Lita Lina Sagedahl (Odland) died of pancreatic cancer on January 27, 2021, surrounded by her family and friends.
Whether you called her your wife, mom, grandma, sister, auntie, cousin, or friend, you know that being a part of her life was an amazing gift. There was nothing more important to her than her family, and if you spent more than a couple days in her presence, you always felt like you were just that.
Lita was born in Townsend, Montana, to Faye (Donald) and Rita Odland on December 22, 1960. Don and Rita, along with their four girls, Laurie, Lonnie, Lita, and Lecil, moved to Menahga, MN in 1969. Lita loved her sisters passionately and cherished every moment with them including their lengthy daily phone calls, coffee visits, and holiday get-togethers. One of the foundations of her relationship with her sisters was their love of their Native American heritage. Lita loved the Native American culture and found true joy in learning of her families’ history.
In 1976, Lita met her husband, Sheldon. She was not interested in his ‘city slicker’ personality at first, but his confident, cool demeanor soon won her over. They were married July 26, 1980 and they have been inseparable ever since. Together they were an unstoppable team, loved and envied by everyone that met them. Lita may have been small in stature, but she was a force to be reckoned with when it came to washers, pool, or any other competition she put her mind to. She was their secret weapon.
Following along with her family roots, as her mother and sisters were all nurses, Lita became a Registered nurse and continued in this career path until her retirement. Her kind heart, compassion, and true desire to help people, made her a fantastic nurse.
Sheldon and Lita had three daughters; Michelle Werlinger (Neil), Jennifer Jacobson (Jim), and Danielle Sagedahl (Shawn). There is nothing in the world that was more important to her than her children. She was so proud of each of them, and took many hours out of her week excitedly listening to their daily updates. The only thing that could surpass her love for her girls was her love for her grandbabies. From the first one, to the last, Blake (16), Griffen (11), Hillary (6), and Max (3), she made every possible effort to let them know how much she loved them; often spoiling them far past their parents’ preference.
When she was not doting on her family, watching the Vikings and Tar heels, or kicking butt at Wild Washers, Lita spent the majority of her free time at the river with Sheldon. Full Moon Lagoon was her paradise and she loved to share it with everyone she met. If you have ever been there, you know that it is special, but a lot of its charm was because of Lita. She never let anyone’s belly or drink go empty, and was always there to lend a supportive ear. If you were lucky enough, she may have even taken you for a wild ride on ‘Gus’ the golf cart!
There is not much Lita would not do for her family and friends. Her main goal in life was to make everyone around her feel comfortable, which was often done through food. She took true pride in cooking and catering to all that surrounded her. Lita’s house was the center of many gatherings throughout the years because everyone knew she was the best cook around and there would always be enough food for an army!
Lita was tough. She owned a quiet toughness that, in the end, gave her a peaceful end to her amazing life. Her selfless, positive and wild spirit is one that we will all miss so very much.
Lita is survived by her husband of 40 years, Sheldon; three daughters; four grandchildren; father and mothers-in law: Chuck (Karen) Sagedahl and Betty Thomas; two sisters: Lonnie Odland and Lecil (Matt) Miller; eight brother and sisters-in-law: Steve (Judy) Sagedahl, Scott (Lori) Sagedahl; Kristi (Mark) Andrew, Tom (Cindy) Knigge, KJ (Catie) Sagedahl; Kari Seijo, Kristine (Scott) Bjorke and Steve Skaro; two aunts; along with many cousins, nieces, nephews and friends.
Lita is preceded in death by her mom, Rita Odland, dad, Don Odland; two grandchildren: Aiden and Caden Werlinger; sister, Laurie Skaro; nephew, Donnie Skaro; father-in-law, Peter Thomas.
A celebration of Lita’s life will be held 11 a.m. on Saturday, February 6, 2021, at First English Lutheran Church in Menahga. Due to Lita’s COVID restrictions, Masks will be required.
Arrangements are with the Furey Funeral Home of Frazee, MN. Online condolences may be left at www.fureyfh.com.