On Sunday, December 5th, Karen Rae Mord of Savage, MN passed away at St. Francis Hospital in Shakopee, MN at the age of 84.
A visitation will take place on January 22nd from 9am-11am at Bridgewood Church in Savage, MN with the funeral service following at 11am.
On September 6th, 1937, Karen Rae Mord was born an only child to her parents Floyd and Dorothy Bergman of Beresford, South Dakota. From a very young age, Karen had a deep appreciation, love and talent for music. She eagerly awaited the delivery of a piano to her house after World War Two and she started lessons as soon as she could. When she was 13, Karen knew that she was going to be a music teacher. She graduated from Beresford High School and went to Augustana college to pursue a degree in music.
While attending Augustana, Karen had a side job cooking in a house for 9 college men. Her future husband, Gale, was friends with the men and it was there that they met and began dating. Gale joined the Army after receiving his college degree so much of their dating was done through letters. When Gale finished army language school in Monterey, California he and his fellow classmates headed back east and instead of going to his parents house in South Dakota he went to see Karen where she was teaching elementary music in St. James, MN. He asked her to marry him and the pair eloped on May 26th, 1960 at St. James Lutheran Church. The newly married couple went back home to tell their surprised parents. Two weeks later Gale was sent to his duty station in Hokkaido, Japan. Karen joined him shortly after and they lived there for two years and had their first child. After returning to the states, she worked for Honeywell in Minneapolis while Gale added a teaching degree to his education at the University of MN. They then moved to Prior Lake where she substitute taught music in the school district before starting her own private music lesson business. She also played the organ and directed choir at Shepherd of the Lake Lutheran Church. At her busiest, she taught nearly 70 students in voice and piano. She touched the lives of hundreds of students over the years. She taught choir and music lessons at Bethany Academy to help put her three children through school there. Karen was heavily involved in the Minnesota Music Teachers Association and for fun, a group of music teachers in the Twin Cities named Musicians and Friends In Agreement, or MAFIA for short.
When Karen wasn’t teaching others about music, she loved spending time surrounded by the arts. Orchestra Hall was one of her favorite places to be, she would always get season tickets. Karen’s interests were not limited to only music. She had many vast collections with hats, dolls and frogs her favorites. Her favorite saying was F.R.O.G. – Fully Rely On God.
Anyone one who knew Karen knew she was a compassionate, extravagant woman. Fighting for the underdog she helped many people along the way, often taking them into her home. She loved the Lord fiercely and shared His love with all those she came in contact with. Karen endured many health problems over the years but like the Energizer Bunny, she kept going and going. Then on December 5th, 2021 the Lord called her home in the presence of her family at St. Francis Hospital in Shakopee, MN.
Karen is survived by her husband of 61 years, Gale Mord; Her son Steven Mord (Laura); daughter Kristine (Jerry) Jackson; daughter Susan (Lance) Melville; granddaughters, Hannah, Sarah and Leah Jackson; and grandsons Benjamin and Jeremiah Melville. She is preceded in death by her parents, Floyd and Dorothy Bergman.
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She was a Grandma to all. Loved by so many. Our condolences to Gale and family.
Joy Beckman (Wheatley)
Mrs. Mord was a jewel who God intentionaly made to shine bright everywhere she went. It was such an honor to have her invest in my life for years through my voice lessons, life lessons and so much more! God truly used her to shape me and how I looked at singing. Every time I sing she’s always In my mind! She was a gift to many and I’m grateful how God placed her gift in my life to transform it. I’m so deeply sorry for your loss and keeping your entire family in my thoughts and prayers.
Emily Lewis (Pieper)
I will always remember her as having so much joy. I knew her when I was so small and then in my teens when she was my voice teacher. I was lucky to have known Karen.
Dear Mord fam., Im have known Karen and Gail for yrs. and we appreciated each others musical gifts. I remember the first time that I went to Friendship church and she was choir director, she pulled me aside and said come up and sing with us!!! She knew of my abilities from SOL and knew then there that she was a special person, Now shw is singing in God’s choir!!!! May her memory be blessed. My sympathy to you Gale and fam. I know what you are going through.
Mrs Mord, you were a true inspiration to me!! The voice lessons where only the small things you taight all of us students. You taught us how to believe in our self, dream, and have fun doing it. You were a true angel with a caring and loving heart!! Thank you, and blessings and peace to The Mord family!! Brian Buss & Family
Sue Marty Eldridge
Honor to Karen Mord — the one and only — who filled our lives with joy. She had sacrificial love for her family.
