Grace E. Covey died September 26, 2012, at her home in Moorhead, MN, under the care of Hospice of the Red River Valley and her family. To the end, she remained the devoted companion of her husband, Dr. Kenneth Covey, who was with her at her death.
Grace Elizabeth Hanson was born on January 15, 1919, to Gertrude Houtkooper and Willis Hanson, Sr. Her father was a North Dakota homesteader and her mother, a Dutch immigrant. Grace was the middle of five children, who all worked hard with their parents. She learned to drive a team of horses for plowing, planting and threshing as a child. She graduated from Lisbon (ND) High School and earned a diploma in nursing from St. Barnabas Hospital School of Nursing in Minneapolis. While working as a nursing supervisor, she met Kenneth and they were married April 27, 1944. For the first part of their marriage, Grace and Ken lived in Mahnomen, MN where Ken was the only M.D. in the county and Grace managed their growing family. They then moved to Rochester, where Ken pursued a fellowship in orthopaedic surgery. The family then moved to Crookston for 7 years and on to Moorhead, in 1966. In 1992 she and her husband shared a McKnight Foundation Human Service Award for their work in setting up housing, support, and free clinics for migrant workers, immigrants to the US, and homeless people.
Grace was a skilled gardener and rosarian. She was an avid reader and cutthroat card player. Until months before her death, she was still playing bridge. As a breast cancer survivor, she volunteered at local hospitals for Reach for Recovery (American Cancer Society). However, in terms of her passionate past-time interests there was no equal to her beloved Minnesota Twins. She and Ken were frequent attendees at spring training and for many years held season tickets. Her Homer Hankie from the 1987 World Series still held pride of place in her home. She was actively involved in her church and its local and regional leadership, including the Cherry Pie Supper, Choir, Circle 2, and the Flower Ministry.
Her husband and their children survive her, Catherine (Thomas Ports) Covey, Elizabeth (Erik) Swee, Jane (George) Hovland, Christine (Thomas) Day, and Mark (Deborah Seaburg) Covey. Also surviving are her 11 grandchildren and 4 great-grandchildren.
Her parents and all of her siblings preceded her in death, Frances Jensen, Jeanette Benson, Doris McCann, and Willis Hanson, Jr.
Memorials may be given to Reach for Recovery (ACS, 4646 Amber Valley Parkway, Fargo, ND 58104), or to First Presbyterian Church, 2900 South Fifth Street, Moorhead, MN 56560, for outreach.
Visitation, Friday, 6 PM until 8 PM, with a prayer service at 7 PM, in First Presbyterian Church of Moorhead. Memorial Service, Saturday, Sept. 29, 2012, at 2 PM in First Presbyterian Church of Moorhead. (Arrangements by Korsmo Funeral Service, Moorhead)
Online guest book at www.korsmofuneralservice.com.