Lila Mae Strowbridge, 88, has been called to rest by the Lord after dying peacefully at her home on July 5, 2008. Lila was born in Cass Lake, Minn., on July 11, 1919, the only daughter of Ida Raycroft Johnson and Chris Johnson. She grew up in International Falls and graduated from International Falls High School where she was a solo performer in the a capella choir. It was while working in her mother's restaurant, the Oliver Cafe, that Lila met Herb Strowbridge. After a year-long courtship, they were married in International Falls on May 2, 1939, and honeymooned at the World's Fair in San Francisco. Though their first home was on Lake Irving in Bemidji, they moved to Brainerd in 1944 and eventually to their home on Gilbert Lake in 1954 where they happily lived out the rest of their 69 years of marriage.
During her lifetime, Lila was very active as decorator and devoted member of St. Francis Catholic Church. She volunteered with the Grey Ladies at Brainerd's State Hospital for 20 years. She also belonged to a Bridge Club in which she was appreciated for her elaborate hosting. Those who were blessed to be a part of Lila's life know of her compassion, her generosity, her appreciation of music, her love for fashion and for cooking and her abounding energy and vivacious spirit.
She was preceded in death by her parents and by her brothers, Vernon and Raymond. She will be sadly missed by her devoted husband, Herb; and by her children, Barb (Jim) Vandeputte, of Brainerd, Ron (Gini), of Portland, Ore., Tom (Lynn), of Brainerd, and Jeff, of Minneapolis, as well as her nine grandchildren; her great-grandchildren; a great-great-grandchild; nieces, nephews and innumerable friends.
Lila's spectacular life will be honored at her funeral service on Wednesday, July 9, at 11 a.m. at St. Francis Catholic Church in Brainerd. Burial will be in Evergreen Cemetery.
Arrangements are with Nelson-Doran Funeral Home in Brainerd.
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