Arlene R. (Hjelle) Mrzena, 91, of Willmar, died Thursday, January 23rd at Carris Health Rice Hospital in Willmar. Her funeral service will be 11:00 am, Thursday, January 30th at Calvary Lutheran Church in Willmar. Visitation will be from 5-7:00 pm, Wednesday at Harvey Anderson Funeral Home in Willmar and continue on Thursday, one hour prior to her service. Burial will be in Calvary Lutheran Cemetery in Willmar. www.hafh.org
Arlene Rosella (Hjelle) Mrzena was born on February 11, 1928, on the family farm in Arctander Township, the second daughter of Clarence and Sophia Hjelle and youngest of six children. She grew up on the family farm and attended country school before graduating from New London High School. Following graduation, Arlene went to cosmetology school in St. Cloud, where she earned her certificate in hair dressing. She worked as a cosmetologist when she met her future husband, Ed. On September 28, 1951, Arlene was united in marriage to Edsel Mrzena at the parsonage in Sunburg. Following their marriage, they lived in Sunburg until moving to Willmar in 1959. They were blessed with two children: Kevin and Vernae. Arlene enjoyed being a wife, mother and also worked at Molenaar Plastics for over 15 years. Together Ed and Arlene shared in 60 years of marriage. During retirement, the couple enjoyed traveling on bus tours around the United States. Arlene also enjoyed time spent with her family and friends. She always made a special effort to talk with everyone she knew at social events and family gatherings. Arlene also went to coffee daily to catch up with friends. She enjoyed playing cards, search words, camping, and listening and dancing to polka music. Arlene was a member of Calvary Lutheran Church where she was active over the years.
Surviving are her children: Kevin (and Sharon) of Willmar, Vernae (and Darin) Vadnais of Prior Lake; four grandchildren, Jamie (and Kasey) Van Heuveln of Kerkhoven, Kelly Mrzena(special friend, Aaron Friehl) of Murdock, Mikaela and Mitchell Vadnais of Prior Lake; four great-grandchildren, Taylor, Brody, Ellie and Paige Van Heuveln. She is also survived by many nieces, nephews and other relatives and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, Edsel, brothers: Elvin, Kermit, Marvin and Orlando; and sister, Sadie Orson.
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