Denise Alane Varley (Donkers), 69, of Faribault, MN came to the end of her joyful, fabulous life on November 13, 2020.
Denise was a woman of faith, and has been reunited in heaven with all the loved ones that have preceded her in death. Her mother Lorraine Donkers, father Ernest Donkers (per Denise the BEST parents, ever), brother Richard Donkers and brother-in-law Jack Winjum. Denise is survived by her husband of 45 years, Joe; her daughters Vanessa Varley, Molly Hardy (Aaron), Kelly Alms (Nick); and grandchildren Adler Kane and Oliver Alms. She is also survived by sister Connie Winjum and brother Terry Donkers (Mary Holasek).
Denise was born in Faribault, MN on November 3, 1951. Raised on a farm in rural Faribault, she continued to spend her married years on the Varley farmstead just outside of town. This is where she and Joe started and built the family business out of their home in 1974. According to Joe, Denise was the “nuts & bolts” of the business, managing the books down to the penny. As organized and routine as they come, there wasn’t anything that slipped past Denise. Prior to the family business, she worked in real estate, and continued to do so in managing family properties.
During her retirement years, a perfect day for Denise would include walking 5 miles (talking to whomever came across her path), going to the grocery store (again, talking to whomever came across her path), coming home and cooking a five-star dinner, and talking with her family about whomever came across her path. She had the gift of gab.
Denise exemplified what it meant to be an amazing human being. She was the queen of social graces. Positive, inclusive, supportive, always did the right thing, and generous to a fault. A cheerful giver. She may have never considered herself “funny,” but she was hilarious. She always had a smile on her face, accented by her signature red lipstick. You never left a conversation with Denise not feeling better. She left everything and everyone better than the way she found them. We are all better for having known her.
Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Saturday, November 21, 2020 at 1:30 p.m. at the Divine Mercy Catholic Church, 139 Mercy Drive in Faribault with Fr. Cory Rohlfing officiating. Interment will be held at the Calvary Cemetery, Faribault. For those unable to attend, you may watch the livestream of the service through a link on Denise’s obituary page at www.ParkerKohlFuneralHome.com.
Memorial visitation will be held at the Parker Kohl Funeral Home on Friday, November 20, 2020 from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. and will continue at the church on Saturday for one hour prior to services.
In lieu of flowers, the family prefers that memorials be directed to Divine Mercy Catholic Church, Divine Mercy Catholic School or Bethlehem Academy in memory of Denise.