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Thornton Lemmon

July 14, 1914-July 22, 2010

Thornton Lemmon, 96, of Detroit Lakes, died Thursday, July 22, 2010 at Diamond Willow in Detroit Lakes.

Thornton, the fourth child of Fredrick and Mabel (Stowell) Lemmon, was born on July 12, 1914 in Pierpont, S.D. He graduated from Pierpont High School in 1932 and in 1934 moved with his family to rural Detroit Lakes, where his parents purchased a farm. In 1935 he worked at a Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camp near Little Elbow Lake, north of Detroit Lakes. Later that year he attended St. Paul Agricultural School until 1936, where he met Marcella Moechnig.

Thornton and Marcella were married on January 18, 1938. They farmed together, raising turkeys north of Detroit Lakes until they retired in 1974. For four years following World War II, Thornton taught agriculture to GIs in Detroit Lakes.

Thornton served on many boards: he was treasurer of Holmesville Township; director of Lakeland Turkey Growers in Frazee; he served on the Detroit Lakes School Board and with the Pelican River Watershed District.

Thornton enjoyed traveling, bowling, camping, playing cards, dancing, winters in Mesa, Arizona, politics, reading, watching the Minnesota Twins and spending time with family and friends.

Surviving Thornton are his wife, Marcella; one son, Roger (LaVonne) Lemmon of Watertown, S.D.; two daughters, Carol (Rod) Nord of Rochert and Julie (Gary) Wolden of Pendleton, Ore.; eight grandchildren, Rebecca (John) Brandon, Roger Scott ( Rhonda) Lemmon, Robert (Sarah) Lemmon, Jeffrey Nord, Randall Nord, Melissa (Cameron) Bailey, Andrea (Douglas) Walker and Todd (Crystal) Wolden; 14 great grandchildren; one sister-in-law, Violet Lemmon of Detroit Lakes; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Thornton was preceded in death by his parents; three brothers, Donald, Loren and Keith Lemmon; and two sisters, Eunice Lemmon and Harriet Skarie.

A memorial service is set for 2 p.m. Monday, Aug. 2 at United Methodist Church in Detroit Lakes, with visitation for one hour prior to the service in the church.

Those wanting to share memories and condolences may use the messages of sympathy section online at

Memorials may be made to the Communication Center State Services for the Blind or the United Methodist Church in Detroit Lakes.