The funeral service for Ruth Anne Shirley Emro, 79, of Owatonna and formerly of Stewartville, MN will be held at 11:00 A.M. on Wednesday (November 13, 2019) at Bethel Lutheran Church in Rochester, MN with Rev. Anjanette Bandel officiating. Burial will follow at Zion Lutheran Cemetery in rural Dexter, MN. Ruth Anne went to meet Jesus, loved ones by her side, on Thursday (November 7, 2019), at Seasons Hospice in Rochester following a short illness.
Ruth Anne Knutson was born on April 8, 1940 in Austin, MN to Theodore and Marvel (Stayner) Knutson. She grew up in Sargeant, MN. where she attended Sargeant schools and Austin H.S. before transferring to Hayfield H.S where she graduated in 1958. After High School she completed the data processing program at Rochester Community College and was employed as a data processor at IBM in Rochester for a few years. Ruth was married in June of 1960 to Otis Nelson Jr. while he was stationed in Hawaii during his service in the US Navy. After his service in the Navy, the couple moved to Rochester where they lived for several years before moving to Stewartville. Otis and Ruth raised their children in Stewartville and lived there for a number of years. They were later divorced. Mr. Nelson died on February 17, 2015.
Ruth Anne was a homemaker and operated a children’s daycare business from her home. She also was employed at Northwest Bank and later, as a book-keeper at the Kahler Hotel, both in Rochester. Ruth Anne married George W. Emro on October 1, 1990 in Lawrence, KS. They lived in Lawrence for about 5 years moving to Owatonna in 1995. George was employed as an engineer at E.F. Johnson in Owatonna until his retirement. Ruth was a current member of Bethel Lutheran Church in Rochester, and a past member of Zion Lutheran Church in Stewartville, Immanuel Lutheran Church in Kansas and Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Owatonna.
Ruth Anne started playing the piano by ear at the age of 4 and she played piano and organ at churches for many years. She performed “sing along” music in many local restaurants and was known in the S.E. MN area for her musical talent. She volunteered to play at many nursing homes and care facilities (sometimes with her children) and was a member of the Harmonettes in Owatonna. Ruth enjoyed gardening, playing 500, following the Twins, and fishing for crappie while on vacation to Pelican Lake every summer. She loved family gatherings, and especially enjoyed following her grandchildren’s school and sporting events.
Ruth is survived by her husband - George of Owatonna; her son - Scott (Heather) Nelson of Stewartville and her daughter – Julie (Jim) Allhiser of Rochester; step- daughter – Kathy Emro (Tim Ross) of Mpls. MN and step-son –Eric (Jonathon) Emro of Minnetonka, MN; 6 grandchildren –Gregory Allhiser, Bradley Allhiser, Annie Allhiser, Lucas Nelson, Henry Ross and Olivia Emro; her sister – Judy Bungum of Austin, MN and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her son – Brian, her parents, her ex-husband – Otis Nelson Jr. and 3 sisters and 5 brothers.
A time of visitation will be held from 5 to 7:00 P.M. on Tuesday, November 12, 2019 at Griffin-Gray Funeral Home in Stewartville and 1 hr. prior to the service at the church on Wednesday morning. Arrangements are with Griffin-Gray F.H. in Stewartville. Condolences and memories of Ruth are welcome at www.griffin-gray.com.
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