Aili Arlene (Laine) GundersonSeptember 13, 1918 ~ October 31, 2017 (age 99)
Aili Arlene Gunderson, 99, Sartell, Minn., formerly of Duluth, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, October 31, 2017 at Edgewood Sartell.
Aili was born on September 13, 1918 in Winton, Minnesota to Elias Laine and Anna Kumpula Laine. When Aili was two years old her father moved the family to Finland and after three years they came back to the United States and settled in Keewatin, Minnesota where her father was an underground miner and her mother ran a Finnish boarding house. Aili was very active at Keewatin High School where she was a champion swimmer, was in several plays, editor of the student newspaper, and graduated as the class of 1936 Salutatorian. Aili then graduated from Hibbing Junior College. She was employed as an executive secretary for Pickands Mather Mining Company in Duluth until her retirement.
Aili was an avid bowler, golfer, and ice skater and participated in leagues and tournaments. While ice skating at the Duluth Curling Club she met Ted Gunderson, who she was married to for 55 years.
Aili lived most of her married life on the Duluth Heights where she was active at the Lowell Elementary School PTA, Holy Cross Lutheran Church Women Circle, St. Josephs 55 Club, American Legion Post 71 Auxiliary, and Diamond Tool Retirees Club. Aili and Ted especially enjoyed their cabin at Wilson Lake near Cotton, Minnesota. Aili was a very social person and she loved to organize parties, sewing clubs, card clubs, and volunteer activities. She was also very proud of her Finnish and Iron Range roots.
Aili was preceded in death by her husband, Theodore Gunderson, her sister Lillie Pearson, and her parents.
Aili is survived by her son, David (Kathy) Gunderson of Sauk Rapids, grandchildren Anne (Clint) Zimpel of Duluth, Mike (Jessi) Gunderson of Lakeville, and seven great grandchildren.
The family would like to thank the dedicated and caring staff at Edgewood Sartell and St. Croix Hospice for their care of Aili
FAMILY AND FRIENDS may gather on Wednesday, November 8th from 1:30 PM until the 2 PM memorial service at Dougherty Funeral Home.
Arrangements by Dougherty Funeral Home, 600 E. Second St., Duluth, 218-727-3555