Phyllis Delia (Fristedt) Jokela, 90, died on Monday, July 6, at Northfield Hospital Long Term Care. She will be remembered by family, friends, and staff at the Care Center as a positive, caring person, who was deeply grateful for the people and beauty in her life. Phyllis was born in Grand Rapids, MN, to Joseph Fristedt and Beth (Watson) Fristedt. She graduated from Central High School in Minneapolis. She grew up singing with her three sisters, and her love of singing in harmony and laughing with her family continued into adulthood with her own children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. When she was eighteen, "almost nineteen" as she liked to say, she took a train by herself from Minneapolis to New Kensington, PA, to marry her Iron Range sweetheart, Veikko Jokela. They spent time in Boulder, CO and Washington, DC, North Dakota, and Plymouth, MN, before moving to Cannon Falls with their four children, Bill, Linda, Becky, and Cindy to farm in 1963. Phyllis was a strong and energetic city-girl-turned-farmer. She was a full-time homemaker and partner with her husband, and carried many pails of hog feed and bales of hay. She loved taking walks in the pasture with Veik to check on the cows or look for crocuses or morels. She was always eager to be outside, to walk and bike the gravel roads surrounding the farm, and did so well into her 70s. She welcomed all to her home with her characteristic personal warmth and generous spirit. She was a 4-H leader, Luther League choir director, and served as president of the League of Women Voters. She and Veik traveled to Finland to visit family and friends, took road trips around the country to visit friends, and ventured to Costa Rica for a month. Veik died unexpectedly in November 2013. Phyllis loved life and enjoyed people. Whether sitting by the fire with morning coffee with Veik or engaging in conversation with a child, grandchild, friend or stranger, she was a warm-hearted listening presence with a ready laugh and positive attitude. "Oh What a Beautiful Morning" was her theme song, no matter the weather. Her optimism and love never faltered. She is survived by her sister, Edith/Itsy (Dave) Egertson of St. Louis; son Bill Jokela (Mary Jane Lipinski) of Marshfield, WI; daughters Linda Jokela, of Minneapolis, Becky Jokela (Dave Paxson) of Cannon Falls, Cindy Jokela (John Poling) of Winona; 10 grandchildren: Kara (Chandler) Yorkhall, Johanna (Jeremy) Manalis, Brennan Hall; Nikolai Paxson, Kelsey (Georgia) Paxson; Anja and Dana (Karin) Jokela; Karlan, Les, and Noah Poling; and 6 great-grandchildren. In her year at the Long Term Care Center, she added to her "family" and will be dearly missed by many. A memorial celebration of her life will be held on August 1 at the First Congregational Church in Cannon Falls, with an informal gathering at 1 p.m. and service at 2 p.m. Contributions in her memory may be made to: Long Term Care Center in Northfield, the Cannon River Watershed Partnership, or Cannon Falls Food Shelf.
Funeral Home: Lundberg Funeral Home 5839 Hwy 19 Blvd Cannon Falls, MN US 55009
Saturday, August 1, 2015
First Congregational United Church of Christ
220 W. Main St.
Cannon Falls, MN 55009
Gathering at 1 p.m.