Elaine Bissen, 90, Austin

Published 10:35 am Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Elaine Bissen, 90, of Austin, Minn., died Aug. 12, 2013, at Sacred Heart Care Center in Austin.

Elaine Bissen

Elaine Bissen

Elaine was born Helen Elaine Dooley on March 27, 1923, in Rochester, Minn. Her parents, Helen (McHugh) and Edward Dooley were both 100 percent Irish. Elaine was very proud of her Irish heritage. She attended Rochester schools and moved to Austin, Minn., after high school.

On Jan. 8, 1947, she married Raymond John Bissen at Queen of Angels Church in Austin.

Email newsletter signup

Elaine was a wonderful wife, mother and homemaker. While raising her children, she worked part time at Berg and Bissen TV and Appliance. When Ray died unexpectedly in 1977, Elaine assumed ownership of their business, Bissen TV and Appliance. She was a happy presence in the store for many years, working with Kathy, Gary and Dan.

Elaine was a member of Queen of Angels church and had been active in the choir and the rosary council. She enjoyed monthly gatherings with her “coffee club,” a delightful group of women who were truly her friends. But mostly, Elaine enjoyed spending time with her family, attending grandchildren’s events, celebrating St. Patrick’s Day and all things Irish, singing and listening to music, and just visiting with her children. She was a gentle soul and will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved her.

Elaine is survived by her children Diane (Dave) Draper, Wisconsin Rapids, Wis., Kathy (Gary) Grant, Austin, Karen (Matt) Merchlewitz, Winona, Minn., Teresa (Greg) Jette, Austin, Scott (Michelle Morey) Bissen, Orono, Minn.; daughter-in-law, Margo Bissen, Austin; grandchildren, Ross, Robert and Michael Draper, Rob Grant and Angela Kulzer, Kyle Petruzzi and Kristian Hammer, Meigan Rath, Ray, Tony, Tim, Mary and Molly Bissen, Luke and Lauren Royce, Jenny Bolander, Jesse and Ben Bissen; 16 great-grandchildren; and her brother, Edward Dooley, Austin.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Ray; sons, Greg and Dan; grandchildren Matt and Stephanie Draper; and sister, Mary Jane Wetenkamp.

A funeral Mass will be celebrated on Assumption Thursday, Aug. 15 at 11 a.m. at Queen of Angels Church in Austin. Father Paul Nelson will preside at the liturgy. Friends and family may call at Clasen-Jordan Mortuary from 5–7 p.m. on Wednesday, April 14 and again on Thursday, at Queen of Angels Church, one hour prior to the Mass. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to Sacred Heart Care Center. The family would like to thank the staff at Sacred Heart for their kind, compassionate and loving care of Elaine while she resided there. Clasen-Jordan Mortuary is in charge of arrangements.