Helen Marie Thaden, 91, of Albert Lea, formerly of Dexter, died on April 4, 2014.

She was born to Lloyd and Alma (Schoentag) Bloomer March 29, 1923 in Faribault. Her mother died when she was three years old. Her father later married Katherine Luff who helped raise her along with her brother, Harold and sister, Barbara on the family farm near Morristown.

She graduated from Morristown High School in May 1941 as valedictorian of her class. She attended Mankato Commercial College.

She was employed first as a secretary for an attorney and then as Deputy Clerk of Probate for a judge in Faribault.

While attending college, she made the acquaintance of other girls who were attending either business or beauty school. Nine college friends began writing a "round robin" letter in 1945 to keep in touch. These treasured letters between friends continued almost 65 years. One of these girls was Alma Thaden, and in January of 1942 Helen went home with her for a visit and met Alma's brother, Harold, who would be her future husband.

The couple were engaged on March 29, 1943, on her 20th birthday, and were married April 14, 1945 at the Methodist Church in Morristown.

After he completed his military service, they moved to the farm near Dexter on Feb. 28, 1947. They farmed together for 25 years until renting it out in 1972. She helped by driving tractor, truck or doing whatever was needed. She resided on the farm until moving to Bancroft Creek Apartments in Albert Lea in December 2009, and more recently she resided at Prairie Senior Cottages, also in Albert Lea.

She and her husband spent the winters in Texas from 1979 to 2007, living in Brownsville, San Benito and Harlingen, where they enjoyed the company of many good friends. She was very active in her church serving as church treasurer, Administrative Board Secretary, advertising for the turkey supper for over 25 years and singing in the choir. She was also known as the "flower lady," planting and tending the church flower beds for many years as well as bringing arrangements for the church altar.

She loved her flowers, tending extensive flower beds at her home with many varieties of perennials and annuals that she was always willing to share with others. She sewed and made Christmas stockings to send to children in Mexico and quilts for family and friends. She enjoyed a variety of craft projects including Hardanger, oil painting and jewelry making and gave many special items to family and friends. She loved taking pictures and was very organized and detailed in maintaining her many photo albums and scrapbooks. She was a loving wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother.

She is survived by her children, Russell (Merry) Thaden of Atchison, Kan., Dennis (Mary Jo) of Robbinsdale, Beth (Bruce) Andersland of Emmons, Minn.; 11 grandchildren; 31 great-grandchildren with several on the way; one brother, Harold (Harlean) Bloomer of Morristown, one sister, Barbara Bloomer of Sauk Rapids and numerous nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Harold in 2007 and one grandson, Nicholas Chase.

Funeral services were held at the Dexter United Methodist Church on Wednesday, April 9, at 11 a.m.

Memorials preferred to donor's choice. Online condolences may be sent at www.worlein.com