Saturday, May 30, 2020

Mary Jean Kaplan, 90, Owatonna

Mary Jean Kaplan, 90, of Owatonna, died Saturday, May 16, 2020 at Owatonna Hospital.

Mary was born Feb. 2, 1930 in Nevada, Iowa the daughter of Henry and Margaret (Cartin) Kotlaba.  She was also baptized in Nevada. They moved to Blooming Prairie in June 1930 where Mary attended school from 1936-48. She received her college education from Winona State University and graduated in 1950 with a degree in elementary education. 

Mary taught 4th and 5th grades from 1950-52 in Murdock. She worked at Jostens Yearbook Company for two years. Mary met Lawrence Kaplan in 1952 and they married Nov.10, 1953. They moved to a dairy farm near Blooming Prairie and then to a dairy farm near Ellendale in 1955. Mary and Lawrence had six children before he passed away on March 13, 1970. Mary continued to run her successful farm until 1986, moved to Ellendale for a year and then to Owatonna, where she made her permanent home. She worked at Nelson’s Bakery and Prange Way before retiring.

While living in Ellendale, Mary was a member of St. Aiden’s Catholic Church and Altar Society and the Ellendale-Geneva Schools PTA. In Owatonna, she was a member of Sacred Heart Catholic Church and its women’s sewing group. Mary’s interests and hobbies included reading, sewing and traveling. She enjoyed her trips to Alaska, Virginia, Texas, and nine trips overseas to Europe, Israel and the Panama Canal.

Mary’s children send a very special thank you to our family and friends who were able to attend Mary’s 90th birthday party on Feb. 1. This meant more to her (and the six of us) than you’ll ever know and turned out to be the celebration of her life that we are unable to hold now due to gathering restrictions. We love you all.

She is survived by her six children: James (Sharon Ringhofer) Kaplan of Owatonna, John (Nancy) Kaplan of Elysian, Richard (Minerva) Kaplan of San Antonio, Texas, Gregory (Celine) Kaplan of Anchorage, Alaska, Kathleen (Peter) Mikkalson of Christiansburg, Va., and Brian (Aleta) Kaplan of Madison, Wis.; 15 grandchildren; four great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews. 

Mary was preceded in death by her husband, Lawrence; sister, Phyllis; brother-in-law, Howard and grandson, Philip.

Private funeral services will be held at Michaelson Funeral Home with Father John Sauer officiating. Interment will be in the Holy Trinity Catholic Cemetery in Litomysl.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in Mary’s name for an elementary education scholarship can be sent to: WSU Foundation, P.O. Box 5838, Somsen 204, Winona, MN 55987, or Choose ‘Other’ and note “In Memory of Mary Kaplan.”


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Steele County Times & DCI

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

Dodge County Independent
121 West Main St.
Kasson, MN 55944

Dodge County Printing
121 West Main St.
Kasson, MN 55944


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