Esther Kruse, 87, Pipestone, died Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2022 at Pipestone Avera Hospital.
Funeral services were held Friday, Sept. 30 at St. Paul Lutheran Church with Rev. Christopher Amen officiating.
Casket bearers were Mike Hemmingson, Brad Whipple, Rick Whipple, Brian “BJ” Kruse, Nick Umbreit and Spencer Kruse.
Honorary casket bearers were Stephanie (Jason) Harbarts, Amanda (Darren) Chambers, Jody Hemmingson, Diana (Fernando) Leija, Teresa Whipple, Nicole (Tony) Klunder, Sara Whipple, Lisa Kruse, Justin (Emily) Kruse, Noah Kruse, Elijah Kruse, Allie Revier, Lexie (Dallas) Fisher, Jason Brecher, Ellen Kruse and Esther’s great-grandchildren.
Interment was in New Woodlawn Cemetery, Pipestone.
Esther Martha-Emma Kruse was born to Anton and Auguste (Stern) Matzke on Dec. 15, 1934 on a farm near Lamberton where she was raised and attended country school. Upon completion of her education she worked in the dietary department of the hospital and nursing home in Springfield.
On May 7, 1957 she married Luvern Kruse at Zion Lutheran Church in Lamberton. They began their married life in Redwood Falls. In 1958 they moved to Wanda, Minn., and in 1960 they moved to Jeffers. In 1964 they moved to Pipestone and in 1967 they moved to Plankinton, S.D. In 1968 they returned to Pipestone.
She worked in the housekeeping department of the Pipestone County Medical Center. On Aug. 5, 1996 she became employed at Juba’s grocery store. After the store was sold to Coborn’s she continued to work there until her retirement in 2007. After retirement she lived in her own home for a number of years until she moved into Ridge View Estates. In September of 2022 she was placed on hospice care.
She was a member of St. Paul Lutheran Church where she and her husband were employed as the church custodians for a few years.
She is survived by her five children, Duane (Pam) Kruse, Pipestone, Jilene “Jill” (Richard “Dick”) Whipple, Pipestone, Brian (Jill) Kruse, Ellsworth, Lynn Ross, Farmington and Kevin (Kelly) Kruse, Rochester; her son-in-law, Chuck Jensen, Alexandria; 15 grandchildren; 27 great-grandchildren; two brothers, Alvin Matzke, Hutchinson and William Matzke, Alexandria; four sisters, Arleen Kruse, Hutchinson, Emma Wall, Balaton, Edna Goll, Hancock and Helen Goll, Alexandria and sister-in-law, Mike Matzke, Rochester.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Luvern; her daughter, Sharon Jensen; her parents; her brothers, Ervin Matzke, Elmer Matzke and Robert Matzke and her son-in-law, Dave Ross.
(Hartquist Funeral Home,