Cover photo for Virginia May Earley's Obituary
Virginia May Earley Profile Photo
1930 Virginia 2021

Virginia May Earley

May 3, 1930 — June 6, 2021

Virginia M. Earley age 91 of Detroit Lakes, MN died June 6, 2021 at Essentia Health, Fargo, ND.

Virginia May Earley was born May 3, 1930 in Pelican Rapids, MN to Walter and Alice (Johnson) Priem. She grew up in rural Pelican Rapids and attended District 149 Country School near the family farm. She worked on the farm and attended the Detroit Lakes Business College to learn the financial aspects of running a farm. She also did waitress work at Bunnel’s and the Proctor Hotel in Detroit Lakes. On May 17, 1948 she was united in marriage to Harold Earley. They farmed on Harold’s home place and raised their family there. Virginia was a seamstress at Norby’s Department Store in Detroit Lakes for thirty years. She also worked at Fingerhut, Arctic Cat, Davis Laundromat, Pine to Palm Golf Course, and the Becker County Historic Museum. She has been a resident at Ecumen-Emmanuel Nursing home for the past three years.

Virginia enjoyed gardening, flowers, canning, birdwatching, camping, and bowling trips. She was also very active in 4-H with her children. She was well known for being an expert seamstress. She also enjoyed knitting, crocheting, quilting, tatting, embroidering, her Homemakers Group, Circle at 1st Lutheran and Sons of Norway. She made many quilts for the nursing home residents to enjoy.

She is survived by two sons, Merle (Cheryl) Earley, of Detroit Lakes, MN; and Rick (Linda) Earley, of Detroit Lakes, MN; four daughters, Karlene (Gary) Negen, of Frazee, MN; Joanne (Charles) Thompson, of Detroit Lakes, MN; Becky (Craig) Mastin, of Detroit Lakes, MN; and Susan (Scott) Conklin, of Osage, MN; 14 grandchildren, Shane (Lisa) Gigstead, Dane (Diane) Gigstead, Mitch Negen, Andy Foster, Nikki (Zack) Sullinger, Jessi (Kyle) Jacobson, Shawn (Julie) Earley, Shannan (Rachel) Earley, Carmen (Jason) Sivers, Jason Earley, Christina (Clint) Armstrong, Lisa (Casey) Christensen, Greg (Sonja) Thompson, Travis (Tammy) Thompson, Sabriel (Bethany) Mastin, Ben Conklin, and Kim Conklin; 26 great grandchildren; 44 great-great grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Harold; four brothers; five sisters; her parents and several nieces and nephews.

Funeral Services will be on Monday June 14, 2021; 2:00 p.m. at the First Lutheran Church in Detroit Lakes, MN. Visitation will be on Sunday from 3:00 – 5:00 p.m. at the West-Kjos Funeral Home in Detroit Lakes. Interment will be in the Lakeview Cemetery, Detroit Lakes, MN.

Link to livestream for First Lutheran Church

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Service Schedule

Past Services


Sunday, June 13, 2021

3:00 - 5:00 pm (Central time)

West Kjos Funeral Home


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Funeral Service

Monday, June 14, 2021

Starts at 2:00 pm (Central time)

First Lutheran Church


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