Mary Ellen Gillard, 95, Rochester
Mary Ellen Gillard, 95, of Rochester, died Friday, May 5, 2023, at the Rochester Rehabilitation and Care Center.
Mary was born on March 27, 1928, in Springbrook, Wisconsin to Fred and Augusta (Wehmayer) Rhodes. The family moved to the West Concord area in the fall of 1929. She attended rural schools and graduated from West Concord High School in 1945; one of seven graduates. She attended Gale Institute in Minneapolis and then worked for TWA Airline in Chicago. In 1948, she enrolled in the first LPN class at St. Marys Hospital in Rochester and worked there until March of 1950, when she married Charles D. Gillard. They moved to their farm in Ellington township and she lived there until 2002, when she moved to Kasson.
Mary worked at Morningside Care in West Concord for three years and then as the West Concord School nurse for eleven years. She volunteered at the Red Cross Blood Mobile for many years, receiving the first LPN certificate and pin from the Red Cross in the Southeast District.
She enjoyed needlework, traveling, researching and writing up family genealogy. She and Charlie hosted several family reunions, drawing relatives from across the nation. She was on the initial West Concord Historical Society Accessions Committee, which did all the scraping, painting, refinishing and arranging of the display rooms and hall ways. She served on the Society’s Board of Directors, the Alumni Reunion Committee, Fairview Auxiliary and was a member of the Methodist Church.
She is survived by her sons Joseph (Sandie) Gillard of Fountain, Edward (Denise) Gillard of Mantorville and Frank (Natalie) of Tucumcari, NM, six grandchildren, 13 great grandchildren and 6 great-great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents, husband Charles in 1994, brothers Delbert Rhodes, William Lester Rhodes, Robert Rhodes, Jerry Rhodes, sisters Della Gillard, Dorothy Stucky and Charlotte Hughes.
Visitation will be held Friday, May 12, 2023, from 12:00-1:00 pm at Kasson United Methodist Church. A memorial service will be held at 1:00 pm at the church.