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Lilly Kenney

June 30, 1916-May 19, 2012

Lilly Lorita Kenney, 95, longtime Moorhead resident, passed away peacefully on Saturday, May 19, at Emmanuel Nursing Home, Detroit Lakes, MN, surrounded by her family.

Lilly (Lil) was born on June 30, 1916 at home in Durbin, N.D., delivered by midwife (Grandma Saar) to George and Lydia (Saar) Jahnke.

Lil attended school in Casselton, graduating from Casselton High School in 1934. She played basketball and ran track for the Casselton Squirrels.

Lil began nurse's training at the St. John's Hospital in Fargo in July of 1934 and graduated with an R.N. degree in July of 1937. She worked for two years in Seattle, Wash., at Providence Hospital and returned to Fargo, where she did private practice. She remained proud throughout the years of her R.N. degree and kept in contact with her classmates from nursing school.

On December 3, 1940 Lil married William (Bill) Kenney in Moorhead, and shortly thereafter they moved to San Diego, Calif., where Bill was stationed in the Navy during World War II. Lil and Bill returned to Moorhead following WW II and were the longtime owner/operators of the Silver Moon Restaurant in Moorhead and the Gardner Hotel in Fargo, from 1969 thru 1974.

Lil and Bill retired in 1974 and enjoyed their retirement with friends and family in San Diego during the winter and at their lake cabin on Lake Melissa during the summer.

Lil enjoyed many activities including her long time bridge groups. She was a loving wife and mother. She spent many years providing exceptional care and love to her daughter Beth Ann, who suffered a long-term illness. Lil was a true "lady" who enjoyed life to the fullest.

Surviving Lil are her sons, Tom (Wendy) of Fergus Falls and Pat (Sue) of Detroit Lakes; and two grandchildren, Grant and Mike (Cindy). Preceding her in death were her husband Bill in 2002; her daughter Elizabeth Ann; her parents; her brother Glen; and sisters Grace Askew and Georgine Nelson.

Lil's family would like to thank the staff of Emmanuel Nursing Home in Detroit Lakes for the wonderful care they have provided to Lil over the past several years. Memorials are preferred, to the Emmanuel Foundation - Chapel Fund.

Visitation will begin at 1 p.m. Wednesday, May 23, followed by the funeral at 2 p.m., in the Emmanuel Nursing Home Chapel.

Interment will be in St. Joseph's Cemetery in Moorhead.

A video tribute and online guestbook are at