The Mass of Christian Burial for Delores Irene (Barondeau) Cunningham of Wadena, MN, formerly of Cresbard, SD, will be celebrated at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, November 11, 2017 at St. Ann's Catholic Church in Wadena with Fr. Aaron Kuhn as celebrant. Friends and family will gather on Saturday at the church from 9:30 a.m. until the time of Mass. Delores, 85, passed away unexpectedly on Saturday, November 4, 2017 at her home at The Meadows of Wadena.
Delores was born March 24, 1932 on a farm on the prairies of Onaka, SD to Joseph and Magdalena (Daschle) Barondeau. She shared many stories of the good ol' days working the fields with teams of horses with her father, 5 sisters and 1 brother. She attended a one room school house for 8 years. She met her sweetheart of more than 60 years, Milton Cunningham at a town hall polka dance in 1954. They married on September 17, 1957 at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Onaka and settled on a farm in Cresbard, SD. Besides raising 5 children, she enjoyed working alongside her husband raising sheep, cattle, goats and poultry, taking special care of the animal babies. After the call of the woodlands of MN in 1976 brought them to a farm in Wadena, she also worked in housekeeping at Tri-County Hospital for 20 years.
She was an avid gardener who could make anything grow, priding herself on starting her own seeds, and canning and freezing enough fruits and vegetables for the entire year. She loved to make and keep traditions, especially during the holidays - the annual Birthday Party Bash, her famous Christmas Kuchen, her year round holiday tree and handmade ornaments to all the grandkids every year. She blessed all she could with quilts, afghans, baby blankets, hats, mittens and scarves. Her competitive spirit would arise when the cards, game boards or fishing rods would come out, and she was the queen of the radio call-in contests!
In her later years, Delores enjoyed fishing on Pelican Bay, reading, attending concerts, doing crafts at the nursing home, working the food shelf, and belonged to the Christian Mothers of St. Anne's, and the Leaf River Extension Club. Not only did she mother her own growing family, but became a surrogate mom to nieces and nephews, and friends who had lost parents.
Delores was preceded in death by parents Joseph and Magdalena Barondeau; brother Andrew; sisters Josephine Greise, Irma Vogel, Ann Schaefer, and Bernadette Sanderson; infant son Joseph: and their canine companion, Brittany Spaniel Sam.
She is survived by her husband Milton of Wadena; sons Michael (Nancy) of Lincoln, IL; Mark (Denise) of Concorde, NC; Charles (Anne) of Lidgerwood, ND; Shawn (Kris) of Hutchinson, MN; daughter Lisa (Randy) Nicoll of Avon, MN; 8 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren; and sister Annette (Alan) Weisbeck of Pipestone, MN.
Honorary pallbearers are her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Burial will be held at a later date at St. John the Baptist Catholic Cemetery at Onaka, SD.
She will be remembered for her generous heart, appreciation of nature, willingness to lend a hand, and her focus on faith and her family.
In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred. Arrangements by theSchullerFamily Funeral Homes & Cremation Services, Wadena, MN.