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Ellen Bidne Brown

August 2, 1937 - January 3, 2022

Ellen Bidne Brown, 84, of Mabel, formerly of rural Decorah, died Monday, January 3, 2022 at the Winneshiek Medical Center in Decorah, Iowa.

Ellen Marian Anderson was born August 2, 1937, daughter of Andrew and Clara (Skaim) Anderson, in Decorah. She was eleventh of 13 children. She was united in marriage to George Bidne September 5, 1959 at Big Canoe Lutheran Church in Decorah, Iowa. Together they had four children: Keith, Kevin, Kathleen and Karen. After George’s passing she married Arland Brown on June 23, 2001.

Ellen was a member of Big Canoe Lutheran Church Priscilla Circle, and an active member of VFW auxiliary for 54 years. She had a great personality, was funny and never missed out on telling a joke. She loved to give you a hard time, but she expected you to give it back in return. Anything for a good laugh. No matter what the situation she could find something humorous. She enjoyed making lefse with her sisters (Three Sisters Lefse), bird watching, gardening, socializing with family and friends, playing cards and pulling tabs. She loved dancing and never missed listening to the big bands on the radio on Sunday mornings before church. She was very proud of all of her grandchildren and great grandchildren.

She is survived by her husband of 20 years, Arland Brown, of Mabel, MN. Children Keith (Brenda) Bidne of Story City, IA Kevin (Doreen) Bidne of Decorah, Kathy (Charles) Colbert of Mandeville, LA, Karen (Aaron) Borcherding of Salina, KS and stepdaughter Michelle Brown (Ryan) of Irvine, CA, 10 grandchildren Seth (Jennifer) Bidne of Grinnell, Katlin Bidne of Ankeny, Kirk Bidne of Minneapolis, Jared Bidne of Minneapolis, Keegan (Kaylee) Colbert  of Destin, FL, Trevor Colbert of Mandeville, LA, Chandler Colbert of Ponchatoula, LA, Chase Colbert of Mandeville, LA, Kortney (Cole) Spickler of Leavenworth, KS, Brendan Borcherding of Smithville, MO and two great grandchildren Riley and Thomas Bidne of Grinnell. Two sisters, Louise Vander Sanden of Sun Prairie, WI and Verna (Willard) Hanson of Decorah, two sisters in law, Gloria (Leo) Bartlett and Donna Anderson, brother-in-law, Roger Nolden, and many nieces and nephews. She hosted Eivind Akervold and Henning Lunde as Norwegian foreign exchange students and loved them as her own.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Andrew and Clara, husband, George Bidne December 15, 1994, and 10 siblings, Arnold, Pearl, Clarence, Florence, Arlene, Leonard, Rueben, Orval, Lorraine, Gladys.

Ellen wanted to give special thanks to her friends, Mike Timmons and Jeanette Paul for their excellent care.

Funeral service will be 11 a.m., Saturday, January 8th at the Big Canoe Lutheran Church in rural Decorah, Iowa.

Visitation will be 4 -6 p.m. Friday, January 7th at the Mengis Funeral Home in Mabel, and one hour prior to services at the church.


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