Weather Forecast


Barbara Emerson Jan. 18, 1925 - May 21, 2013

Barbara Emerson Jan. 18, 1925 - May 21, 2013

RENVILLE - Barbara Emerson, age 88, of Renville, died Tuesday, May 21, 2013, at the RenVilla Nursing Home in Renville. Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, May 24, 2013, at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Renville. The Rev. Rick Tuttle will officiate. Burial will be in Fairview Cemetery in Renville. Visitation will be Thursday from 5-7 p.m. at Dirks-Blem Funeral Home in Renville. Visitation continues on Friday one hour prior to the services at the church in Renville. Arrangements with Dirks-Blem Funeral Service, Renville, Minnesota.

Barbara Felicia Emerson was born on January 18, 1925 to John and Esther (Billard) Vogt in Albert Lea, Minnesota. Her favorite color was blue, reflected in the eyes of her husband, Elwood, and their three children, Jim, Pam and Mary. She loved to entertain and decorate for every season, especially Christmas, with white flocked trees and blue lights. She planned a special "Christmas in July" including roller skating in the empty furniture store with her grandchildren Amy, Dayna, Brandyn, Heather, Laura and Kelly. Barb played marathon games of Chinese Checkers and let her grandchildren eat chocolate pudding for breakfast. She cherished their winter visits in Tucson and summers in Renville, warming beach towels in the dryer to wrap her love around them after swimming lessons.

Barb was always busy with family, friends, church, community, and as the decorator for the furniture store. She enjoyed dancing, bridge, golf, bowling and weekly hair appointments to maintain her signature style. She loved her frequent trips to the Twin Cities with AnnaBelle Wohlman to shop for shoes at Southdale. When Barb's children were young they thought she knew everyone in Renville County because everywhere we went someone greeted her with, "Hi Barb". Barb's motivation and enthusiasm for life started early. As an independent young woman of 16, she left the family farm near Olivia to rent a room in town and work in the Telephone Office as an Operator as she finished high school. Later, Barb lived with her sister and brother-in-law, Maye and Harry Jensen, in Bremerton, Washington to sew uniforms for the soldiers in World War II. Returning home, she was at the Sheep Shedde in Olivia when Elwood Emerson sat down and ate half of her sandwich. She always laughed and said he ended up feeding her for the rest of his life.

Barb and Elwood were married on January 27, 1946 and shared 52 years together. They enjoyed many winters in Tucson with her siblings and their spouses, Maye and Harry Jensen and Bob and Shirley Vogt. They also enjoyed trips to visit Myron and Val Vogt in Europe and Canada. Barb continued to entertain her family and friends at Meadows on Main where she lived for several years.

The Emerson children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren thank everyone who contributed to our happy memories we shared with mom and our fun times in Renville. Special thanks to our extended family and everyone at Meadows on Main, RenVilla, and Renville County Hospice.

Barb is survived by children Jim (and Pat) Emerson of Shoreview, MN, Pam Mann of Lake Mary, FL, and Mary (and Arlie) Freiborg of Spirit Lake, IA; her grandchildren: Amy (and George) Simon, Dayna (and Rob) Tobyansen, Brandyn (and Kelli) Schneider, Heather (and Dirk) Hanson, Laura (and Nate) Erickson, and Kelly Freiborg; her great-grandchildren: Brittany, Christopher, Nicholas Simon, Reagan and Wyatt Tobyansen, Beckham and Evelyn Hanson, her siblings Paul (and Edith) Vogt of Olivia, Myron (and Val) Vogt Port Ludlow, WA, her sisters-in-law Vivian Vogt of Olivia, and Shirley Vogt of Olivia; and many nieces, nephews and friends. Barbara was preceded in death by her husband, Elwood, her parents John and Esther Vogt, siblings and spouses Milly (and Lou) Brabec, Wally Vogt, Maye (and Harry) Jensen, Bob Vogt and her great-granddaughter Brianna Hanson.

Dirks-Blem Funeral Service, Renville, MN