Weather Forecast


Elma Barrett

Elma Elina Olsen Barrett, 94, of New York Mills, passed away March 23, 2009, at the Elders' Home in New York Mills.

She was born Jan. 12, 1915, in Otto Township, rural New York Mills, to Hjalmer and Elizabeth (Hyypio) Olsen. She grew up on the family farm in Otto Township and attended New York Mills public schools. She moved to Duluth and was employed at the Duluth Athletic Club for eight years. On Aug. 20, 1938, she married William Henry Barrett in Duluth. Their marriage was blessed with two children, Mary and Jim. She was an active member of the Kenwood Lutheran Church in Duluth for 30 years and was also employed by Stanley Home Products for 60 years. In 1975, she and Bill made their home on Rush Lake, rural New York Mills. In 1979, they moved to Kaleva Apartments where Bill was the first manager. She was an active member of the St. Peter's Evangelical Lutheran Church, Senior Citizens Center, and was a past president of the VFW Ladies Auxiliary. She also enjoyed reading, sewing, cooking and gardening.

Funeral services were held Saturday, March 28 at St. Peter's Evangelical Lutheran Church in New York Mills with the Rev. Ryan Stout officiating. Pallbearers were Lyle Brasel, Lory Brasel, Eric Olsen, Troy Henderson, David Olsen, and Scott Olsen. She was laid to rest in Prairie Cemetery, rural Ottertail. Arrangements were provided by the Karvonen & Son Funeral Home of New York Mills. Condolences may be sent online at

Survivors include her daughter, Mary (William) Caldwell of Smithfield, N.C.; son, James Barrett of Virgina, Minn.; two granddaughters; sisters, Elmie (Marvin) Fiskari of Ottertail, Edith Paaso of Duluth, Emily Cross of Renton, Wash.; Estella Brasel of Renton, Wash.; many other relatives; and a host of friends.

She was preceded in death by her parents; sisters, Esther, Edna, Ethel, Elizabeth and Eldora; and brothers, Benjamin, Stanley, Rueben and Simon "Bomber".