Honsey family and friends gather to celebrate 100th birthday
by Bonnie Kay Baldwin
Lake Mills Graphic
Berdine (Opdahl) Honsey, born to David and Clara (Opdahl), celebrated her 100th birthday last Saturday, Nov. 9, on her actual birthday. Her family honored her with a party at Emmons Lutheran Church, Emmons, Minn.
Honsey’s mother, Clara, lived to be 101, herself. Berdine told a story that when former Graphic editor, and brother-in-law, Harris Honsey, asked Clara how she lived to be that old, she jokingly said, “I didn’t die.”
The amazing centenarian, Berdine, still lives on her own in an apartment at Knudtson Place Apts., Albert Lea, Minn., where she moved in earlier this year, in March. She gets around with a rolling walker.
Berdine graduated from Alden High School, Alden, Minn. She met her husband, Homer Honsey, at Lime Creek Church, rural Lake Mills, in Sunday School, and they were in confirmation together. They married Nov. 1940 at Lime Creek.
They were initially farmers, she said, until they moved to Kiester, Minn. and worked at the locker plant. Later, they moved back to Emmons to farm again. Homer also did carpentry work.
“I think he made 30-some houses.” said Berdine.
Berdine and Homer were kept plenty busy with nine children. They had eight boys and one girl: Curtis (the late Betty); the late Dean Honsey (Joey); Neal (Gayle); the late Ross Honsey (Diane); Howard (Connie); Loren; Judith Ann Cleveland (Tom); Richard (Bobbie); and Dennis (Heidi). They also had 25 grandchildren and close to 60 great-grandchildren.
“We moved to town in Emmons, in 1980, before he passed away.” Homer passed away almost 20 years ago (Dec. 19, 1999) from a heart condition.
Berdine’s hobbies included crocheting, sewing and quilting for her church women’s circle, helped with the church’s annual Lutefisk supper, taught Sunday school and Bible school. She was also involved in the senior citizens club in town.
“My life has been good,” said Berdine. "The best thing was when my husband asked me to marry him.”