Debra Kay Hjelm was born on October 13, 1956, in Alexandria, MN the daughter of Norman and Audrey (Syverson) Schuhmacher. Debbie graduated from Glenwood High School in 1975 and continued her education at the Alexandria Technical School completing a clerical program. She moved to Minneapolis and began working at Target in 1976.
Debbie met the “Love of her Life” Greg Hjelm, while growing up in the Forada area. Together they were united in marriage on September 23, 1978 at Zion Lutheran Church in Alexandria. Debbie and Greg lived in Chaska and Debbie worked at Stewart Sandwiches. In 1980, they moved back to the Glenwood area where they raised their three children, Chad, Amber, and Derek. Debbie stayed home to care for their children and other neighborhood children when she began a day care. Debbie was a “Kid magnet”. Children loved her because of her fun, kind, and gentle nature. After 12 years of running her day care, Debbie and Greg began a new business together, H&S Specialties Inc in 1992.
A few words that best describe Debbie would be: kind, loving, caring, crafty, thoughtful, and stubborn. Debbie was always willing to help others and had a special knack that resonated with children. She liked to crochet and was an excellent seamstress, making clothes and dresses for her girls. She liked to make all kinds of different crafts. Some other hobbies of Debbie were softball, bowling, volleyball and family Bingo games. She also liked to grow flowers and she had a love for all animals, especially Cardinals.
Debbie’s love for her family was evident in the way she took pride in making sure everyone was loved and made to feel special. She loved to host Thanksgiving for her extended family and have Easter egg hunts for her grandchildren. She adored all of her grandchildren and cherished the time she spent with them. She will forever be in the hearts and minds of all who knew and loved her.
Debra Kay Hjelm died on Tuesday, May 28, 2019, at the Sandford Medical Center in Fargo, ND after complications from the treatment of Amyloidosis at the age of 62 years old. She is survived by her loving husband, Greg Hjelm of Glenwood; children, Chad (Heather) Hjelm of Glenwood, Amber (Brett) Braaten of Glenwood, and Derek (Marci) Hjelm of Glenwood; grandchildren, Molly Hjelm, Maggie Hjelm, Grady Braaten, Tate Braaten, Lydia Braaten, and Klara Hjelm; parents, Norman and Audrey Schuhmacher of Glenwood; loving pet, Benji; brother, Richard (Robin) Schuhmacher of Glenwood; sister, LuAnn (Jeff) Tweit of Glenwood; brothers-in-law, Royce Larson, David “Sonny” (Nancy) Hjelm, and Tom Straseske; sisters-in-law, Darlene Roiland, Doris Carter, Lois Backlund, Babe (Ronnie) Jacobson, Mary Hjelm, and Donna (Terry) Rice; numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins. She was preceded in death by her brothers-in-law, Thomas Roiland, Arvid Hjelm, Jim Roiland, Doug Backlund and Del Carter; sisters-in-law, Dorothy Larson and Judy Straseske.
A Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, June 1, 2019 at 11 AM at Zion Lutheran Church in Alexandria, MN.
A visitation will take place on Friday, May 31, 2019 from 4-7 PM at the Anderson Funeral Home in Alexandria and also for one hour prior to the memorial service at the church on Saturday.
A private family interment will be held at a later date.