Norma Grace Coughlin, age 94, of Pine River, passed away at her home on April 22, 2021. She was born to Oscar and Lola Soger on November 7, 1926 in Orr, Minnesota. Norma attended school in Orr, and upon graduation, went to Washington D.C. where she worked for the Navy Department for five and a half years. In 1949, she married George “Bud” Coughlin. They spent winters in Chicago, and summers in Pine River, running Kilworry Resort. In 1954, they moved to Minnesota to live year-round. She was the face of Kilworry for 71 seasons. She was affectionately known as the Queen of Kilworry by guests and family.
Family and friends were most important to Norma. She especially enjoyed large family gatherings and was very proud of her kids, grandkids and great grandkids. She made many friends among resort guests and loved seeing new generations within these families. She saw at least 5 generations from several families, and there are still guests coming who she met in 1950, her first year.
After Bud died in 1987, Norma spent time traveling, and also made many friends on casino bus trips. She loved watching sports, especially the Twins, and attended at least one game a season for many years. She never retired from the resort and although her role changed, she was an essential part of the operation until the end.
Norma is survived by her children: George Coughlin (Deb), Patrick Coughlin (Terry), Mary Jo Smith (Randy), Susan Shepard (Roger), Jane Diederich (Dave); brothers: Russell Soger (Jackie), Donnie Soger; sister, Margie Olson: 15 grandchildren, 40 great grandchildren; numerous nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, George; brothers: Everett, Roy, Ray, George and Larry. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to Gillette Children’s Hospital in St. Paul. All arrangements are in Pine River. Mass of Christian Burial will be at 11:00 AM on Thursday, April 29, at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, with visitation one hour prior to the mass. Burial will be in Pine Ridge Cemetery. A luncheon will be at 1:00 PM at Bites.
Thank you to Good Samaritan Hospice, North Memorial ambulance and first responders, and the doctors, nurses and all who took care of Norma at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Brainerd.
To view a recording of the service, please click on the link below.