Cover photo for Josefa Gerdin's Obituary
Josefa Gerdin Profile Photo
1932 Josefa 2010

Josefa Gerdin

March 25, 1932 — March 11, 2010


Josefa ‘Pepi’ Gerdin, 77, passed away peacefully in her sleep during the early morning hour of Thursday, March 11, 2010.

Per her specific request, there will be a private memorial luncheon at Appletree Court on what would have been her 78 th birthday. A private interment will be held at the family plot at Hillside Memorial Cemetery in the Twin Cities the following day.

‘Pepi’, as she was known, was born March 25 th , 1932, in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico, the daughter or Jose Quintana Cardona and Francisca Villalba Burgos. Her father died of malaria while serving in the military and before she was born. She was raised by her widowed mother and siblings, one brother and three sisters.

On July 25, 1953 she was united in marriage to Airman Walter Wirth Gerdin, USAF. As an Air Force wife and full time homemaker, over the next 22 years, Pepi enjoyed many opportunities to travel throughout the United States and Europe with their growing family: Patsy Ann was born in Puerto Rico, Frank Walter was born in Texas and Gary Gene was born in Germany. In 1968, family settled in Fergus Falls, MN where Walter retired from the Air Force in 1972. In 1984, Pepi and Walt moved to the warmth of Florida, traveling back to Minnesota in the summer months. They resided in Umatilla, Florida until 1996 when Walt passed away. Pepi then spent several years traveling between Minnesota, Utah, New Mexico, North Dakota and Florida. Always returning to the sunny south before winter hit the north-country. In 2007, due to failing health, Her family moved her to Breckenridge, MN to be near them.

At Appletree Court, she made new friends, enjoyed her apartment-home with a view of the river and all the wildlife she so enjoyed watching, and in the coldest of winter, she didn’t have to go outside the building for fellowship and fun. She enjoyed the secure environment, all the activities available, and being with other ladies who shared her passion for BINGO, playing cards, putting puzzles together, and watching movies.

She is survived by her sister, Dalila Downs of Florida; her three children, three grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren: Patsy A. (Leslie) Willemssen, Wahpeton, ND, their son Adam Jacob (Monica) Willemssen, Denver, CO; Frank W. (Tami) Gerdin Tijeras, New Mexico, their daughters Mariah Lee Gerdin and great-granddaughter Sianne, Maryland; Brandy Jo (Ted) Lovesky and great-grandson, Donovan, South Carolina; Gary G. Gerdin of Moorhead, MN

She was preceded in death by her parents: Jose Quintana Cordona and Francisca Villalba-Quintana-Burgos of Puerto Rico; her brother, Miguel Quintana; her sisters, Sara Smith and Emma Peacock; and her husband, Walter W. Gerdin (1996).

In lieu of flowers, the family would prefer donations to a monument fund. Joseph Vertin & Sons Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Josefa Gerdin, please visit our flower store.


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