Cover photo for Gloria Born's Obituary
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1926 Gloria 2020

Gloria Born

April 18, 1926 — July 4, 2020


Born, Gloria A. age 94 of Fridley.

Gloria Annette Born, age 94, of Blaine, Minnesota died Saturday July 4th, 2020. Gloria was born in Pontiac, Michigan the oldest daughter Ernest Olaf Hedwall and Helen Evangeline Johnson on April 18th, 1926. In her early years they lived in Chicago where her father worked for Al Capone as a driver. Gloria started her criminal career as a "look-out and family protector" at age 3. They left Chicago on a tip that there would be trouble just before the Saint Valentine's Day massacre and headed for Minneapolis.

At age 10 she accepted the lord. Her faith has been as strong now as it was when she was young. Never wavering. She has enjoyed attending church, singing and hearing gospel music, reading the bible and teaching. Her faith has helped others in her life to find the lord as well. It always bring a smile to her face.

The family which grew to include 3 sisters and 4 brothers lived in Minneapolis in many different locations, moving frequently. She attended many different schools and graduated from South High School in 1944. Gloria met Edward Born and his family during a summer vacation near Coon Lake. Edward proposed but she didn’t want to marry Edward before he left for the war. She preferred to wait until he returned.

Gloria took a job when she was 18. She spent some of her first earnings on chocolate covered peanuts for her sisters and brothers. This is one of their fond memories of their childhood since it was such a treat to get them.

Edward and Gloria were married in the prayer room at 1st Covenant Church in Minneapolis, MN on June 14th, 1947. Reverend Caleb Johnson performed the ceremony. The best man was Walter Johnson and the maid of honor was Betty Sjoberg, and they had two junior bridesmaids; Joyce Hedwall and Yvonne McCormack. After the ceremony they had a reception at her mother’s house, where about 50 guests celebrated with them. Her brothers Gary, Phil and Ken were housebound with chickenpox, where they had to watch from the windows.

After they were married they had an apartment for a short time at 13th and Yale Street. They moved in with her mother for about a year while they planned and started building their permanent home. The lot they purchased on Cottagewood Terrace in Blaine was basically all sand dunes. They began building the house themselves, with the help of family and friends, without a mortgage. Buying supplies and building it over time. On their first anniversary they gave each other a Colorado blue spruce which was one of the many trees that grew tall in their yard which eventually replaced the sand dunes.

Gloria worked at a downtown business as a mail girl, until she became pregnant with Bernie. She was laid off shortly after because she was pregnant. After training her replacement she was called in a couple of times to re-train her. Apparently they were not paying attention. The boss was supposed to get his mail first and the new girl wasn’t doing it properly.

On February 6th, 1949 their first son was born, Bernie, and they moved into their unfinished house soon after on April 9th, 1949. Bernie loved crawling in and out of the studs where the walls would soon be. On March 24th, 1951, their second son, Michael was born.

They spent time as a family going camping and doing many other fun things with family and friends. They became very close with the next door neighbors, The DeMars. They would have lunch frequently together and do crafts while the children played.

They lost their first garage to a tornado around 1951 and rebuilt a larger one. Their second garage was nearly as large as their house. This one too was damaged in a fire from an oil barrel explosion while Edward was welding. Luckily he wasn’t hurt as he had just left to get something he needed.

Gloria and Edward started teaching a Sunday school class of 2 and 3 year olds at their church, Spring Lake Park Baptist, now called Eaglebrook Church. They would do crafts and play with the children. They taught them many songs and stories from the Bible. For their part of the Christmas program every year they would gather the children in their class and lead them into the great hall on a rope filled with knots and handles for the children to hang on to so they wouldn't get lost or left behind. After they sang, they were led out the same way back into the classroom. During other holidays and events they would take Polaroid pictures of each child to create special personalized gifts for the parents. Gloria was very organized and kept records of her classes throughout the years. She would often attend a wedding’s or graduations from a child in her classes and bring an old photo to give to them. The children from her classes always remembered Grandpa and Grandma Born. They taught at the church for over 40 years before retiring.

