Della Rae Larson Johns, born June 21, 1918 at home in Blue Earth County, Minn., to Hans and Alma (Svensson) Larson, left for her heavenly home Oct. 22, 2017 at the age of 99 at Serenity Hospice and Home in Oregon.
As a child, her family moved to a farm in New Ulm, Minn., where Della attended a country school through eighth grade. Later, Della attended the University of Minnesota, St. Paul Campus and would have graduated but her father called her home to help her mother on the farm. Della always loved school.
In 1941, Della married Norman Johns, who left shortly after for the Navy during WWII. They had two children, Sharon and Robert. When Norman returned home from the war, they bought their first home in Sleepy Eye, Minn., where Norman worked for Del Monte and Della was a homemaker. After his retirement, they moved to Lake Minnewaska, Glenwood, Minn., and later to a condo near the lake. They joined United Parish in Glenwood.
Della enjoyed fishing, dancing, wintering in Arizona, gardening, playing scrabble, cards, cribbage and reading. After her husband and daughter’s death, she moved to Rochelle, to be near her son, Bob, and his family. There she enjoyed more gardening, playing bingo at the senior center, being prom queen at age ninety and more cribbage. Even after moving to Serenity Hospice and Home Sept. 9, Della was still winning at cribbage (with a twinkle in her eye). Her memory, most days, continued to be very bright; and she was very pleased with visits from family members and friends.
Della was preceded in death by her daughter, Sharon in 1998; husband Norman in 2004; her parents; brothers, Axel, Fritz, Carl and Alfred; sisters, Lennea, Lily and Alice; and great-great-granddaughter, Hailee.
She is survived by her son, Robert (Jeri) of Rochelle; son-in-law, Dean Paulson of Glenwood, Minn.; sister, Edna Lentz of Texas; three grandsons, Douglas (Mary Beth) Paulson of Glenwood, Minn., John (Janice) Paulson of Bismarck, N.D., and Todd (Tammy) Paulson of Alexandria, Minn.; two granddaughters, Carrie (Dan) Davis of Rockford, and Holly (Bryan) Kuhn of Sycamore; 10 grandchildren, Emily, Laura, Alex, Mitchell, Carly, Spencer, Logan, Olivia, Sydney, Jacob; five great-great-grandchildren, Hannah, Mia, Jayden, Tenley and Rhyder; sister-in-law, Leora Johns of New Ulm, Minn.; special niece, Dianne (Chuck Sandstrom) Kelly of Northfield, Minn.; nieces, nephews and special friend, Ralph Papke.
Della’s family would like to thank the Hub City Senior Center where Della enjoyed many pleasant hours, San Gabriel Assisted Living and the Serenity Hospice and Home. We thank God for the life of Della Rae Larson Johns (1918 – 2017). John 3: 16-17.
The visitation will be from 4 – 6 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 27 at the Unger-Horner Funeral Home, 400 N. Sixth St., Rochelle. The memorial service will be held at 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 28 at Calvary Lutheran Church, 19 Perry Road, Lee. Burial will be at a later date at the Glenwood Cemetery in Glenwood, Minn.
Memorials may be made in Della’s memory to the Serenity Hospice and Home, 1658 S. IL Rte. 2, Oregon, IL 61061 or to the Hub City Senior Center, 401 Cherry Ave., Rochelle, IL 61068.
Visit www.ungerhorner.com to sign the online guest book.