Paula Claire Lepak passed away surrounded by her family on 12/18/2021. She was born September 29, 1952 in Buhl, MN to Gerald and Olga Simonson. She attended Martin Hughes High School. She went on to pursue her dream of becoming a nurse at St. Luke’s School of Nursing in Duluth, graduating in 1973. She later chose to advance her career by becoming a nurse anesthetist, graduating from Hibbing Anesthesia school in 1979. She spent time working in the career she loved in St. Cloud, MN and Carmel, CA where she met Bing Crosby and Clint Eastwood while working on the PGA tour. She returned to Duluth and worked at Miller Dwan Medical Center as a nurse Anesthetist from 1981 until 2011 when she retired after 30 years. During her years working in Surgery, she served on the Minnesota Nurse Anesthetist Continuing Education Committee and received the prestigious Agatha Hodgkins award for Nurse Anesthetists. In her spare time, Paula was an amazing cook and baker. She often shared treasured recipes with friends and family. She was an animal lover, had a contagious laugh and a great sense of humor. She especially loved spending time at the lake home she loved, in Western Minnesota. She was preceded in death by her parents Gerald and Olga, and Brother Gerald. She is survived by her loving husband, Mike; children, Anne (Willis), Nick (Erika); brother Sidney; nephews; Barry (Gina) and Ryan; grandchildren, Penelope, Lachlan and Viveka; great-nephews, Gavin and Owen; great-niece, Lauren and many treasured friends and family. The Family would like to extend our sincerest gratitude to St. Mary’s Hospice. In lieu of flowers, Memorials preferred to Stella Maris Academy.
Visitation will be held on Tuesday, December 28, 2021 from 5PM to 7PM with a Rosary starting at 6:30PM at Dougherty Funeral Home, 600 E. 2nd St. Duluth, MN 55805. Visitation continues Wednesday, December 29, 2021, at St Mary Star of the Sea, 325 E 3rd St, Duluth, MN 55805 from 9AM until the 10AM Funeral Mass. Luncheon will be served at Dougherty Funeral Home immediately following Mass. Burial at Polish Catholic Cemetery will take place on a later date. Arrangements by Dougherty Funeral Home 218-727-3555.