Doris Guse


Doris Guse died on September 28, 2015, 30 hours after collapsing in a chair at a wedding she was excited to attend. She died in palliative care at St Mary’s Hospital in Duluth.

Doris was born almost 97 years ago in Lisbon, N.D., on November 9, 1918, to William and Gina Maurer. Her parents moved to Springfield, Brown County, Minnesota, several years later with Doris and siblings. Her siblings were Dorvin Maurer, Deloris (Bebe) Woerhman, Wallace (Ole) Maurer, Shirley Woehrabe, and Janet U’ren. That original and tightly-bonded family is now gone. There are 15 nieces and nephews produced from Doris’s siblings, all of them above average and pretty good-looking people, too.

Doris lived most of her life in or near Springfield. She moved to town at age 14 to attend Springfield High School. She married Ernie Guse (1913-2002) in 1937. They had a daughter, Rebecca (1939-1997), and a son, Bill. She had four grandchildren, Kurt Kluegel (Idaho), Heidi Kluegel Matonis (Connecticut), Joseph Guse (Virginia) and Hanna Guse (Wisconsin).

Doris and Ernie operated a grocery store in Springfield from 1945- 1967. They moved to Litchfield several years later, then to Two Harbors in 1999. Doris and Ernie wintered in Mission, Texas, for over 30 years.

Doris enjoyed, “Getting things done.” If you visited her mornings she would first exclaim with enthusiasm, “I got a lot done this morning.” She was a consummate letter writer and kept in contact with many people from all stages of her life. She acquired friends and associates of many ages. Email was “Ok,” but she preferred the hand, the envelope and the stamp. Ernie and Doris spent many rewarding hours practicing and attending dances. She competed in and gave lessons in ballroom dancing when at her winter Texas home. She enjoyed bridge, and was often puzzled why she did not get “very good hands.” Her husband once told her that if he got cards like she did he would stop playing cards all together.

She seemed capable of just about anything, her dinners were always fabulous, her attention to other’s needs was keen, and she was generous to others with her time. It seemed everyone enjoyed her company and marveled at her ability to adapt to new experiences, knowledge, and try new things.

She started quilting in her early retirement years, and it became her most cherished interest and hobby. After completing her first quilt she said, “I’m so happy to be done I could stand on my head.” Ernie took a picture of her standing on her head in front of her first quilt, and that tradition continued for a couple dozen quilts. She was advised to not stand on her head anymore when she was 83 years old, but she continued to produce quilts. All her grandchildren and great-grandchildren and many acquaintances have her handiwork. Doris loved to have energy, and missed it, dearly, when she started to fail over the last few months.

A memorial service for her will be at the Knife River Lutheran Church at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, October 17.  Doris’ Knife River Church quilting club will provide lunch. Doris would prefer any memorials be made to the local food bank, funding for it is located at Second Harvest Food Bank, 4503 Airpark Blvd, Duluth MN  55811.

Springfield Advance-Press

13 S. Marshall Avenue PO Box 78 Springfield, MN 56087