Imogene N. Tharalson, 81, of Sun City, AZ went to be with the Lord on August 9, 2019. Imogene (Imo) was born on June 20, 1938 to Hilmen and Lena Brekhus in Norman County, MN. She helped her parents on their farm near Rindal, MN and attended rural schools nearby while growing up. During high school at Fertile, MN she sang as an alto and played the cornet in various choral groups, was a majorette, and was active in several church and school groups. After graduating from high school, she became a registered nurse in 1959 through Lutheran Deaconess Hospital in Minneapolis, MN and continued working there in the pediatric ward.
In the summer of 1961, she and three other nurses had many adventures as they traveled across Europe. In late 1961 she began attending a young adult group at Central Lutheran Church in downtown Minneapolis. While at meetings there she met Darryl Tharalson, who was to become the love of her life. After a rather whirlwind romance during the winter which involved considerable ice skating, bowling and other activities they got engaged and were married on July 7, 1962. The marriage took place in the Lutheran Church in Rindal, MN on a very hot and humid day. They went on their honeymoon to Riding Mountain National Park in Manitoba, Canada.
After being married, they lived in Minneapolis until the summer of 1964. During that period, Imo continued working in the pediatric ward at Lutheran Deaconess Hospital while Darryl was doing graduate work at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis and working at Prudential Life Insurance Company in Minneapolis. From 1964 to 1975 she worked as an RN in hospitals in several cities and states as Darryl was teaching and/or working on various academic degrees in earth science/geology. Along the way, she and Darryl were blessed with a daughter, Deborah, in 1965, and a son, Bruce in 1967. During that period of time, which involved moving every one or two years, Imo was a model wife and mother. With her upbeat and sunny personality, Imo quickly made friends in the different places she lived. She usually sang in the church choir and engaged in other Christian activities. Summer vacations generally were spent on her parent’s farm in northern Minnesota.
While living in Chadron, NE from 1975 to 2000, in addition to other activities, Imo was a manager in the Chadron Natural Food Coop and sang in the church choir. Imo worked as an RN for the Chadron Community Hospital in the Home Health department for most of the years in Chadron. During the summer, Imo, Darryl and family often camped in the Black Hills and canoed on Lake Angostura. She and Darryl had many fun times cross-country skiing at Chadron State Park during the winter months.
She and Darryl moved from Chadron to Sun City West in 2000, but spent the summer months in Rapid City, SD where they did much biking and playing tennis or golf. One day Imo even aced a hole! While living in Sun City West, Imo sang in the church choir and enjoyed biking and playing mini-golf, tennis and table tennis. She and Darryl moved from Sun City West to Sun City, AZ in late 2003.
In Sun City, Imo was active in church and enjoyed reading, bocce, biking tennis, swimming, and even some roller blading in the neighborhood. During the cooler months she often assisted Darryl when he was in the field looking for minerals and rocks. She always took pleasure in getting together with family and friends and helping people in need.
Around the middle of 2017 Imo was diagnosed with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. That disease progressively destroys lung function. As time passed, she had to be on oxygen 24/7 and became more limited in mobility. By October of 2018, in order to receive the required care, she and Darryl found it necessary to move in with their daughter and family in Scottsdale. Ultimately, as she continued to weaken and lose weight, she had to reside in a hospital bed 24/7 there. Even though the last several months were increasingly difficult for her, Imo maintained a positive attitude and retained her cheerful smiles and faith in God and Jesus. She peacefully passed away early on Friday, August 9th. She was cremated at Menke Funeral & Cremation Center in Sun City on Tuesday, August 13, 2019. She is survived by husband Darryl, daughter Deborah, son Bruce and six grandchildren.
A memorial and celebration of Imo’s life is planned to take place later this year for family and friends.