Debbie L. Russell

Debbie L. Russell (nee: Rehder), age 56, of Cottage Grove, MN, passed away on July 2, 2015, peacefully at her home surrounded by her family, following a courageous battle with cancer.

Debbie was born on February 15, 1959 in Austin, MN to Norman and Shirley (Betterley) Rehder and grew up in Hudson and North Hudson, WI. She was a North Hudson Pepper Fest Princess in 1976 and graduated from Hudson High School in 1977.

While working at Sam’s during high school, she met Jeff Russell, and on May 17, 1980, they were united in marriage. They were blessed with two sons, Dustin and Shane. No matter the many jobs in between, Debbie and Jeff started their careers together at Duro Bag in Hudson and ended together at Smyth Companies-Minneapolis.

Debbie had a creative and artistic spirit, with a real talent for interior decorating and making a welcoming home. Her creativity flourished in her scrapbooking projects and ceramics work. Her green thumb was evident in her knack for growing tropical indoor plants and tending to her terrariums and fish tanks. Debbie appreciated time spent outdoors soaking up the sun with family and friends. She had a generous heart for animals, especially her beloved “Rotties” (Rottweilers), had a tremendous sweet tooth, a love for old western movies, and was known as the “shopping queen.”

Even though life wasn’t easy following her cancer diagnosis, her strength, will to live, and the love she had for those around her never diminished. Above everything, she treasured her family and cherished her time spent as a wife, mother, daughter, sister, and friend.

Survived by her husband, Jeff Russell; sons, Dustin and Shane Russell; sister, Gina Rehder; parents, Norman and Shirley Rehder; brother-in-law, Randy (Patti) Russell; sister-in-law, Teresa (Mark) Bierbrauer; and nieces and nephew: Holly, Dean, and Brittany. She is preceded in death by her grandparents and niece, Samantha.

A Gathering of Friends and Family will take place from 4-7 p.m. on Tuesday, July 7, 2015 at the O’Connell Family Funeral Home, 520 S. 11th St., Hudson, with a Memorial Service concluding the evening at 7 p.m.

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