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Thelma Pownell

February 07, 1932 - December 08, 2015

Prayer Service - Thursday

December 17, 2015
- 7:00 PM

Boulger Funeral Home & Celebration of Life Center, Fargo

Visitation - Thursday

December 17, 2015
5:30 PM - 7:00 PM

Boulger Funeral Home & Celebration of Life Center, Fargo

Funeral Service - Saturday

December 19, 2015
- 10:30 AM

Leeds Lutheran Church, Leeds ND


Boulger Funeral Home

Thelma Pownell

February 07, 1932 - December 08, 2015


Thelma A. Pownell, 83, Fargo formerly York and Devils Lake, ND passed away Tuesday, December 8, 2015 at Bethany Retirement Living, Fargo.

Thelma was born February 7, 1932 on a farmstead northeast of Leeds, ND., to Charles and Esther (Wiegel) Urness. She attended schools at Zion, ND. and Leeds, ND., where she graduated from high school in May, 1951. She attended Minot State Teachers College and taught country schools for four years near Churches Ferry, Maddock and Edmore, ND.

She attended Sunday school and was confirmed in the Lutheran faith at Leeds. On June 18, 1956 she married Clifford Pownell at Leeds Lutheran Church. They lived and farmed north of York until 1994 when they moved to Sunwest Acres, west of Devils Lake. Thelma moved to Fargo in 2004 and was a resident of Bethany Retirement Living until her passing.

Thelma taught Sunday school in York and was a member of the Ladies Aide, American Legion Auxiliary, Good Samaritan recreation club and the 55 club of Knox.

She is survived by 2 daughters; Cindy (Dean) Todd, Hendrum, MN, Cheryl (Rodger) Donegan, Harwood, ND, 3 grandchildren; Daniel (Alicia Fraser) Todd, Patrick Donegan, Jeffrey Donegan, siblings; Lewis (Adeline) Urness, Jim (Elayne) Urness, Joseph (Jean) Urness, Sonja Johnson, Gloria Bracken, Ramona (Clifford) Horner and many nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, Clifford, brothers, Clifford Urness and Benjamin Urness and infant sister, Hazel Urness, grandson, William Todd, son-in-law, Daryl Rice.

Prayer Service: 7:00 P.M. Thursday, December 17, 2015 at Boulger Funeral Home, Fargo with visitation starting at 5:30 P.M.

Funeral Service: 10:30 A.M. Saturday, December 19, 2015 at Leeds Lutheran Church with visitation starting at 9:30 A.M.

Burial: York Cemetery, York ND.


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10 responses to “Thelma Pownell”

  1. Allan and Wanda says:

    Praying for you all. Great picture of her. I’m sure she is content and happy with Cliff again.

  2. Heidi Mann says:

    What a special lady! It was a treat to know Thelma and have occasional opportunities to be together! Our family wishes your family peace, strength, and whatever else you need from God in order to walk through the days ahead. Much love to you.

  3. ardis brandl says:

    So sorry to hear of Thelma’s passing. I worked with her at Good Samaritan and I did a lot of alterations for her, She was so proud of her family.. Such a sweet lady. My prayers and thoughts are with you all.

  4. Sandi Kimmet, RN ,Parish Nurse says:

    I have known Thelma since 2009. She was a resident at Gd Sam on 45th at the time. Messiah Lutheran provided monthly communion services and she was a faithful and active attendee. She always talked about the Hour of Worship, and a couple of times provided the pastor with ideas for his sermon. She called me from the hospital a couple of times to come visit too. I was able to see her in the halls and elevators at Bethany too. She always had a smile, and requested a prayer. Her love for her family was so strong. Many if those prayers were for one of you. Thelma, with all the health issues, remained a bright spirit. Please ccrpt my condolences.

  5. Jane Bisbee Britton says:

    Thelma will be missed. Always had a Christmas Card in the mail. She is a life time friend and neighbor and even taught me in Vacation Bible School. One year Cliff and Thelma and Cheryl were going for Thanksgiving when the roads were drifting pretty high and turned around to go back home. They stopped in to tell us about the roads so we invited them in and they had Thanksgiving dinner with us. So many memories. My prayers are with you all. Love you Jane

  6. Michael and Cecelia O'Keefe Family says:

    Our deepest sympathies at the loss of your mother Cheryl! It is so difficult to lose a parent. Sympathies also to Rodger and the boys. Blessings and prayers for the family during this difficult time.
    Mike & Cece O’Keefe and family

  7. Lloyd & Kristin Johnson, and family says:

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you,

  8. Nicole says:

    I was lucky enough to have met Thelma almost a year ago. She had several great stories and an even greater laugh. She always made sure that her neighbors around her had all that they needed. She always talked about her grandsons being twice her height and laughing that she had to look up to see them, and it made her week to have Cindy bring fun colored balloons and fried chicken on Fridays. She loved her family so much. I’ve learned a lot in working with her and will never forget her kindness. I hope you all hold onto the good times and that you find peace, she was such an awesome person. I know many of us that worked with her are better for knowing her.

