Valerie Kilian, 72

Valarie Jean Kilian (Kleine), 72, of Aberdeen, SD, passed away Thursday, February 1, 2024, at Avera St. Luke’s Hospital.

Her wishes were to be cremated with no formal funeral service. Her family would like to invite you to join them in a Celebration of Life on March 9, 2024, at 2 pm at the Aberdeen Elks Lodge.

Carlsen Funeral Home and Crematory, Aberdeen, is in charge of arrangements. Family and friends may sign the online guestbook.

Valarie “Val” Kleine was born February 11, 1951, to Robert & Lois (Weisman) Kleine in Sherburn, MN. The family moved to Aberdeen in 1959. She graduated from Aberdeen Central in 1969. After graduation, she worked many jobs, including Taco Town, Starlite Truck Stop, bookkeeper at Dakota Seed Company, Concrete Dispatcher at Larsen Concrete, and drove the semis thousands of “forward” miles for Kilian Trucking as well as keeping the books. She began her 30-year career at 3M in Aberdeen until she retired in 2013. She was always willing to work countless hours of overtime and picked up second jobs to stay busy when overtime was not available.

She married Terry Kilian in February of 1971. Together, they had three children: Marnie, Joni & Travis. Although their years together were rocky, to say the least, when it came down to the brass tacks, they couldn’t live with or without each other.

Val was a hard worker and instilled good work ethics into her children; because of her, we have all worked hard to provide what we can to our own families.  Mom was always willing to help us in one way or another and worked hard to provide for us. She also was willing to help her friends to the best of her ability.

Val’s most loved hobby was crocheting; she spent countless hours making her “football” fans. Most summers, she spent gardening and canning. She usually had the house a constant “pressure canner” from her bountiful garden harvest. If she wasn’t in the garden, she was probably mowing the lawn in one of her “famous” outfits. She also loved raising chickens. The grandkids and great-grandkids will always remember collecting all the eggs with Grandma. It also didn’t matter to her if you were blood; if you were a child in need of a grandma or great-grandma, you had one in her. Val had always wanted a set of twins, and Austin and Jill delivered Arlo and Amelia, much to Great Grandma’s joy.

She also had a special fondness for horse racing. One of her horses, Rapid Jack, set a track record at North Dakota Horse Park, ridden and trained by her grandsons Robert and Nathan. Mom thoroughly enjoyed being a grandma and had most of the grandkids trained to “go get grandma a blue pop.” She left us with memories we can look back on and appreciate, learn from as well, and laugh a little, and for that, we are forever grateful.

Val is survived by her children: Marnie Kilian, Joni & Shawn Norton, and Travis Kilian; grandchildren Robert (Carrie) Haar, Amanda (Quico Estrada) Haar, Austin (Jillene) Norton, Nathan (Sivana Witt) Haar, Billie Norton, Brody (Aubrey) Johnson, Tori (Kyle Frohling) Johnson, Talan Kilian, Jaycob Morris, Alex McKinney, Ariana Kilian and bonus grandson Collin Pigors; great-grandchildren Camryn, Avery and James Haar, Kennedy, Amelia and Arlo Norton, Kinsley Johnson and bonus great-grandson Mason Croucher; and siblings Doug Kleine, Vickie (Lee) Albrecht, Lori Kleine, Daryl (Kelly) Kleine and Paul Kleine.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Robert & Lois; ex-husband Terry Kilian; and brother Charles Kleine.

We would like to send a heartfelt thank you to the Avera Hospice staff and all her providers for the excellent care she received from them at Avera St. Luke’s Hospital; we appreciate all your compassion and support.