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JANET ELLEN (SLIETER) BURKHOLDER was born to Ben and Grace (Schipper) Slieter on September 12, 1934, in Luverne, Minnesota. She grew up and attended elementary school near Steen, Minnesota and high school in Hills, Minnesota where Jan played clarinet in the band and was also student conductor. She was also involved in choir and 4H. Her parents farmed and attended church at Bethlehem Lutheran in Hills where Jan was baptized, confirmed and eventually married. After graduation she attended Augustana College in Sioux Falls, South Dakota studying elementary education. It was at college that she met the love of her life, William Rolla Burkholder. After two years Jan received her teaching certificate and Bill was drafted into the Army, stationed in Texas while Jan began teaching 1st grade in Sioux Falls. Jan and Bill were married on June 9th, 1956. Bill then used the GI bill to return to Augustana while Jan continued teaching in Sioux Falls. The couple moved to Ruthven, Iowa where they worked in the school system and their first child, Kim Marie was born. A year later they moved back to Sioux Falls where Bill taught at Augustana College and they added a second child to their family, Todd William. In 1964 they moved to Pipestone, Minnesota, where Bill became the Superintendent and Jan worked in the Title 1 program focusing on teaching math to students. It was in Pipestone where Ann Elizabeth and Mary Kay were born. Bill preceded her in death on March 17, 1998. Following his death, she continued to reside in Pipestone. On March 6, 2021, Jan was admitted to Avera McKennan Hospital in Sioux Falls where she passed away on Saturday, March 13, 2021 at the age of 86 years, six months and one day.
Jan was a member of Christ the King Free Lutheran Church in Pipestone. She enjoyed being involved in Sagio Club, Christian Women’s Club and various card clubs. Jan loved to volunteer at church - first directing the children’s choirs at First Lutheran, the adult choir at Christ the King and more recently leading bible studies. Jan had a strong faith in the Lord and loved her family. She so enjoyed being a homemaker and hostess, baking and cooking for her family and friends, raising her four children and enjoying their many athletic and music events. She was blessed to travel the country watching her grandchildren and great-grandchildren grow up and attending their activities.
Jan is lovingly remembered by her four children, Kim (Rick) Skatula of Jasper, TN, Todd (Katie) Burkholder of Plymouth, MN, Ann Mahaffey of Brentwood, TN, and Mary Kay (Brad) Olson of Rogers, MN; grandchildren, Adam, Gretchen, Justin, Colin, Billy, Ben, Eli and Ella; great-grandchildren, Samuel and Lily; her sister, Bonnie (Harlan) Kolsrud of Sioux Falls; along with many nieces and nephews from the Burkholder and Slieter families. She was preceded in death by her husband, Bill; father and mother, Ben and Grace (Schipper) Slieter; and her brother, Gordon Slieter.
In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to Christ the King Free Lutheran Church or to the donor’s choice.
Per MN Executive Order, masks and social distancing will be required for those in attendance. Thank you for your cooperation and understanding.