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1922 Leora 2022

Leora Lorraine Richardson

April 30, 1922 — January 12, 2022

Leora L. Richardson, age 99, of Owatonna, Minnesota, passed away peacefully Wednesday, January 12, 2022 at the Lund Home-Hospice of the Valley in Gilbert, Arizona. Leora Lorraine Richardson was born April 30, 1922 in Waterloo, Iowa the daughter of Rufus and Lydia (Kress) Cunningham. She was a graduate of Waterloo Iowa Public High School. Leora married Max Richardson in 1940 and they resided in Owatonna all their married life. In 1947, Leora started the Blue Willow Restaurant and Boarding House with the Thurnau family and catered many weddings and events; including the Owatonna Country Club and Wenger's first Christmas Party. She had two food stands at the Steele County Free Fair starting in 1953. In 1959, the Blue Willow was sold. In 1965, she worked in the hospital kitchen as a supervisor, then waitressed at the Inn Towne for 12 years and Jerry's Supper Club for 12 years. Leora and Max enjoyed traveling all over the states and overseas, including two trips to Alaska, trips to Hawaii, and Europe. In 1989, they began spending their winters in Mesa, Arizona. Max passed away in 2000. Leora married Robert Stevenson in the fall of 2008. They also lived in Owatonna and wintered in Mesa, AZ. Robert passed away two days before Leora on January 10, 2022. Leora's greatest joy was her family. She was an excellent cook and baker and enjoyed helping others, including volunteering for Meals on Wheels. She was also a "snappy dresser" and owned several colorful Cadillac convertibles in the 1950s, 60s, and 70s. She liked being noticed. Leora was an excellent Hammond organ player. She is survived by her daughter, Dixie Vavrichek of Rochester, MN; son, Ross Richardson of Faribault, MN; three grandchildren; five great grandchildren; three great great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents; first husband, Max Richardson; second husband, Robert Stevenson; sister, Opal; son-in-law, Ronald Vavrichek. A private family service will be held at a later date. In lieu of memorials or flowers, please do something kind for a grandparent. To leave a special memory or condolence please visit www.ranfranzandvinefh.com Arrangements are entrusted to Ranfranz and vine Funeral Homes, 5421 Royal Place NW Rochester, MN, 55901, (507) 289-3600.
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