She taught us how to learn, to work, and especially how to play.
Oh she will be missed!
My love and condolences to the Mord family.
I feel blessed having had a few opportunities to visit Karen (and Gale) with Sue who visited her mother nearly every day. Although our visits were short, I can attest to the Karen’s love of the Lord that seemed to penetrate the room each time. Karen emanated God’s grace through her health problems. I’m saddened for Sue and families who grieve Karen’s loss of earthly life. I continue to pray they find comfort in knowing Karen is no longer suffering, and is living eternal life with our heavenly father who will always continue to be there for Sue as they were so immensely close. One can know Karen was a remarkable person to have made Sue who is such an incredible person and dear friend.
Marilyn Ann Dueffert
I knew Karen for several years and as our fun time we were MAFIA members. My daughter Karin took voice lessons from from a young age through high school. Karen and Karin did well together in competitions and she was much loved by Karin. It is so sad that Karen’s last years had so many health problems but she always bounced back. She taught lessons right up until the end. She will be sadly missed I am sure by the hundreds she taught as many became life long friends. She was always a special caring lady.
Unfortunately I will miss the funeral as I am going to have surgery that will keep me homebound for a few months.
Grandma Karen was a special lady and always shared her heart and thoughts-Blessings John Sikkink
Nancy Jane Burman
My sincerest condolences to Karen’s family. She truly was a shining light, working so hard to bring the joy of music to all. My students still remember “the hat lady” who changed hats depending upon their song; & had stuffed frogs in the chairs as their audience. She was a great encouragement to me, also, as a younger teacher. I shall always remember her.
When we lived in the dome house down the street from Karen and Gayle my 2 children and myself took piano lessons. But, more than that we all became friends and fun neighbors! She will be missed.
Vivian L Von Bergen
Karen Rae said to me one evening in a class: “I don’t have a sister and since you are 4 years older, you are now my big sister.” This is how she addressed me! As for me, I was the younger of twins, so she became my little sister. I miss her so much – after all, I didn’t have a little sister very long. She was a dear and precious saint! I’ve only known her since 2018 but have wonderful memories!
Karen changed my life. I came to faith in Christ through our Bible studies and church activities. She encouraged me to finish college and convinced me I was a “very intelligent woman. ” We had our annual New Years Eve date with Karen and Gale for years. She was a fiercely loyal friend who I miss daily. Condolences to Gale who lovingly devoted many years caring for his sick spouse. Stephen, Kristin, Susan, and Gale may you be comforted in your grief.
Karen had such a big heart and expressed her gratefulness to those who touched her heart with word or song. We will miss her.
Joyce and Irving Johnson
We met probably about 6th grade in little country towns in South Dakota. Our paths crossed many times and we remained great friends. Our music and Christian faith molded us together as soul mates, and we rejoiced at being together in Tri-State music camps, Augustana, times together in South Dakota and when Karen and Gale visited us here in Colorado a few years ago. I guess God needed her more than we do. Good-bye for now, dear friend.
Tim & Diana Weidenhaft
Gale and family,
We are so sorry for the passing of Karen.
She is a wonderful woman of God, and a blessing to those around her. We know she is with Jesus and with the body of saints. But, until our reunion in heaven, she will be missed.
Tim & Diana Weidenhaft
(Unfortunately, we will not be able to attend today’s funeral but will be praying for you).
Glenda and Ron Ross
Gale and Family,
I recently read Psalms 135 and verse 3 and my thoughts went to Karen. “Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good; celebrate his lovely name with music.”
We so treasure the short stay many years ago now at our home in Turlock, CA, that Gale and Karen visited with Gale’s cousin, my mother, Verlyn Young and our dad Clayton Young. We enjoyed every minute of talking and visiting with Gale and Karen. A very special person indeed, who will be greatly missed by many! Our prayers and sympathy to the family…..
My deepest sympathies to Karen’s family. I knew Karen through the various music teacher organizations in Minnesota, and I enjoyed her so much. She was one of a kind, which I really appreciated – there was no one like her. I will miss her and am glad to have known her for as long as I did. Her light shone strong.
Always such a distinctive woman So stylish with those hats! And a wonderful kind giving spirit to match! I will miss her.