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Verla M. Holtan

October 15, 1929 ~ November 10, 2023 (age 94) 94 Years Old

Verla M. Holtan Obituary

Verla M. Holtan, 94, of  Rochester,MN  died on Friday( November 10, 2023) of natural causes, surrounded by family at her home.                                                                                                                                

Verla May Nielsen was born October 15, 1929 in Grand Meadow MN to Kasper and May(Gilbert)Nielsen. She grew up on the family farm in Grand Meadow Twsp, attended country school and Grand Meadow schools, graduating from Grand Meadow HS in 1947.  Verla was married on September 4, 1949 at  Zumbro Lutheran Church in Rochester,MN to Arnold Holtan.   Following their marriage the couple lived in Rochester for a few years before moving in 1955 to their farm home in Salem Twsp. where they raised their family and made their home for many years.  Verla was a homemaker and was employed as a bookkeeper with Gamble Robinson Co. in Rochester for many years and also at the Rock Dell Creamery in Rock Dell,MN. Arnold was employed at Mayo Clinic in Rochester for 37 years, retiring in 1988. Mr. Holtan died on March 18,  2004.  Verla moved to her home in Rochester in 2008.   

Verla was a longtime member of E. St. Olaf Lutheran Church in Rock Dell where she taught Sunday school, sang in the choir and quilted with it’s Ladies Circles. She attended many Lutefisk Dinners with Arnold, earning honorary Norwegian status. She currently was a member and attended services at South Zumbro Lutheran Church in rural Kasson  She enjoyed gardening, old-time music and dancing.  Verla loved time spent with her family, especially her grandchildren and great grandchildren.                 

Verla is survived by 2 sons and 1 daughter –  Randy(Cindy) Holtan of Rochester; LuAnn(Tedd) Gilkison of Kasson,MN, Alan(Karen) Holtan of Byron and 12 grandchildren – Dr. Tammy(Patrick)Dutter, Ellie(Hans) Ott, Todd(Natasha) Holtan, Brian(Sara) Gilkison, Zack Gilkison, Jesse Holtan, Kyle Doblar, Billy(Anna) Holtan, Nick Holtan,R.J. Holtan, Justin(Laura) Swenson and Kristina Swenson and 17 great grandchildren, nieces, nephews and brother-in-law Harvey (Betty) Holtan. She was preceded in death by her husband – Arnold and granddaughters – Keri and Heather.

The memorial service for Verla will be at 11:00 AM on Friday (November 17, 2023) at  South Zumbro Lutheran Church with Rev. Pete Wyttenbach officiating. Burial will follow at E. St. Olaf Lutheran Cemetery Rock Dell,MN. A time of visitation for family and friends will be held from 4 to 7 PM  on Thursday(November 16, 2023) at Griffin-Gray FH in Stewartville and 1 hr. prior to the service at the church on  Friday morning. Arrangements are with Griffin Gray Funeral Home in Stewartville. Memories and condolences of Verla are welcome at


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November 16, 2023

4:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Griffin - Gray FH, Stewartville

Memorial Service
November 17, 2023

11:00 AM
South Zumbro Lutheran Church
4830 120 Avenue SW
Kasson, MN 55944


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