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Marian Fitzgerald

Marian Sophia (Kahnk) Fitzgerald, age 92, died peacefully on Thursday, December 24, 2020 surrounded by her family.  Marian was born on February 17, 1928 in Ruthton, MN to George and Marie Kahnk.  They lived on a farm and later moved to Lake Wilson.  She attended Lake Wilson High School, graduating in 1946. She then moved to California to live with her sister, returning to Minnesota after a couple of years.  She lived and worked in Slayton, MN where she met the love of her life, Duane Fitzgerald.  Marian and Duane were married on April 28, 1949 at St. Ann’s Catholic Church in Slayton.  They raised their family in Slayton then moved to Hutchinson, MN in 1980. They moved to Cannon Falls, MN in 1993 to live closer to their daughter and grandchildren.  In 2010, Marian moved into an apartment in the Northfield Retirement Community in Northfield, MN, where she lived until March, 2020, at which time, she moved in with her daughter Lori near Randolph, MN due to declining health.

Marian and her husband Duane owned and operated Slayton Sewing Service for many years, and in addition to this, she had several jobs at various small businesses wherever they lived. She was active in Catholic Daughters and the VFW Auxiliary for many years. She enjoyed working outside the home but her actual career and passion in life was caring for her immediate and extended family. Her favorite place to be was in the kitchen - she loved cooking and often put together a delicious meal in minutes for anyone that stopped by. She was proud of the family she created and made everyone feel as if they were her favorite. Her most beloved title was Grandma Fitzy!

Marian was a kind and loving person. In her downtime she enjoyed bowling, dancing, making and mending clothes for her children and grandchildren, winning at the casino (usually playing the penny slots) and hosting numerous family gatherings. One of her favorite projects was making a quilt for each grandchild for their high school graduation gift.  She enjoyed being with family and she and Duane often traveled to visit their children and grandchildren in various locations across the US. Living at the Retirement Community brought her great joy in the last 10 years.  If a visitor stopped in to say hello, they would often find her having lunch or coffee with her many friends.

She is survived by four children, Brenda (Dean) Ehrlicher of Billings, MT, Daniel (Judy) Fitzgerald of Grand Island, NE, Linda Fitzgerald (Arne Green) of Rapid City, SD, and Lori (Jeff) Krohn of Randolph; one brother, Louis Kahnk of Minneapolis; sister-in-law, Muriel Kahnk Pearson of Hadley; 11 grandchildren, Justin (Stacie) Fitzgerald, Joshua Fitzgerald, Todd (Michelle) Dawson, Traci (Pepper) Valdez, Trent (Darci) Dawson, Chad (Kellie) Fitzgerald, Dani Jo (Andrew) Rossa, Casi (Jason) Otte, Ryan (Katelyn) Ackerman,  Jolene (Bill) Sweasy, and Justin (Samantha) Green; 28 great grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.  She was preceded in death by her husband, Duane; her son, James Fitzgerald; her parents, George and Marie Kahnk; brothers, Don, Les, Marvin, Harold, Ray, Dick, and Cliff Kahnk; sister, Blanche Koch; and many loving in-laws.

A Mass of Christian Burial was held on Tuesday, December 29 at 11 am, with visitation from 10-11 am, at St. Pius V Catholic Church, Cannon Falls. Interment followed at the church cemetery.

A Celebration of Life will be held in the summer, 2021 or as COVID restrictions are lifted. 

Memorials are preferred to the family to be used towards a scholarship in Marian’s name at the Randolph School. If you would like to send a card to Marian’s family, please mail to: The Family of Marian Fitzgerald, c/o Lundberg Funeral Home, 5839 Hwy 19 Blvd, Cannon Falls, MN 55009.

Arrangements by Lundberg Funeral Home, Cannon Falls. Online condolences may be directed to


Hadley Steel