<div class="celebrating-text">Obituaries</div>
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December 2, 1935 – November 19, 2023

William “Bill” Demarais, age 87, of Delano (formerly of Waverly), passed away peacefully on Sunday, November 19, 2023, at home surrounded by his family.

Bill was born on December 2, 1935, in Maple Lake, MN, the son of the late Roy and Anna Demarais.  He was educated at the local Catholic school, and then went on to serve in the United States Airforce.  Upon coming home from the service, he met his future wife and best friend Pat at a dance in Maple Lake.  Bill and Pat were united in marriage on May 11, 1963, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Waverly.  They were blessed with six children, and later even more blessed with 10 grandchildren and then 9 great-grandchildren.  He was fondly known to his family as “Pops” and taught them the tradition of having a nickname for everyone, and always cracking jokes.

Despite Bill’s declining health, he never lost his charismatic sense of humor and kept everyone entertained until the day he passed.  Bill was a storyteller and an occasional embellisher, but everyone loved to listen and laugh at his stories.  He was especially proud of his “Rich Mellow Tones” and graced his family with a song at the end of every visit, always changing the lyrics which always made them laugh.

Left to honor his legacy & cherish his memory are his loving wife Pat of 60 years, children – Dave (Jen) of Buffalo, Steve (DeeDee) of Howard Lake, Dan (Linda) of Howard Lake, Brenda (Dave) LePage of Delano, Kim of Delano, son-in-law Michael of Waverly, “daughter- niece” MaryBeth, and his faithful pup Sam.  Sister Bernie Vadner of Silver Bay.  Grandchildren:  Bryan (Kayla), Dalton (Bethany), Rachel, Jacob (Trisha), Tessa (Jeremy), Ross, Dane, Kenzie (Kaleb), Maddie and Olivia.  Great-grandchildren:  Aleks, Charlie, Luke, Kenna, Anna, Claire, Tate, Kalvin, Kashius, and a new baby due in January.  Many nieces and nephews, brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, and honorary children and grandchildren he had acquired through the years.

Preceded in death by his daughter Dawn, parents Roy and Anna, siblings Mary, Shirley, Donna, Donald, Jerry, Peggy, Anna & Katie, many brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law.

Mass of Christian Burial for William “Bill” Demarais will be held at a future date.



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October 18, 1921 – November 18, 2023

Bernice Dorothy Aritt, age 102, of Winsted, MN passed away on Saturday, November 18, 2023 at The Gardens of Winsted.

She was born on October 18, 1921 in Victor Township, Wright County, MN the daughter of Albert and Lucy (Lueck) Aritt.

Bernice was formerly employed at Jim’s Red Owl for many years.  She enjoyed spending time with her family, gardening, shopping, visiting with friends and playing cards.  She loved hosting card parties.  Bernice was an avid MN Twins and MN Vikings fan.  She also enjoyed taking road trips with her sister Delphine.  She was a faithful member of Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Winsted and belonged to the CCW and St. Anne’s Society.

Bernice is survived by four nieces; two nephews; many great-nieces and great-nephews; other relatives and friends.

Preceded in death by her parents, brothers Leo, twins Wilbur “Bud” and Wilfred, sisters Delphine Aritt and Irene Cantin; and nephew Douglas Cantin.

Mass of Christian Burial for Bernice Aritt will be held on Saturday, November 25, 2023 at 11:00 at Holy Family Catholic Church, Silver Lake, MN.  Father Matthew Wiering will be the celebrant.  Interment will follow at Holy Trinity Cemetery, Winsted, MN.

Visitation will be held 10:00 AM until the time of service.

Words cannot express the feeling in our hearts.  Thank you for being with us during this difficult time.  Your thoughts, prayers and words of sympathy will always be remembered.  No thank you cards will be sent.          -The family of Bernice Aritt

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June 8, 1936 – November 5, 2023

Joan Ann Otto (Braun), age 87, of Winsted passed away peacefully on Sunday, November 5th, 2023 with her loving family by her side.

She was born on June 8, 1936 in Hutchinson, MN the daughter of Eric and Myra Braun.

She graduated from Hutchinson High School in 1954.

On October 25, 1958, Joan and William Otto were joined in marriage at Holy Trinity Church in Winsted, MN. They recently gathered with family to celebrate their sixty-five years of marriage. They were blessed with four children, four grandchildren and three step-grandchildren.

Joan loved her family deeply. She was always there for them providing support, advice, encouragement and hugs. One of her favorite sayings, which she painted on one of the walls in her home, was “Family is Everything”. Her home was filled with photos of her loving family.

She was a member of the Holy Trinity Church choir and enjoyed singing with her choir friends for weekly mass, holidays, and special events.

She had many fond memories of traveling with special friends and family. She liked to share photos of their many destinations.

She enjoyed sewing, baking, crafts, interior decorating, fashion, bowling, golfing, traveling, and her Red Hat Society group.

She will always be remembered for her quiet grace, kindness, courage and perseverance.

Survived by her loving husband of sixty-five years: William D. Otto; children: Brian Otto (Lori), Cheryl Otto Siebert (Keith), Doug Otto and Kristin Otto (Tony Bleull); grandchildren: Matthew Siebert, Mark Siebert, Amarah Otto, Ella Otto; step-grandchildren Michael Bleull, Steven Bleull and Bradley Bleull; her brother: Gary Braun (Sharon); her pet: Nikki; and other relatives and friends.

Preceded in death by her parents Eric and Myra Braun, her sister Wanda Braun Schleuter (Harry), her father-in-law and mother-in-law George and Kathryn Otto.

