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Birdie Heern

Birdie Luella Heern, 86, of Wadena, passed away Jan. 7, 2010, at Fair Oaks Lodge in Wadena.

She was born to Karl Edward and Anna (Johnson) Skaro on Feb. 8, 1923 in Bluegrass. Birdie lived her entire life in Wadena. She married Ralph Clyde Heern on June 22, 1946. They raised four children: Wanda, Donna, Darwin and Doug. She served the community for many years with her commitment to the Wadena Empty Stocking Fund. She was a dedicated member of the First Congregational United Church of Christ for 63 years, participating in their women's circles and will be remembered for the many jars of delicious home-grown pickles she provided for funerals over the years. Her hands were busy with crocheting, gardening, and caring for her family.

Funeral services were held Jan. 12 in the First Congregational United Church of Christ in Wadena, with the Rev. Bob Griggs officiating. Pallbearers were Michael Marquardt, Kenneth Broker, Chad Broker, Allen Skaro, Ray Skaro, and Steven Skaro. Interment was in the West Lyons Cemetery in rural Nimrod. Arrangements were with the Johnson Memorial Home in Wadena (

Survivors include her son, Doug of Wadena; daughters, Wanda Marquardt of Duluth, and Donna (Duane) Trana of Wadena; grandchildren, Julie (Jason) Brink, Tracy Trana, both of Wadena, Michael (Sue) Marquardt, Denise Ozdemir and Paula (Milo) Swenson, all of Duluth; great-grandchildren, Josh and Jordan Brink of Wadena, and Owen Swenson and Jacob Marquardt of Duluth; sisters Nellie Heern, and Shirley Skaro, both of Wadena, and Pearl Westby of Sebeka; sister-in-law Geraldine Skaro of Sebeka; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Birdie was preceded in death by her husband, Ralph, on Jan. 7, 2008; her parents, Edward and Anna; son, Darwin; brother, William; sister, Doris Broker; and son-in-law, Gregg Marquardt.