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Mary Caren Blazek, 74, of Kasson, MN passed away on August 19, 2017, at Seasons Hospice in Rochester, MN surrounded by loved ones. Sadly, Mary lost her 16-year battle with cancer. However, those who knew Mary knew her strength, and her fight to beat this disease never stopped. She was an incredibly strong woman with a contagious smile and infectious laugh who will be deeply missed!

Mary was born on October 8, 1942, in Albert Lea, MN, to Roy W. and Oriet M. (Thompson) Grunwald. Mary grew up on their farm in Ellendale and graduated from Ellendale High School in 1960. She worked in several capacities throughout her career; her most recent position being legal assistant for Dunlap & Seeger, P.A. She retired in July 2013 after 25 years. On May 14, 1961, she married Ross Christensen. Together they had two children. They later divorced. On August 19, 1977, she married Robert Blazek.

Mary was an active member of Alcoholics Anonymous, proudly celebrating 29 years of sobriety. Mary enjoyed playing the piano; gardening; knitting – donating many items to the needy; shopping – especially for shoes; collecting vintage treasures; NHRA drag racing; reading; and taking long walks. Most of all, Mary loved spending time with her children and her cat.

Mary is survived by her children, Rick (Robin) Christensen, Blooming Prairie, MN; Cara (Mark) Nelson, Kasson, MN; beloved cat, Grayce; step-children, Michael (Evelina Guerra) Blazek, Dodge Center, MN; Teresa (Shane) Clark, Janesville, MN; one granddaughter; six step-grandchildren; four step-great-grandchildren; sister-in-law Suzanne (Rodger) Hill, Ellendale, MN; two aunts; many cousins; and extended family. Mary is also survived by dear friends she considered family, Larry, Ali, DJ, Alanna, and Luke Dixon, Avon, IN. She was preceded in death by her parents and husband Robert.

Funeral service will be at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, August 26, 2017 at Trinity Lutheran Church 104 ~ 2nd Street SE in Hayfield with Reverend Paul Hauschild officiating. Burial will be in First Lutheran Cemetery in Ellendale, MN.

Visitation will be from 9:30 until the time of service Saturday at the church.

Czaplewski Funeral Home in Hayfield is assisting with arrangements.

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