LEONA BOOMGAARDEN FRANK was born to Folkert and Anna “Nellie” (Behrends) Basche on August 22, 1931 at the family’s farm in Ellsborough Township, Murray County, Minnesota. She spent her early childhood years here and attended a year of country school before moving with her family to a farm near Florence, Minnesota. She attended country school near Florence for five years. Her family then moved to a farm southeast of Ruthton, Minnesota where she completed her schooling. She graduated from Ruthton High School as Valedictorian of her class in 1949 and began working at the Ruthton Bank where she was employed for five years. She met her future husband, Ralph Boomgaarden, while serving as maid of honor in her friend’s wedding, where Ralph was the best man in that wedding. She always believed she really did find the “best” man. Ralph and Leona were married on April 8, 1951 at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Tyler, Minnesota. The couple lived and farmed near Ruthton, where Leona helped on the farm and together raised their seven children. In 1967, she took a job at Ruthton Public School as the school secretary. She served in that capacity until 1978. The family moved to an acreage south of Ruthton in 1979 where they continued to enjoy farming and operating their dairy business. Ralph preceded her in death in November of 2000. On October 12, 2002, she was united in marriage to Calvin Frank at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Balaton, Minnesota. The couple made their home in Holland, Minnesota until Calvin died in July of 2015. Leona remained in this home and lived independently until her death on November 6, 2022.
Leona was a life-long member of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod, having been baptized, confirmed and married at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Tyler, and was a member of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Pipestone, Minnesota at the time of her death. She was an active member of the Holland Senior Center for 20 years, where she enjoyed many friendships and served several terms as President. Leona was a fan of the Minnesota Twins and Vikings, was an avid reader, enjoyed playing cards, embroidery work, and watching her favorite game shows.
She is lovingly remembered by her children; LaDarla (Mark) Haws, St. Louis, MO, Joy (Monte) Owens, Ruthton, MN, Barbara (Michael) Lux, Sleepy Eye, MN, Ricky (Lynne) Boomgaarden, Cheyenne, WY, Brian (Stacy) Boomgaarden, Pipestone, MN, Lori (Chris) Randell, St. Charles, MO, and daughter in-law Deb Boomgaarden, Chandler, AZ; 14 grandchildren, 2 step-grandchildren, 22 great grandchildren, sister-in-law Mary Boomgaarden, and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband Ralph, her husband Calvin, her youngest son Robin, her sister Vivian and husband Lewis Talmadge, and her niece, Patti Glynn.