Memorial Mass of Christian Burial for Joan Otto will be held on Friday, November 10th, 2023.

Holy Family Catholic Church.                                  700 Main St. W., Silver Lake, MN.                        Father Matthew Wiering will be the Celebrant.

11:00 Visitation, 12:00 Mass with a luncheon to follow. An inurnment for the family at Holy Trinity Cemetery in Winsted, MN following the luncheon.

In lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested for Parkinson’s Foundation -Tribute Gift.   Parkinson.org.

The Chilson Funeral Home in Winsted is serving the family.   Online condolences may be made to www.chilsonfuneralhome.com


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Theresa Lynn Skinaway, age 59 of Minneapolis, Minnesota journeyed to the Spirit World on November 1, 2023 at the Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis,
Minnesota. She was born on April 16, 1964 the daughter of Darrell and Margaret (Murry) Skinaway.

Survived by her sons: Steven Skinaway and Antonio Luna; daughters: Rebecca Skinaway, Stephanie Skinaway and Tarilyn Mountain; grandchildren: Stasiana Skinaway Mountain, Angel, Lucio and Stevena Lopez, Guadelupe, Shakira and Taliyah San Chez; great-grandchild: Kiora Rose Mountain-Coleman; sisters: Shelly and Yvette Skinaway; daughter-in-law: Christine Beaulieu.

Preceded in death by her sisters: Stacy Skinaway and Kimberly Skinaway; brothers: Darrell “Sonny” Skinaway and John “Johnny Boy” Skinaway; grandchild: Teleya Mountain; Mother: Margaret Skinaway; father: Darrell Skinaway; special friend: Steven Mountain

A special thank you to sister-in-law, Jean Mountain, for the help she gave with the services.

The Chilson Funeral Home in Winsted, Minnesota assisted the family with funeral arrangements. On-line condolences can be directed to www.chilsonfuneralhome.com

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Marissa Marie Kelly, age 25 of Minneapolis, Minnesota Journeyed to the Spirit World on November 4, 2023 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  She was born on July 23, 1998 in Minneapolis, Minnesota the daughter of Jomarie Potter and Gerald Kelly III.

Marissa’s life was a journey filled with challenges and resilience. As a child, she attended elementary school in the bustling city of Minneapolis, where she discovered her love for learning and made lifelong friends. Her teenage years brought her to Onamia, a small town in Minnesota, where she continued her education. At the age of 19, Marissa found herself facing an unexpected twist in her life’s path as she became a young mother to a beautiful boy named Elijah. With boundless energy and a vibrant spirit like his mother, Elijah became the center of Marissa’s world.

She then had to make a hard decision at 19 to ask her Auntie Kelly Potter to take him in and care for his needs. Years later, Marissa made the difficult decision to move back to Minneapolis to care for her aging parents. It was a selfless gesture, driven by her deep love and gratitude towards them. She juggled the responsibilities of being a mother, a daughter, and a caregiver with grace and determination. However, life had its own plans for Marissa, and she soon faced her own health battles. Her heart began to weaken, and she was diagnosed with a serious heart condition. This news shook her to the core, but Marissa refused to let it define her. She underwent surgery and had a pacemaker implanted, determined to fight for her health and the life she cherished. The last few years of Marissa’s life were marked by numerous hospital visits and medical interventions. Despite the physical and emotional toll, she never lost her spirit. Marissa faced each setback with courage and an unwavering determination to live life to the fullest. Throughout her journey, Marissa remained a pillar of strength for her son Elijah.

Marissa’s life may have been filled with hardships, but it was also a testament to the power of love, resilience, and the indomitable human spirit.

Marissa is survived by her son: Elijah Kelly, of Minneapolis, MN; mother: Jomarie Potter – Kelly of Minneapolis, MN; father: Gerald Kelly Jr., of Minneapolis, MN; brothers: Joseph Potter and his wife: Mary of Minneapolis, MN; Gerald Kelly III and Sierra Sam of Onamia, MN; Branden Kelly and Jocelyn of Minneapolis, MN; grandmother: Patricia Potter of White Earth, MN; Aunties: Kelly Potter of Minneapolis, MN; Shelly Potter of Anika, MN; Jamie Day of White Earth, MN; uncles: Joel Potter and  Jeremy Potter of White Earth, MN and many nieces, nephews, cousins, great aunts and great uncles.

She is preceded in death by her grandfather: Joseph A. Potter; grandfather: Gerald W. Kelly Sr.; grandmother: Patricia Kelly; brothers: Charles Connors and Wayne Potter; Uncle: Jeffery L Potter; great-grandmother: Jeanette Oswaldson; grandparents: Charles and Verna Potter, Simon and Georgianna Day, Edward and Mary Skinaway; aunt: Tanya Day and other aunts, uncles and cousins.

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Deidra A. LaBelle, age 61, of Breckenridge, MN journeyed to the Spirit World on October 28, 2023.

She was born on January 31, 1962 in Breckenridge, MN the daughter of Charles Cox and Cora Crawford.

Survived by her partner Jim Hasse; children Deanna LaBelle, Edith LaBelle and Alique Hasse; grandchildren Mason Kohl Jr., Cayden Kohl, Riley Jones, Sophia Jones, Alex LaBelle, Quentin Strong, Carter Strong, Wambdi LaBelle, Sylis LaBelle, Anastasia Anderson and Ira Anderson; siblings Bill Cox and Debra Cox; other relatives and friends.

Preceded in death by her parents; son Daniel LaBelle; grandson Cante’ LaBelle and brother Chuck Cox.