Sharon Louise Vangsness passed away on Monday, January 22, 2024 at the age of 83 peacefully surrounded by her loving family.
Sharon was born on November 5, 1940 to Nels and Gertrude Ekstrom en route to the hospital along Highway 52 in Inver Grove Heights, MN. Sharon was a lifelong member of St. Ansgar’s Church in Cannon Falls, MN being baptized, confirmed and married at the church. She was an active member her entire life serving as a Sunday school teacher, on the church choir and church council. She had a strong faith and trust in God.
Sharon loved all things family. She married David Robert Vangsness on March 26, 1960 and had 4 children. She loved to attend her children’s activities from sporting events, music concerts, plays, motocross races, and Harley Jams. She was always there for her family without fail. This continued with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren by attending their dance recitals, swim meets, band concerts, and sporting events. She spent much of her time with family and friends at her and Dave’s cabin in Cumberland, WI. Sharon was known for her baking, particularly her apple bars, chocolate chip cookies, her special Christmas Bread and Scandinavian treats. She loved a good game of cribbage with Dave and spent lots of her time sewing and doing cross-stitch.
Sharon possessed a servant’s heart in faith, family & work. She graduated from college at the age of 40 with a degree in social work. This began a long and fulfilling career until retiring at the age of 75 working for non-profit foundations including the MN Foodbank Network, Alzheimer’s Association, Crohns & Colitis Foundation, MN Veterinary Medical Association, and the Northfield Community Action Council. Sharon truly believed in community, service to that community, and connecting to others through time well spent.
Sharon is preceded in death by her parents Nels & Gertrude Ekstrom, her sister Diane and brother Roger, loving husband David, and son Michael. Her legacy will be carried on by her surviving family including son Steven Vangsness, daughter Michelle (Lyle) Zappa, and son Jeffrey (Teresa Crockett) Vangsness. Grandchildren Ashley (Andy) Nelson, Jaime (Matt Rodstein) Zappa, David (Meghan) Zappa, Dylan Vangsness, Mitchell (Lexi Craven) Vangsness, Sally Vangsness, and Tyler & Abby Vangsness. Great-grandchildren Annabelle, Everleigh & Reid Nelson and Larkin & Sloane Rodstein.
A faithful service to celebrate Sharon’s life is scheduled for Friday, January 26, 2024 at 11:00 am at St. Ansgar’s Lutheran Church, 7459 Hwy 19 Blvd, Cannon Falls, MN, 55009. A visitation will take place the hour preceding the service at 10:00 am at the church. Sharon’s service will be livestreamed and may be viewed by clicking the link below. A burial & luncheon will follow the service. Contributions can be made to the church in Sharon’s honor.
Sharon's family would like to thank the staff of Brighton Hospice and the Lexington Pointe Senior Living for the excellent care she received.
LIVESTREAM INFORMATION: For those who would like to participate in Sharon's service via livestream, you can watch the service on Friday, January 26 at 11:00 am. It can be viewed by scrolling to the bottom of this page and click PLAY to begin. Please leave a message of support on our Tribute Wall to let the family know you were able to watch the service. If you are having troubles with the Livestream, the service will be available to watch later in the day.