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 Violet Elizabeth “Vi” <I>Mertes</I> Zorn

Violet Elizabeth “Vi” Mertes Zorn

Bowbells, Burke County, North Dakota, USA
Death 17 Oct 2015 (aged 96)
Greenwood, Johnson County, Indiana, USA
Burial Minot, Ward County, North Dakota, USA
Memorial ID 153864316 · View Source
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Violet Elizabeth Zorn, a long time resident of Minot, ND, died peacefully on October 17, 2015, in Greenwood IN, at the age of 96.

Violet, better known as Vi, was born August 1, 1919 in Bowbells, ND to Elizabeth and John B. Mertes. She was raised on the family homestead near Bowbells along with her two brothers and two sisters. She attended grade school in Bowbells, and graduated from Bowbells High School in 1937. She also attended her junior year at St. Leo's in Minot while working for a family friend as a nanny. Taking the advice of her mother, she went on to study nursing in Minot, and graduated as a registered nurse from St. Joseph Hospital School of Nursing in 1940. After graduation she was employed by the City of Minot Detention Hospital taking care of patients with infectious diseases and became a dedicated nurse.

While she was training and working in Minot, she met and then married Walter Zorn on June 28, 1941. She and Walt lived in Minot until August 1942 when he was inducted into military service. She then moved to Bowbells to live with family until 1945 when he returned from the South Pacific. Reunited, they happily returned to Minot where Vi worked at St. Joseph's and Trinity Hospitals in Private Duty Practice and Walt worked for the railroad. In 1951 she began working for Dr. William Hurly and Medical Arts Clinic in a job she loved and that allowed her to work with someone she so highly regarded. She treasured the friendships she made at the clinic and kept in touch after she retired in 1979.

Vi and Walt enjoyed happy years together in Minot in two homes that she and Walt built from the ground up. They both worked hard to provide a good life for themselves and their three children and modeled an incredible work ethic and commitment without complaint. Vi was a member of Little Flower Catholic Church and a member of Confraternity of Christian Mothers. She played bridge with ladies from her church, and enjoyed playing bingo and trying out new craft projects on the dining room table. She was a dedicated grandmother who made efforts to attend each graduation, wedding, or family event. She carried her special chocolate cake to every event and fostered a bond with each grandchild that made them feel special. She was known for keeping track of all the family news and served as a hub for family connections. She and Walt were also known for being there for the family in time of need. Their quiet support was felt across the miles and usually in person.

Retirement years with Walt were enjoyed by spending time with relatives and friends at their lake cabin catching walleye and serving up great meals. She and her sister Inie were known for putting together great spreads for a big crowd. Vi and Walt loved visiting their children and grandchildren in various states, and also traveled around seeing the country on bus tours, and spending leisure time in Hawaii and Arizona. They had the retirement years they had always wanted. Their last years were spent close to Bev's family in Greenwood Indiana where they enjoyed daily visits from family members. In the residence where she and Walt lived, Vi was voted "best dancer" and she was known and loved by the staff for her spunky personality, and for retaining her nurse's badge by helping out at the nurse’s station. She and Walt were married for 70 years when he passed in 2011.

Survivors include her three children: Beverly (Harold) Maupin, Greenwood, IN, Dr. Richard (Mimi) Zorn, Seattle, WA, and Connie (Mike) Pepper, Twin Falls, ID. She leaves nine grandchildren and twenty-one great grandchildren. She is also survived by her dear sister and close companion, Inie Nehring, Bismarck, ND.

A funeral mass will be held at Saints Francis & Clare Catholic Church in Greenwood, Indiana on Wednesday, October 21, 2015 at 10:00 a.m.

There will be a burial service at Rosehill Cemetery on Saturday, October 31, 2015 at 11:00 a.m. in Minot, North Dakota. There will be a reception for family and friends at the Knights of Columbus hall immediately following the burial service.

In Vi's lovely handwritten script with an outline for this obituary, she asked that memorials be sent in lieu of flowers to Bishop Ryan High School Foundation. She valued education and the independence it offers. She appreciated the efforts at Ryan to challenge students to be the best they could be.

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  • Created by: Darrell F. Holtzclaw
  • Added: 17 Oct 2015
  • Find A Grave Memorial 153864316
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Violet Elizabeth “Vi” Mertes Zorn (1 Aug 1919–17 Oct 2015), Find A Grave Memorial no. 153864316, citing Rosehill Memorial Park, Minot, Ward County, North Dakota, USA ; Maintained by Darrell F. Holtzclaw (contributor 47580350) .