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1908 Thea 2009

Thea Burner

May 15, 1908 — May 10, 2009

Thea Burner, 100, of Mayville, ND, died in her sleep at the Luther Memorial Home in Mayville, Sunday, May 10, 2009, in Mayville, under the care of Hospice of the Red River Valley. Thea had resided at the Luther Memorial Home for more than nine years. Thea was the second of six children born to Henry and Julia (Ellingson) Brainerd on May 15, 1908, on their farm near Golden Lake, Steele County, North Dakota. When Thea was almost two years of age, her folks moved to a farm they bought near Sherbrooke, ND. Thea attended a one-room school near their new farm. Beginning first grade at the age of five, she could speak only Norwegian. After the first day of school, her teacher accompanied her home and instructed Henry and Julia they were to speak only English in their home. Thea enjoyed school, especially writing and art. After completing the eighth grade, Thea attended high school in Fargo and in Sharon. She also attended sewing school in Fargo, where she became skilled at making patterns and sewing, skills she would put to good use throughout her life. Thea married Hartwell Burner on October 7, 1928, settling in Hope, ND, where Hartwell managed the Monarch Grain Elevator. Hartwell and Thea and their family moved to Mayville in late 1942. Thea was very active in Mayville civic affairs, leading the restoration of the Mayville Public Library, the development of Pioneer Park at the west entrance to Mayville, and the construction of the Kolsrud Shelter in Island Park. She gave talks about the pioneers and early Mayville history to Elderhostel visitors until the last years of her life. Thea had a love of gardening and flowers. She crocheted, played the piano, painted, and was active in affairs at the Mayville Congregational United Church of Christ, the Order of the Eastern Star, the Pioneer Daughters, and the Luther Memorial Home. Thea and Merilla Brasel co-authored, “Pillars of Time”, a pioneer history of Mayville-Portland and the surrounding area. Thea was feted at her 100th birthday party on June 29, 2008, at the Luther Memorial Home, attended by her six children and spouses, 15 grandchildren, 25 great-grandchildren, 1 great-great grandchild, and many friends and relatives. Hartwell preceded Thea in death on June 7th, 1990. She was also preceded by her parents; sisters, Florence Solberg and Mildred Horner; brothers, William (Art) and Herbert Brainerd. Thea leaves six children, Betty (Howard) Moen of Pahrump, Nevada, Dr. H. Blair (Lavina) Burner of Bellevue, Washington, Phyllis (Harley) Turner of Fresno, California, June (Dallas) Johnson of Waconia, Minnesota, Margit (Kenneth) Eastman of Mayville, North Dakota and Robert (Judy) Burner of Donnelly, Minnesota. Thea also leaves 19 grandchildren, 35 great-grandchildren, five great-great grandchildren; one sister, Myrtle Traun of Moorhead, Minnesota; and one sister-in-law, Jean (Sam) Oxton of Mayville, North Dakota. She also leaves many special friends and care givers at the Luther Memorial Home. Memorials are preferred to the Mayville Congregational United Church of Christ, Hospice of the Red River Valley, Luther Memorial Home or Mayville State University. Visitation: Will be one hour prior to the service at the church. Memorial Service: 2:00 PM, Tuesday, May 19, 2009, at Mayville Congregational United Church of Christ, Mayville, ND. Burial: Mayville Cemetery, Mayville, ND.
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