Obituary of Darlene Ohlson Timm
Darlene (née Ohlson)
Age 89, of Maplewood, MN
Darlene “Dar” Esther (Ohlson) Timm passed away peacefully on Tuesday, August 8, 2023 at her home with her husband and children around her. Darlene was born July 11, 1934 in St. Paul. She was the youngest child and only girl born to Edwin Theodore and Esther Elvira (Anderson) Ohlson. She was 6 years old when her father died and she was raised in part by her Swedish grandmother, Alice Anderson, who encouraged and helped pay for piano lessons. Darlene blossomed into a musical career at a young age, playing church organ and directing a church choir at age 16. Darlene graduated from Harding High School in 1952 and went on to study music and library science at the University of Minnesota. Through her brothers’ East Side friendships, she would start dating William Timm who lived 3 blocks away and was studying pharmacy. They married in early 1955 and she became Catholic. Darlene’s education had to wait as she went on to have 6 children in the next 8 years. Her Air Force family life settled quickly into suburban life first in N. St. Paul and then to Maplewood. Darlene continued to make music and played organ countless times for weddings and funerals. She directed choirs first at St. Peter’s and then returned to college in her 40’s and worked on piano performance, earning a musical Bachelor's degree from St. Catherine University. After teaching for a short while, she returned to St. Kate’s and received her liturgical musicianship certification. She then embarked on another 30-year career of making music at many Catholic churches in the St. Paul area. She formed bell choirs and funeral choirs to enhance musical liturgy. She was a substitute accompanist into her early 80s.
Darlene was widowed for 10 years and always disliked sitting in church alone. She was a very social person and joining the WOW (Widows or Widowers) group and helping organize many events as president. At age 80, encouraged by her daughters, she began a one-month membership on CatholicMatch.com. There she met widower Russell Susag, a retired 3M engineer. They really hit it off and were married in April, 2015. They spent much time at Russell’s cottage in Siren, Wisconsin. They had a pact where mom would go snowmobiling and jet-skiing and Russell would learn to dance. They both liked golf. The 8 years they were married were their wonder years.
Dar’s other interests were many and varied. She was an excellent cook and baker. She could sew just about anything. She was a constant reader and also researcher of her Swedish history. She traveled widely with her husbands and also made a trip to the shrine in Medjugorje with her daughters. She was a servant and friend to both her mother and mother-in-law. She mourned her son Michael’s early death and was a doting grandmother to his young son Eric. She spent as much time as she could with all her kids and grandchildren and visits to her house for vacations and holidays were special events.
Left to mourn her passing is her beloved husband, Russell Susag. Darlene is also survived by 5 children: Bruce (Marcia) of Wisconsin, Richard (Susan) of Oakdale, Dan (Glenda) of Colorado, Sandra of Texas, and Kathy (Tom) Halverson of Woodbury. She is also survived by 14 grandchildren: Eric (MacKella), Michael (Stephanie), Katy (Steve), David, Jeff (Astrid), Greg, Jenny (John), Connor, Fiona, Zachary, Nathaniel, Samantha, Alex (Kalila) and Andrew and two step-grandsons Chad (Heather) and Lance (Melissa). She is further survived by great-granddaughter Maci and 4 step great-granddaughters. She is also survived by Russ’s children Amy (Mike) Maynard of N. St. Paul, Ann of Richfield, Katie (Urban) Bauer of New Mexico, John (the late Lisa) of Cottage Grove, Karen (Sharon Jones) of Massachusetts and Jim (Kim) of Prior Lake and Russ’s 8 grandchildren. Russ’s sister Lynn (Ahmed) El-Hoshy of Maryland also survives. Lastly she is survived by a wealth of nieces, nephews and cousins, neighbors and friends, her ‘sister/cousin’ Sr. Jeanne Lefebvre and the congregation of The Church of St. Peter.
Preceding Darlene in death were her first husband William Timm in 2004, her parents and her parents-in-law Gus and Edna (Halligan) Timm, her three older brothers Roy, Harvey and Jack (Shirley) and her oldest son Michael (Chong Son).
Darlene’s final words to many people were often the Swedish expression ‘Många tack!’, ‘Many thanks!’ The family is thankful to Dr. Michael Bozivich who provided decades of medical care, Fr. Pietro Rossotti who provided spiritual care, and Our Lady of Peace Hospice who provided end of life care.
Mass of Christian Burial is on Wednesday, August 23, 2023 at Church of St. Peter, 2600 Margaret St. N., North Saint Paul at 10:30 am with visitation at 9:30 am. Additional visitation Tuesday, August 22, 2023 at Sandberg Funeral Home (2593 E. 7th Ave, North Saint Paul) from 4:00 – 8:00 pm with Recitation of the Rosary at 7:45 pm.