Luella ‘Lu’ Banek, 84, passed away May 2, 2018 at CHI St. Alexius Hospital. Services will be held at 10:30 am Tuesday, March 8, 2018, at Faith Lutheran Church. Burial will be at the ND Veterans Cemetery.
Lu was born in Hazen, ND to Christian and Hedwig (Hildebrand) Seitz on August 30, 1933. She grew up on the family farm located 20 miles north of Hazen with her three brothers. She graduated from Hazen High School in 1951. She married Tom Larson in 1954. They moved to Fargo for college where she attended Moorhead State studying education with plans to become a teacher. Her education was interrupted by the birth of her daughter. She said many times how happy it made her to stay at home to raise her daughter. The family moved all over the country with Tom’s work ending up in Kansas.
Lu and Tom parted ways and she made the decision to return home to North Dakota with her daughter to be closer to extended family. She worked in retail at Sears and then became credit manager at Buttrey’s. During this time, she met Milt Banek and a great love was born. They were married on October 21, 1970 and had wonderful marriage celebrating their silver anniversary. Milt passed away from cancer the following year and Lu never stopped missing him.
In her later years, she spent time with her companion, Lonny Heintz. They had a running gin rummy game going and had many good laughs together. Lonny became very sick and although he recovered, he suffered the effects of increasing dementia. Lu was his caretaker for the remaining 5 years of his life.
Lu was an avid bowler and she enjoyed applying those skills to jackpot bowling and bowling with a senior league. She also enjoyed reading and crossword puzzles, something she passed on to her daughter. She also had a wonderful sense of humor and left of legacy of funny family stories. Her faith was an important part of her life. She was a member of Faith Lutheran Church since 1967 and was active in church activities in her younger years. She enjoyed doing her devotions every morning even when her eyesight made it a challenge.
Lu is survived by her daughter and son-in-law, Nancy and Dave Horner, step-son Terry Banek, grandchildren, Josh (Lauren) Horner, Jordan Horner, Whitney Triggs Staples, Jeremiah Banek, Clint Banek, and Bianca Banek Wierck, her sisters-in-law, Geneva Seitz and Carolyn Seitz, and her nieces, nephews, and cousins.
She was preceded in death by beloved husband, Milt, her parents, Christian and Hedwig, her brothers, Leonhard, Edgar, and Myron, infant daughter Lori Ann, and her step-daughter, Deb Heagle.