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Ellen Zmolek

May 9, 2019
Traer Star-Clipper

Ellen J. Zmolek, 75, of Rochester, passed away peacefully, with her loving family at her side, on Monday, April 8, 2019.

Ellen was born November 12, 1943 in Iowa City, IA to Carl and Evelyn (Stokes) Wilson. She was a 1961 graduate of Traer High School, in Traer, IA and then went on to earn her Bachelors in education from the Iowa State Teachers College. On February 5, 1966, Ellen married Eugene Zmolek at St. Pius Catholic Church. She began her teaching career in Rochester as a health and physical education teacher. She then became involved in the community education program, where she spent the majority of her teaching career before retiring in 1999. During her time as a teacher, Ellen was blessed to have taught children of all physical and mental abilities, as well as adults of all ages. She enjoyed working in her flower and vegetable gardens, sewing, knitting, and watching her children and grandchildren's sporting events and horse shows. Ellen had a passion for music, which shined through with her playing piano and being active in the choir and bell choir at church. Ellen was an active member of Congregational Church UCC, as well as being involved with Channel One, and the Dorothy Day House. She was a humble, patient, caring and generous woman.

Ellen is survived by her husband of 53 years, Eugene; children, Brian (Julie) Zmolek of Rochester, Doug (Jenny) Zmolek of Rochester and Becky (Mark Connelly) Zmolek of Rochester and five grandchildren, Abigail, Riese, William, Bennett and Ella. Ellen was preceded in death by her parents, Carl and Evelyn and by an infant sister, Ruth Evelyn.

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A memorial service celebrating Ellen's life will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, May 1, 2019 at Congregational Church UCC, 974 Skyline Dr. SW, Rochester, MN with Rev. Garth Schumacher officiating. Memorial contributions may be made to the Rochester Sports Foundation or to Mayo Clinic Hospice Music Therapy Program. Ranfranz and Vine Funeral Homes are honored to be serving the Zmolek family; to share a special memory or condolence to the family please visit



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