Cover photo for Marian Hillive Bendickson's Obituary
Marian Hillive Bendickson Profile Photo
1931 Marian 2020

Marian Hillive Bendickson

January 29, 1931 — January 12, 2020

Marian Bendickson passed Sunday, January 12, 2020 at her home at the age of 88, with loving family and the wonderful  assistance and advice from Grace Hospice.  

Marian Hillive (Larson) Bendickson was born January 29, 1931 in Rushseba Township, the first child of Clarence Gunder Larson and Olga (Nelson) Larson.  The family resided on a farm located east of Rush City near the St. Croix River, where the river and the surrounding woods provided lots of fun activities including swimming, fishing, long walks, picking berries, and skating.  Six siblings joined Marian: Clarice, Kenneth, Della, Arnold, Rudolph and Clarence.

Marian preferred working with her father outside, helping with the horses and milking cows.  She was a capable farmhand driving the teams, and drove teams that others considered too green and flighty.  She and her siblings enjoyed riding the horses as well, a favorite pastime of hers.  When it came to helping Ma in the house, Marian preferred baking, but she had many other skills.  She sewed, crocheted many doilies, quilted, knitted, embroidered tablecloths and sampler, cooked and other household chores.  The family still has a quilt she made as a teenager that she embroidered with horses she had drawn on towels, filled the quilt with wool batting from wool she collected off the fences from the family’s sheep.  

Her first school was Chisago County School No. 56.  The family moved to her grandfather Nelson’s farm for a year and a half where the children attended Pine County School No. 13.  They walked to both of these schools, often walking on top of frozen snow piles, having snowball fights and slogging through spring muds. After moving back to the Rushseba Township farm, Marian completed her education at Rush City elementary and high school.

 After leaving school, Marian found work with the Harvey and Esther Schmidt family, giving her an opportunity to travel with their family to Louisiana, Texas and other states while she cared for the family’s children.  Once she returned to Minnesota, she moved to Minneapolis to seek employment and worked at Mr. Farrells Girls Club from 1950-1951.  After that, she found work as a waitress at Kresge’s Five and Dime on Nicollet Avenue in Minneapolis where she was employed from 1951-1954.

In 1952, she began to exchange letters with Kermit Stanley Bendickson, a soldier in Korea who was given her name by a friend of Gerald Bergin. For the next year, they corresponded until Kermit was discharged and returned home to Sisseton, South Dakota.  He soon moved to Hopkins to work at Minneapolis Moline.  One day Kermit, his brother Ted (Theodore) and her friend Cynthia Cedergren surprised her at her job at Kresge’s.  In 1953, Marian and Kermit started to date; they were married in a simple ceremony on October 20, 1953 in Hopkins where they continued to make their home.  While living in Hopkins Wayne Gobel, Alice Elisa, Donald Allen and Shirley Ann were born. 

The family moved in with Marian’s parents on the farm for several months where Marian learned to drive and passed her driving test. That spring, as it often did, the St. Croix river flooded, the water filling the lower field east of the barn.  Her brother Kenny gave everyone a ride around the flooded field in his boat.

The family returned to Minneapolis, living in a Queen Anne fourplex on Nicollet Island, with Kermit’s brother Mickey (Milton) living two doors away.  David Brent was born while living there.  Next the family moved to an apartment on Emerson Avenue near Highway 55 where Sandra Jean was born.

On July 1, 1970, Marian and Kermit purchased a home at 3331 Aldrich Avenue North, in Minneapolis, where they resided for many years.  In addition to the children, the household included an array of pets; Spot, Duke, Snoopy, Betsy, Buddy, Pearl, Guy, Bill, Jazz, and many other pets including mice, chameleons and birds. Marian enjoyed her flower gardens, one year she was recognized for her efforts by the neighborhood association.  She continued her creative endeavors with crocheting, sewing, decorating cakes, journaling, genealogy, and other projects she designed.

