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May 2, 1925 – May 2, 2023

Elaine Evelyn (Betke) Bechtold, age 98, of Hanover passed away on Tuesday, May 2, 2023 at Lake Ridge Care Center in Buffalo.

She was born on May 2, 1925 at Catlin Hospital in Buffalo, MN to Louis & Augusta (Splittstoesser) Betke.

Elaine was baptized on June 14, 1925 at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Hanover, MN by Reverend William Beiswanger.   She was instructed in the Lutheran catechism and confirmed in the Christian faith on May 21, 1939 at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Buffalo, MN by Reverend W. Sauer.    Her confirmation verse was Psalm 27:1 “The Lord is my light and my salvation – whom shall I fear.    The Lord is my stronghold of my life – of whom shall I be afraid”

Elaine graduated from Buffalo High School in 1943.   She was employed at the First National Bank in Minneapolis and later was secretary for Allied Manufacturing Company in Buffalo, MN and secretary for the Farmers Home Administration in Buffalo.

Elaine married Wilfred Bechtold on May 24, 1947 at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Buffalo, MN by Reverend E. Berwald.

She was a faithful member of Salem Lutheran Church and an active member of Salem Ladies Aid -Greenfield.

She taught the Special Needs Sunday School Class for a number of years.  Because of a daughter with Down Syndrome, she was involved with the Institute for Reading Development and Sensorimotor Program at Mankato and instrumental in teaching reading to her daughter.     She educated herself through St. Cloud State on Learning Disabilities.   She belonged to the Minnesota State Council for the Handicapped, Minnesota Association for Children with Learning Disabilities, PACER (Parent Advocate Coalition for Educational Rights), Hennepin County Association for Retarded Citizens, The Down Syndrome Association of Minnesota and National Down Syndrome Association.  She was Secretary and Membership Chairman for The Wright County Association for Retarded Citizens.    She was involved with the St. Michael Foundation for Special Needs and she belonged to the Auxiliary of the American Legion Post #567 in St. Michael.   She was a 4-H Leader of Hanover Honey Bees 4-H Club for 10 years.  After her daughter graduated from High School, she became involved with St. David’s Adult Developmental Services.   She was employed by J.K. Bowers for thirty-five years  and Nancy Woodworth for thirty years plus many others doing Day Work.  She also belonged to The Hennepin County Extension Services, Polka Lovers Club, Class of 43 Remnants and Red Hat Society.

Elaine is survived by Roger & Linda Bechtold, Ronald & Millie Bechtold and Clyde & Sandra Bechtold; eight grandchildren: Neil, Shawn, Darrin, Carrie, Julie, Lance, Jason and Joshua; 17 great grandchildren; other relatives and friends.

Preceded in death by a daughter Jodi on February 11, 2001, her husband Wilfred March 25, 2003, a grandson Kevin on February 12, 1983 and by her parents Louis & Augusta Betke.

Funeral services for Elaine Bechtold will be held on Wednesday, May 10th, 2023 at 4:00 P.M. at Salem Evangelical Lutheran Church in Greenfield.   Pastor Paul Schuler will officiate.   Interment will follow at Salem Lutheran Cemetery.

A visitation will be held on Wednesday, May 10th from 2-4 P.M.  AT THE CHURCH.

Honorary Casket Bearers will be Carrie Bechtold and Julie Gamec.

Casket Bearers will be Neil Bechtold, Shawn Bechtold, Darrin Bechtold, Lance Bechtold, Jason Bechtold, Josh Bechtold.

Special Thank you to St. Croix Hospice and Lake Ridge Care Center for their care and compassion.   In lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested for Salem Lutheran Church Sign Fund or Salem Legacy of Faith School Fund.



2 Guestbook Entries

  1. Jim & Arleen Vorderbruggen

    I remember your mother and father and you offspring and especially your sister with her down syndrome. After we met that day at Lake Ridge it took me a while to put it all together. Your parents were a wonderful couple. Our sympathies to all of you.

  2. Rita Varner-Otness

    Roger and family
    I am sending my deepest sympathy at seeing the loss of your wonderful Mom. She was one of my favorites in so many ways. Such a wonderful lady. Such a long life so well lived. Praying for God’s peace and comfort in your lives at this difficult time.


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