Kathryn Leclerc

kathryn leclerc

Kathryn "Kay" Leclerc, 75, died on Wednesday, January 4, 2012 at Sanford Palliative Care unit in Fargo

.Kay was born in Fargo, ND, on October 11, 1936, the youngest of three children of C.M. "Max" Dahl and Eleanor Reed Dahl. She graduated from high school in Chaffee, ND, and attended Macalester College in St. Paul, MN, before graduating from the University of North Dakota with a bachelor's degree in social work. She was employed as a social worker by Catholic Family Services before becoming director of the Social Services department at Dakota Hospital. She retired in 1984.

On December 27, 1958, Kay married Lawrence A. "Larry" Leclerc, Jr. They made their home in Fargo, where Larry worked as an attorney at Serkland Law Firm before being appointed a district court judge in 1979.

Kay believed strongly in the importance of community service. She was a director of Cass County Public Health, past chairwoman of the North Dakota State Health Council, a member of the Internal Review Board at MeritCare Hospital, a director of Bethany Retirement Living, and an active member of the League of Women Voters. She was an avid gardener, an accomplished cook and a devoted wife, mother and grandmother. She also loved to travel, and in recent years she enjoyed trips to the Isle of Skye, Acapulco and Paris.

Kay is survived by Larry, her husband of 53 years; her brother, John "Jack" Dahl, Gackle, ND; her daughters, Martha Leclerc (Leo Wilking), Fargo, ND, Joan Vartanian (Harout), Los Angeles, CA, and Rebecca Leclerc, Edina, MN; her son, Jeffrey Leclerc (Cindy Garcia-Leclerc) Apple Valley, MN; two granddaughters (Eleanor and Virginia Wilking); four grandsons (Steven Leclerc, Aram Vartanian, Eliot Wilking and Jake Seiler) and many nephews and nieces.

She was preceded in death by her parents, her sister, Martha Dahl Carlisle, and her cousin, Lisa Locken.

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Memories Timeline


  1. New Brighton Minnesota

    Please accept Jolene’s and my deepest condolences on your loss. We will hold you tightly in our thoughts and prayers.

    Dave Phillips

  2. Fargo ND
    I got to know Kay around 14 years ago when I worked at Metro COG and she was on the highway noise committee for sound protection along I-94. She was a wonderful, kind, and intelligent woman. I really enjoyed working with her, and I am glad for the opportunit to have known her. I am sorry to hear of her death.

  3. Jamestown ND
    Please accept my sincere condolences Kay was a mentor to me 30 plus years ago as I began my career as a medical social worker. She was compassionate and brought great knowledge and caring to her patients and colleagues. I know she will be greatly missed by her family and her community. God bless you all and may you be comforted by your memories and your love for one another. Tracy Johnk

  4. Columbia Heights Minnesota

    I was saddened to learn of Kay’s death and want to assure you of my deepest sympathy. My very best wishes to you and your family.

    Paul Madsen

  5. Falcon Heights MN
    So sorry to head of your loss. I remember your mom from back in our Clara Barton days. You will be in my thoughts and prayers.

  6. Fargo ndDear Larry and family,
    My prayers and sympathies on the death of Kathryn as you grieve her death and celebrate her life. May the risen Jesus fill you with consolation and peace.

  7. Portland ORSo sad to learn of cousin Kay’s passing, seems all too soon. All my best to Larry and Becky and all the rest of your family. I always enjoy visiting with you, and especially Larry and Kay’s visits to the lake when I have been there too. Kay was a funny and lovely person, and like Carol said in her message, I imagine her and Lisa together looking on and being their splendid humorous selves.

  8. Fargo North Dakota
    Dear Larry, My prayers are with you as you say Goodbye to your loving wife. May she rest in peace and may you and your family find peace in knowing that she is at rest with our loving God.
    Sister Petronilla (your 2nd grade teacher)

  9. Bloomington Minnesota
    Larry and family,
    Ellen and I were very saddened to hear about Kay, she was one of our favorite people and she will be missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this time.

  10. los angeles caDear Joan,

    My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. May you find joy in the special moments you and your mom had together and peace in remembering her touch and her smile.
    Warm wishes, therese

  11. Worthington MN
    I wish to extend my deepest sympathy to the Leclerc family. “Martha’s Mom” modeled gracious hospitality and genuine care and concern over all of her children’s friends that frequented their household. I am blessed to have known Kay. May God bless your family richly with His comfort and peace during this difficult time. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  12. Long Beach CAOur heartfelt condolences to the family of Kathryn. For the USC family is sending all, thoughts of peace and may the heart find comfort during this difficult time.

