Gloria E. Sletten, 92, of Redwood Falls died Saturday, November 23, 2013 at Redwood Area Hospital. Memorial services will be held at 11:30 a.m. on Friday, November 29, 2013 from Nelson-Martin Funeral Chapel in Redwood Falls with burial to follow in the Redwood Falls Cemetery. Visitation will be held at the funeral home on Friday from 10:30 until 11:30 a.m.
Memorials may be made to Redwood Area Library Foundation to honor lifelong learning and the joy of reading or to the Gideons in honor of Gloria’s best-loved book.
Arrangements are with Nelson-Martin Funeral Service of Redwood Falls. E-mail condolences may be sent via
Gloria Evelyn Sletten, daughter of Minnie and Fredrick Schmidt, was born March 29, 1921 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. After graduating from North High School in Minneapolis, Gloria attended the University of Minnesota where she explored her love of nature in studying botany and zoology. Her studies at the Minnesota School of Business provided her with the fundamentals of accounting and tax which helped her in her earliest jobs including one at the Foshay Tower in Minneapolis.
Gloria met the love of her life, William Charles Sletten, at the Glen Lake Sanatorium where they received treatment for tuberculosis. Following their recovery, they enjoyed a long courtship with trips to the North Shore for hiking and picnicking with their friends. Upon settling in Redwood Falls after marriage, Gloria worked alongside Bill in his accounting business and the two of them often worked together long into the night during tax season. Gloria also cared for residents of the Robert Milton Home (now REM- South Central Services), retiring in 2007 at age 86.
Always ready to volunteer, Gloria could be counted on to support her community. Her accounting skills served her well as treasurer for the Redwood Falls Cemetery Board for 38 years. Volunteering as a Girl Scout Leader combined her love of the out-of-doors and of children. Gloria was never so happy as when leading her troop in outdoor adventures involving camping and hiking where she would recount the history of the area and identify all of the flora and fauna. Gloria had a lovely singing voice and neighbors would often hear her singing her favorite opera arias. Regular visits to attend opera performances were Gloria’s special indulgence. An avid reader with an interest in history, she was a familiar face at the Redwood Falls Public Library where she shared her passion with the community book club.
The foundation of her life was her faith. Her work with the Gideons spanned many years. Whether it was teaching Sunday school or singing in the church choir or enjoying the fellowship of other church members, Gloria maintained a clear focus on her commitment to Jesus Christ as her personal savior. This commitment sustained her, giving her both strength and comfort.
Gloria’s greatest joy was in sharing time with her family. Blessed with four children, she delighted in playing games, baking cakes and cookies and reading together. Family trips criss-crossed America with Gloria and Bill often spontaneously piling the kids into the car and heading out to explore National Parks and cities. Never one to belabor spilled milk or protocol, Gloria created for her children a wondrous childhood which she also introduced to each grandchild and great-grandchild. Every family member will long remember trips with Gloria exploring her beloved Minnesota, watching her hike over hill and dale, enjoying impromptu picnics in parks and playing friendly backyard games. It was in these experiences that Gloria provided a window into her faith, shared her joy and exuberance in life as well as expressing a clear example of her love.
Gloria graced each of her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren with the gift of a beautifully hand-made quilt in which they can wrap themselves on chilly days to be long reminded of their wonderful mother, grandmother and great-grandmother.
On November 23, 2013, Gloria died as she lived, with unassuming grace and with consideration for others before herself.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her devoted husband, her younger brother, Ronald Schmidt and her brother-in-law Robert Sletten.
Gloria is survived by her daughter Marcelyn (Terrance Jasan); son William Charles II (Charmayne), and their children Kjersti (Erik) Vevle, Marit (Matt) Green and William Charles III; daughter Kristine (William) Thum, and their children Schuyler and Chloe; and son David and his children Joshua Day, Natalie and Danielle. Great-granddaughters Charlotte Day and Svea Vevle were the delight of her last year.