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Hazel Haugo

Jan. 19, 1907-Sept. 12, 2009

Hazel Haugo, 102, of rural Waubun, died Saturday, September 12, 2009 at the Eventide Home in Moorhead. At the time of her death she was one of the oldest residents of Mahnomen County and was believed to be the oldest graduate of Minnesota State University Moorhead.

Hazel was born to Ole and Barbro Syverson, Norwegian immigrants, on Jan. 19, 1907 on a farm near Ulen. She was baptized on March 17, 1907 at the Atlanta Lutheran Church. Hazel attended elementary school at District 26 (the Tinjum School), a one room rural school near the Syverson farm, and graduated from Ulen High School in 1926.

Following high school, Hazel attended Moorhead State Teachers College (MSTC), graduating in 1927. After graduation, Hazel taught for seven years in four different rural schools: Plentywood and Woodland Nook Schools in Norman County; Popple Grove School in Mahnomen County: and Troseth School in Becker County.

On Dec. 24, 1933, Hazel married Olaf Haugo at the Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Ulen. They made their home in Popple Grove Township for 66 years, until Olaf's death in 1999. Hazel continued to live on the farm until 2004, when she moved to the Eventide Home in Moorhead. Hazel was a true farm woman of her generation, who supported the family's farming business and also participated in a range of community activities. She was active in the Wild Rice Lutheran Church, Popple Grove 4-H Club, Popple Grove Homemakers Club and Waubun High School activities. In 1972, Hazel and Olaf were the recipients of the Valley Farmer and Homemaker Award at the Crookston (Minn.) Winter Shows.

Family was first and foremost in Hazel's life. She selflessly nurtured her large family of nine children, including a special needs daughter, with grace and love. Her domestic skills were legendary. She was an exceptional cook whose meals, especially her holiday and traditional Norwegian dishes, will be remembered and missed by her entire family.

She was an excellent seamstress and left a legacy of beautiful handiwork for her children and grandchildren. In later years, she read with passion and could still recite long passages of poetry from her days as a schoolteacher. Her love of young children continued to the last days of her life, as a young child always brought a smile to her face and brightened her day. Hazel's personality was somewhat reserved, but it was peppered with a dry, subtle sense of humor and comments that were all the more interesting in contrast to her usual shyness. She will be missed not only by her extensive family but also by so many who valued her as the last of her generation. The scripture, Matthew 25, aptly describes her life, "Well done, good and faithful servant."

Surviving Hazel are five sons, David (Jean) Haugo of Waubun; John (Sharon) Haugo of Hudson, Wis., Olaf (Dianne) Haugo of Hawley, Donald Haugo of Bloomington, Minn., and George (Mary) Haugo of Fargo; two daughters, Carole (Roger) Olsen of Moorhead and Patricia (Blair) Wheaton of Toronto, Canada; 23 grandchildren, and 40 great grandchildren.

Preceding Hazel in death were her parents; her husband, Olaf; one son, Allan; one daughter, Marie; nine brothers: and seven sisters.

Visitation will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 15, with a 7 p.m. prayer service, at the Anderson-Mattson Funeral Home in Mahnomen. It will continue for one hour prior to services at the church on Wednesday.

Funeral services are scheduled for 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 16, at Wild Rice Lutheran Church, rural Twin Valley. Interment will take place at Wild Rice Lutheran Cemetery, rural Twin Valley.

Arrangements have been entrusted to Anderson-Mattson Funeral Home of Mahnomen. An online guestbook is available at