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Obituary for Donald Rau

Donald Rau, age 92 of Kensington, passed away at the Douglas County Hospital, Alexandria on April 2, 2017 with his wife by his side. Funeral Services will be held at 11:00AM on Friday, April 7, 2017 at Zion Lutheran Church, Hoffman with Rev. Bill Aufdenkamp officiating. Visitation will be 4:00 – 7:00PM on Thursday, April 6 at Erickson-Smith Funeral Home in Hoffman, resuming one hour prior to the services at the church.

Donald George Rau was born on October 20, 1924 in Columbia Heights, MN to Fredrick and LC May Rau. He was baptized into the Christian faith as an infant and confirmed at St. John's Lutheran Church in Hancock, MN. He was raised in the rural Perham and Hancock areas and attended country school in Ottertail County, MN. He attended high school and graduated from Appleton High School in 1942.

On April 3, 1949, Don was united in marriage to the love of his life, Lillian Alois Rau, at Bethania Lutheran Church in Rosholt, SD. To this union, ten children were born.

Don and Alois spent the early years of their marriage in Minneapolis and then Denver, CO where Don worked in the metallurgical industry. In the early 1960's, Don and Alois returned to their roots on the farm and purchased their second farm in rural Kensington where they continued to raise their family.

In addition to farming, Don was active in his community. He was a member of Zion Lutheran Church in Hoffman where he served on the Church Council and was also an Elder. He also served approximately 20 years on the Kensington Public School's Board of Education as both member and chairman.

Don's greatest joy though, was his family. He loved nothing more than spending time with his wife of 68 years, Alois, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Don was preceded in death by his parents, Fred and LC Rau; his sisters' Cleone, Naomi, Geraldine and infant sister, Elsie; his brother, Merlin; his son, Darcy; and granddaughter, Sarah. He is survived by his wife, Alois; his sister, Ruth (Warren) Hickey; his children Donn (Marsha) Rau; Dana (Madonna) Rau, Denise Rau-Carlson; Debra Rau (widow of Darcy); David (Sandra) Rau; Duane (Lana) Rau; Dianne Rau-Green; Dale Rau, Alicia Rau-Thorn, and Anita Rau; as well as 27 grandchildren and 28 great-grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Lutherans for Life, Bethesda Lutheran Communities, or the Wounded Warrior Project.

Online condolences:

Funeral Home:
Erickson-Smith Funeral Home - Elbow Lake
116 1st Street NE
Elbow Lake, MN
US 56531

Previous Events





4:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Erickson-Smith Funeral Home - Hoffman

103 7th Street N
Hoffman, MN 56339





11:00 AM
Zion Lutheran Church

106 6th St N
Hoffman, MN 56339


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