Janice (Hovland) Benrud, 85, originally of Moose Lake, passed away peacefully with her granddaughter Sophia and her daughter Ann by her side on Friday, July 30, 2022, in St. Paul.
As was the family’s desire and commitment, Janice spent the last years of her life living with family–children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren–as they all shared in her Alzheimer’s journey, shining a light on all the joy, laughter, and love she still embodied. A bout of Covid was too much for her compromised system to handle.
Janice prided herself in being a “farm girl” and held a lifelong enchantment for the farm life she grew up in. She loved the Western Minnesota waving hills of wheat, the oak tree silhouettes, and the sunsets that spanned the rolling countryside. She lived the last few years of her life simply, spending time on her son David’s farm, boating, picking wildflowers, coloring, snuggling with dogs, and living joyfully with her family.
Janice was born May 11, 1937, to Henry O. and Emelia Marie (Zimmerman) Hovland on her grandparents’ farm in Elizabeth Township, Ottertail County. She spent her early childhood living near Maplewood State Park until her family moved to a dairy farm near Elizabeth. She attended a one-room schoolhouse nearby and graduated from Pelican Rapids High School in 1954.
Janice graduated from Moorhead State with a degree in Education and launched her teaching career in Glenwood, MN. She maintained a life-long commitment to raising children up and celebrating them. She founded the Hope Nursery School in 1967 in Moose Lake and tenderly taught hundreds of young people for nearly 30 years. She went on to facilitate ECFE (Early Childhood Family Education) classes and substitute taught in the Moose Lake and Barnum school systems.
Janice married Donald E. Benrud, on June 18, 1960, at a quaint church in Rothsay, MN. They started their life together in Wadena where they had three children, Mary, Ann, and David. From Wadena, they moved to Moose Lake and lived there for nearly 60 years.
She is preceded in death by her husband, Donald E. Benrud, her parents, Henry and Emelia (Zimmerman) Hovland, brother Berton Hovland, and sister Marilyn Proffitt.
Janice is survived by her children; daughters, Mary Benrud and Ann Benrud; son, David Benrud (Gregory Foster); grandchildren, Elijah (Marjorie) Renn, Maya Kasangaki, Saman Bemel-Benrud (Heather Rudow), Yarrow Benrud (Emily Hayes), Sophia Benrud (Heidi Nybroten), Cameron Phillips, Taos Wanza, and Grace Wanza; great-grandchildren, Brenden Renn, Layla Kasangaki, Elkin Bu?ay, Bianka Renn, Rowan Benrud, and Emry Rudow.
Visitation will be Saturday, August 13, from 1:00 p.m. until the 2:00 p.m. service at Hope Lutheran Church, Moose Lake.
Janice’s ashes will rest in the North Friborg Cemetery, rural Rothsay, near the family farm.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the youth programs at Hope Lutheran Church, Moose Lake.