Erin T. Welch, age 39 of Rochester, MN, formerly of Watkins, MN, and Eden Valley, MN, passed away February 4, 2022. A funeral service will be held Saturday, February 12, 2022, at 2:00 PM at Johnson-Hagglund Funeral and Cremation Service in Litchfield, MN. A visitation will be held Friday, February 11, 2022, from 4:00-7:00 PM at the funeral home and one hour prior to the service. The funeral service will be livestreamed at www.johnsonhagglund.com. Interment will be on Saturday, February 19, 2022, at 1:00 PM at St. Patrick Catholic Church Cemetery in Shieldsville, MN, followed by a Celebration of Life at 2:00 PM at The Signature Bar and Grill in Faribault, MN. Please dress casually and wear your favorite band/festival shirt (even better a Cody Jinks shirt if you have one) for the visitation, funeral, and interment.
Erin Theresa Welch, the daughter of Kenneth Welch and Sophia Gustafson, was born September 5, 1982, in St. Paul, MN. While in high school, Erin participated in the People to People International Program and traveled to Australia with her friend Jill. She graduated from Kimball Area High School in 2001. In 2003, she graduated from St. Cloud Technical College, earning a degree in Office Technology/Legal Assistant.
Following college, Erin worked for the St. Cloud Attorney’s Office and the Wright County Attorney’s Office. Her caring heart and desire to help others led her to become a member of the Eden Valley Rescue Squad and later, to a successful career as a 911 Dispatcher for the Meeker County Sheriff’s Office where her dedication to help others shined for 12 years. Erin moved to Rochester last fall to work as a 911 Dispatcher for the Rochester Police Department.
In Erin's younger years, she loved to hang out with Grandma Terry. They shopped until they dropped, went camping in the motorhome with Grandpa Bill and traveled to Nashville for country music festivals. Erin also loved being with her dad four-wheeling in Dresser, Wisconsin and boating on the lake. Erin loved and embraced her Irish Heritage and celebrated St. Patrick's Day in style! She loved Outlaw/Original/Singer-songwriter country music artists and bands. Cody Jinks was her favorite and she traveled far and wide many many times to see him perform live. She also loved original/indy rock and roll. Erin loved outdoor music festivals, honky tonks and dive bars for original live music. She was mom and Scott's traveling music festival partner and boy did we have fun! She scored big time when bonus dad Scott came into her life! Erin knew every word to every song after only a couple of listenings and always sang along! She never missed a chance to have a good time even when medical issues made life a bit more difficult. She decided that nothing was going to stop her from living life as she wanted which is really what we all should do, right? Erin was a very loyal friend and always willing to help. She had a very fine pack of very good friends to whom we are thankful for. Erin's original "tribe" of friends were Amy, Missy, Kristy, Mel and Amanda. As they tell us, she was always up for an adventure! Angie and Tonya, also much loved and loyal friends, spent countless hours with Erin having the times of their lives! Her brother from another mother, Ernie, looked out for her, gave her guidance and spent many days and nights on casino and musical journeys. Erin was happiest when surrounded by her friends and family. Erin was also quite stubborn and often turned down help from others when she really needed it which drove a lot of us kind of crazy! Fur babies also were a big part of her life-specially her long-time dog Maggie who passed before Erin. We hope they are snuggling on the couch now! Erin's mind was as sharp as a tack. She had an uncanny ability to remember almost everything! Dart league and kayaking were also activities that Erin loved. She whole-heartedly participated in the Hawk Walker’s MS team fundraising in honor of all with MS but especially her uncle Tom “Hawk” Nuetzman. She worked countless bingo and meat raffles for the Eden Valley Lions. Erin absolutely loved being a 911 dispatcher and from what we hear, was quite competent in this field. She truly loved helping people in need. She had recently started dispatching with the City of Rochester Police Department and was so happy with this job and her co-workers. Erin could make a big impact in very little time. She will be missed so deeply but let us all work to keep her spirit, fierceness, love of a good time and her loyalty alive.
Erin is survived by her parents: Kenneth (Gail) Welch of Faribault, MN and Sophia (Scott) Gustafson of Clearwater, MN; many aunts and uncles; great-aunts and great-uncles; cousins; and fabulous friends and co-workers.
She was preceded in death by her grandparents: Glen and Delores Welch, and Bill and Terry Nuetzman; uncle Michael Quernemoen; cousin Craig Dodds; and extended family and friends.