July 14, 2024

Bonnie Leis

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Bonnie Leis, 97, of Elbow Lake, passed away Sunday, January 7, 2024, at the Barrett Care Center. A Funeral Service was held on January 12, 2024, at Christ Lutheran Church, Elbow Lake with Pastor Bill Aufdenkamp officiating. Burial was at Union Cemetery, Elbow Lake.

Alice Elizabeth (Meberg) Leis was born December 8, 1926, to David Marten and Alice Elizabeth (Flaten) Meberg in Park River, ND. She was baptized on January 2, 1927, and confirmed on June 15, 1941, into the Lutheran Faith. She attended Walsh County Agricultural School, graduating in 1944. She furthered her education at Concordia College in Moorhead, MN with a degree in Physical Education and History, graduating in 1948. Upon graduation, she began teaching at the Elbow Lake-Wendell Schools.

On June 17, 1950, Bonnie married Paul William Leis. She became a homemaker/stay-at-home mom after the birth of her first child, Darwin. She loved spending time with her children, giving them haircuts, sewing them clothes (she was an amazing seamstress), supporting them in whatever they did. She introduced them to Twins games and tailgating with her marvelous cold fried chicken and potato salad. There were swimming outings at Fairhaven Beach and later at Eagle Lake, not only with her children, but also her grandchildren and stops at the Ashby Snack Shack. She enjoyed attending her children’s and grandchildren’s events and being part of their lives. She continued to provide education throughout her life with her substitute teaching and one-on-one tutoring. She spent time reading bedtime stories to her children and later teaching Sunday School, Release Time, and Vacation Bible School. She enjoyed her interactions with children so much that in later years went to the local elementary school to spend a morning reciting “Little Orphant Annie” by James Whitcomb Riley.

Later, needing something to do, she worked at Jarvis Fairway Foods for several years, enjoying the conversations with her work colleagues and others she would meet. She also began running in 3K’s, 5K’s, and 10K’s at local area festivals and continued for many years. When she gave that up, she continued to stay physically active with circuit training at the fitness center and riding her bike whenever she could. Bonnie was active in LWML at Christ Lutheran Church, Homemaker’s, and a member of the Elbow Lake Study Club.

Most of all, she cherished the time spent with her husband, Paul. She treasured their morning devotions, their trips, and their love of evening swims at Eagle Lake. And the dancing. Oh, how they loved to dance and how well they danced. We would always marvel at how in tune they were with each other. Later on, with Paul’s failing health, Bonnie was there to support him every day, living up to her wedding vows.

On January 7, 2024, Bonnie passed away at the Barrett Care Center at the age of 97.

Bonnie is survived by her children: Darwin Leis, of Fargo, ND; Orvin (Donna) Leis, of Elbow Lake, MN; and Kathrine Leis, of Oak Park, IL; grandchildren: Jacob Leis, of Maplewood, MN; Alexandra Leis (Adam Uren), of Minneapolis, MN; Elizabeth Leis, of Minneapolis, MN; and Jonathan Leis of Boise, ID; two great-grandchildren: Asa and Aksel Uren; one sister: Ruth Kingsley, of Overland Park, KS; and several nieces and nephews.

She is preceded in death by her parents; her in-laws: Jacob and Nellie (Buhr) Leis; siblings: Paul Meberg, David “Urby” Meberg, Margrete Skjerven, and Marion Onsted; sisters-in-law: Loraine Meberg, Ardell Meberg, Gail Meberg; brothers-in-law: Bill Skjerven, Burt Kingsley, and Merl Onstad; brothers and sisters-in-law: Ralph and Edna Leis and Larry and Avis Leis; and nephews: Mark Meberg, David Meberg, Arnie Meberg, Dean Meberg, Eric Meberg, and Steven Leis.

Arrangements by Erickson-Smith Funeral Home of Elbow Lake.

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