Ella was born July 24, 1940, to Daniel and Helen Warnes in Stephen M.N. She was the fourth of five siblings and lived on the family farm until she graduated salutatorian from Stephen High School in 1958.
She then attended Augsburg College for three years. Her first marriage in 1961 resulted in three children. She then married Robert Lerud, who had two boys from a previous marriage on May 26, 1972. They lived in Grand Forks and Grafton N.D., and moved to The Dalles, Ore., in 1981.
Ella had many jobs throughout her life, such as teaching English, selling Tupperware and Lutheran Brotherhood Insurance. She enjoyed being with people and helping those in need.
When she was younger, she was very active in 4-H and throughout her life she was very dedicated to her church life, most recently Zion Lutheran Church. She loved her family and was always supporting them. She had many interests, including bowling, singing in the choir, gardening and bird watching.
Ella is survived by her spouse, Robert Lerud, of 45 years and their children, Steven (Jennifer) Lerud, Barton (Justine) Lerud, Justine (Barton) Lerud, Tyrone (Cheryl) Lerud and Kirstin (David) Wright; 10 grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; and sisters Wanda (Ted) Olson and Gloria (Dean) Danter. She was preceded in death by her parents, brother Dennis, and sister Mary.
A memorial service will be held at Zion Lutheran Church in The Dalles on Jan. 27 at 1 p.m. Burial will be on Jan. 29 at the Odd Fellows Cemetery. In lieu of flowers please send memorials to Zion Lutheran trust fund.
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