Esther Garrity

Esther Garrity, 96 years old, died September 14, 2020, of congestive heart failure.

Esther was raised on the Minnesota Iron Range, graduated from Moorhead State Teachers College, and taught English at Moorhead High. She met her husband, James E Garrity, on a blind date. Esther was predeceased by her husband, her parents and her sister. She is survived by her five children, James (Karen), Jane (Donald Matthees), John (Catherine), Thomas (Michelle), and Stephen (Kari), 9 grandchildren and 9 great-grandchildren.

Esther was active her entire life in various roles, including homemaker, teacher, PEO, Prosequi Study Club, Friends of the Library, Moorhead State Alumni Board, the American Legion Auxiliary, St. Joseph Church, the State of MN Bilingual Education Advisory Task Force, and a charter member of the Fargo/Moorhead Finnish-American Historical Society, now Red River Finns. Esther was always proud of her Finnish heritage, was an early supporter of Salolampi, the Finnish Language Village at the Concordia Language Villages, and exemplified Sisu in her daily life. Esther was a world traveler, lifelong learner, adored books, opera, and crossword puzzles. On her travels Esther would often surprise people by telling them hello and thank you in their native tongue.

Esther was passionate about education. She stressed the importance of education to her children and grandchildren, and was proud to see all five of her children through college and graduate programs.

She will be dearly missed. How lucky we are to have known someone to whom it’s so hard to say goodbye.

Due to the global pandemic, the family is holding a private service. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to The ALS Association, (Gift Processing Center, PO Box 6051, Albert Lea, MN 56007); Salolampi Foundation, (Concordia Language Villages, 901 8th Street South, Moorhead, MN 56460); or Moorhead State University, 1104 7th Avenue South, Moorhead, MN 56563)

Arrangements are entrusted to the care of Boulger Funeral Home and Celebration of Life Center, Fargo. To sign the online guestbook, go to

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