Doris Bryson, age 105, of Herman, Minnesota passed away Wednesday, July 28, 2021 at Karen's House in Herman.
A Graveside Service will be held Thursday, August, 5, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. at Lakeside Cemetery in Herman, Minnesota with Pastor Heather E. Klason Officiating. Pallbearers will be Lane Pederson, Danny Johnson, David Johnson, Matt Brown, Eric Hanson, Scott Kilpatrick, Mike Mortenson and Chip Bregant.
A Celebration of Life will be held Thursday, August 5th at 11:30 a.m. at the United Methodist Church in Herman with a Time of Sharing and lunch.
She was born in Hawley, Minnesota on August 22, 1915 to John and Elizabeth Wyland, the youngest of ten children. Both her parents passed away while she was still living at home, so she began a series of moves, ending up with the Homer Munson family as a housekeeper. Upon graduating from high school, she attended Moorhead State Teacher’s College, and graduated with a state teacher’s license. She taught in a one room school house in Kent, MN and told stories of digging snow tunnels during recess and baking potatoes in the pot-bellied stove for lunchtime.
Doris met David P Bryson just after graduating high school and they married on June 29, 1939. She and David lived in the Herman community all their married life of 62 years. They spent those years on the farm just outside of Herman raising four children: Jerry Bryson (Junice), Glen Bryson (Valerie), Wynetta Hanson (Keith) and Ilona Whicher (Steve). There are eight grandchildren and one step-grandson, seven great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild. One grandson preceded her passing.
Doris was busy with all the things farm and family life involves. She was a seamstress, baker, housekeeper, gardener, and lawn/yard manager, in addition to assisting David on the farm. Trained as a teacher, she did Title 1 teaching for several years at the Herman Community School. Doris was also very active in church activities and participated with her children in 4-H. After their children left home, she and David began to spend their winters in Apache Junction, Arizona and Doris continued wintering in Arizona after David’s death in 2001.
Doris moved from the farm into the town of Herman in the fall of 2006 and subsequently to the Pullman House in 2013. In 2015 Doris moved to Karen’s House on the edge of Herman where she remained until her death on July 28, 2021.
Doris saw huge changes in the world in her 105+ years, surviving both the Spanish flu and Covid19. As in many families, stories and adventures are passed along from generation to generation. Her extended family of numerous cousins, nieces and nephews, add to her history. She lived a wonderful life.
I’ve always liked to think of my Grandma was my own Laura Ingalls Wilder – a true pioneer – who forged a life of farming, faith, family and love on the Minnesota prairie. I loved sitting around the farm in the evenings, as the Cottonwood leaves rustled outside, and the Mourning Doves cooed their goodnights, listening to the stories of my Grandma and Grandpa. Grandma was the youngest in her family and her mother died when she was young. As a young adult she went to work at my Great-Grandpa Bryson’s dairy farm, where she met and fell in love with my Grandpa. I recall stories of stolen kisses in the kitchen, and dates to get ice-cream. She attended a teacher’s college in Moorhead, earned her teaching certificate and went on to teach in a little schoolhouse, living with the families she taught. I loved hearing how Grandpa would drive out to pick her up and bring her back for the weekend. After marrying, the newlyweds moved near Herman, MN, where Great-Grandpa had bought land for them to farm and the dear farmhouse that became their home. And there they built a beautiful life, raising 4 children, 2 boys and 2 girls. The farm and house expanded over time, as they tried their hand at various animals and crops. There were years of floods and years of drought. There were hot summers filled with mosquitoes and grasshoppers. And there were winters with so much snow the drifts went up to the second story windows and one had to watch for the power lines close to the ground. There was 4H and county fairs, Tony the Pony (who the kids rode to the one room schoolhouse down the road), and various pets. There were trips with Great-Grandpa and Great-Grandma Bryson to the Lakes, and even a trip to Florida one year. As the kids grew up, married and moved out, there were grandchildren, and big family gatherings.
As a child there was no place I loved more than the farm…running around with my cousins, playing pool in the old basement at night while eating popcorn, building huge snow forts or climbing the enormous cottonwood trees. I thought there was nothing move lovely than a poached egg on Grandma’s pink and yellow Dessert Rose dishes in the morning. And I fondly remember the soft, fuzzy matching pink robes Grandma sewed for us granddaughters one Christmas. I remember it seemed like on the farm we were always either preparing for a meal, eating a meal, or cleaning up from one. In the winter the porch off the kitchen became a big walk-in freezer, filled with pies and cookies and goodies. And there was my other favorite room of the house – the porch off my Grandma and Grandpa’s bedroom, filled with the baby dolls and their furniture where I would play for hours (Grandma and I both share a love for dolls). As Grandma and Grandpa grew older, they enjoyed long trips out to Arizona each winter, and eventually bought their own mobile home out there. They loved their time in Arizona, where so many other friends and family also gathered in the winters. Even after Grandpa passed away, Grandma continued to winter out in Arizona, and we enjoyed visiting her cute Arizona house with its citrus trees. Eventually Grandma sold the farm, and moved into her little Herman house. While her life slowed down, my amazing Grandma continued to drive and live on her own well into her 90’s.
Her life was 105 years and 11 months of the best kind of life imaginable. A life rich in memories, stories, laughter and loved ones. Grandma has always been, and will always be, an amazing role model for me – a strong woman in every sense, a pillar in her family, faithful and resilient to the end. I strive to carry her legacy forward….her pioneer spirit, and her love.
Love you Grandma!
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Doris Iona (Wyland) Bryson, please visit our floral store.
Herman Norcross School
Herman MN 56248
Herman United Methodist Church Herman United Methodist Church
306 Hanover Ave. S, Herman MN 56248