Skip to content

Judith Kocurek


Judith Darlene “Judy” Kocurek, age 71, a long time Menahga, Minnesota area resident, passed into the glorious redemption of heaven in the early morning hours of Tuesday, November 14, 2017 at the St. Cloud Area Hospital with her loved ones at her side.

Judy was born on November 3, 1946 in Wadena, to Ludwig and Lydia (Harju) Gustafson. She grew up in Menahga where she attended public school, graduating from the Menahga Public High School with the Class of 1965. As a young woman, Judy ventured to Utah where she worked for a time as a nursing assistant. After returning to Menahga, Judy met and fell in love with Woodrow Kocurek and the two were married on January 25, 1969. Their marriage was blessed with six children: Woodrow Louis III, Denise Marie, Karyn Adele, Kevin Douglas, Nina Lydia and Kurtis Allen. The young family made their home in Mendota for a number of years, where Judy devoted herself to making a loving home for her husband and children. She was a wonderful cook and baker who will be long appreciated by her children for her delicious home cooked meals.

In 1976, they returned to Menahga where in addition to caring for her family, Judy also worked for a time as a nurse’s aide at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Park Rapids and at Green Pine Acres Nursing Home in Menahga. Each spring, she looked forward to planting a large vegetable garden which she would nurture into fruitful abundance to help meet the needs of her growing family. She also enjoyed raising many beautiful flowers into colorful splendor for all to enjoy. In her spare time she enjoyed working with her hands making beautiful comforting quilts for family and friends. Judy was a woman of faith who found peace and fulfillment in her relationship with Jesus Christ. For many years, she attended the First English Lutheran Church in Menahga. Above all, Judy loved her family with all her heart and was a great nurturer of her children and grandchildren with an unconditional love that only a mother can know and give.

She will be lovingly remembered by her six children: Woodrow (Ruth) Kocurek of Centuria, Wisconsin, Denise (Allen LaFountaine) Notsch of Bagley, Karyn Gruber of Bemidji, Kevin (Karen) Kocurek of Menahga, Nina Kocurek of Sauk Rapids, and Kurtis (Abby) Kocurek of Roosevelt; 21 grandchildren: Dustin, Woody, Amanda and Wyatt; Elizabeth, Kristen, Joe, Samantha and Katie; Jake, Chase and Walker; Kody, Kristian, Kameron, Kiara and Karson; Abby and Aaron; Grant and Carter; seven precious great-grandchildren; her two sisters: Elaine (John) Vlajnich of Virginia, and Evelyn (Butch) Cadeau of Eveleth, as well as many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

Judy was preceded in death by her parents; a sister in infancy and four brothers: Calvin, Donald, Ernest and John.

Funeral services are set for 12 Noon on Saturday, November 25 at the First English Lutheran Church in Menahga with the Rev. James Hallaway officiating. Her casket bearers will be her grandchildren. Honorary casket bearers will be her nieces: Carla Moberg, Terry Hiti, Nadine Hendrickson, Tammy Koibinen and Christina Persons. Interment will be made in the Menahga City Cemetery. Following the service a luncheon will be served at church for all. Visitation will begin one hour prior to the services at the church.

Arrangements are entrusted to Cardini Pearson Funeral Home. To leave online condolences or to view the video tribute, please visit