Marilyn Wahlberg

Wednesday, June 14, 2023 5:14 pm

Marilyn Wahlberg, age 93, of Decorah, passed away on Tuesday, June 13, 2023, at her home in Decorah.

Funeral Services will be at 11 a.m., Tuesday, June 20, 2023, at the First Lutheran Church, 604 W Broadway St. in Decorah with Rev. Michael Wilker presiding.  Burial will be at Holden Lutheran Church Cemetery in Kenyon, MN at a later date. Visitation will be from 9 a.m. until the time of service on Tuesday at the church.

In lieu of flowers, memorials can be directed to either the Raymond E. and Marilyn Wahlberg Scholarship (Luther College), Pearson Memorial Scholarship (Luther College), First Lutheran Church, or Winn Med Hospice (Decorah, IA). 

Marilyn Ann Wahlberg of Decorah died peacefully at home surrounded by family on June 13, 2023.  She was born to Einar and Florence Pearson at Swedish Hospital in Minneapolis, Minn., on May 13, 1930.  Marilyn and her younger brother Allan grew up spending many summers on their grandparent’s (Ma and Pa Berglund’s) farm in Milaca, Minn., and had great memories of their time throughout their younger years spending Sundays with their parents on outings, a rare time off for their father who normally worked 16-hour days at his sheet metal shop.

Marilyn was a gifted pianist and accompanied her HS orchestra, many soloists, church choirs, and high school musicals throughout her years. She was an amazing card player, baker, cook, active volunteer and friend to anyone she met. Marilyn didn’t know a stranger and made everyone she met feel loved and special.  Her recall of people and how she knew them was uncanny.  Friendships/relationships were the number one priority in her life – if she learned of a friend in need or a cause for volunteers, she was the first in line to respond with her time, a casserole, or her incredible brownies or baked goods.

Marilyn married Ray Wahlberg on March 18, 1950. They were married for 53 years, and raised five children together starting in Richfield, Minn. Marilyn worked many different jobs throughout their early years to help put Ray through law school, then as a teacher’s aide in Kenyon, Minn. public schools while the kids were young, and in the Career Services Office (St. Olaf College) and the Alumni Office (Luther College) in later years. Marilyn amassed many friends in all the places she lived – Minneapolis, Richfield, Kenyon, Northfield, and lastly Decorah. Always entertaining and hosting events, she was the epitome of the hostess with the mostest.

Marilyn was extremely proud of her Swedish heritage, something she attributed to pretty much any success, or question as to her longevity, in life. Her close connections with her family in Sweden have extended to the relationships her kids now have with their Swedish family. Anyone who met Marilyn would leave their encounter more often than not, knowing she was (proudly!) 100% Swedish. Having mostly lived in predominantly Norwegian settlements throughout her life, she recently said, “But I like Norwegians too, they’ve been accepting of me” – her family couldn’t agree more.

Marilyn is survived by her brother Allan of Mansfield, Mass.; sons Randy (Pam), Brad (Rhonda), Tom (Beth), John (Alice); daughter Kathy; grandchildren Barry (Sarah), Brady (Emily), Jenna (Eivind), Anders, Nick, Taylor, Annika, Jackson; and great-grandchildren Madison, Sterling, Beau and Bennett. Marilyn is preceded in death by her parents, and sister-in-law Myrna Pearson and son-in-law Rob (‘Doc’) Fuqua.


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