Irene Holmes

Irene Holmes

Irene Helen Holmes left our world after 94 years of life on March 16, 2014. She was one of twelve children (born on August 24, 1919) to Emma and Paul Keocher on a farm near Weber, MN. She received her early religious instruction in German at nearby St. Johns Lutheran Church and attended a one-room schoolhouse where she learned to speak English in first grade.
In 1942, she married Henry Dahl and they had one child, Carolyn. Unfortunately Henry died a few weeks later. In 1950 she married Archie Holmes Jr., who worked for Northwestern Bell Telephone Co., and they had one daughter Candace. Besides taking care of her children, Irene always worked outside the home in many different occupations: as a nurses aid at Green Acres, at the New Brighton Arsenal during the Korean War, as a Northwestern Bell telephone operator, and for Control Data from 1964 to 1984. Her career highlight was receiving a citation of participation for making some equipment used in Neil Armstrongs lunar landing.
She was a member of Trinity Lutheran Church and the American Legion Auxillary. She loved living in North Branch. In 1971 she traveled to Europe to visit her daughter Carolyn who was studying art in Florence, Italy and was delighted to discover she could speak German to many Italians.
Blessed with musical ability, she played piano by ear, sang with the Joyful Voices group, and danced with the North Branch Squares group until Archie died in 1993. After moving to Ecumen Villages in 2010, she was a regular at the Friday afternoon music sessions. She especially enjoyed seeing her friends from Joyful Voices perform and often sang along to the oldies but goodies. Irene also loved to crochet, make quilts for her grandsons, afghans for her daughters, and to embroider linens. Her last project depicted the colorful birds that came to her feeder.
Anyone who visited with Irene would soon learn that she had a sense of humor that could at times surprise. One of her pieces of advice for growing old was: Never tell anyone your age, then you wont remember the number either and youll act younger.
She is survived by her daughter Carolyn Dahl (Thomas Perry) of Houston TX and Candace Boser (Alvin) of Circle Pines; grandsons Christopher Boser of Gainesville FL, Aaron (Heather) Boser of Circle Pines, and Brett Boser of Woodbury; two great-grandchildren Maci and Connor Boser; and her sister Loyda Calander.
She is preceded in death by her parents; husbands; sisters (Lucille Nelson, Bertha Lindell, Minnie Keocher, Gloria Stamm); her brothers (Emmanuel, Reinhardt, Alvin, Rudolph, Leonard, Theodore Keocher). Her bright blue eyes will be missed by her family and all in the community who knew her.
Visitation on Wednesday, March 26, at Grandstrand Funeral Home in North Branch from 5 8. Funeral March 27 at Trinity Lutheran Church in North Branch at 11:00. Visitation 10 11.

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