Jeanne Laurice Bendtsen
Bendtsen, Jeanne Laurice November 9, 1927 - June 29, 2020 Jeanne Bendtsen, formerly Jeanne Johnstone, nee Jeanne Laurice Shillock passed away peacefully on June 29th attended by her daughter Sally Irrgang. She was born to Laurence and Almyra Shillock in Minneapolis, Minnesota. One of four siblings, she was preceded in death by her older sister, Louise Lewald, and survived by brothers Thomas and James Shillock, and her husband Quentin Bendtsen. She leaves behind five children, Mary Sue (John) Pavik, Sally Irrgang, Georgia (Jim) Greeley, Rob (Mary) Johnstone and Roy (Lori) Johnstone. She also is survived by seven stepchildren, Katherine Bendtsen, James (Nancy) Bendtsen, Robert Bendtsen, Elizabeth Bendtsen, Steven Bendtsen, John Bendtsen and Sharon Bendtsen. In addition, a host of nieces and nephews, numerous grand children and great grand children, mourn her passing. Her influence was positive and wide, and her legacy one of faith, love and joy. Jeanne lived through times of momentous change and dramatic history. Her formative years were during the Great Depression and fostered a lifetime of frugality and hard work. Some of her children used to refer to her as the original Second Hand Rose. She cold stretch a dollar like no one else. Her high school years were during World War II. She met her future husband, George Johnstone, at Washburn High School in Minneapolis. Jeanne and George eloped after graduation, traveling to South Dakota to be married. Jeanne and George raised their five children in South Dakota, Blooming-ton, and Eden Prairie, Minnesota. George was a traveling salesman for most of their marriage, leaving Jeanne as a full-time mom with a home and children to manage. During that time she trained to become a graphic designer, later being employed by Erickson Corporation and the Sun Newspapers. In 1973/74 Jeanne founded the Eden Prairie News, a local paper that is still publishing today. Jeanne and George divorced in late 1975. She met Quentin Bendtsen and eloped with him in December of 1976. After several years Jeanne and Quent moved to Motley, Minnesota. They built a cabin on the Crow Wing River, her "cottage on the river" which became their home, and ran a variety of different businesses in the area before retiring. Jeanne loved music, playing the piano and guitar, dancing and singing. She was a life-long learner and nature lover. Her active curiosity lead her to investigate things like searching for wild food, attempting taxidermy, community theater, gardening, sewing, crafting, macramé, and almost any type of creative problem solving. But her primary loves were music and visual art. She loved to paint on canvas and nearly anything else that was not nailed down, even a kitchen floor, which was nailed down. She was a woman of faith. Her Catholic tradition was a central component of her life, and she served her parishes in many roles over the years. In their later years, she and Quentin wintered in Texas and spent the summer at their much-loved Crow Wing cabin and their home in Motley. After their snowbird travel ended, the pair lived at Margaret Place in Coon Rapids until she went into home hospice care. She died in her daughter's home in Bloomington. Jeanne's life was long and full of wonder, tragedy, love, hard work, joy and curiosity. She is missed by all who knew her, but has left behind a wealth of memories to be cherished.
Published on August 2, 2020
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