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Nellie Ann Kruger

June 17, 1938 August 6, 2017
Nellie Ann Kruger
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Obituary for Nellie Ann Kruger

Nellie Ann (DeKam)(Habben) Kruger, age 79, died Sunday August 6, 2017 at Sanford Worthington Medical Center after 14 months of residence at Crossroads Care Center in Worthington. Nellie was born June 17, 1938 to Elbert and Nelvia (Prins) DeKam on the DeKam farm in Section 18 of Murray County near Edgerton, MN. Nellie was the second born in a family of nine children. Her siblings & nieces/nephews called her “Toots”.

Nellie was a lifetime member of the Christian Reformed Church while appreciating the faith of many friends from other churches. In 1957, Nellie began work at Campbell’s Soup Company in Worthington where she met Alvin Habben. They married on May 15, 1959 at Leota, MN. They settled in Worthington on Grand Avenue. Nellie took a “20 year maternity leave” to be a full-time mom. Nellie and Alvin spent 27 wonderful years together while blessing and being blessed by 6 children before life changed dramatically on October 15, 1986 when Alvin died following heart surgery at the Minneapolis VA hospital. After a second stint at Campbell’s Soup, Nellie also cooked at Crossroads Care Center, delivered gifts from Flower Lane, transported blood and patients for the Red Cross, and blessed many by driving for the Worthington Taxi Service. Nellie married Merlin Kruger on August 26, 1995 and they lived at rural Worthington until a stroke in November of 1996 necessitated his move to Crossroads Care Center. Nellie was a faithful companion until his death on June 29, 2005.

Nellie was very active volunteering her time and love throughout her adult years to include GEMS leadership, child evangelism thru Goodnews Bible Club, delivering Meals on Wheels with her son Evan, local Bible Studies, playing piano & organ for sing-alongs at chapels & care homes and helping with many various RSVP functions. Gardening, reading, and the writing of poetry were all enjoyed. Nellie was a collector of many things. Nellie used her gift of needlework and abundant inventory of yarn to crochet baby hats for newborns as well as creating thousands of hot mats, dish cloths, and various other knit/crochet items to gift. Nellie loved to share coffee and conversation as she crafted and in-fact perfected the ability to crochet while reading a book while holding a conversation while watching MN Twins baseball while taking a nap! Nellie loved scrabble and served as an English & Bible tutor to Asian and African friends. Nellie touched the lives of many imprisoned men through letters of encouragement and Bible lessons published by Crossroads Prison Ministries!

Nellie is survived by her Habben children: Julie of Sioux Falls SD, Barb of Worthington MN, Evan (Cindy) of Cottage Grove MN, Galen (Heather) of Sibley IA, Arlyn of Worthington MN, Walon (Bobbi) of Round Lake MN; her Habben grandchildren: MacKenzie, Isaac, Jacob, Kristina, Lee, Brody; her siblings: Gerald (Jane) DeKam, Clarice Wixon, Beverly (Norman) Gravenhof, Gertrude (Thede) Bakker, Geneva (John) VanDorp, Wesley (Barb) DeKam, Darla DeKam and brother-in-law Delbert Vander Schaaf along with many extended family and friends!
Nellie was preceded in death by her parents; husbands, Alvin Habben & Merlin Kruger; 2 stillborn Habben children, Bruce and Carrie; sister Elda Vander Schaaf; brothers-in-law”love”, Carroll Wixon and Alfred Habben.

Her final words were the testimony of “Victory in Jesus” –her Savior Forever.

Visitation will be held on Thursday, August 10, 2017, from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., at the Benson Funeral Home in Worthington, MN. A family prayer service will be held on Friday, August 11, 2017, at 10:30 a.m., at the Benson Funeral Home in Worthington with burial to follow in the Worthington Cemetery. A Celebration of Life will be held on Friday, August 11, 2017, at 1:00 p.m., at the Christian Reformed Church in Worthington, MN, with Pastor Adam Eisenga officiating.

Benson Funeral Home in Worthington is in charge of arrangements.

Previous Events





5:00 PM 8/10/2017 5:00:00 PM - 8:00 PM 8/10/2017 8:00:00 PM
Benson Funeral Home

1225 Ryans Road
Worthington, MN 56187

Benson Funeral Home
1225 Ryans Road Worthington 56187 MN
United States





1:00 PM 8/11/2017 1:00:00 PM
Christian Reformed Church

1100 1st Ave SW
Worthington, MN 56187

Christian Reformed Church
1100 1st Ave SW Worthington 56187 MN
United States

Cemetery Details


Worthington Cemetery Final Resting Place

Nobles St
Worthington, MN 56187

Nobles St Worthington 56187 MN
United States

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