Alvina Balow

Alvina Balow, of Lake City and formerly of rural Red Wing, passed away on Wednesday, December 27, 2023, at the age of 95, at the High Street House in Lake City where she resided. She was born October 26, 1928, in Lake City to Clarence and Florence (Prigge) Busch. She graduated in 1946 from Mary E. McCahill Institute in Lake City. She was employed at the Illinois Bell Telephone Company in 1946 and then transferred to the Northwest Bell Telephone Company in Rochester in 1947. She worked in Rochester, Austin, Owatonna, Faribault, Red Wing, and Minneapolis as an operator, Chief District Clerk, Chief Operator, and Head of the Service Observing Department in Minneapolis, leaving Minneapolis in 1963. On September 28, 1963, she married Eugene I. “Gene” Balow at St. Mary of the Lake Catholic Church in Lake City. She became the mother of six energetic, very lively, and loving children, and then had two more boys to join the melee. Alvina stayed home with the children until 1970 and then went back to work for Northwestern Bell Telephone Company in Red Wing. That job was eliminated and she was then transferred to Rochester. She commuted to Rochester for two years and then retired in 1983, having reached the milestone of 30 years of employment at the age of 55. Once retired, she took on waitressing as a hobby and worked at the Whistle Stop in Frontenac and the Chickadee Cottage in Lake City. She was a member of St. Mary of the Lake Catholic Church and the Women’s Guild, the VFW Auxiliary, and was a 4-H leader for many years. She enjoyed playing cards, needlepoint, reading, and above all her grandkids. She had great memories of many, many trips out west with a car or motorhome full of teenagers.
Alvina is survived by her children, Michael (Donna) Balow of Brighton, MI, David (Laurie) Balow of Lake City, Philip (Jane) Balow of Prior Lake, Mary Pat Danckwart of Kellogg, Kathy (Wayne) Dudley of Lake City, Becky (Bruce) Benrud of Goodhue, Tom (Dawn) Balow of Lake City, and John (Jillian) Balow of Moseley, VA; 27 grandchildren; 40 great-grandchildren; and sister-in-law, Nona Busch of Milaca, MN. She was preceded in death by her husband Gene; granddaughter, Beth Benrud; her three siblings, Lyle Busch, Bill Busch, and Bernice Nichols; and son-in-law, John Danckwart. 
The Funeral Mass will be held on Wednesday, January 3, 2024, at 11:00 a.m. at St. Mary of The Lake Catholic Church in Lake City with Father Joseph Pete and Father James Russell officiating. Burial will be in St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery in Lake City. Friends and family may visit on Tuesday, January 2, from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. at Mahn Family Funeral Home Anderson-Peterson Chapel, Lake City and one hour prior to the service at the church on Wednesday. On-Line Condolences may be placed at


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