Laura Juntunen, age 75, passed into eternal life on December 29, 2007 from her home in Osakis, MN.
Laura Helen Koski was born on August 6, 1932 in Gackle, North Dakota to Emil and Edna (Bakkila) Koski. She moved as a young girl to rural Menahga and graduated in 1950 from Sebeka High School. Laura attended teacher's training in Park Rapids and taught country school in a one room school house called Hillview in Ottertail County. On August 8, 1953 Laura was united in marriage to Roy Juntunen in Sebeka. They lived in Hibbing for a year and then moved to Mounds View. In addition to raising her family, Laura volunteered at the Red Oak Elementary School in Mounds View and was active in the P.T.O. In 1972 the Juntunen family moved to Osakis, where they owned and operated the True Value Hardware Store. Laura helped run the store and did the bookkeeping for the business. Laura also made time to help teach the Head Start program at Osakis Public School. Roy and Laura sold the hardware store and retired in 1997.
Laura was a member of Osakis Lutheran Church and belonged to the Ladies Aid. She was an excellent cook and baker who would treat her family to Finnish tarts at Christmas and Red Velvet cake for birthday celebrations. She was proud of her heritage and enjoyed baking many Finnish foods, especially flat bread and donuts. She also raised a big garden each year and did many quarts of canned goods. Laura had many interests, but especially enjoyed knitting, crocheting, traveling and doing crossword puzzles. She was a loving wife, mother, grandma and sister who will be dearly missed by her family and friends.
Laura is survived by her husband of 54 years, Roy Juntunen of Osakis; her children, Kathy (Justin) Rueb of Stevens Point, WI, Ron Juntunen of Burnsville, Deb (Dave) Waldvogel of Osakis, Brenda (Joe) Ritacco of Elk River, Steve (Julie) Juntunen of Elk River, Brent (Dawn) Juntunen of Osakis, Stephanie (Ken) Kraemer of Osakis; 19 grandchildren; 1 great grandson; 5 brothers, Virgil (Shirley), Donald, Delano, Dennis (Arlene) and Leroy Koski; 6 sisters, Irene (Jerry) Salmen, June (Jim) Anderson, Darlene (Calvin) Marjama, Delores Youngbauer, Mary Ellen (Dave) Parvi and Della (Tony) Alto; many aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and friends.
Preceding her in death are her parents, a son, Brian Juntunen, a granddaughter, Shayla Juntunen and brothers, Clifford and Ralph Koski.
Funeral services were held on Wednesday, January 2, 2008 at 11:00 am at the Osakis Lutheran Church with Rev. Ron Calvert officiating. Music was provided by organist, Vicki Larson and soloist Dana Hetland. A eulogy was read by her daughter, Kathy Rueb. Interment was at the Grace Lutheran Cemetery in rural Sebeka, MN with honorary bearers being her 12 granddaughters, Lindsay Brough, Courtney Rueb, Becky and Meghan Juntunen, Darcie, Denise and Deanna Waldvogel, Kristina and Alexa Ritacco, Janna Juntunen, Ashley and Taylor Kraemer. Active bearers were her 7 grandsons, Eric Juntunen, Douglas and Devin Waldvogel, Samuel Ritacco, Jason and Joshua Juntunen, Dustin Juntunen.
Arrangements were handled by the Roy-Hetland Funeral Home in Osakis, MN.