Cover photo for Ellen Mary Rothenbacher's Obituary
Ellen Mary Rothenbacher Profile Photo
1935 Ellen 2021

Ellen Mary Rothenbacher

December 31, 1935 — August 17, 2021

Ellen Rothenbacher passed away Tuesday, August 17, 2021 at Signe & Olivia Assisted Living in Pine City at the age of 85.

Ellen Mary Heffernan was born December 31, 1935 to Joseph and Mary (O’Connor) Heffernan in Tralee, County Kerry, Ireland. 

Ellen was born in Ireland and at the age of 18, came to Chicago with $5 tucked into her bra. While working full time at AT&T/Northwestern Bell Company, she applied to part-time work in gift wrapping at Robert Hall Clothing Store.  She was interviewed for the position by Robert Rothenbacher, the manager of the store.  Not only did she get the job, she found the love of her life!  They were married at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Rush City, Minnesota in 1960.  They raised two children, Dean Paul Rothenbacher and Margo Ann Rothenbacher.  Her faith and family was always the most important things in her life. 

Although they lived in Shoreview, the Rothenbacher family enjoyed time at their lake place in Harris, Minnesota. In the 70’s, the family enjoyed living on a hobby farm in Rush City.  In the 80’s, they bought their first cabin on Cross Lake in Pine City.  Shortly afterward, they bought their retirement home on the same lake.  Ellen enjoyed the water, beautiful flowers and visiting with friends.

In order to graduate from the Irish high school, Ellen had to learn to knit and this became one of her true passions. Ellen loved visiting with people and had a passion for befriending people who were sad or lonely. With her Irish brogue, she could strike up a conversation with anyone. She always made people feel wanted and loved.  This included every dog too! She truly had a gentle heart and a loving spirit. Of all these passions, her true love was always her husband, her children, her grandchildren and family.

Ellen is survived by her husband Bob Rothenbacher of Pine City; children Dean Rothenbacher of Oakdale, Margo Rothenbacher (Peter Schmittdiel) of Pine City; grandchildren Pierce Rothenbacher-Schmittdiel and Parker Rothenbacher-Schmittdiel; siblings Esther Murphy of Askeaton, Ireland, Joseph Heffernan of Old Mill, New Castle West, Ireland; nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends. 

Ellen was preceded in death by her parents Joseph and Mary Heffernan; nephew Dermot Heffernan; Joseph and Marie Rothenbacher (in-laws) of Rush City.

Mass of Christian Burial for Ellen will be celebrated: 11 AM Saturday (8/28) at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Rush City.  A visitation is planned for family and friends to begin at 5 PM Friday (8/27) at Olson Funeral Chapel in Rush City and also one hour prior to the service at the church.

Please click here to view Ellen's Funeral Mass.

Memorials may be directed to: Sacred Heart Catholic Church of Rush City or St. Jude's Children's Hospital. 

Funeral arrangements are entrusted to the: Funeral and Cremation Service of Rush City, Olson Chapel
www.FuneralAndCremationService.com

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Ellen Mary Rothenbacher, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Friday, August 27, 2021

Starts at 5:00 pm (Central time)

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Rosary

Friday, August 27, 2021

Starts at 7:00 pm (Central time)

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Visitation

Saturday, August 28, 2021

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

Sacred Heart Catholic Church

415 W 5th St, Rush City, MN 55069

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Mass of Christian Burial

Saturday, August 28, 2021

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

Sacred Heart Catholic Church

415 W 5th St, Rush City, MN 55069

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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