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Dedication of Burial Stone to be Held May 20

There will be a special dedication of a burial stone on Sunday, May 20, at the St. Rose of Lima Cemetery in Avoca, Minnesota. 

The stone will have the names of the six young women who died 130 years ago at the Academy of St. Rose (Holy Child Academy) in Avoca.  Their names will be etched deeply into the granite as a reminder of the courageous young women who left their homes on a South Dakota reservation and traveled to the prairie of Southwest Minnesota to attend school, to fall ill and to die in the subzero temperatures of a brutal winter.

A blessing of the stone with a short prayer service will begin at 2 p.m. at the cemetery.  This will be followed by a light lunch at Divine Mercy Hall at St. Ann’s Catholic Church on Maple Avenue in Slayton. There will also be a special Native American blessing to conclude the dedication.  This notice is your invitation to join in this most historic ceremony in Murray County. 

Special guests for this important event include Father Thien Nguyen, pastor of St. Ann, St. Columba and St. Mary, Slayton, Iona and Lake Wilson, Sister Roseanne McDougall, archivist for the Sisters of the Holy Child Jesus (the Order who sent sisters to teach at the boarding school from 1883-1890), John Eagle, Dakota Elder and Marlys Knuth, MN Catholic Daughter of the Americas First Vice Regent and other dignitaries representing Native American’s from various Tribes and numerous Catholic Daughters as well as representation from the City of Avoca, the Knights of Columbus, Foresters, and the Murray County Historical Society.    

There will be shuttle service to the site and you are asked to bring a lawn chair as seating will be limited.  

Catholic Daughters of the Americas strive to embrace the principles of faith working through love in the promotion of justice, equality and the advancement of human rights and human dignity for all mankind  (Catholic Daughters mission statement). 

Minnesota State University,Mankato to Award 2,335 Degrees at End of Spring Semester

Mankato, Minn. (May 3, 2018) - Minnesota State University, Mankato will award 2,335 degrees at the end of the spring 2018 semester, with approximately 1,600 students participating in three graduation ceremonies on campus Saturday, May 5 in Taylor Center’s Bresnan Arena.

Students in the colleges of Arts & Humanities and Science, Engineering & Technology will take part in the 9 a.m. ceremony; those in the colleges of Allied Health & Nursing and Education will participate in the noon event; and students in the colleges of Business and Social & Behavioral Sciences will be graduated in the 3 p.m. ceremony. Live-streaming captioning services will be provided for each ceremony.

Candidates for graduate degrees will graduate with the college of their affiliation.

Undergraduate students receiving recognition will include 140 students graduating summa cum laude (3.8 grade point average and higher), 313 students graduating magna cum laude (grade point averages of 3.5 to 3.79) and 280 students graduating cum laude (grade point averages of 3.3 to 3.49).

More information about the Minnesota State Mankato spring commencement is at

Minnesota State Mankato, a comprehensive university with 14,712 students, is part of the Minnesota State system, which includes 30 colleges and seven universities. 

Eric Ahlers, BS, Physics - Fulda, MN 

Myah Holinka, BS, Family Consumer Science, Magna Cum Laude - Fulda, MN

Seth Bass, BS, Exercise Science, Magna Cum Laude - Slayton, MN

Macy Christensen, BS, Medical Technology, Summa Cum Laude - Slayton, MN

Erika Lieser, MS, Early Childhood Special Education - Slayton, MN

A Senior’s Thoughts on Graduation

By Cole Davis

By the time that you would be available to read, I will be almost done at Murray County Central High School. At the time that this article is being written, I still have about two weeks left at MCC. Before I truly leave, I am taking this article as an opportunity to reflect. 

I was born in Worthington and raised in Slayton for the entirety of my life. I’ve been at MCC since I was in Kindergarten. I spent my time with the same people every day of school for over ten years. This place has always been my home. But times change, and so do I. After thinking about it enough, I can honestly say that I am looking forward to graduation. Despite this, there are a great many things that I am going to miss about living in Slayton, and what I am going to miss the most would definitely have to be the people. 

