Margaret Irene (Hatfield) Fleming of North Mankato, MN passed away peacefully on Tuesday, October 10, 2023. She was born on March 10, 1923 at the home of her grandparents; Henry and Anna (Albers) Schrader in Bridgewater township, Rice County, MN. It was always a source of pride to be the only person born in the house that is still in the Schrader family. Her parents were James G. and Edna C. (Schrader) Hatfield. Margaret was baptized at Trinity Lutheran Church in Dundas, Mn on June 3, 1923. Margaret grew up on the family farm along the Snake River several miles from McGrath, MN. When she graduated from McGrath in 1941 they still didn’t have electricity at home. That fall she went on to attend the University of Duluth. She double majored in math and biology education graduating in 1945. Margaret taught school in Moorhead and Benson, MN. Wanting to see the country she took a train to the west coast to visit her aunt and uncle. In 1948 she was hired to teach in Malin, OR and met her future husband, Max at a square dance in Tulelake, CA where Max had a homestead. Margaret was united in marriage to Max William Fleming (hometown Beaver City, NE) on July 6, 1950 in Northfield, MN. After their marriage Max returned to Lincoln, NE to complete his bachelors degree. They returned to Tulelake for a short time before moving to Los Angeles where Max obtained his Masters. They moved to St. Cloud, MN for 3 years and then to Owatonna, MN. After a year in town they bought a farm on Lemond road. Shortly after moving the youngest of their 7 children was born. Margaret returned to teaching in 1968 and taught in Waseca for several years. She then taught for many years in Litomysl, MN. They sold the farm and moved to Ellendale, MN for several years where Max passed away in 1987. She was then employed at McCrossen Boys Ranch in Sioux Falls, SD where she had the opportunity of a lifetime. McCrossen sent several teams of horses to participate on the Texas Sesquicentennial wagon train from January to July 1986. After covering 3,000 miles around Texas they ended at the Texas state fair. Since McCrossen sent groups of boys to help they needed a teacher along. A “schoolhouse” was built on a hay wagon pulled by horses and Margaret taught the boys while rolling down the road! She found it a most thrilling adventure to see the flora, fauna and geology of Texas! Upon retiring from McCrossen’s she built a home in St. Peter. She continued to substitute teach in area schools until age 85. When raising her family on the farm Margaret was a member of the neighborhood ladies group, the KYN club. She also enjoyed membership in AAUW. Having a flower garden, birdwatching and reading were Margaret’s main hobbies. She also enjoyed sewing many stuffed animals for her grandchildren. She loved to travel and summer vacation meant going to visit family and friends throughout the United States. Mission trips to Mexico with St. John’s Lutheran Church in Waseca was another of her opportunities to travel. She even went with a group from St. John’s to the Boundary Waters when she was in her 80s! One spring her children bought her a plane ticket to England where her granddaughter was attending college. The two of them explored England and Europe for 3 weeks. Margaret enjoyed bible study at her church in her later years. When you would say goodbye after visiting she would reply “take care, beware, of the green eyed dragon with the thirteen tails”!
Margaret is survived by her 7 children; Pierce of Boone, IA, Mary Kruger of Austin, MN, Stephen (Vicki) of Elysian, MN, Rita (Dale) Seath of Elysian, MN, Jeffery (Sherri) of Preston, MN, Ralph of St. Cloud, MN, and Keith (Kelly) of Lakeville, MN; 20 grandchildren, 41 great grandchildren and 6 great great grandchildren with 1 on the way and many nieces, nephews and several cousins. She was preceded in death by her husband, Max; her parents; 4 brothers; 1 sister; and a daughter in law, Deloris.
Funeral service will be at St. Peter Lutheran Church, 427 W Mulberry St. in St. Peter, MN on Friday, October 20, 2023 at 11 am with a viewing 1 hour prior to the service. A meal will be served after the service with burial to follow at Groveland Cemetery, Dundas, MN. Memorials are preferred to St. Peter Lutheran in St. Peter, MN. The funeral will be livestreamed and available below.
The live stream link below is a complimentary service provided by
St. Peter Funeral Home.
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