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Madelon Arveta O’Keefe, age 93, of Litchfield, passed away July 30, 2019, at the Dassel Lakeside Care Center under the care of Ecumen Hospice. Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:00 AM on Monday, August 5, 2019 at the Church of St. Philip in Litchfield. Visitation will be held from 2:00 PM until 4:00 PM on Sunday, August 4th with parish prayers at 4:00 PM at the Johnson-Hagglund Funeral home in Litchfield. Visitation will also be one hour prior to the service at church. Interment will be in the Calvary Catholic Cemetery in Litchfield.
Maddy was born May 29, 1926, as the third daughter of Arthur and Lillian (Pinch) Coser. She was raised on Rice Lake and attended Eden Valley country school. She received her GED in 1976. Maddy and Thomas O'Keefe were married on June 4, 1946 in Litchfield, Minnesota and they were blessed with six children. They were life-long residents of Litchfield and members of St. Philip’s Catholic Church. Maddy was a homemaker and stay-at-home mom with her children. Since 2006, she has enjoyed her time living at Gloria Dei in Litchfield. Maddy was an Avon representative for many years and was in the Avon Presidents Club from 1988 - 1993. She was a member of the Association for Retarded Children (ARC) starting in 1957. She was very active in the founding of the Day Activity Center for Meeker and Kandiyohi counties, which has now grown into Pro Works. Her volunteer activity at St. Philip’s school included working with the basketball team and making the team banner. She belonged the Eagles Auxiliary and the American Legion Auxiliary. She was auxiliary president for a number years and was also known as the "poppy lady". Maddy's hobbies included sewing, crafts, flowers, fishing, playing cards and scrabble. She taught her children and grandchildren that when playing games or cards, "friendships cease." Maddy's philosophy of life was when you get up in the morning, you have a choice to make on how your day is going to be. She always chose to smile, be happy and to make the most of her day with family and friends.
Those that survive and hold cherished memories are her children, Carolyn O'Keefe of Litchfield; Marilyn (Jay) Olson of Underwood; Dianne (Daniel) Barka of Litchfield; Marjorie (David) Sonsalla of Litchfield and Martin (Paige) O'Keefe of Chaska, Minnesota. She has 12 grandchildren Stacy Olson, Bryant Olson, Bridget (Michael) Lux, Stephanie (Terry) Olstad, Joshua (Lynn) Barka, Noah (Kim) Barka, Adam (Trista) Barka, Amanda (Scott) Gerten, Eric (Melissa) Sonsalla and Nicholas (Angela) Sonsalla, Katherine O'Keefe and Erin O'Keefe. She has 22 great grandchildren Michael Crouch, Timothy and Gregory Lux, Allison Olstad, Natalie, Elizabeth, Joseph, Christopher, Benjamin, Hope, Annie and Olivia Barka, Karin, Greta and Krin Barka, Sam and Lyla Gerten, ShayAnn, Tanner and Westin Sonsalla, Michael and Brooke Sonsalla. She is also survived by one sister Helen (Donald) Lehman of Paynesville and numerous nieces and nephews. Maddy was preceded in death by her husband, Thomas O'Keefe; an infant daughter Nancy Ann; her parents Arthur and Lillian Coser; her sister Marilynne Larson; and brothers and sisters-in-law Russell Larson, Margaret and Lester Candela, Patrick and Rose Hughes, Leo and Edna O'Keefe, and Roger and Lucille Straub.
Blessed by Maddy's memory.