  13. Fargo ND
    Dear Larry: We were so sorry to hear the news! Kay was such a wonderful lady and such a dear friend. She will be missed by everyone who knew her. Our hearts go out to you and your family. Lynn and Nancy Crooks from Arizona

  14. Blaine MN
    What a terrible loss for your family and for the community. She raised a wonderful family and was an inspiration for many. Your mom lived her life with such purpose. She will be missed greatly.

  15. Sherman Oaks CAPlease accept our heartfelt condolences.
    “The angels are always near to those who are grieving, to whisper to them that their loved ones are safe in the hand of God.”
    ~Eileen Elias Freeman

  16. Fargo ND
    Kay will be missed by many. She was always very gracious. I will miss running into her in various places in Fargo. Her family has my sincere sympathy.

  17. Jeff, Martha,Joan,Rebecca and Larry: Please accept my deepest sympathy for the loss of your mom/wife…
    I remember back to all of the fond memories of her as I was growing up in Fargo….all of the trouble Jeff and I got in to and the soft, logical and unassuming way she was always able to put us back on track without us even knowing it! All of her great meals and times down at Lake Maude…
    She will be missed so greatly…I smile when I think of her..>>Mark C

  18. Lke Park MN
    Dear Larry and family: so sorry to hear of Kay’s psassing, she seemed to be fighting the nasty disease quite well. I’m glad you were able to have Christmas together enjoyed the Christmas card and miss our years of being in touch more. emeber the poker club Larry, Becky remember playing with Debbie as a child. Remember thesummer here on Viking Bay? again may she rest in Peace and hope that your family remebers only Happy times
    Donna and Dave.

  19. I am so sorry to hear of your loss. I have fond memories of your mom, grandma or wife, going way back to the 60’s and Camp Fire Girls. Thinking of her makes me smile. She was a wonderful roll model. In the days ahead may you find comfort in your memories of Kay. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  20. SUN VALLEY CAOur deepest sympathy to your family, there are no word at the time like this to ease your pain… we knew Katherine through Joan and Harut, she was a lovely person, we enjoyed being around her especially at Thanksgiving when she would tell the stories of the family from the Mayflower days. Our thoughts are with at this difficult time…

  21. Minneapolis MN
    Oh Larry, this is such sad news. My heart goes out to you and your children. I remember so fondly the times you and Kay joined Lisa and Bob at the lake and I was privileged to share. You all helped restore family to me and I am so grateful. I still miss Lisa terribly still, but take some comfort in knowing those two beloved cousins are somehow/somewhere closer now than ever. Perhaps playing a game of Scrabble while looking over a lake that our beautiful lakes only dimly mirror.

    May the love of all you hold dear keep you and bless you.


  22. Fargo ND
    Kay has been a member of the Bethany family for many years. It was my privilage to serve Kay as a family member when her parents were here and her leadership and participation on the Board of Trustees was appreciated. My deepest sympathy to her family. Peace be with each of you.

  23. SUN VALLEY CAOur deepest sympathy to your family, there are no word at the time like this to ease your pain… we knew Katherine through Joan and Harut, she was a lovely person, we enjoyed being around her especially at Thanksgiving when she would tell the stories of the family from the Mayflower days. Our thoughts are with at this difficult time…

  24. My condolences to the Leclerc family, and especially to Becky. I met Becky’s mom on several occasions and she was such a warm and wonderful person.

  25. Los Angeles CAMy condolences and sympathies to the family of Kathryn Leclerc. I know she was a special lady, having heard wonderful stories about her while working with her daughter Joan. My heart and prayers are with you during this time.

  26. Bismarck N. D. I extend my deepest condolences to Larry and the entire family over the loss of Kay. she was, in every regard, such an exceptional person.
    I particularly admired her professional excellence as she brought a combination of intelligent, clear thinking and an abundance of compassion to the challenging matters in her care.
    The wonderful relationship between Kay and Larry brought joy to all who knew them. It took someone very special to so successfully partner with the Judge all these years, and Kay clearly excelled at the challenge.
    I feel very fortunate to have been her friend.

  27. Valley City ND
    So sorry to read about Kay in today’s paper. She was indeed a wonderful woman and know that she will be missed by all of you. Have such fond memories of the “Dahl” family and being at the ranch in Chaffee.

  28. My heart is heavy. She was a Grand Lady! I have always had the utmost respect for your mom. She paved the way for so many women in this community. Brilliant, humble and a joy to be around. As you go through each day, she will send you messages to carry on, make her proud and enjoy life to the fullest! I trust you all will do just that.

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