Dorothy Jane Hirt

May 4, 1927 ~ January 25, 2018 (age 90)

Dorothy Hirt, 90, of Bemidji, MN died Thursday, January 25, 2018 at GoldPine Home, Bemidji.

Private Funeral Services will be at the Olson-Schwartz Funeral Home, Bemidji, MN. with Pastor Tim Pomp officiating.  Interment will be in Greenwood Cemetery, Bemidji.

Dorothy Jane Riley was born May 4, 1927 in Nymore, MN to Millard F. and Alma (Lambrecht) Riley. She was raised in the Bemidji area with seven brothers and one sister. Dorothy attended Northern School, Medicine Lake School, Lab school and Riverside School in Grant Valley Township, graduating from the eighth grade in 1941. Dorothy married Norman M. Hirt on June 24, 1944. They lived on the Hirt family homestead for sixty-four years raising their three daughters on the farm. Dorothy took on the chores of farm life working alongside her husband in every task. She helped with the field work, barn work and dairy, poultry and logging operations. She also maintained the home with her fabulous cooking, baking and canning from the huge vegetable gardens grown every year. She found time to enjoy her talents as an excellent seamstress, quilter, knitter, crafter and artistic painter over the years. Dorothy worked at the Red Owl and National Food Stores in Bemidji in the 1960’s through 1975 when the National Food store closed. She then discovered her talent to do craft work at home working with dough art and painting wood craft items which her husband, Norman, cut out for her in his wood shop. She was most renowned for her beautiful birdhouses which she painted with intricate winter scenes – all ones-of-a-kind! Dorothy was a gifted flower gardener both at home and at the Gilfillan Center in Bemidji where she worked for fifteen years as a cottage inspector from 1982-1997. She was additionally responsible for all the flower bed displays on the grounds. Her creative gardens won her many compliments and a plaque of appreciation in 1990 from Gilfillan’s Executive Director, Cyril Murphy. Dorothy enjoyed traveling with her husband, Norman, to Alaska, Canada, Montana and the southwestern states. She and Norman were great dancers, especially known for their “signature” style polka dancing. They also enjoyed fishing and camping around the Minnesota lakes. Dorothy loved to play cards – especially the game of “Hand and Foot.” She found jigsaw puzzles addicting. She enjoyed reading the Reader’s Digest, Birds and Blooms and the Bemidji Pioneer. Her favorite TV shows were Wheel of Fortune, classic movies and public television’s Lawrence Welk Show. She enjoyed time spent with her special family and friends over meals or just coffee and her “blue-ribbon quality,” homemade apple pies and carrot cakes.

She is survived by 3 daughters, Carol (Carl) Ekman of Lakeville, MN, Sharon Hirt-Taschner of Cottage Grove, MN. and Linda (Ken) Kraft of Spokane, WA.; 7 grandchildren; 8 great-grandchildren; special friends, Ron and Linda Bouchie and family and Greg and Beth Oja and family; siblings, Ken (Dixie) Riley of Columbia Falls, MT, Lila (John) Cronemiller of Bemidji, and Delbert “Jim” (Alice) Riley of Columbia Falls, MT and sisters-in-law, Delores Riley of Bemidji, Ann Riley of Columbia Falls, MT and Jan Riley of Grand Forks, ND.

She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Norman “Bubs” Hirt and brothers, Herb Riley, Harry Riley, Wallace Riley, Donald Riley and Paul Riley.

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