Millie Ardath (Copley) Schwanke, 93, of Cushing, passed away at Amazing Love Elder Care Center in Randall on October 11, 2019. A gathering of family and friends will be held on Tuesday, October 15 from 5:00-8:00 pm at Brenny Family Funeral Chapel in Randall. A service honoring Millie will be held on Wednesday, October 16 at 11:00 am at Zion Lutheran Church in Little Falls. Interment will take place at the Randall City Cemetery.
Millie was born on October 8, 1926 in Meadow, South Dakota to Daniel Joel and Tillie (Tepley) Copley. The family moved to Minnesota and Millie graduated from Little Falls High School in 1944. After high school, she moved to Richmond, California with her sisters to work for Kaiser Shipbuilding for the war effort. She married DeWayne Schwanke after the war on September 4, 1946, at St. Peter Lutheran Church in Randall, MN.
Millie and DeWayne ran the Randall Pool Hall and Theater for a time, tried farming outside of Randall, and then settled in Randall in 1955. They had four children. Millie was a wonderfully loving and caring mother and homemaker. She made fabulous meals, cooking from scratch with vegetables from her large garden and baking delicious desserts for her family. She was always a gracious hostess, welcoming people to her table and serving food to anyone who stopped in. Millie enjoyed sewing, quilting, embroidery, playing cards, and traveling. She had a strong faith and was active in the Ladies Aid, Altar Guild, Sunday School, and Vacation Bible School. Millie and DeWayne owned and operated Schwanke’s Camp on Green Prairie Fish Lake near Randall for eight years. Upon retirement, they moved to Fish Trap Lake and enjoyed life fishing and playing cards; she often caught the most fish of anyone she was with. Millie was active in the development of Avion Palms, an RV park near Bowling Green, Florida, where they spent many winters. Millie never passed up a chance to win a game of shuffleboard. Above all, Millie cherished her family and the time she spent with them.
Millie and DeWayne celebrated their 70 wedding anniversary along with their 90th birthdays on September 4th, 2016, with their entire family and many friends in attendance. It was a lovely celebration.
Millie will be missed by her husband of 73 years, DeWayne, of Little Falls, children Tim (Linda) Schwanke of Tampa, FL, Lance (Barbara) Schwanke of Two Harbors, MN, RoxAnne (Don) Flicek of Cushing, MN, and Scot (Deanne) Schwanke of Burnsville, MN, eight grandchildren, 8 great-grandchildren, sister Jeannette Schwanke of Randall, and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, Dan and Tillie Copley, and siblings Dale Copley, Geneva Venske, and Betty Bigalke.
Arrangements have been entrusted to the Brenny Family Funeral Chapel of Randall.
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