Karen A. Velline, 71, Collegeville
September 22, 1943 - August 3, 2015
Mass of Christian Burial will be on Monday, August 10th at 10:00 AM at St. John the Baptist Abbey Church in Collegeville for Karen A. Velline, age 71, of Collegeville, who died on Monday, August 3rd at the University of Minnesota Hospital in Minneapolis. Rev. Greg Miller OSB and Rev. Eugene McGlothlin OSB will concelebrate. Burial will be in the Parish cemetery. Friends may call on Sunday between 4:00-8:00 PM at St. John the Baptist Parish Center in Collegeville and on Monday one hour prior to services at the Church. Parish prayers will be at 6:00 PM.
Karen was born September 22, 1943 in Detroit Lakes, MN to LeRoy and Martha (Tembrock) Bergen. Her lifelong affinity for and connection to the Virgin Mary began as a young girl when she was crowned Our Lady at a “May Procession” Mass. She married Robert Velline (Bobby Vee) on December 28, 1963 at Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Detroit Lakes. She and her husband moved to Los Angeles, CA for his recording career until 1980 when they moved to St. Cloud, and eventually Collegeville, MN. Karen attended Moorhead State University and finished at UCLA with a Bachelorette Degree in Early Child Development. She finished her education attaining a Masters Degree in Social Work from the University of Minnesota. Karen was employed by the Kimball School district and later received the Rose Award for her volunteer role in setting up the Rape Crisis Center for Women in St. Cloud. Karen trained in “Living in Process, Beyond Therapy” under Anne Wilson Schaef. She then founded her own private practice and retired at the age of 60.
Karen, along with her husband Bob, spent her retirement years at both their Watab Lake and Tucson homes. She enjoyed riding her horse Stormy through the mountains of Catalina State Park and spending time with her five grandchildren. Karen was very proud that all of her children attended Cathedral High School where she and Bob had created the “Rock Around the Clock” fundraising event that ran for 24 years and later evolved into “Joetown Rocks”, a fundraiser for the parish of St. Joseph. Karen and Bob were awarded the Paramount Theatre’s Life Time Achievement Award for their contribution to the Arts in Central Minnesota in 2011. She was a member of St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Collegeville, MN. Karen will be remembered by all who knew her for her numerous contributions to the community, her generous heart and her infectious smile.
Survivors include her husband Bobby of Watab Lake, children, Jeff Velline (Cindy) Avon, Tommy Velline (Kathy) St. Cloud, Robert Velline (Mary) Prior Lake, Jennifer Velline Whittet (Barron) Buffalo, grandchildren, Bennett, Liam, Alison, Saima and Calianna, brothers and sisters, Robert Bergen (Cookie) Detroit Lakes, Raymond Bergen (Akama) Woodstock, NY, Joanne Lane, St. Cloud, Richard Bergen (Sue) Maple Grove, Patricia Vogt (Mitch) Detroit Lakes, Michael Bergen (Patricia) Salt Lake City, UT, Mary Solmon (Marty) Detroit Lakes, Steve Bergen (Detroit Lakes) and Joseph Bergen (Kelli) Avon.
She was preceded in death by her parents, sister Monica, brothers Ronnie and Jim, brother-in-law Donald Lane and nephews Gabriel and Steven.
Memorials are preferred to St. John the Baptist Parish in Collegeville, MN, the Parish that prayed for and supported Karen throughout her journey.
The Velline family, on our mother’s behalf, would like to say thank you to all of our family and friends who have been so loving and supportive during Mom’s courageous battle. We would like to send out a very special thanks to Dr. Palmer and the medical team at Duke University Hospital, Durham, NC, Dr. Walia and the medical team at St. Joseph’s Hospital, Phoenix, AZ, Dr. Christine Reichl and the medical team at St. Cloud Hospital, St. Cloud, MN and Dr. Hertz and the medical team at the University of Minnesota Medical Center, Minneapolis, MN. Lastly, we would like to say thank you to all who have had the courage and foresight to become organ donors. Words cannot begin to express the depths of our gratitude.