Carole D. Sietsema, 86, of Spicer, died Monday, June 3, 2019 at her home near Spicer. Her memorial service will be 4 p.m., Wednesday, June 12, 2019 at Hope Presbyterian Church near Spicer where a visitation will be held one hour prior to the service.
Carole Diane Nelson was born on January 23, 1933 in DeSmet, SD to Ivan and Hazel Nelson. At the age of 6 (1939) the family moved south of Sacred Heart, MN. Carole attended Country School District 14, until 1945 and then moved to Renville where she attended and graduated from high school in 1951.
In 1953 she graduated with a Provisional Elementary Certificate from St. Cloud State College. She married Robert M. Sietsema on May 5, 1953 and they made their home in Excelsior. Five children were born over the next 10 years.
Carole taught first grade at Alice Smith School in Hopkins in 1954/55. The Sietsemas then moved to Mankato MN making it possible for her to acquire her BS degree in Elementary Ed. in 1965 from Mankato State College.
Spicer MN was the family’s next move in 1967. They built a home on George Lake, and Carole went to school along with her children as a first grade teacher. Through the years she taught at the Spicer Grade School, Old Gray Elementary School in New London, and then switched to fourth grade and was delighted to move the new facility, Prairie Woods Elementary in New London. Carole retired in 1995 after 28 years of teaching. Finding it difficult to relinquish completely, she volunteered and substituted for two years. She spent her retired years enjoying the company of her beloved husband between Spicer and Sun City, AZ.
Carole was a member of Hope Presbyterian Church where she sang in the choir, directed many Christmas pageants, taught Sunday School and Bible School, and played bells. She enjoyed sewing, reading, knitting, crafting, scrap booking, gardening, traveling, and most of all, spending time with her family and friends. She lived a life defined by her faith and unconditional love, and with a passion for education. She was an inspiration to all those fortunate enough to know her.
Carole died peacefully in her home on June 3rd. She is survived by her husband, Robert Sietsema; 5 children, Cynthia Wyatt (Todd), Craig Sietsema, Lori Clarke, Meredith Tavary (Greg), and Drew Sietsema (LuAnn); 12 grandchildren, Chad Wyatt (Cherylin), Brooke Mascitti (David), Shawna Hanson (Jeff), Bryan Sietsema (Sara), David Sietsema, Caylie Clarke, Carissa Cowles (Andrew), Elyse Tavary, Holly Tavary, Brennen Sietsema (Kate), Ethen Sietsema (Brooke), Gaven Sietsema (Laura) and 13 great-grandchildren, Ethan, Aidyn, Avari, Evan & Elin Hanson, Brett, Mila, Oliver & Elijah Sietsema, Carmen & Dahlila Wyatt, and Vincent & Gloria Mascitti. She was preceded in death by her father, Ivan Nelson, mother, Hazel Nelson, and sister, Ellen Schroeder.