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Florence M. Griffin

Swift County Monitor - Staff Photo -

Florence Marie Griffin died peacefully January 24, 2020 in Glenwood Minnesota.  

Visitation will be held Saturday, August 21, 2021, from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church of Glenwood, followed by the funeral mass at 10:30 a.m. Please join the family for lunch after the service at Captains Bar and Grill, 28583 N. Lake Shore Drive, Glenwood.

Born in Graceville, Minnesota July 31, 1923 to George and Bernadine Hervert, Florence grew up on a farm in western Minnesota during the Great Depression years. Although she traveled far and wide throughout her life, the farm girl was never far away.

After graduating from Graceville High School, she trained to become a registered nurse at Mercy Hospital in Iowa City, Iowa. It was there she met the love of her life, Dr. Richard Griffin whom she married in 1945.  Upon completion of his internship in San Antonio, TX and being discharged from the U.S. Navy, they moved to Graceville and then Benson, Minnesota where they set down roots for nearly 40 years.

Florence and Dick fully embraced small town life, raised 11 children and discovered their paradise just 24 miles down the road on Lake Linka. There they enjoyed a magical retirement together for more than 30 years among the sheep, oaks and Norway pines. Florence spent her life devoted to her husband and family.  

To say that Florence was a remarkable person would be an understatement. Her boundless energy, optimism, curiosity, compassion and unwavering faith made her a role model to all.  Her natural ability to relate to others was extraordinary, finding ways to spark a connection to make sure everyone felt welcome and important.

Florence was always in motion; teaching, helping, doing, fixing, creating and giving to others in all aspects of her life including school, church, community and of course at home.  So much to do, the days were always too short for all of her volunteer work and interests. The world is a better place because of her involvement in Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Benson Park Board, religious education classes, the Terrace Mill and countless other causes.  Her hobbies and interests were seemingly endless including rug braiding, sewing, gardening, bread baking, reading, traveling, ice fishing, crossword puzzles and more than could possibly fit on this page.

Time spent with her husband, Dick, was cherished and protected, whether it be relaxing on the porch after a hard day at the office, cutting wood on days off at the lake or during one of their many adventures around the world. They were an unstoppable team.

The house was always bustling with activity as family and friends stopped in for a visit or to enjoy a piece of fresh bread, a cookie or a mouth-watering slice of pie. A trip to visit Grandma and Grandpa at Lake Linka was pure magic.  With endless possibilities to explore the farm, fish, make jam, hunt for mushrooms, learn to knit, bird watch, cross-country ski, sail or canoe, trap critters in the garden or just read a story or play a game. The unforgettable memories created with Grandma and “Big” Grandma measure in the millions!

Because of Florence, the world has more good cooks, gardeners, seamstresses, nature lovers, readers and kind-hearted people. She taught so many to love deeply, to make something out of nothing, and the value of a hard days work.

Florence didn’t just walk this earth for 96 years; she changed it, with a twinkle in her eye and determination in every step.

Florence left behind many family and friends; children, grandchildren and great grandchildren: Dave Griffin, deceased (Carmen Converse), Dan (Amanda) Griffin, Liam and Ewen; Ben (Jen) Griffin, Delaney, Aubrey and Jace; Maggie Griffin; Kathy (Paul) Smaagaard, Krysta (Xavier) Smith, Alex, Dylan; Craig (Missy) Smaagaard, Lucas, Natalie and Kylie; Tim (Holly Munson) Griffin, Carl (Annie) Griffin, Will and Sophie; Jamie (Eric) Olberding, Finn and Max; Irene Jensen, Bess (Al Baez-Rodriguez) Jensen, Katie (Dan) Akre, Martin and Sydney; Anne (Dino) Boukouris, Griffin Jensen; Loretta Griffin; Molly (Heidi) McNeil; Megan (Dan) Larson, Maggie; Shannon McNeil; Kelly (Peter Schell) McNeil; Jack (Trish Murphy) Griffin, Ted (Melvina) Griffin, Luna and Kieran; Claire Griffin, Caitlin Griffin, Quinn (Scott) Jenson, Tove; Karen (Eric) Haynes, Vishal, Dhyana, Narendra, Adrian, Giita, and Rainjana Haynes; Tom (Jude) Griffin, Chris Romanoski, Joe, Cora and Ray Griffin; Martha Griffin, Nora (Jack) Crawford, Jane and Louis Thompson; Sarah (Greg Pflaster) Griffin, Peter, John and Ellen Pflaster;  Jim(Britt Merchant) Griffin, Florence.

Preceding her in death were her husband Richard Griffin, son Dave Griffin, grandchildren; Kevin Jensen and Will Griffin.

In lieu of flowers, Florence would like donations made to The Nature Conservancy, Catholic Charities, the Swift County Benson Hospital Foundation, or The Terrace Mill Foundation. We would like to honor her request.

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