Aune Sylvia Harju


OTSEGO, Mich. — Aune Sylvia Harju, 93, of Paynesville, died on Sept. 12, 2017, at Diana’s Care in Otsego, surrounded by her family.

She was born in Pieksamaki, Finland, on June 10, 1924, to Aksel and Olga (Manninen) Valkonen.

She worked for many years in Finland, including state work and cashiering. She immigrated to the United States in 1949, moving to the Detroit area, at first living with relatives. She met and married Emil Harju in Detroit. They moved to Paynesville in 1952. They lived on the family farm where they raised their family. She also worked for the U.S. Forest Service and restaurant work. From 1980 on they spent their winters in Florida.

She was a kind and generous lady who made wonderful meals for her family and friends. Her family remembers the cabbage rolls, pasties, Finnish pancakes, and pulla and breads that were some of her specialties. She was also especially proud of obtaining her high school diploma.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Emil, of more than 50 years of marriage in 2006. She was also preceded in death by her infant daughter, parents and siblings Hilja, Toivo and Pentti.

She is survived by son, Paul, of Boynton Beach, Fla .; two daughters, Leah (Dennis) Good, of Charlotte, and Diana (Nelson) Multer, of Plainwell; six grandchildren, Elissa (Chris) Mullinix, Heather (Trent) Clemen, Sarah (Nate) Voss, Devin Good, Lisa (Josh) Vyverman, John Multer; seven great-grandchildren; a sister-in-law, Aulikki Valkonen, of California; and several nieces and nephews.

Friends may call at Life Story Funeral Home in Plainwell on Wednesday, Sept. 27, from 4 to 7 p.m.

Funeral services will be held at 1 p.m. EDT on Saturday, Sept. 30, at the Cane Funeral Home in Bruce Crossing with Pastor Kay Richter officiating. Friends may call at the funeral home from 11 a.m. EDT until the service. Interment will be in the Paynesville Cemetery.

Following the interment, lunch will be served at Our Saviour Lutheran Church in Paynesville.


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