Her faith was a big part of her life from childhood. She would attend any local services when she could and sometimes even walk over from their house if she couldn't get a ride. She also developed a love for all kinds of gospel music. She had been given a Bible from Rosie Parke’s. She read through the Bible every year. It was something she really enjoyed doing.

Michael married Bonita Carlson on June 14th, 1975, who then had three children. Christopher was born in January 1980, Suzanna was born in October 1981 and Kimberly was born October 1983. When Bonnie returned to work, Gloria told them that her grandchildren were not going to go to a day care. She started out watching them first at their house in Blaine but later to Fridley to watch them at their home.

Gloria and Edward spent many years taking the grandchildren out to do things for fun, including, parks, beaches, playgrounds, garage sales, the County Fair, Circus Circus and on hikes. She also was a "busy beaver" and always cleaned the house up. Suzi once answered the door and told the salesman that no one was home except the "maid". Everyone got a laugh out of that story. Another thing she loved to do with her grandchildren was bake cookies. She always gave each of them a Dixie cup with a spoonful of cookie dough in it to eat. Chocolate chip was the favorite flavor. Many weekends were spent with the grandchildren for sleepovers with movies and video games. She spoiled them as best she could. She also walked with the kids down the street to the playground by her house. It wasn't very large but she would sit on the bench and talk with neighbors while the kids played. She was very good at making sure they all took breaks and drank water, even if they didn't want to.

Over the years, family would gather at their house in Blaine. Every Sunday they would do a Sunday dinner with all of the family. Sometimes Gloria would cook, sometimes they would pick up KFC, but always had too much food. Their house in Blaine was not that large, imagine a sardine can. That was the family around the table that filled their entire living room. If someone needed to get out, that whole side of the table had to get up. After dinners were typically spent playing games or taking naps. Some of the games she enjoyed included Zonk, Scrabble, and other table games. She also did jigsaw puzzles frequently.

Birthdays were always celebrated at least once around Gloria. For everyone’s birthday in the family they had the tradition of a large family dinner out. The birthday persons choice, though usually

they tried to consider cost of the restaurant and what type of food was served to accommodate everyone’s likes. She would typically give a card with the amount of money for their age in it and sometimes a gift for them as well. Her cards always were filled with stickers. It was kind of her trade mark signature. Stickers all over the envelopes. She would even mail cards to family and friends all over the country, and even out of the country to a family friend in England. The Parke kids were not always around but they always got cards as well. They were like her extended grandchildren. She also helped celebrate birthdays with a group party, which included her sister Kathy and Jul. These parties were planned around a few people’s birthdays. Everyone would bring gifts for each birthday person and they would do a pot luck style lunch or dinner at various homes. They always had too much food at these events as well.

The family also spent time in their yard. They played Bocce Ball or sat around a campfire. Gloria always had her picnic basket ready to bring out and do a hot dog roast. Michael bought them a fire ring from Menards and that was set up near the driveway and garage. They also set up a picnic table there. They frequently gathered for hot dogs and marshmallows. She set up lawn chairs and loved watching the fire burn and tell stories. She did have a couple of Pyros in the family as well.

July 4th was frequently held at her house. She would get a large display of home fireworks from Sam's Club. There was an old tree they had chopped down on the side of her property. The stump left over was just the right height to light a firework on, go back to the lawn chairs and watch it go off. Lighting the fireworks was usually left to the kids or Bernie. She had a tradition of getting ice cream and root beer for floats on the 4th. That was her favorite. She also played zonk on the picnic table before it got too dark out.

Gloria and Edward had an old motorhome. Over the years they took many camping trips in it. They drove it to Yellowstone with the whole family. The grandkids were not quite teenagers yet so they really enjoyed it. During the trip they were keeping track of which states they saw license plates of, to pass the time. They found every state before the trip was over. Chris started driving that motorhome at age 2. Edward had to run to catch up to it to stop it before he got too far. It gave them all a heart attack. Another time while Suzi was sleeping in the bunk above the cab she fell off and landed on her feet. She was fine, not hurt at all but Bonnie tried to catch her and ended up breaking her finger.

