Erma M. Anderson

SHERBURN – A Celebration of Life service for Erma M. Anderson, 93, of Sherburn, Minn., will be 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 5, 2013, at St. John’s Lutheran Church, Sherburn, Minn., with Rev. Steven D. Wilson, officiating. Burial will be in Sherburn Cemetery, Sherburn, Minn.

Erma was called to her eternal rest on Tuesday morning, Oct. 1, 2013, at Lyon Manor Nursing Home in Rock Rapids, Iowa. Visitation and a time of sharing memories with the Anderson family will be held one hour prior to the services Saturday at the church.

Personal words of comfort may be sent to the family online at

Erma Marie Poppe was born Oct. 6, 1919, at home on Houge Ridge, Caledonia, Minn., to Henry F. and Lydia (Wiebke) Poppe. She was the middle child of seven children. She had three brothers, Vincent, Harold, Dale; and three sisters, Norma, Vera, and Ruby. She attended Houge Ridge, District #98, country school at Caledonia, Minn. When commencement exercise for the rural schools of Houston County was held on July 28, 1932, Erma graduated along with 100 other eighth-graders. During the Depression, it was not possible to afford high school, so Erma and her sister, Norma, went to Chicago to work as household maids. In 1939, she attended the University of Minnesota Agricultural School in St. Paul, Minn., where she met Arlin Anderson. Arlin and Erma were married Aug. 12, 1940, in Caledonia. They farmed for 45 years on Jay Center farm in Martin County, Minn. Erma loved to be a farmer. She raised chickens and brood sows, and helped harvest crops until their retirement. Every day she listened to the crop prices on the radio. She kept meticulous records of those crop prices and determined the best time to market the crops. After retirement, they moved to Sherburn where they lived for 31 years. Arlin passed away on Sept. 23, 2002.

Erma was lifelong Lutheran and Republican. She was baptized on Oct. 26, 1919, and confirmed on June 25, 1933, both in Caledonia. She was a member of St. John’s Lutheran Church where she was active in its Ladies Aid. She was a member of Elm Creek Garden Club, and an adult leader of the local 4-H club. Erma was a horse lover and kept records of all Kentucky Derby and triple-crown race winners.

Erma is survived by her four daughters: Gayle, (George) Bruns of Rock Rapids, Iowa, Gloria (Roger) Moore of Blue Earth, Minn., Gwen (Bruce) Quesnell of Whitehall, Mont., and Jennifer (Mark) Sandstrom of Ellsworth, Wis.; grandchildren, George D. Bruns, Molly (Mike) Wickam, Daniel (Lora) Moore, Nancy (Jerry) Bonnifield, Grant (Veronica) Wise; great-grandchildren, Blake and Savannah Wickam, Eli, Evelyn and AJ Bonnifield, Jessica and Travis Moore, Abigail Quesnell and Michael Wise; many nieces, nephews, and other friends and relatives. Also surviving is her sister, Vera Jones of Wheat Ridge, Colo.; and sister-in-law, Marjorie Poppe of Houston, Minn.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her three brothers; her sisters, Norma and Ruby; and by her husband of 62 years, Arlin A. Anderson.