Maurice E. Duden, age 79, died Tuesday, April 23rd at Sanford Hospital in Fargo, ND. Funeral services will be Monday, April 29 at 10:30 A.M. at Our Saviors Lutheran Church in Crookston. A visitation will be held one hour prior to the service at the church. Burial will be in Oakdale Cemetery. Arrangements are with Stenshoel-Houske Funeral Home in Crookston.
Maurice was born, April 28, 1939, at Bethesda Hospital in Crookston to William and Marie (Strickler) Duden. His childhood was spent on a farm near Crookston. As a young adult, he was a resident of the Bethesda Lutheran Home in Watertown, WI. In 1977, he returned to Crookston living a somewhat independent life in a kind and caring group home setting.
Over the years, Maurice spent time at his Uncle William Strickler’s farm. He loved his uncle dearly as William taught him to do farm chores and rake hay with a Massey 50 tractor. In more recent years, Maurice looked forward to every holiday at the Strickler farm with his cousins and their families. He enjoyed sharing stories, good food, red cherry wine, and keeping everyone updated on certain hard to find items, when he would loudly proclaim, “they just don’t make them anymore!”
Maurice was an excellent worker. He was very proud of his 20 years spent at Hugo’s Bakery in Crookston, waking at 4:00 a.m. to fry donuts. He was a faithful worker at the DAC never wanting to miss a day of his assigned tasks. He looked forward to filling the pop machine every Thursday and was so proud that he was the reason that pop was available for everyone at the DAC. He loved making latch hook pillows which he proudly gave away as gifts. He would strive to make a difference and encouraged others to do the same.
Maurice loved his bike and was often seen, as he’d say, “zooming down the road” or “running around too much!” His favorite destination was the M&H Gas Station for a 20 oz. mug of coffee. He was a faithful listener of KROX and would often know what was happening before anyone else. He loved watching Wheel of Fortune and old western movies. His favorite actor was John Wayne. He traveled to Hawaii, Disney World, Mt. Rushmore and several Vikings and Twins games.
Maurice was a member of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, where he faithfully sat in the front pew every Sunday. He was never late, usually beating Pastor Bohler to the church before 8:00 a.m. service. He considered Pastor one of his best friends and looked forward to visiting with him Sunday mornings. Maurice had a strong faith and as reported by a caregiver, “he loved his Jesus.”
He also loved his group home family and they loved him. He started his day making coffee and pouring a cup for others when they walked in the door. He was very helpful around the house and would often say, “What would you do without me?” And staff would reply, “We would be lost without you.” It is said, he never met a food he didn’t like, and he faithfully ended every meal with a thank you to the cook. He looked forward to his Friday meal at the Golden Link and the friendships he made there. No matter what was on the menu, he would reply enthusiastically, “I love that stuff!”
He is survived by his brother William “Billy” Duden, East Grand Forks, MN; cousins; Don and Ellen Strickler, Euclid, MN; Marilyn (Strickler) and Stan Sirek, Wahpeton, ND; Kenneth and Joanne Duden, Mankato, MN; Joy (Yuergens) and Bruce Bang, Hawley, MN; Evelyn (Duden) and Bernard Huot, St Hiliare, MN; and many second cousins who loved him and helped him collect hundreds of pop tops for the Ronald McDonald House. Also left to mourn his passing are friends and staff of Willow Group Home and the DAC.
Maurice was welcomed into heaven by his parents, and special Aunt and Uncle William and Jean Strickler.
May Maurice’s memory always be treasured.