Alverna H. McLanahan, age 88 of Melrose, died peacefully with her family at her side on Saturday, December 1, 2018 at CentraCare Pine Villa Health Care Center in Melrose, Minnesota.
At the request of Alverna, a private family service will be held to honor her life. Rev. Marvin Enneking will preside. Inurnment will be in the Saint Mary's Cemetery in Melrose, Minnesota.
Alverna Helen Walz was born April 10, 1930 in Lake George Township, Stearns County, Minnesota to Alphonse and Louise (Deters) Walz. She was a 1948 graduate of Melrose High School. On March 30, 1963, she was united in marriage to Julian R. "Mick" McLanahan in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Alverna was the proud mother of two sons, Patrick and Robert, and moved from place to place for Mick's job with the electric companies. Alverna worked as a Supervisor in food processing in Oregon, later retiring to Arizona and then back home to Melrose. She and Mick loved to spend time "treasure hunting" - everything from unique collectables and antiques to Native American artifacts. They truly enjoyed searching and finding Indian arrowheads throughout the West which they later donated to a museum. Alverna loved playing cards, bowling, and playing Bingo. She enjoyed the conversation and just being involved with her friends and extended family. She learned to persevere and to be a strong, independent, compassionate woman as she experienced some of life's most difficult challenges -- such as the death of her son, Robert at the age of 5 years. She would often remind everyone - "I CAN paddle my own canoe!" and she seriously meant it.
Alverna is preceded in death by her son, Robert McLanahan in 1970, husband, JR "Mick" McLanahan in 1998, son, Patrick McLanahan in 2000; parents, Alphonse and Louise Walz; sisters, Ann Olmscheid and Beatrice Sieben; niece, Marlene Henry; and her special senior companion, Melvin Pankratz who died in 2012.
She will always be remembered by her extended family and the friends she made as she traveled and lived throughout the United States. Alverna and her beloved family will be waiting for each of us at The End Of The Trail.