WE REMEMBER TODAY….
LaVone Pauline Blake passed away at the age of 93 years old at her home in San Diego, CA. after a long illness of end stage dementia.
She was born in Montevideo, MN to the proud parents of Clarence and Celesta (Glemmen) Dalen.
She grew up on a farm outside of Montevideo and attended a one room schoolhouse until transferring to Montevideo High School from which she graduated. While attending high school, she received at GTA (Grain Terminal Association) Scholarship along with 13 other farm youth from the Northwest states of Minnesota, Montana and the Dakotas that attended a special school in New York City. While on this trip she was able to go to the White House and meet with President Roosevelt and his wife Eleanor.
She married her childhood sweetheart, George Duane Blake, at the Little Brown Church in the Vale in Nashua, Iowa on July 26, 1947.
She helped put George through college by working in a canning factory office as a secretary, as a secretary to one of the professors at South Dakota State College in Brookings, South Dakota and then as a secretary to the principals of Montevideo High School in Montevideo, MN. They moved to Seattle, Washington after George got his first job out of college at Boeing. This was very difficult for her as it was her first time away from her family. From there they moved back to Minnesota as George got a job with Control Data. They remained in Minnesota until 1968 when George transferred to San Diego, CA with Control Data and they remained in San Diego until George and LaVone’s deaths.
LaVone was active in her church, Bethel Lutheran Church, in Minneapolis, MN in various positions including the choir. She also did foster care for Lola and Diane Winters who later accompanied her and George on their move to San Diego, CA. Once in San Diego she became involved with the General Federation of Women’s Clubs serving in various positions at the local, district, state and national level from treasurer to education to president. Her greatest achievement was getting all of the mission bells replaced for the CA missions down to Mexico City. She was also active in her church, St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church working on the altar guild, helping out at vacation bible school, helping with the WIN program, attending bible studies, and singing in the choir. She was part of the St Andrew’s choir that sang with the Duke Ellington band in Mission Valley. She caroled with members of St. Andrew’s at Solar during the Christmas holidays. She also served her community by running a voting booth in her neighborhood for all elections. She loved to travel all over the country for her women’s club activities as well as travel around the world with George when he would go on his business trips. She would always say: “Who would expect a farm girl from a small town in Minnesota could travel the world and do the things she had done.”
Her hobbies were spending time with her family, traveling, singing, helping out at her church, reading, crafts, and going home to Minnesota for the summer months to be with family there.
She was preceded in death by her beloved husband George who passed away August 10, 2016 and daughter Lola Jean Pyles who passed away 7/3/20 as well as her parents Clarence and Celesta Dalen, and brothers Carlyle Dalen, Donald Dalen and DuWayne Dalen.
Survivors include her sister Gen Baldus, daughters Kathleen Hall, Diane Smith (Michael) and William Blake (Rita). Grandchildren: Jonathan Pyles (Hosanna), Christopher Pyles, Duane Smith, Nathan Pyles, Cassandra Pyles, DaeLynn Adams (Gary). Great grandchildren: The Jonathan Pyles family (Hosanna, Matthew, Josiah), The William Blake family (Jordyn, Kammie, Ryan, Zachary, Bentley, Liana), The Christopher Pyles family (Ian, Riley, Desmond) and the DaeLynn Adams family (Kairi).
LaVone loved everyone and no one was a stranger to her. She was a loving mother, grandmother, great grandmother, sister, sister-in-law, aunt, and friend. She had a heart of gold. She shared her talents and love of God during her walk her on earth. She felt blessed to be born in this country that offered her so much and she loved her country and the flag it stood for.
May God bless her memory among us.
Services are pending at this time.