In 1972, Marian took a job at The Hungry Eye restaurant in downtown Minneapolis and stayed there until 1974.  After a short break from work, she took a waitressing job at Merwin Drug’s on Broadway and Lyndale Aves North.  She became a cook after filling in for a vacationing cook; proving her value in the kitchen.  She retired from Merwin’s in 1993.

Marian enjoyed spending time with family and especially visits with Kermit’s family in Sisseton, South Dakota.  Kermit’s mother was a favorite and she missed Elise dearly after her death.  The family often visited South Dakota to spend time with Kermit’s siblings and their children, and Marian’s last trip this fall was to attend the funeral of her niece Carole Fonder in De Smet, South Dakota.  Family gatherings were filled with food, laughs, games, and lots of fun.  Loud fun, which was often daunting to anyone new attending.  Kermit and Marian always welcomed everyone and that lasted throughout their lives.  Many of the children’s friends have fond memories of Marian and Kermit and their hospitality over the years.  

Kermit passed away on September, 20, 2010, Marian remained in their home until she broke her hip in 2014.  After rehabilitation, she moved to Cedar, Minnesota to live with her daughter Sandra and Sandra’s partner Mike Marvin.  There she enjoyed the more rural feel with all the wildlife that visited and the large open yard with a pond, woods and creek.  She also made a point to spoil the pets, Mama, Grazy and Bella, especially Bella who had Marian well-trained in treat giving.  Marian spent her days reading, making puzzles, writing letters, journaling, and playing games.  She was always willing to join in a rousing game of Pug even though she invariably finished in the hole. Mike Aronson gave her a large mallet last year to use to smash people’s fingers while playing, although she chose not to use it.

One could always count on Marian for a brilliant comment or ‘the look’ that no one with any sense dared to ignore.  Practical jokes were frequent.  In their dating days when Kermit’s family didn’t know who she was, Marian walked up to one of Kermit’s sister’s homes and pretended to be a holy roller until she and Kermit revealed it as a joke.  When hemming a pair of pants for a friend of Kermit, she pinned one leg shorter as a joke. For a woman who was often the quiet one, she was always willing to join in on a prank, especially when partnering with Kermit.

Marian is survived by her children Alice Countryman of Crystal, Donald Bendickson of Minneapolis, Shirley Bendickson of Falcon Heights, David Bendickson (Katie Moynagh) of Minneapolis, Sandra Bendickson (Michael Marvin) of Cedar; daughter-in-law Donna Bendickson of Crystal; son-in-law Tim Countryman of New Hope; 6 grandchildren Jennifer (Greg) Crest of Robbinsdale, James Countryman (Nancy) of Minneapolis, Joan (Corey) Weatherspoon of Brooklyn Center, Amanda Summers of Minneapolis, Adam Bendickson (Rita) of Falcon Heights, Thomas Bendickson of Crystal; 3 great-grandchildren Kendall Crest, Ethan Crest, Jaylen Weatherspoon; siblings Della Nelson, Arnold (Pat) Larson all of North Branch, Clarence (Audrey) Larson of Rush City; sister-in-law Joyce Larson of Pine City; many nieces, nephews and cousins.

She was preceded in death by her parents Clarence and Olga Larson; husband Kermit Bendickson; son Wayne Bendickson; brother-in-law Warren Nelson; siblings Rudy Larson, Kenneth (Evelyn) Larson, Clarice (Jerry) Bergin.

Reverend Nathan Baker-Trinity will officiate funeral services for Marian: 12 Noon; Monday (1/20/2020) at the First Evangelical Lutheran Church of Rush City. A time of visitation and reviewal is planned for one hour prior to the service at the church. The interment will take place in First Lutheran Cemetery in Rush City.

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




To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Marian Hillive Bendickson, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Monday, January 20, 2020

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Central time)

First Evangelical Lutheran Church

1000 S Jay Ave, Rush City, MN 55069

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

Funeral Service

Monday, January 20, 2020

Starts at 12:00 pm (Central time)

Funeral And Cremation Service Olson Chapel


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


Visits: 9

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the
Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Service map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

Send Flowers

Send Flowers

Plant A Tree

Plant A Tree