Ethel Cairns, 94, Albert Lea

Published 12:00 am Sunday, August 14, 2005

Memorial services for Ethel Del (McGaffey) Cairns, 94, of Albert Lea, will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, Aug. 15, at the First Presbyterian Church in Albert Lea.

The Rev. Dwight Netzer will officiate. Interment will be in Graceland Cemetery.

Ethel passed away on Saturday, Aug. 6, 2005, at St. John’s Lutheran Home in Albert Lea.

Email newsletter signup

She was born on Dec. 10, 1910, in Meadow Valley, Wis., the daughter of Ancil T. and Lulu May (Hutton) McGaffey.

Ethel graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a bachelor of arts degree in political science and French.

Soon after, she married Clifford Cairns and moved to St. Paul.

In 1944, Ethel and Cliff moved to Albert Lea with their two daughters. Together they worked, raised their family, and became part of the Albert Lea community.

Ethel was active in her church, various charitable activities, and the University Women’s organization.

Her interests ranged from national politics and economics to classical music and gardening.

She and Cliff made many trips around the country, but she was always happiest in her adopted state of Minnesota.

Ethel is survived by her daughter, Peggy Grantham; her brother Edward McGaffey; five grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents; husband Clifford; daughter Dorothy Sarafolean; two sisters; and two brothers.

Her family wishes to thank the staff at St. John’s Lutheran Home for the kind and loving care they provided to Ethel.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in her name to the American Cancer Society, or to St. John’s Lutheran Home.