  9. Daughter--Cindy says:

    THOUGHTS ON MOM by older daughter Cindy Todd

    Some of my earliest memories as a child are of naptime & likely driving my mom nuts for asking for story after story before I slept—even the very same one again & again. My favorite story was called Teeny Tiny Woman. The gist is of a teeny tiny woman, who lived in a teeny tiny house that had a teeny tiny fence. The Teeny Tiny Woman put her teeny time head under the teeny tiny blanket for a teeny tiny nap; on & on the story goes!

    Mom taught us proper manners from a very early age. Everything had to be please & thank you or one got nothing upon request! She led by example & this was shown by her good manners while in the hospital during her recent illness. While dozing, she would ask nursing staff for water, ice chips, etc. and ALWAYS said please & thank you. When one of us family members came to visit, she would say “excuse me, but I have to roll over & take a nap now!”.

    Just a few days before Mom passed, she was up & dressed at the lunch table while visiting with the hospice social worker. With Mom’s severe dementia, her comments & questions cycled every minute or so. Mom had out her pointer finger, while telling the social worker that her two favorite things to do are to go to church & go to Bingo! And…….sometimes Bethany had a special Bingo day in the chapel! Mom was quite lucky @ Bingo. Bethany gave out a dime for each time one bingo’d. When we were cleaning out her room at Bethany, we came across $12.00 in dimes in various drawers & envelopes. That’s 120 dimes! Thus the Bingo cards here @ the service.

    While family was very important to Mom, if there were 6:30p Bingo, we were promptly dismissed @ 6p, whether we’d visited for an hour or five minutes. Of course, with those good manners, we were invited to join her. Cheryl & I had a fairly regular visiting schedule with Mom. She would frequently ask Bethany staff if it was yet Friday (Cindy’s day to bring chicken) or Saturday (Cheryl’s morning to visit).

    Being half Norwegian (I found Mom to have little humor, although we’ve been told by many since her passing that she had good humor for friends. As sick as Mom was, one day when I came to her see her, in the hospital, I stated “Hi Mom. How are you feeling?”. She replies, in her drowsy state, “with my fingers!”. Another time, one of the nurses told her it was snowing & asked would she like some snow. Mom replied “no thank you, it’ll melt”.

    Because of Mom’s poor eyesight, I’d been giving her balloons for various occasions rather than greeting cards. Mom could see the balloons well & always knew that if she had balloons, I’d been to visit. This was true during her recent hospital stay as well. Thus the balloons @ the prayer service.

    On a much more important note, I have much humble gratitude to our Heavenly Father for answering my prayer that HE take Mom to heaven peacefully & gently! Cindy

  10. Cheryl Donegan says:

    Thing you might not have known about my Mom by Cheryl Donegan:

    Thelma was the 3rd oldest of 9 children and loved her siblings dearly
    Her favorite color was blue
    Her favorite song was “On the Wings of a Snow White Dove”
    She loved going to Red Lobster and would always order shrimp and a baked potato
    She drank her coffee with 2 creamers but beverage of choice was water
    Thelma loved all Holidays and to get together with family to celebrate
    She wrote in a daily journal for close to 60 years and could easily settle any family disputes
    She attended Church whenever possible and also watched services on TV from Messiah Lutheran in Fargo and the Christian Hour of Worship from Aberdeen, SD.
    Thelma played pinochle, whist and just about any other card game
    She enjoyed a trip to the casino and went with the Bethany Group as recent as 6 months ago
    She never missed a game of bingo and won often
    Her hair appointments were on Wednesday at Bethany and nothing would ever stand in her way
    She would visit with anyone and especially the cashier at any store
    Thelma knew when everyone’s birthday was and would send a card or make a phone call
    She called me every Saturday morning for the past 31 years ever since I left home to attend college
    She was very proud to have been a college graduate and a teacher
    Thelma was a polio survivor and fought her way back after being paralyzed as a small child
    She would kill garter snakes on the farm because I was afraid of them
    She worked hard on our farm by cooking, hauling grain and everything else that needed to be done
    Her grandchildren mean the world to her and she was so proud that they were growing up
    Thelma loved her family as no one else could —– Love you Mom and like I would tell you every time I left Bethany, “Love You, Mom and Be Good!” She would smile and say “Love You and You Be Good too!”

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