Alice Ruth (Lamppa) Niemi, 92 yrs old
Born: June 22, 1928
Died: December 19, 2020
Born on June 22, 1928 in Embarrass, Minnesota and died 92 years, and 23 miles farther, on December 19, 2020 in Virginia, Minnesota. Alice lived in Embarrass for the first 72 years of her life, marrying her husband Leonard Niemi at the age of 19, and having three daughters: Berta, Barbie, and Becky.
She was part owner in Lamppa’s Store where she worked alongside her siblings, Ernie Lamppa, Alvin Lamppa, and Bertha Niemi. Once she was at home, she could be found in her garden watching and waiting to can all of the string beans, pickles, beets, and jams that her grandchildren, Tricia Shuck, Jeff Pike, Jason and AJ Hegg could stand to eat. She shared her love of gardening as an active member of the Embarrass Garden Club. Alice and Leonard moved to Virginia at the turn of the century, and she immediately planted apple trees, raspberry bushes and vegetables in the back yard.
Alice enjoyed visiting with her great-grandchildren: Carissa Kurtti, Noah Shuck, Carter Hegg, Shaylene Pike, Anders and Levi Hegg. They never left without a knitted gift in their hands or a warm slice of Finnish biscuit in their belly. After Leonard died in 2005, Alice remained an active member in Gethsemane Lutheran Church, Priscilla Circle, and the Fiber Arts Guild. She could be found on many early mornings with a magnifying glass and her beloved Hardanger, or packing up her latest quilt for Mission Sewing. Alice was a tough liberal Finn and proud of it. No discussion of politics, tarts, biscuit, or bread will ever be the same without her having the last word and sending you home with a jar of jam.
She was preceded in death by her daughter Becky, husband Leonard, parents Axel and Minnie, siblings Ernie Lamppa, Alvin Lamppa, and Bertha Niemi.
She is survived by daughters Berta and Barbie, grandchildren Tricia, Jeff, Jason, and AJ, great-grandchildren Carissa Kurtti, Noah Shuck, Carter Hegg, Shaylene Pike, Anders and Levi Hegg, “In-laws” and handymen David Pike and David Hegg, Scott Shuck, Angie Pike, and Cara Hegg.
We are forever grateful to the staff of Edgewood Vista, Essentia Hospice, Dr. Keith Peterson, and all of her nurses and caregivers these last few months. They were there when COVID wouldn’t let us be there. Christmas will be harder this year without her hand-knitted mittens, scarves, afghans, and quilted blankets she always gave for gifts. While she claimed there were too many things left unfinished, nothing about the love she gave her family was ever incomplete.
A celebration of life will take place in her garden during the spring of 2021, and when we can all be together again. Memorials may be directed to the Virgie Hegg Hospice Partners. Funeral arrangements by Ziemer-Moeglein-Shatava Funeral Home in Gilbert.