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Elmer Ehde

January 14, 1940 — November 25, 2023

Edina

Elmer Ehde

Elmer Edwin Ehde was born on January 14, 1940 to Elmer and Goldie (Sanderson) Ehde in Luverne, Minnesota. He was baptized and confirmed in the Lutheran faith. Elmer grew up in Steen, Minnesota where he enjoyed riding his bike and go-cart, and playing baseball with friends. In his youth, he enjoyed everything a young boy would enjoy – he even put up a zipline between two trees, but his mom made him take it down as it probably wasn’t safe. While in high school, Elmer raised his own mink on his relatives’ mink farm. After his graduation in 1957 from Hills High School in Hills, Minnesota, Elmer started raising mink full-time. In 1962, he enlisted into the National Guard and later transferred to the Air National Guard. This same year he moved his mink to a ranch he built east of Steen. On December 15, 1962, Elmer was united in marriage to Karen Hewitt at the Immanuel Lutheran Church in Rock Rapids, Iowa. Later, his brother Arthur joined him as a partner in the mink business. Elmer received his honorable discharge from the guards in 1970. In 1973, the brothers expanded the mink ranch on land they bought north of Luverne. He retired from raising mink in 2008. He enjoyed the many people who helped on the farm over the years, especially the high school and college kids. He felt that much of the success the ranch had was due to the loyal and hardworking people who worked on the ranch over the years. On Saturday, November 25, 2023, Elmer died at the Wealshire of Bloomington in Bloomington, Minnesota at the age of 83 years, 10 months, and 11 days.

Elmer was a member of Oak Hill Church in Bloomington. He was previously a member of Grace Lutheran Church in Luverne. Locally, Elmer served on the Rock County Zoning Board. On a state and national level, he served as director and president of the Minnesota Fur Breeders Association and the American Legend Association. Raising mink gave him the opportunity to meet people from across the country and all over the world. He traveled to Europe and Japan for American Legend, which fostered a desire for more travel. Elmer enjoyed every place he went, including the Black Hills, Yellowstone, and Seattle. He especially loved Maui, a love he passed onto his family. He called it his “happy place”. Elmer always looked for the best in people and was a positive person. He was the ultimate grandfather. He would drop everything to help a child or grandchild. He devised games and activities for them and had endless patience with them. He had a bottomless curiosity, which he passed on to his grandchildren. Elmer was a warm, kind, and dependable father and grandfather. He will be remembered for his love of ice cream, Hawaiian music, non-fiction books, and baseball caps. He took up running at age 40 and instilled in his family the importance of staying active, whether walking, cycling, or running. He will be dearly missed.

Elmer is survived by his wife, Karen Ehde of Edina, Minnesota; children, Dawn (John Cerqui) Ehde of Seattle, Washington, and Timothy (Jennifer) Ehde of Minneapolis, Minnesota; three grandchildren, Sam Ehde, Kate Ehde, and Andrew Cerqui; and siblings, Margaret (Ivan) Sturzenbecher of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and Arthur (Carol) Ehde of Luverne. He was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Clarine Hawkins; brother-in-law, Gerald Sturzenbecher; nephew, Scott Ehde; niece, Pam Lais; great-nephews, Carson Ehde and Teddy Boddicker; and great-niece, Arrianna Boddicker.

Memorials may be directed to Carson’s Cause or Generations (formerly Luverne Senior Center).

To send flowers to the family in memory of Elmer Ehde, please visit our flower store.
Elmer Ehde - Memorial Folder.pdf
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Past Services

Memorial Visitation

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

Hartquist Funeral Home - Luverne Chapel

207 Elm St, Luverne, MN 56156

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Memorial Service

Thursday, November 30, 2023

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

Grace Lutheran Church - Luverne

500 N. Kniss Ave., Luverne, MN 56156

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Interment

Thursday, November 30, 2023

Trinity Lutheran Cemetery - Steen

110th Ave, Steen, MN 56173

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