Colleen Unice Mickelsen began her celebration of eternal life on Saturday, June 28, 2014, at Trinity Health, Minot, with her family companioning her all the way "home."
Born March 8, 1928, in Burke County to Alfred and Bertha (Tracy) Johnson, she was the youngest of 10 children. She attended grade school in Bowbells and graduated from Bowbells High School in 1946.
She married the love of her life, Lawrence Mickelsen, on June 5, 1948, at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Bowbells. They were the proud parents of five children. An avid reader all of her life, Colleen instilled that wealth in her children's lives. Always immersed in her Catholic faith, she was active in Confraternity of Christian Mothers, Catholic Daughters of the Americas, teaching CCD, and served on the parish council. In later years, she was active in Serra Club and served as a Eucharistic minister at St. John the Apostle Catholic Church, where she was a charter member. Colleen was a President's Club "Avon Lady." She and Lawrence graced the dance floor at the Moose Lodge with their Saturday evening presence.
A very social person, Colleen enjoyed many special friendships all her life. When lonely or down, she would arrange coffee parties, to turn a sad day into one blest with friends. Proud of her Irish and Swedish roots, she faithfully attended the Norsk Hostfest for more than 25 years, hosting guests in her home until 2012.
Gifted with a strong personality, she was a stable guide for her family through Lawrence's 36-year career with the Burlington Northern Railroad, a job necessitating his frequent absence. Colleen loved being a "stay-at-home mom" and hearing the greeting, "Hey mom, what's up?" She did work in food service at Perkett Elementary school for several years. She was a great cook and was a sharp, good-natured card player. Colleen had quick wit and her playful sense of humor added "vinegar" to many gatherings.
Colleen was preceded in death by: her parents; husband of 56 years, Lawrence; son, Larry; grandson, Gary Dalen; siblings, one brother, Ralph Johnson; and eight sisters, Kay O'Connell, Ann Rubbelke, Lucile Patrick, Ilene Johnson, Florence Siebert, Elizabeth Ness, infant sister, Genevieve Johnson and Dolores Sundin; and in-laws, Margaret (Bud) Barry, Irvin (Leone) Mickelsen, Arnold (Ilene) Mickelsen, Fred Propp, Joe O'Connell, Francis Rubbelke, George Patrick, Lily Johnson and Emmett Ness.
Colleen is survived by: daughters, Colleen (Joe) Ressler, Mandan, Sharon (Steve) Dalen, Great Falls, Mont., Colette (Greg) Furness, Andover, Minn.; son, Tony Mickelsen, Everett, Wash.; 11 grandchildren, Alicia Flickinger, Jonathan Mickelsen, Doug Dalen, Justin Mickelsen, Christopher Furness, Jennifer Furness, Matthew Furness, Angela Arsencault, Anthony Mickelsen, Katherine Furness and Maria Furness; 15 great-grandchildren; sister-in-law, Lila Propp; brothers-in-law, Lyle Sundin and William Siebert. She also leaves behind many nieces, nephews and special friends.
The family wishes to thank the sixth floor staff at Trinity Health and Hospice staff for their compassionate, excellent care, Father Charlie Heidt, Father Bruce Krebs, Monsignor Joseph Senger, Deacon Chuck Kramer, Chaplain Cliff Nelson and Chaplain Brian Krebs.
Mass of Christian Burial: will be celebrated on Wednesday, July 2, at 10:30 a.m. at St. John the Apostle Catholic Church, Minot.
Interment will take place at: Rosehill Memorial Park, Minot.
Vigil Prayer Service: Today, Tuesday, July 1, at 7 p.m. at St. John the Apostle Catholic Church, Minot.
Visitation: Tuesday, July 1, from 4 to 7 p.m., at St. John the Apostle Catholic Church, Minot.
The family prefers memorials given in Colleen's honor to Bishop Ryan School Foundation or Trinity Hospice.
Those wishing to sign the online register and share memories may access the online obituaries section at (www.thompsonlarson.com).
(Thompson-Larson Funeral Home, Minot)