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Kathryn Matthees, 96

Kathryn was born to John and Ida Schwartau in Goodhue County, Minn., on Aug. 31, 1917. She passed away peacefully on Oct. 23, at Eventide on Eighth in Moorhead, at the age of 96.

Following graduation from Red Wing High School in 1935, she worked for several years and then earned a degree in Home Economics from the University of Minnesota in 1943. Kathryn was a member of Clovia, Sigma Epsilon Sigma and Omicron Nu. She valued education and was very proud that all of her children earned academic degrees.

Kathryn worked as an extension agent in Otter Tail County for 3 years before she married Nick Matthees in June 1946. Nick purchased Rigel Refrigeration in February 1947, and they established their home in Moorhead. After the death of Nick in 1966, Kathryn accepted the challenge to run Rigels with the help of family and many faithful employees until her retirement in 2004, at the age of 87.

Kathryn was very involved with many Fargo Moorhead organizations including Trinity Lutheran Church, Concordia College, Camp Fire Girls, Lionesses, American Legion Auxiliary, Prosequi Study Group, United Way of Cass-Clay, the Republican Party and many others. In 1991, she received the Frances Erickson Award from the Clay County Republican Party.

Kathryn was an avid reader who enjoyed traveling and politics. She delighted in cooking, sewing, and making pajamas for her grandchildren. In 1983, she purchased a cabin on Pelican Lake that became a beloved gathering place for friends and for four generations of family who were able to enjoy her fabulous food and hospitality.

Kathryn was preceded in death by her parents; husband Nick; sisters Mary, Gertrude, and Ruth; and brother John.

She is survived by her children: Anne (Dave) Pudas, of Brooklyn Park, Minn., Charles (Barbara, PhD) Matthees of Moorhead Minn., Robert (Carolyn) Matthees of Lake Park, Minn., Dr. Donald (Jane) Matthees of Fargo, N.D., Rebecca (Dr. Patrick) McCaskey of Athens, Ga., and Marjorie Matthees of Moorhead, Minn.; grandchildren: Sara (Bob) Schreiber, Andrew Pudas, Susan (Ronald) Blum, Jennifer (Jerry) Sondag, Elizabeth (Spencer) Stowers, Christopher Matthees, Ann McCaskey, Nick (Alison) Matthees, John (Samantha) McCaskey, Cody Matthees, Cameron Aakre, and Grant Matthees; great-grandchildren: Cora Schreiber, Eleanor Stowers, and Xander Sondag. She is also survived by sister-in-law Bernice Schwartau; brother-in-law John (Ardelle) Matthees; sister-in-law Gladys Matthees; many nieces; and nephews.

The family wishes to thank the staff of Eventide for their wonderful care and compassion.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials to be sent to: Eventide Foundation 2405 8th St. S., Moorhead, MN 56560, or the charity of your choice.

Visitation: from 6-8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25, in Wright Funeral Home, Moorhead. Funeral service: at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 26, in Trinity Lutheran Church, Moorhead. Interment: Riverside Cemetery, Moorhead.

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