Mary Mathilda Tatge

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Mary Mathilda Tatge, 100, of Benson, Minnesota, died on Friday morning, January 24, 2020 at the Gabriel House in Murdock, Minnesota. Visitation will be held at Our Redeemer’s Lutheran Church in Benson, from 5:00 pm – 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, January 28, 2020, and will continue from 10:00 am to 11:00 am on Wednesday, January 29, followed by the funeral service at 11:00 am. Interment will be in the Benson City Cemetery. Arrangements are with the Zniewski Funeral Home of Benson.  Please sign the guestbook at 


Mary Mathilda Tatge passed away peacefully on January 24, 2020, at Gabriel House, Murdock, MN at the age of 100. Mary was born at home on the farm near Vivian, SD on February 10, 1919, to Halvor and Olea (Monger) Strom. Mary attended North Lund country school, Sherman, MN High School and graduated from Vivian SD High School in 1937. She was valedictorian of her class and captain of the girls’ basketball team.  As a sophomore she was crowned Miss Vivian. She then attended St. Mary’s Hospital School of Nursing in Pierre, SD for three years, receiving her RN degree. 


It was at this school that she met her life-long friend, Marlene (Jake) Peterson and encouraged her to also work at the Benson Hospital.  Mary began her nursing career in Benson, MN, in 1940. She also worked in Edgerton, WI for a short period of time.  While working at the Benson Hospital, Mary met the milkman, Orville Tatge.  They were married in Vivian, SD, on August 15, 1942, while Orville was on leave from the army.  Following Orville’s discharge from the army when WWII ended, they had a dairy farm in Six Mile Grove township, Swift County.  They raised a family of seven children and were married for 71 years.


Mary was a hard-working farm wife and mother. She raised and butchered chickens for sale, had large vegetable and flower gardens and sewed most of the family’s clothes. Mary was a Sunday School teacher and member of the Ladies Aide at Six Mile Grove Lutheran Church, where most of her children were baptized and confirmed. She was active in the Mother’s Club at District 88 Country School where her children attended. She was a Live Wires 4-H leader and taught many girls how to sew. Mary loved sewing, designing her own clothes during her high school years. Most of all she loved re-making items and seldom bought new material. Over the years she gave her children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren many quilts, ‘furries’ (fuzzy snuggle blankets), stuffed toys and clothing. Mary was known for the variety of hats she loved to wear along with high-heeled shoes and earrings.


Mary re-connected with her nursing career in the early 60’s, again at the Benson Hospital. They moved into Benson in 1965. Mary was an active member of Our Redeemers church, working many Smorgasbords where she wore her mother’s original Bunad and skirt from Norway. She participated in Mission Circle, Bible Study, WELCA, and quilting. Mary enjoyed volunteering at Red Cross Blood Mobiles for many years.


Mary was also talented at making and decorating cakes.  She made cakes for weddings, birthdays, baptisms, graduations and any other time her grandkids asked her to. After selling their home in Benson, she and Orville lived at Scofield Place for a few years. Mary was an expert at adapting to whatever life threw at her and her faith was a large part of her life.  In 2018, she moved to Gabriel House and was very content in her last home. She believed in exercise and spent a lot of time walking and doing stretches.  GH staff complimented her on setting such a good example for the other residents. A highlight of her week was playing Bingo at Scofield Place and Gabriel House.  


Mary loved to brag about her large family and always had time for calls, visits and sending birthday cards.


She is survived by her children and grandchildren: Richard (Sharon) Tatge, Thorin Tatge and Amber (Olin) Tatge; Carmen (Jim) Groettum and Mary (Tom) Papke – Children of Sylvia; Chuck (Sandy) Tatge, Tina (Curt) Baldwin, Chad (Marisol) Tatge and Grant (Rachel) Tatge; Doug (Pat) Tatge, Kellie (Ernest Klennert) Tatge, Brock (Kirby) Tatge, Carter Tatge (significant other, Stephanie Spaan), and Josh (Chelsie) Tatge; Paul Tatge, Jill (Jay Kemper) Tatge and Zach (Alyssa) Tatge; Marlene (Byron) Giese, Christopher Giese and Stephanie (Egon) Lohman; Lyle (Donna) Tatge, John Tatge and Luke Tatge. Mary is also survived by 28 great grandchildren, 2 great-great grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.  She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, Orville in 2014, her daughter Sylvia DeLine in 1994, brothers Ole, Harry, Lennert, Helmer, Palmer, Martin, and Edwin ‘Punk’ Strom and two sisters, Hilda Strom and Mabel Wester. 


Blessed be her memory.

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