January 10, 1922 - June 1, 2015


A Memorial Service celebrating the life of Ellen “Millie” Mildred O. Higgins, 93, of Sauk Rapids, will be at 12:30 PM on Friday, June 5, 2015 at the Shepherd of the Pines Lutheran Church in Rice. Pastor Bob Trinklein will officiate the service. There will be a committal service with military honors at 11:00 AM at the Minnesota State Veterans Cemetery in Little Falls Friday morning.

Ellen Mildred Ovidia Weflen Higgins passed away peacefully at the age of 93 on June 1, 2015 at St. Cloud Hospital, surrounded by family. Millie was born in Renville County on the Weflen family homestead on January 10, 1922, born to parents Martin G. and Julia (Stende) Weflen. She was the beloved middle sister to Marian Christison of Roswell, GA (formerly of Chula Vista, CA), Archie Weflen, Palmer Weflen, and Doris Holt of Richfield.

She graduated high school from Granite Falls, MN in 1939, then worked at the TB sanatorium and waitressed at various local cafes until joining the WAC in 1943. She was part of a small select group of Women’s Army Corps enlisted women who served with the Signal Corps during the Second World War in the Pacific Theatre, operating a teletype machine while assisting in the interception and decoding of Japanese messages. She served in Brisbane, Australia and also spent some time in Manila, Philippines. She met her husband Robert (Bob) while stationed in Australia and they were married in January of 1946. They lived in various places throughout their lives including Brooten, MN, St. Paul, Des Moines, IA and many years in Illinois, mostly in the Mt. Vernon area, returning to Minnesota in 1979 and settling in St. Stephen. She enjoyed working as a seamstress at garment factories, cashiering in a grocery store, and various other positions, including a brief ownership of an electrical store. She was involved in County Extension groups, gardening, numerous bible studies, always learning new things. She enjoyed camping, bowling, traveling, family, and loving life.

She is survived by her sisters Marian Christison and Doris Holt and sister-in-law Barbara Weflen of Sauk Rapids, 15 loving nieces and nephews, and numerous other family.

She was preceded in death by her husband Bob in 2002 and two brothers, Palmer in 1995 and Archie in 2012, also nephew Mike in 1995.