Clara W. Pantsar

Clara Wilma Pantsar, 97, of Cambridge passed away Sunday, March 18, 2012 at The Villages of North Branch.

She was born May 19, 1914 in a small farm house outside of Floodwood, Minn., one of seven children to Swedish immigrants Simon and Anna (Gustafson) Asp. She attended Prairie Lake Elementary School and graduated from Floodwood High School. After high school she enrolled in Nurse’s Training, but because of a tragedy at her parent’s farm, could not complete her education. After a year of helping on the farm, Clara moved to Cloquet where she met her husband to be, George Pantsar. They were married on June 20, 1936.

George had enlisted in the Army so Clara went to work in Minneapolis. She worked for General Mills in the bookkeeping and accounting department, and also took night classes to improve her skills. When George was discharged from the Army, he came home with a severe case of malaria. Clara, to support the two of them, took in discharged veterans for board and room in their Minneapolis home. She did this for several years.

In 1949 they had one daughter Simone, their only child. By 1955 the family moved to an 80 acre farm in Anoka. Because of their love for animals, they had horses, cows, pigs and chickens, along with the dogs and cats to care for. After Simone started school, Clara worked at the Anoka County Auditor’s Office. She was the first employee to operate their first automated bookkeeping machine. It was quite a challenge.

Clara became active in county politics, the Welcome Wagon, Mercy Hospital’s Women’s Auxiliary, along with holding a full time job. After George retired, they both traveled in their RV, and later purchased a home in Wisconsin on the Apple River.  As they became older, they sold their home and moved into a senior mobile home park in Princeton so they could be closer to their daughter and her family.

In January 1994, George passed away and Clara moved to Mill Ridge Commons in Cambridge. She became involved in many of their activities even though her eyesight was very poor. As years went by, she could no longer live by herself and moved into Grandview Christian Home. She found that she was not ready for nursing home living and moved to The Villages of North Branch where she has lived the past four years and enjoyed it very much.

She was preceded in death by her parents, husband George and all of her siblings. Clara is survived by her daughter Simone Wilber of Cambridge, two grandchildren Kelly and husband Barry Nelson of Stanchfield, Michael Wilber of Cambridge, two great grandsons Steven and Eric Nelson, brother Roy and wife Vivian Asp of Cloquet, sister Ruby Vokuil of Milwaukee, Ore., as well as nieces, nephews other relatives and loving friends.

Funeral Services will be held at 2 p.m., Thursday, March 22, 2012 at the Carlson-Lillemoen Funeral Home with Rev. Dennis Nelson officiating. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service. Rev. Dennis Nelson, accompanied by Darlene Fixell will sing “How Great Thou Art” and “Precious Lord Take My Hand.” Pallbearers will be Michael Wilber, Barry Nelson, Steven Nelson, Eric Nelson and Steve Pearson. Interment will be in the Cambridge Union Cemetery. Arrangements are with the Carlson-Lillemoen Funeral Home and Cremation Services of Cambridge.