Gloria loved flowers. She had several types of flowers in her yard and some of them were given to her by her mother. Her flowers included Tiger Lilies, and other types of Lilies, Orange Blossoms, Violets, Crocus and Pansies. She loved watching for the Crocus to come up each year since they were the first ones. It meant spring was here. Spring was her favorite.

Eaglebrook church met every Tuesday for a Bible study group. Her friend Polly would pick her up and drive her to and from it. Gloria enjoyed and looked forward to attending. She sat with many others at a large table, talking and listening to the Bible and enjoyed coffee and snacks that were provided. Once a month they would have a pot luck and everyone would bring something to share. Gloria always brought potato salad, but once and a while a package of cookies.

Gloria never had a driver’s license so she relied on either Edward, Bernie or another family or friend to drive her around. After Edward passed on November 11th, 2006, Michael took her to lunch and grocery shopping every Friday. They would go back to her house and play a few games of Zonk after. A couple of years later Suzi took over taking her shopping. Then the last couple of years Kim and Suzi were taking her together or meeting for lunch at Denny's then shopping at Cub. She always wanted to treat and buy lunch even when other people offered to pay. Many family and friends drove her

where ever she needed to go. Whether it was a doctor’s appointment, church or to the store. They enjoyed taking her, even when she would tell them that she didn't need to bother them if they were busy. They were happy to help.

Gloria had many visitors during the week, even though she couldn’t get out much. Kerry Parke visited her as often as she could and they would talk or play games together at her table. The Parke family was thought of as her adopted grandchildren since they were young. She also had weekly visits for many years from Janice and Diane. They planned a dinner every week. Sometimes they would go out for dinner and get free pie from Bakers Square on Wednesdays, and sometimes they would cook or pick up food to bring to her. These visits continued even towards the end of her life when she couldn’t get out hardly at all.

Gloria has three great-grandchildren. Jordan was born in February 1999. Hannah was born in June 2004. Amberly was born in August 2019. She loved any time she was able to spend with them. Amberly was a constant source of smiles for Gloria this past year, no matter what was happening or how she was feeling she loved seeing her. It always put a smile on her face.

Gloria lived alone in her house in Blaine up until she fell in November of 2018 when she broke her shoulder. She was taken to Mercy hospital where they had to put her shoulder back into its socket. After that she moved in with Mike and Bonnie in Monticello while her shoulder healed. She and Mike watched TV and spent time together during his hospice care. It was hard in the last year when she could no longer read very well, so Michael purchased Through the Bible with Les Feldick DVD set for them to watch. She frequently talked about how she enjoyed this time she was able to spend with Mike before he passed. After Mike passed on May 3rd, 2019 she moved into Janice's house in Fridley, where she started her own hospice care.

She had a great hospice team. The nurse, aide, pastor, social worker and music therapist made visits to help care for her. Janice, Kim, Suzi, Amberly, Bonnie and Diane were there for her in the last months and weeks to care for her and help her with meals. She especially enjoyed the music therapist. He would visit every other week or so with his guitar and play several songs for her. No matter how she was feeling, these visits always got her to smile. During the government shut down her hospice care visits became almost entirely virtual. It was hard for her and the family to adjust, but she had music therapy via video calls and pastor and nurse visits by phone. They were able to visit again for the last couple of weeks but with masks and face shields on.

Gloria passed away July 4th in her sleep surrounded by family. She had not eaten, woken or gotten up in several days prior to passing. Many people came to say their goodbyes in the days before. She will be missed by so many people.

Funeral service Wednesday 2:00 PM with visitation one hour prior at Miller Funeral Home, 6210 Highway 65 NE, Fridley 763-571-1300.  Private interment Ft. Snelling National Cemetery

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Service Schedule

Past Services


Wednesday, July 15, 2020

1:00 - 2:00 pm (Central time)

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Funeral Service

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Starts at 2:00 pm (Central time)

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Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Starts at 11:15 am (Central time)

Fort Snelling National Cemetery

7601 34th Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55450

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