Ethel Sonja Wicks Monstad, 76

Published 1:37 pm Thursday, December 16, 2021

Ethel Sonja Wicks Monstad, 76

Ethel Sonja Wicks Monstad, 76 years old, died in Bergen, Norway, Dec. 8, 2021. Ethel Sonja was born to Salmer and Mildred Wicks in Austin, Minnesota, on March 13, 1945, and grew up on a farm in Moscow Township in Freeborn County. She was active, along with her brother Jim, in 4-H, School activities including band, and church were a big part of her upbringing. Schooling started at a small one-room neighborhood school (Crackerbox school) and she graduated from Austin High School in 1963. She graduated from Austin Community College, transferred to the University of Minnesota where she earned a BA in Home Economics. After working in several Counties for the Home Extension service, she wanted to explore her Norwegian roots and heritage. While traveling In Bergen, Norway, she met Jostein Monstad, whom she married in 1971 in Austin, Minnesota at St Olaf Lutheran Church, with many family members from Norway attending. Living back and forth from USA to Norway, she learned Norwegian, was very involved as a mother and enjoyed raising her three children, Sturle, Joakim, and Synneve. These were some of her two major accomplishments in her younger years. From 1981-1983, Jostein and Ethel Sonja had the chance to spend time in Minnesota close to her parents with their children attending American schools, while they both worked in a group home for youth with special needs. Later, in Norway, she pursued degrees in pre-school education, special education and speech therapy. She worked many years in pre-school and at a high school for physical and mentally challenged students. All her children did parts of their education in Minnesota and Norway. Joakim moved to the USA and married; therefore Jostein and Ethel Sonja continued to have many trips back and forth from Norway to USA to visit family and friends. She demonstrated a deep faith in Jesus, her Lord and Savior whom she trusted faithfully each day. She was a member of Arna Lutheran Church and participated and contributed in many activities. Both on the farm in Minnesota and the mountains in Norway she enjoyed hiking and being in nature. Her love and interest in her husband, children and families along with many friends in several countries was a great encouragement to all who knew her. She is survived by her husband, Jostein Monstad, children Sturle (Inger Johanne) Monstad, Joakim (Yvette) Monstad, Synneve (Leif) Bottolfs, grandchildren; Anna, Kai, Eili, Oline, Nils, Renn and Erik, Sister-in-law Carole, Brothers Dale (Lee) Wicks Austin MN, Raymond (Jean) Wicks Plattsmouth NE, Family friend Barbara, Brothers-in-law Jan Monstad, Oddvar (Kirsten) Monstad, Many nephews, nieces and cousins. Preceeded in death by parents Salmer and Mildred Louise Wicks, brother James Wicks. Ethel Sonja will be buried in Arna church 20 Dec.1130 CET. Memorial website and information on how to follow the service online can be found at her memorial site; sonja.monstad.no