Eleanor M. Buttenhoff, 95, of Monticello, MN went peacefully to be with her Lord on June 2, 2019 at the Monticello Care Center, surrounded by her loving family.
Eleanor was born on Nov. 8, 1923 on the farm in Independence Township, MN, to Jesse and Bernice (Gotsch) Pool. She graduated from Delano High School in June 1941 and in Aug 1941 married Leonard Buttenhoff of Howard Lake, MN. Leonard was drafted into the Army in Oct. 1941 and Eleanor later joined him in Calif. where she worked in a boarding house and the North American Aircraft factory. The couple lived several places while Leonard was in the service, including California, Louisiana, and Kentucky. At his discharge in Nov 1945, they returned to farming in Howard Lake. After leaving farming in 1951, they lived in Golden Valley, Le Seuer, Minneapolis, Morris (a return to farming), Buffalo, and Rockford, MN. Four children were born to the couple. Eleanor and Leonard divorced in 1978. Following the divorce, Eleanor lived in Minneapolis and worked at St Mary’s Hospital until her retirement. She moved to Cedar Crest Apartments in Monticello in 1993 and spent her last two years at the Monticello Care Center.
Growing up and throughout her life, Eleanor did many types of work: on the farm, as a hired girl for housework, in a boarding house, in factories, for a babysitting agency, doing home daycare, as a Dairy Queen owner/operator, as a bakery assistant, as a nursing home cook, as a hospital dietary aide, and as a church secretary.
Eleanor was a generous person to her family, neighbors in her apartment building, her pastor, staff at the Care Center, and others. She enjoyed baking and making crafts, specializing in plastic canvas ornaments, magnets, and other holiday decorations. Often she would openly give away baked goodies, (cookies, blueberry muffins, lemon poppy seed bread), crafts and/or money, other times gifts were given secretly. One of her favorite tricks was to hang a Christmas ornament on each doorknob at Cedar Crest on Christmas Eve late at night when she wouldn’t be ‘caught’. Eleanor was also a regular at Bingo and other games at Cedar Crest and the Care Center. She passed her winnings (quarters, dimes, and nickels) along to her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. It was her way to continue to be generous when she no longer was able to bake or do crafts.
Survived by her children; Richard Buttenhoff, Gene (Joan) Buttenhoff, Diane (Virgil) Rose, Joan (Frank) Opay, five grandchildren, and ten great-grandchildren; preceded in death by her parents, and sister, Pearl Starry.
A memorial service will be held at St Peter’s Lutheran Church, 413 3rd St E, Monticello, on June 10 at 11:00, with visitation from 9:30-11:00, lunch to follow the service. Interment at Lewis Cemetery, Maple Plain. Memorials preferred to St Peter’s Lutheran or Guardian Angels & Elim Hospice, Elk River.
Thank you to the staff of the Monticello Care Center and Guardian Angels Hospice for making Eleanor’s final hours comfortable and peaceful. God blessed Eleanor with a long life and we were blessed to have her in our lives. As we loved her, so we miss her.