Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Luella M. Heim, 99, Medford

Luella M. Heim, age 99 of Medford, passed away on Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2021 at the Medford Senior Care following an extended illness, two days from her 100th birthday.

Mass of Christian Burial was held on Monday, Oct. 4, 2021, at 11 a.m. at Christ the King Catholic Church in Medford with Father Jim Starasinich and Father Matthew Wagner Concelebrating.  Interment was held at the Corpus Christi Cemetery in Deerfield Township.

The family prefers that memorials be directed to the Immaculate Heart of Mary Seminary, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul – Faribault and Mayo Hospice in memory of Luella.

The family requests that those attending Luella’s visitation and funeral please be fully vaccinated and masks will be required. Thank you for your understanding.

Luella Marie Heim, daughter of Sebastian and Cecilia (Wagner) Gillen, was born on Sept. 30, 1921, on the family farm in Cannon City Township. She graduated from St. Lawrence School in 1935, attended her freshman year at Bethlehem Academy and obtained her G.E.D. many years later. 

As a young lady, Luella was available for domestic duties with families who needed assistance, making friends and memories along the way. Before WWII, Luella met her future husband, Bernard Heim, who left for military service in 1942. She moved to Minneapolis to help in the war effort and was hired by Honeywell Corporation.  She worked there until 1946 when Bernard returned from France. While in Minneapolis, she volunteered with the American Red Cross even marching with their unit in the Aquatennial Parade. 

She was united in marriage to Bernard (Bernie) Heim on July 9, 1946 and settled in rural Rice County. By 1957, the young family had taken up residence in Deerfield Township in Steele County, where they were active in the Corpus Christi Catholic Church. All 10 of their children attended Medford Public School.

She was a master of recycling and repurposing long before it was trendy. At an early age, Luella developed a love of horticulture and nature. She spent many hours gardening and tending to her flowers. She created beautiful floral arrangements that regularly adorned the church altar on Sundays. She was a devout Catholic and her faith and the love of family was extremely important to her. Giving of one’s time played a key role throughout Luella’s life, and she was proud to volunteer as a 4-H leader and with the Faribault Chapter of Hospice and St. Vincent de Paul organizations.  She treasured her membership in the Court St. Anne of Catholic Daughters and the Winona Council of Catholic Women, holding various leadership roles in both organizations. 

For over 30 years, using her mother’s Singer Treadle sewing machine, she produced beautiful, pieced quilts and ditty bags that were distributed to missions around the world. She enjoyed reading and journaling. She was always up for a good game of cards and was hard to beat at Scrabble. She was a devoted Minnesota Twins fan, watching them play brought her hours of enjoyment.


Left to treasure the memories of Luella are her children, Lois (David) Nelson, Elaine Johnston, Philip (Gail) Heim, Lloyd Heim, Rosemary Heim, Christine Heim, Patrick (Tracy) Heim, Cynthia (Richard) Smith, and Jeannette (Randy) Malterer; 17 grandchildren; 22 great grandchildren and three great great grandchildren; siblings, Joanne (Jim) Cortese and Adrian Gillen; son-in-law, Robert Racek and hundreds of extended family members.

In addition to her husband and parents, she is proceeded in death by her daughter, Joanne Racek; infant twins, Paul and Mary; son-in-law, Carl Johnston; siblings and in-laws, John and Florence Gillen, Ambrose and Ruth Gillen, Greg and Varian Gillen, Ed and Barbara and Josephine Gillen, Joe and Lorraine Gillen, Ann and Alexius Thissen, Rita and William Franke and Jeanne Gillen.

For online tributes and further information, please visit www.ParkerKohlFuneralHome.com.



Steele County Times

Steele County Times
411 E. Main St.
P.O. Box 247
Blooming Prairie, MN 55917

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