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Laura E. Merkwan
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Laura was born Sunday, April 15, 1923 to Alfonse V. and Anna (Renkiewitz) Walka in Norwich, Connecticut. She graduated from Norwich Free Academy high school in 1941. Laura met her true love, Carson Merkwan while he was stationed at the submarine base in New London, Connecticut during World War II. They were married in Washington, DC March 28, 1945. They moved to South Dakota in 1948 where they raised their four children.
Laura began her working career as a civil service worker in Washington, DC. Throughout her lifetime in Yankton she was employed at Gurney’s Seed & Nursery, Supervalu, Kapitan’s Market, Hasker’s Market, cleaned at Wilson Trailer’s and was the family photographer.
Laura was a dear wife and mother. She enjoyed crocheting, quilting, canning produce from her garden and playing games, especially pinochle, whist and cribbage. During her later years she especially enjoyed playing the card game “poop on your neighbor” with Skip and her grandkids. She was an excellent cook and baker. She regularly made kolaches and taught everyone how to make her delicious potato dumplings. She was a true sports fan and enjoyed watching the Twins and Vikings. Watching her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren in all their sports and activities was a favorite activity. Laura loved to dance where ever she could find some good polka music. Laura was extremely dedicated to family. She dearly loved her grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Laura Elizabeth Merkwan, age 97 of Yankton, SD died Tuesday, July 7, 2020 at Avera Sister James Care Center in Yankton.
Laura is survived by her sons Millard “Skip” (Laurel) Merkwan of Gayville, SD, Dr. Gary Merkwan of Yankton and daughter Sally (Terry) Stucky of Yankton; son-in-law Larry Wynia of Yankton; grandchildren, Jennifer (Russ Konechne), Scott (Darla) Wynia, Shane Wynia, Dr. Steven (Charina) Wynia, Amanda (Travis) Cox, Carson (Dr. Courtney) Merkwan, Casey (Tina) Merkwan, Robin (Joel) Husman, Mathias (Jamie) Stucky of Lennox and Carly (Corey) Hines; great grandchildren Jacob, Zachary and Dagny Anderson, Grace, Jack and Anna Wynia, Bailey and Steel Wynia, Ryken and Avery Cox, Gary, Blair and Grant Merkwan, Brix and Axel Merkwan, Ryan and Reese Husman, Josie, Clara and Addy Stucky, Kenzie, Carson and Kate Hines.
Laura was preceded in death by her parents, husband Carson Merkwan, daughter Carole Wynia, daughter-in-law Linda Merkwan, sisters Lillian and Mary and brothers Frank, Vincent and Eddie.
Laura will always hold a very place in my heart. She was always there when our family faced any joys or heartaches. When I was young, I thought you were the coolest adult Id ever met. I am so very thankful that I got to spend time visiting her last fall. My condolences go to all her family. Her family meant the world to her.
Linda Gilles Jul 15 2020 3:01 AM
My mom's best friend for almost 70 years. End of an era. Can't put into words what Laura and Carson meant to my parents and to the Gurney family. Our deepest sympathy and love.
Doug Gurney Jul 12 2020 7:45 PM
So sorry for your families loss. Keep the memories close.
Rex and Pam Bye Jul 11 2020 1:14 AM
Blessings to a wonderful Aunt and Family! Please accept my condolences and to a heartfelt Celebration of a great Woman!
James Wakely Jul 11 2020 1:08 AM
Sally, Terry and family, We were so sorry to hear of your mom's passing. May happy memories carry you through this difficult time.
Dick and Joyce Lane Jul 10 2020 11:12 PM
Laura's outgoing, friendly personality and cooking skills made it impossible not to love her. My own introduction to Laura was by way of potato dumpling in about 1962. Smart, kind, sassy, honest, generous and loyal are just a few of the good qualities that she displayed in her life. We are all better people for her presence in our lives. My mother, Gladys Ryken, also sends her condolences; Laura was her friend as they both raised large families and shared the blessing of seeing our families united with the marriage of Linda and Gary and all the good that their love unleashed. This legacy continues.
Robert L Ryken and Gladys E Ryken Jul 10 2020 5:56 PM
RIP sweetheart. Say hi to Uncle Carson.
Jerry and Rose Schulz Jul 9 2020 6:06 PM