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Janet Makela 1940 – 2023

Janet Mable (Clarin) Makela of Menahga, MN, passed away on April 13, 2023, at Green Pine Acres nursing home in Menahga at the age of 83. She was born at home in Straight River township, Hubbard County, to Henry and Edna (Hook) Clarin on February 7, 1940.
Janet had an ideal childhood growing up on the farm with her nine brothers and sisters, some of whom fondly called her Jannie. One of her greatest memories was playing in the Straight River that ran through the property. She vastly preferred helping her mom around the house to barn chores, though!
Janet graduated from Menahga High School with the class of 1958. She moved to the Twin Cities and worked there for about two years. She met James Makela at the Red Eye ball diamond and they eventually married on October 10, 1959, in Park Rapids, MN at the First Baptist Church. They moved back and forth from Minnesota to Montana three times over the course of their marriage. Two of their four children were born in Montana and two in Minnesota.
Janet had a few different career paths during her lifetime including daycare provider in both Minnesota and Montana; sewing and hanging curtains for DEKCO Manufacturing in Menahga; working at Busy Bee Café in Roundup, MT; housecleaning; working at New Frontier Resort in Park Rapids; and ending with housekeeping at Green Pine Acres nursing home in Menahga for over 20 years.
Janet was an amazing wife, mother, sister and friend. She was a very loving grandmother and great-grandmother and loved attending their sporting events, band concerts and graduations. She liked to bake, loved gardening and tending her flowers, having coffee with her many friends and never missed a good garage sale. She also had a life-long love of sewing, making many beautiful quilts, wedding dresses and clothing of all kinds. Crocheting and embroidery were also among her many other talents.
Janet was preceded in death by her parents Edna and Henry; sister Joyce (Warren) Nelson; brothers: Leon, Dale and Gary; brothers-in-law Elmer (Joan) Torma and Warren (Joyce) Nelson; sister-in-law Leona (Donald) Clarin. Also, father-in-law Elmer Makela, mother-in-law Ida Makela, brothers-in-law Don, Clyde, Vern, Russ, Ervin, Wilfred Huotari, Gary Harju; sisters-in-law Joanne Makela, sons-in-law Mike Malmskog and Bob Mason.
She is survived by her husband of 63 years, James; daughters: Christie Mason, Shari (Bryan) Petersen, and Becky (Matt) Palmer; son Curt (Vilma); six grandchildren: Nikki (Adam) Kates, Derek (Sanae) Petersen, Evan (Felicia) Petersen, Brittany (Eric) Aker, Tristan (Bailee) Palmer, Morgan (Brandon) Palmer, Hunter; and thirteen great-grandchildren.
She is also survived by siblings: Don Clarin, Joan Torma, Jewel (Ron) Anderson, Linda (Dick) Nevala, Lora (Eric) Erickson; sisters-in-law Lorraine (Leon) Clarin, Joyce (Gary) Clarin, Ellen (Gerald) Benson, Irene Romaniuk, Norma Jean (Gary) Walker, Margaret Makela, Sheila Matson, Vivian Sazama and Trudy (Bruce) Hollman; and brothers-in-law Clarence (Dot) Makela, Wes (Carol) Makela, Harvey Makela; and a host of other relatives and friends. She will be greatly missed.
Funeral services will be held on Monday, April 24, 2023, at 1 p.m. with visitation from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. at Friends in Christ Community Church, 405 Becker Ave N, Sebeka, MN with pastor Althea Tysk officiating. Burial will take place at Mantyla Cemetery north of Sebeka following the service.
Arrangements are entrusted to Wevley Funeral Home of Sebeka. Online condolences may be left at

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