Ellen Dahle Westberg, 90, of Hoffman, died on Friday, February 5th, 2010 at her home in rural Hoffman. Born on May 9th, 1919, to Andrew and Inga Dahle of rural Marietta, MN, Ellen grew up on a farm and attended a one-room schoolhouse, Lac Qui Parle County School District No. 108. The school, located on US Highway 212 near the Minnesota, South Dakota border, was adjacent to a popular landmark, a natural flowing spring well at which many people stopped for fresh water.
Ellen attended Marietta High School and following graduation in1938 went on to attend the Normal Teacher Training School in Madison, MN. Her first teaching position was in a one-room schoolhouse near Haydenville, a small town between Marietta and Madison. Two years later Ellen completed her teaching degree at St. Cloud Teachers College. Her next teaching job was in Hoffman, Minnesota, where she taught 3rd and 4th grade from 1941 to 1944. In 1945 and1946 she taught elementary school in Benson, Minnesota. On September 21st, 1946, she married her husband of 64 years, Harry Westberg, from Hoffman, MN. They began farming near rural Hoffman and still farm there today. After having two daughters, Karen and Cheryl, Ellen returned to teaching in 1958 in Barrett, MN and completed a BS in Elementary Education from the University of MN, Morris in 1970. She retired from teaching 3rd grade in Barrett in 1981. Ellen was always a firm believer in a good education and loved learning. Music always played a major role in Ellen's life. She sang duets with her sister, Arlene, at weddings, funerals, and numerous community events. She enjoyed playing the piano at home and school, and the piano or organ at church. Ellen's interests included gardening, cooking, reading, and doting on her grandson, Andrew. She was particularly interested in current events, and read newspapers and weekly news magazines regularly. She watched CNN news around the clock until just a few days before her death. Ellen is survived by her husband, Harry Westberg; daughter Karen Westberg of Plymouth, MN; daughter Cheryl and son-in-law David Barsness of Detroit Lakes, MN; grandson, Andrew Barsness of Morris, MN; sister, Arlene Ferden of Rushford, MN; nieces and nephews; and great nieces and nephews. Ellen was preceded in death by her parents; aunts and uncles; and her brother and sister-in-law, Leland and Sophie Dahle.
Services: Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2010, at 11:00 a.m., Messiah Lutheran Church, Hoffman, with Rev. Steve Olson officiating. Spring burial in Bethel Cemetery. Visitation: 5-7:00 p.m., Monday, Feb. 8, 2010, at Erickson-Smith Funeral Chapel in Hoffman, and resuming one hour prior to service at the church on Tuesday.