Margaret S. Usgaard, age 96, of Decorah, Iowa, died Thursday evening, September 3, at Aase Haugen Senior Services in Decorah.  

Margaret Sylvia (Johnson) Usgaard was born June 21, 1924, in Winneshiek County to Arve J. and Hilda M. (Holien) Johnson. She was baptized July 24, 1924, and confirmed her Christian faith on June 6, 1939, with Rev. Paul Koren at Washington Prairie Lutheran Church.

Margaret attended Springfield Township School #6 in Nordness through 8th grade and graduated from Decorah High School in 1943.

After graduation from high school, she became employed by Northwestern Bell Telephone Company in Decorah as a telephone operator from 1943 to 1947, and again from 1950 to 1957. In 1962, she began working at Luther College as a switchboard operator and information desk attendant in the Student Union until her retirement in 1987.

She was united in marriage to Curtis Usgaard by Rev. Oscar Engebretson on October 21, 1946, at Washington Prairie Lutheran Church. They became the parents of one son, Harold.

After her marriage, she became a member of Decorah Lutheran Church. She sang in the senior choir, served on various committees in the church, was active in the church women’s circle, and regularly attended weekly Bible studies.

Margaret enjoyed visiting with friends and doing crossword puzzles. Her grandchildren and great-grandchildren were a very important part of her life.

Margaret is survived by her son Harold (Lynette) Usgaard of Rosemount, MN, and grandchildren: Jennifer (Michael) Bockenstedt of Rosemount, MN; Sara (Amanda) Usgaard-Stohr of Rosemount, MN; and Joshua Usgaard of Eagan, MN. She is also survived by two great grandsons, William and Owen Bockenstedt. Other survivors include a sister-in-law, Lois (Gene) Albers of Ridgeway, IA, three nephews and five nieces.

Preceding her in death were her husband Curtis Usgaard, parents Arve and Hilda Johnson, brother Harold Johnson, who lost his life in World War II, sister Arline Gerleman, sister-in-law Beth Usgaard, brother-in-law Bob Usgaard, and nephew David Usgaard.

A private family graveside service will be held at Lutheran Cemetery in Decorah with Rev. Peter Kowitz officiating.

Memorials may be directed to Decorah Lutheran Church, 309 Winnebago St., Decorah, IA 52101, Luther College, c/o Development Office, 700 College Drive, Decorah, IA 52101 or Aase Haugen Senior Services, 4 Ohio Street, Decorah, IA 52101.