All of the amazing teachers I’ve had throughout the years have helped shape who I am as a person. Amazing people like Mr. Schleisman, Mr. and Mrs. Siedschlag, Mrs. Parker, Mrs. Andert, Mrs. Larson, Mrs. Beers, Mrs. Harms, Mr. Steve Harms (the music teacher) all helped shape the foundation of who I was in elementary school, teaching me about morals and how to be the best that I can be. Mr. Helgeson, Mr. Anderson, Mr. Biren, Mr. Damm, Mr. Isaac Harms (the social studies teacher), Mr. Carlson, Mr. Freeman, Mrs. Whitehead, Mrs. Hildebrandt, Mrs. Nau, Mrs. Bau, Mrs. Beech, and all of the other amazing faculty members at the MCC high school helped me stay on that path, keeping the values instilled in me when I was younger. I am proud to say that I look to many of these teachers for guidance, and have always been able to count on them to help me in times of trouble. Without these people encouraging, I would not have had near as much interest in continuing my education. 

Of course, what will be the weirdest of all is the fact that I won’t be with the same class that I have always been with. I won’t see all of my friends, most of whom I’ve known since elementary school, every day of school any more. On the thought of not being together all of the time, Seth Atwood brings up a few thoughts. “I’m really looking forward to graduating, but I know that I’ll miss hanging out with all of the group,” Seth says. “We still need to meet up over the summer for sure, at least for wing night!” In addition, Meeting up with my friends has become a tradition of sorts, happening at least once every week. Either through experiences at my home, holding a movie night or playing cards, or through time around town, hanging out at  City Limits or the Hub, or going out for a walk, our group loves to spend time with one another. Jeremy Thompson, another member of our friend group, is also in a similar boat. “I know that I don’t act as excited as Seth about wanting to graduate, but I am looking forward to it,” He claims with a chuckle. “I just hope that we all keep in touch.” 

There are people that are not in my grade whom I will miss greatly. Juniors like Jake Bleyenberg, Cale Engelkes, CJ Tutt, and Kelly Dahlhoff, Sophomores like Sam Larson and Vanessa Dahlgren, and Freshman like Rylan Behnke and Ashley Aanenson have all been amazing friends in my high school experience. Rylan often claims that he has to “keep the legacy going”; hopefully he will. Jake is also the brother of one of my best friends, and also has grown to become one of them himself. Sam became my friend through shared experiences in speech and in being members of the stage crew for the musical and the play in the past few years, and has what is possibly the greatest sense of humor that I have ever encountered. I look forward to being able to see them succeed in the future. I’ll have a year or two on them, so I guess I’ll have a bit of an advantage, but they all are bound to succeed in their own ways. They can use the Seniors as a blueprint, after all.

My childhood memories will always bring me back to Slayton. I don’t think I could ever forget the time spent at MCC High School. The people that I’ve met and become friends with over the years are always going to be an influence on who I am and who I will be. Now that my high school career is ending, I am ready for a new beginning. I still have the summer to figure out what that beginning is going to be like, however. So this is sort of an early goodbye, since I will still be roaming the streets of Slayton until about August. Maybe you’ll see me somewhere, and by that time, I’ll will officially be a high school graduate. Took me long enough.

We Are All Aging-Learn How MNRAAA Can Help

Join us for a discussion and learn ways The Minnesota River Area Agency on Aging (MNRAAA) can help older adults, their families and service providers in southwest Minnesota.

As the designated area agency on aging for 27 counties in southwest Minnesota, MNRAAA is a catalyst in building communities where older adults live with dignity, mutual respect and shared responsibilities across generations and cultures.

Linda Giersdorf, Executive Director of MNRAAA, reminds us that “an older adult is a person who is developing, still growing, still a learner, still with potential…whose life has within it promise for and connections to the future”.

Information for: Consumers, caregivers, home care providers, hospital and nursing home discharge planners/social workers, directors of nursing, case managers, home and community-based service providers, health care clinics/homes, health systems

You will Learn: 

• MNRAAA’s mission and roles

• Demographics of southwest Minnesota

• How Title III Older Americans Act funds are awarded

• Services offered by the Senior LinkAge Line®

• How we can help people live in the community setting of their choice

•How we help communities develop or expand priority services for older adults

 Learn more by attending a presentation at one of the sites and times below.

Date/Time:     Monday, June 4 @ 9:00 - 11:00 AM

Location: Merit Center, Room B, 1001 W Erie Road, Marshall, MN

Date/Time:     Wed., June 27 @ 9:00 - 11:00 AM

Location: Snell Motors, Community Room, 1900 Madison Avenue, Mankato, MN

Date/Time:     Friday, June 29 @ 9:00 - 11:00 AM

Location: Health and Human Services Bldg., Multi-Purpose Room, 2200 NE 23rd Street, Willmar, MN

To register: