Barbara Ruth Connell, 90, Luverne, died Thursday, June 8, 2017.
Visitation will be from 5-8 p.m. Thursday, June 15, at the Dingmann Funeral Home in Luverne with parish prayers at 8 p.m. Visitation is also one hour prior to the funeral service at 11 a.m. Friday, June 16, at St. Catherine Catholic Church in Luverne. Burial will follow in St. Catherine Cemetery in Luverne.
Barbara DeClerk was born Jan. 25, 1927, to Leo and Stephanie (DeToy) DeClerk in Pipestone. She grew up near Jasper and graduated from Jasper High School. Barb attended the University of Minnesota for one year where she was a cheerleader. She then returned to Jasper.
Barb married Keith Connell on Dec. 9, 1947, at the St. Joseph Parsonage in Jasper. They lived in Luverne and raised their family of ten children. For several years Barb worked at the Luverne Style Shop.
She was a member of St. Catherine Parish and the LCCW. Barb always had a positive outlook on life, a passion for cooking and baking (especially pies and sugar cookies). She enjoyed bowling, bridge, the Minnesota Twins and the Duke Blue Devils. She was well-known for her world-class whistling ability and for being an eight-year hospice graduate. She accomplished her goal of living out her life in her home of 67 years.
Barb is survived by her ten children, Stephanie (Bill) Heyer, Eden Prairie, Timothy (Connie) Connell, Luverne, Mary (Carl) Steerman, West Bend, Wisconsin, Patrick Connell, Luverne, Charles Connell, Luverne, Megan (Tom) Nelson, Luverne, Robert (Sandy) Connell, Cambridge, John Connell, Luverne, Casey Connell, Panama City, Florida, and Kathryn (Pat) Baustian, Luverne; 17 grandchildren; 16 great-grandchildren; a sister-in-law, Florence Connell, Kansas City, Missouri; and special friends Barb Dispanet, Sara Lanoue and Dr. Judy Chesley.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Keith; three brothers, Francis, Peter and Eddie DeClerk; and two sisters, Helen Kollman and Gertrude Leister.
Arrangements were by Dingmann Funeral Home of Luverne, www.dingmannandsons.com.