Cover photo for Florence  "Flossy" Briese's Obituary
Florence  "Flossy" Briese Profile Photo
1929 Florence 2018

Florence "Flossy" Briese

March 1, 1929 — May 1, 2018

Florence (Flossy) Bertha Ganyo Briese 89, passed away Tuesday, May 1, 2018, at the Pembina County Memorial Hospital, Cavalier, ND. Funeral services will be Saturday, May 5, 2018, at 10:30 a.m. at the St. Paul’s Lutheran Church rural St. Thomas, ND. Visitation will be held Friday, May 4th, from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. with a 7:00 p.m. prayer service at the Askew Funeral Home, Cavalier. Visitation will also be available at the church one hour prior to the service. Interment will be at the St. Paul’s Lutheran Cemetery, rural St. Thomas.

Flossy was born March 1, 1929 in Grafton, ND. She was the fourth of eight children and oldest daughter born to Lawrence Frances Ganyo and Laura Bertha (Puppe) Ganyo, of Grafton. She grew up and attended school in Grafton. In 1943, when she was only 14, her father passed away. To help make ends meet, the family grew a large garden and pulled wagons across town to the west side of Grafton to sell their vegetables. Flossy moved to California with her sister, Dorothy, when she was 18 and lived there for a year. She was eager to return home and told us many times how much she appreciated home after that. After returning to Grafton, she worked as a waitress and as an aide in the hospital, to help deliver and care for newborns.

Flossy was united in marriage to Harvey Carl Briese on July 24, 1950 in Grafton. Harvey was 9 years older than her, but she never felt there was an age difference. They made their home on the Briese Farm near St. Thomas where they raised a family and grew their farm. For the first 5 years of marriage, they lived in a small travel trailer. For the next five years in the basement of their unfinished home, which was affectionately referred to as “the hole.” In 1960, Harvey and Flossy finally completed their home which included lumber Harvey repurposed from an elevator that was being torn down in Glasston.

As a homemaker, Flossy raised 3 children and helped her husband with the farm. In the fall she kept the “threshing crew” fed, delivering full meals out to the field during harvest. In the winter she worked in the potato warehouse, sorting potatoes. During the summer Flossy enjoyed mowing the big farm yard and in later years fishing with Harvey on Lake of the Woods where they kept their boat and camper for many years. Harvey and Flossy loved fishing and could fish all day trying to catch that big walleye. Flossy once caught her �trophy fish’, but it got away. She was always trying to catch it again!

Flossy was an active member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, rural St. Thomas, where she enjoyed attending bible study and Ladies Aid and helping make quilts for the needy. She belonged to Blue Ribbon Home Makers for over 60 years. Flossy enjoyed baking for the Hospital Auxiliary. She was well known for her baking and she enjoyed pleasing everyone with her wonderful cooking. Her fabulous donuts, pies, cakes, cookies and especially her home-made caramel rolls were always a welcome treat for her guests. She loved to knit and crochet. Her family has all been blessed with beautiful afghans.

She raised a garden and, in the fall, she did all the canning of fruit, vegetables, jellies, jams and chicken. There were always lots of canned goods to enjoy all winter.

Flossy lost the love of her life, Harvey, in 2002. Flossy continued living on the farm until she moved to County Estates in Cavalier in 2013. She enjoyed her new home visiting and playing cards with the other residents and friends that came to visit. Her life was made rich with a huge network of family, friends, her 3 children and spouses, 5 grandchildren and 9 great-grandchildren.

Flossy is survived by her daughters: Loree (Bruce) Hadley, Lillian, AL; Lana (Mike) Ell, Bismarck, ND; five grandchildren, Shane (Melissa) Hadley, Robertsdale, AL; Ryan (Mandy) Hadley, Wylie, TX; Trisha (Billy) Elkins, Pelham, AL; Katie Ell and Jacob Ell, Bismarck, ND; nine great grandchildren, Samantha Hadley, TX; Nicholas Hadley, AL; Rosalyn Hadley, AL; Heath Hadley, TX; Aubree Ell, ND; Amiya Ell, ND; William Elkins, Hadley Elkins, and Emelia Elkins, AL. Flossy is also survived by her brother, Ronald Clarence (Jean) Ganyo, Tacoma, WA; her sister-in-laws, Gloria Briese, Cavalier, ND; Marlene Dvorak, Grand Forks, ND; Mary Ganyo, Grand Forks, ND; Jean Ganyo, Tacoma, WA; and brother-in-law; Hector French, Wichita Falls, TX.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Florence "Flossy" Briese, please visit our flower store.


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