Margaret Eklund, 96, Winner, S.D., formerly of Wood, passed away on Thursday, November 7, 2013, at the Winner Regional Long Term Health Care Center.
Margaret Mary Legner Eklund was born to Gustav and Anastacia (Rezac) Legner on March 10, 1917, on her parent’s homestead seven miles southwest of White River, S.D. She attended the Valburg School and White River schools graduating in 1935. She was the fifth child in a family of eight. After graduating from high school she worked in the welfare office in White River.
She was united in marriage to Wally Eklund Sr. on June 15, 1940. They traveled to the Worlds Fair and Yellowstone Park on their honeymoon. They made their home on the Eklund ranch where they raised their four children: Margie (Richard) Kingsbury of Wood, Macki Townsend of Minneapolis, Minn., Wally (Linda) Eklund of Rapid City and Bernie (Vicky) Eklund of Valentine, Neb. They were blessed with thirteen grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren. Margaret was a busy ranch wife and mother. She cooked and washed for hired men and hauled kids to school and helped around the ranch whenever she could.
She belonged to the Prairie Companions Extension Club. Those meetings were social gatherings for the whole family. Many of the women didn’t drive so the men came to club too. Getting ready for the club was a big job. It meant getting the house painted and wallpapered and fixing a big lunch or maybe a new linoleum or new dishes. It was a lot of work with no running water or electricity. The family belonged to the United Church of Christ. She served as president of Ladies Aid and sang in the choir. She belonged to the Wood Women’s Club and helped with the Wood library and the city park which the club supported. She was also past matron of Wood Chapter #137 Order of the Eastern Star and member of the White River Chapter after the Wood Chapter closed. Her hobbies were reading, sewing, crossword puzzles and gardening. She loved a big, thick book. She made quilts and crocheted many afghans for friends and family. She enjoyed flowers in her yard. For many years she and her friend Helen Lookabill bowled in a league in Winner. They enjoyed shopping together and tried not to miss any crazy days.
After Wally passed away in 1977 she continued to live on the ranch. She sold the ranch to Richard and Margie and moved to Winner in 1989. She enjoyed her grandchildren and spoiled them. She made them pancakes in any shape they requested and let them try out all the sugary cereal they wanted. The Kingsbury kids could always beg for a story or just go over for a visit if they were in trouble at home. She went to lots of basketball games for both her own kids and also the grandkids. She did some traveling. She visited her siblings in Seattle and went to Mexico with her sister-in-law and took several tours in the United States.
She is survived by her children and two sisters, Vera Eide of Seattle, Wash., and Bess Drozd of Pasco, Wash., and many other family members and friends. She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, brothers: Tony, Ed, George and Albert and two sisters, Ella Vaenta and Emily Gunner, and a grandson, Wade Eklund.
She lives in the memories her family share. We celebrate the things she did for us and the influence she had in our lives! May she rest in peace!
Funeral services were held Monday, November 11, 2013, at the Wood Community Hall in Wood at 2:00 p.m. A visitation was held November 10 at Mason Funeral Home in Winner. Burial was Monday, November 11, at Evergreen Cemetery in Wood following the funeral service.