interment was in the Oakland Cemetery in Hutchinson.
Ethel Margaret Hendrickson Klima was born July 8, 1919, in Echo, the daughter of Oscar and Minnie (Finbraaten) Ericson. She was baptized as an infant. As her family moved, she attend several school districts in southwestern Minnesota, and was a graduate of Alberta Public Schools in 1937. She furthered her education at Normal Teachers Training in Canby and at Mankato Teachers College.
On Nov. 28, 1944, she was united in marriage to Floyd Hendrickson in Marshall. Their marriage was blessed with three daughters, Delores, Eileen and Judith. The couple shared 29 years of marriage before Mr. Hendrickson’s death on Nov. 2, 1973.
On May 16, 1976, she was united in marriage to Edward Klima at Bethlehem United Methodist Church in Hutchinson. They resided in Hutchinson and shared 19 years of marriage before Mr. Klima’s death on March 12, 1995. After her husband’s death, Mrs. Klima lived in Hutchinson, Dassel and Cokato.
She taught school in several country schools. She worked at a dress shop in Hutchinson and was then employed at 3M Company in Hutchinson for 12 years. She retired in 1976. She was a member of Bethlehem United Methodist Church in Hutchinson since 1962.
It is hard to imagine a person who wanted to be a parent more than she did. When she was blessed with becoming a parent, she made it a lifelong commitment to nurture her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She taught many important lessons. Among them was her love of her Christian faith, and it was very important to her to share that faith with family and friends. Every day, she read from the Bible and found great comfort from the words she read. Ultimately, her Christian faith led her to face death with dignity, grace and courage. She was not afraid. She used the final weeks of her life to remind people of her love for them. She said goodbye to many loved ones and let them know she was ready to leave earth and go to heaven. In the week she died, Mrs. Klima stated that she knew what was going to happen when she reached heaven. She said, “I’ll meet the Lord and thank Him for the blessings in my life. I’ll ask for forgiveness of my sins. Then I’ll meet up with my loved ones who have gone before me.”
Among the important lessons she taught was the importance of education. It was important for her to have her children perform in school to the best of their ability. In addition to the value of academic learning, she installed a love of music in each of her three children. In her house, there was music — some of it was halting as her young daughters took piano lessons. Eventually, each of her daughters grew to love music as important parts of their lives.
There is an African proverb that says, “When an old person dies, a library burns.” It was important for Mrs. Klima to be a lifelong learner. Along with her Bible, from which she read daily, she kept a dictionary next to her favorite chair. She set a goal of learning a new word each day. During her 96 years on earth, she saw and learned many things. Even in the last weeks of her life, she shared information about eskers and what was left by the glaciers and she talked about events from our country’s past. She knew how certain crops could be planted when the wild plums were in bloom. Sadly, some of the knowledge she carried is now lost, but much of it lives on her in children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
After her faith, her love of parenting and her commitment to lifelong learning, another central feature of Mrs. Klima’s character and life was her love for, and genuine caring, not only for her family but also for many people with whom she came in contact. She took an active interest in the lives of many people, especially her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, but also her care givers and their families. She exhibited love for many people. Equally remarkable was her concern for people far away who were experiencing abuse, natural disaster, disease or wars. This tied in with her deep faith in Jesus Christ and her sense of social justice.
She is survived by her daughters, Delores (Jeffrey) Kessel of Wausau, Wisconsin, Eileen (Arturo) Diaz of Hutchinson and Judith Louden of Sartell; stepdaughter, Susan (Roger) Chrast of Silver Lake; nine grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; eight stepgrandchildren; 14 stepgreat-grandchildren; stepdaughter-in-law, Betty Klima of Hutchinson; many other relatives and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Oscar and Minnie Ericson; first husband, Floyd Hendrickson; second husband, Edward Klima; son-in-law, Thomas Louden; brothers, Glen Ericson, Orin (Mildred) Ericson and Jewel (Ellen) Ericson; stepson, Edward “Eddie” Klima Jr.; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law; and nephew, Robert Hendrickson.
Arrangements were with the Dobratz-Hantge Funeral Chapel in Hutchinson. Online obituaries and guest book are available at www.hantge.com.