Gladys Elfstrom, 96

Gladys Martha Elfstrom, 96, went to be with her Lord and Savior Monday, July 21, 2014, at the Kittson Memorial Health Care Center, Hallock, Minn.
Gladys Sjulson was born February 26, 1918, at the family home in McKinley Township.  She was the oldest of five children born to Sivert and Cora Sjulson. Her mother was a country school teacher and her family moved frequently.  During her early years, Gladys lived on the McKinley home place with her parents and Grandpa Per Sjulson.
During the school year she lived with Great Aunt Nellie in Pelican Rapids, and with her Grandma Julia and Grandpa Charlie Evenson in Thief River. She graduated from Thief River Falls High School in 1936.
After graduation, she stayed with the family to help take care of her younger siblings while her mother was off teaching school.  
Then in 1941, Gladys attended Dakota Business College in Fargo, N. D. After graduating from business school she worked for L.B. Hartz Store, Thief River Falls.
In 1942, she was persuaded by her brother, Paul to move to San Diego where she found a job working for Safeway as a bookkeeper.  During the five years she lived in San Diego, she was a hostess at the First Baptist Church’s fellowship center, welcoming servicemen and other young people, and introducing them to the others who spent time there.
After the war, serviceman Harris Elfstrom of Lancaster visited Gladys in San Diego.  Harris had been Gladys’ childhood sweetheart and had also corresponded with her during the war.  After spending several months courting Gladys in San Diego, he proposed to her and brought her back to Lancaster where they were married on June 26, 1948.
They settled down in a farm north of Lancaster where Harris raised turkeys and farmed, while Gladys was a homemaker and mother of three children; Iris, Ember and Angie.   Gladys also was a 4H leader, Sunday School teacher, and youth leader, and was active in the Lancaster Covenant Ladies Aid.  
After the girls were in high school, Gladys worked as a teacher’s aide for the Lancaster School for many years.  She loved teaching art to the grade school children and created all kinds of art projects at home.  She won an award for one of her pen and ink drawings from the Institute of Agriculture Rural Art Shop. It was displayed at the Swedish Institute of Art in Minneapolis for one month.
Gladys is survived by her children, Iris (Ed) Shoemaker, Oak Ridge, LA, Ember (Keith) Kapitan of Eden Prairie, Minn., and Angie Elfstrom (Steve Kovacic), Eden Prairie, Minn.; four grandchildren, Noel and Heather Robertson, Kyle and Kris Kapitan; four great-grandchildren, Brooke Robertson, Connor Grady, Kaden and Kellan Kapitan; and one great-great-grandson, Harris Robertson.  
She is also survived by her three brothers, Paul (Lorraine) Sjulson , Harry (Vivian) Sjulson, and Robert (Jo) Sjulson and one sister, Goldie (Billie) Nelson.  
Gladys was preceded in death by her husband, Harris, and her parents, Sivert and Cora Sjulson.
Funeral services were held Saturday, July 26, 2014 at 2 p.m. at the Lancaster Covenant Church.  Interment was in Riverview Memorial Garden Cemetery, Lancaster.  
Visitation was held at the church on Saturday for one hour prior to the funeral service.
Rev. Galen Nordin presided; special music was provided by Van Pankratz and children, Arden Peterson, Faye Potrament and Galen Nordin.  
Casket bearers were Noel Robertson, Kyle Kapitan, Connor Grady, Kris Kapitan, Ed Shoemaker, Steve Kovacic and Keith Kapitan.
Austin Funeral Home, Hallock was in charge of the arrangements.

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