June 16, 1956 — Nov. 24, 2019

Pamela D. Carlson, of Willmar, died Sunday, Nov. 24, 2019, at Carris Health Rice Hospital in Willmar surrounded by her family. She was 63 years old.

She was born on June 16, 1956, in Ogilvie to Lorraine Burmeister. When Lorraine and Henry Vanderberg were married three years later, Henry adopted her, and she joined the Vanderberg family as a beloved child. She was raised on the Vanderberg farm near Ogilvie and loved being a farm girl. She graduated from Ogilvie High School in 1974 and went to the St. Cloud School of Nursing, earning a licensed practical nursing degree in 1977. Following this, she began working at the Willmar State Hospital.

She was baptized at Zion Lutheran Church in Mora and confirmed her faith at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Ogilvie. She served as a Sunday school and vacation Bible school teacher until her health prevented this, and continued making hundreds of prayer shawls for nursing homes, hospitals, hospice and others.

She was united in marriage to Jeffrey Carlson on Dec. 30, 1977, at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Ogilvie. Their life together took them all over the country, from Kerkhoven to North Dakota, Washington, back to Minnesota and eventually returning to Willmar in 2010. Amidst these moves, she transitioned to becoming a fulltime homemaker, even sometimes 

homeschooling her daughters. 

Her heart overflowed with love. She took in strays and always had animals about. She was talented; knitting, crocheting and quilting innumerable gifts for others. She loved spending time with friends and family, whether playing games or just visiting. 

She was preceded in death by her parents.

She is survived by her husband, Jeff of Willmar; daughters, Kristine Carlson of Willmar, Linda (Weston) Heuer of Maple Grove; grandchildren, Jeffrey and Diana; siblings, Bob (Sherry) Vanderberg of Mora, Cindy (Wes) Arends of Ogilvie, Robin Saari of Mora, David Vanderberg of Mora, Bill Vanderberg of Rosemount; and many beloved nieces and nephews. 

A memorial service was held on Saturday, Nov. 30, 2019, at Redeemer Lutheran Church in Willmar. Burial was in Hillside Cemetery in Kerkhoven. Arrangements are with Harvey Anderson Funeral Home in Willmar.

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