Phyllis Toft, 1929-2019

Published 1:00 am Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Funeral services for Phyllis I. Toft will be at 3 p.m. Wednesday at Bonnerup Funeral Service in Albert Lea. The Rev. Todd Walsh will officiate. Interment will be at First Lutheran Cemetery in Ellendale. Visitation will be one hour before services at the funeral home.

Phyllis Toft

Phyllis Irene Toft passed away Saturday, Sept. 28, 2019, at Thorne Crest Senior Living Community in Albert Lea. She was born Mother’s Day, May 12, 1929, the daughter of Irvin and Cora (Gunderson) Toft.

She was baptized and confirmed at First Lutheran Church in Ellendale. Phyllis graduated from Ellendale High School in 1947 as valedictorian. She received her bachelor’s degree in business education from Mankato Teacher College in Mankato and master’s degree in counseling and guidance from Fresno State in California. She taught in Blue Earth, Waterville and Bemidji; LaJunta, Colorado, and for the last 31 years at Taft, California, with classes in Hawaii and a sabbatical in Copenhagen, Denmark. She retired from teaching in 1987. After retiring she taught general education development at the community correctional facility near Taft. She returned to live in Minnesota near family in July 2015.

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Phyllis loved traveling with friends and her sisters in the U.S. and to Mexico, Europe, Scandinavia and Canada. Along with her travels, she enjoyed reading, handwork, crafts, needlework, painting, all kinds of art and golf.

She is survived by her nieces and nephews Penny (Garry) Nordhorn, Kent (Kim) Toft, Robert Toft, Sharleen (Brian) Olson, Timothy (Nancy) Toft, Peggy Toft, Allan (Debbie) Toft, Linda (Jeff) Batty and Sarah (Brent) Kohn; sisters-in-law Evelyn Toft (Kenneth) and Shirley Toft (Paul); as well as great- and great-great-nieces and nephews and special friend, Julie Gullickson.

Phyllis was preceded in death by her parents; sisters Olive, Carol and infant Grace Toft; brothers Gordon, Charles, Kenneth, James and Paul Toft; and sisters-in-law Marge Toft (Charles) and Margaret Toft (James).

She will be remembered as a beloved daughter, sister, aunt and dedicated educator.

Memorials can be directed to the First Lutheran Cemetery Fund in Ellendale.

The family would like to extend a special thank you to the assisted living and memory care staff at Thorne Crest Senior Living Community and Albert Lea Mayo Hospice.