Obituary of Beverly Jean Keiser
On January 8th 2020 Beverly Kloss-Keiser passed away. She was a Great Grandma, Grandma, Mother, Aunt, Cousin and Friend. Her wishes were to have no funeral services. I would like however to share with you some written thoughts about her life along with 200+ photos in a separate slide show. These memories spurred a lot of emotion. For the slideshow choose the link at the very bottom of this letter, it is 23 minutes long and holds pictures of Beverly throughout her life.
Beverly Jean Kloss was born on the 23rd of March in 1927 in Minnetonka Beach, Minnesota. Her parents, Frank and Emma (Simertz) Kloss, & grandparents on both sides, go back to the 1800's on Lake Minnetonka. Her Grandparents owned a Tavern in Minnetonka Beach on Lake Minnetonka’s Lafayette Bay. They would shuttle people via boat to the Big Island Amusement Park in the early 1900’s.
Beverly was 2nd oldest of 4 children. Siblings, Frank Kloss Jr. (aka Junior), Joanne, and Gayle have all preceded her in death so the reunion will be grand. Beverly graduated from Wayzata high school in 1945 while living and working at the phone company in Minnetonka Beach until the 1950s. There she was known to spend her summers sailing, swimming, and water- skiing while cross-country skiing in the winter. Fishing, of course, year round.
In 1953, she married Mitch Russell. Mitch was in the Air Force and stationed in Everett, Washington. That is where a new adventure began. For a couple years, Beverly and Mitch enjoyed all of the outdoor activities that the Pacific Northwest had to offer. Skiing, fishing, clam-digging, hiking, and more. While in Everett, Beverly worked at the phone company. In 1955, Beverly gave birth to her daughter, Bonnie Verlinda and that did not slow down life one bit. The next year, Mitch was deployed to the Philippines. This had Beverly and Bonnie setting sail on a large military ship destined for Manila. Beverly and family spent the next couple years living the military life in Manila and Baguio while exploring much of the area.
Deployed back to the states, in 1959. First Lackland Air force base in Texas, then onto Air force Academy in Colorado Springs, and ultimately a couple years (1960-1961) at the Sioux Lookout Air Station in Sioux Lookout, Canada...475 miles north of Minneapolis, deep into the Canadian wilderness. There, Beverly added curling to her sporting repertoire, with it becoming quite a passion for some time. In 1961, Beverly moved back to Minnetonka beach and later divorced Mitch and went to work again at the Phone company.
A couple years later, Beverly married a widowed Jay Keiser. They lived on Crystal Bay on Lake Minnetonka which was just a couple of blocks from her birthplace home. For almost 4 decades they lived there. During that time Beverly worked for Carlson Companies for much of the time. Besides teaching her daughter how to cook and sew, Beverly also volunteered at Our Lady of the Lake Catholic Church in Mound, was on a bowling league and would often be found lighting up the Navarre Lanes!
Over her lifetime Beverly did a lot of traveling sometimes for 2-3 months at a time, visiting Germany, Norway, Canada, China, Hawaii, most of the United States. There were also yearly trips with her siblings to Lake Superiors North shore looking for the elusive moose & several trips to Taunton MN to stay with her cousin Ardella.
Beverly had always talked about wanting a Samoyed when she retired. On her 62nd birthday, Bonnie hid a small puppy in a box for her to open. Which she did, and then closed it in amazement just as quickly as the gift was MOVING! Nikki was an American Eskimo, but looked like a mini- Samoyed. Beautiful and very protective Nikki, was Beverly's dog for quite some time.
From 2001 to 2014, Beverly lived in her "darling" cabin on the property of her daughter and son-in-law, Dave. Located on Eagle Lake near Monticello, and is right on the water. It makes you feel like you are on a boat while sitting in the kitchen. She loved her little place and getting to be close to her daughter. Her cabin was surrounded by wildlife and she especially liked the large variety of birds and the majestic trumpeter swans that came to visit.
In 2014, Beverly moved to St. Ben's assisted living center in Monticello. At first, she did not like the
idea but soon discovered that she enjoyed the community and the extra company. From December 2017 to present she was at the Monticello Nursing home. Both at St. Ben's and the nursing home Beverly made many friends of both residents and staff. Her personality was like a mob boss. She would "gently" convince people to participate in ALL the activities. She was also known for racing up and down the halls in her power chair, actually receiving a speeding warning from the staff. Her first ticket at 90!
Beverly was my wonderful loving mother who was always there for me. I miss and will miss her every day for the rest of my life. In addition to seeing her weekly she would still call me every evening just to "check in". Now when the phone rings in the evening, I still first assume it is her. Love you mom!
In any case, go feed some birds in honor of Beverly!
Because her family is a big part of the Lake Minnetonka History we want to continue to preserve that for others to enjoy. You can help by contributing to the below:
In Honor of Beverly Keiser:
Westonka Historical Society
Mound MN 55362
Link to 200+ photographs of Beverly’s life it is 23 minutes long. ENJOY!
Music titled "Angels" wonderfully done by Jim Murray/Canada