Cover photo for Laverne C. Motzko's Obituary

Laverne C. Motzko

May 24, 1936 — October 5, 2023


Laverne C. Motzko

Laverne C. "Vern" Motzko, 87, of Plymouth, died Thursday, October 5, 2023.

Laverne (Vern) Charles Motzko was born to Victor and Christine (Plemel) Motzko on May 24, 1936, in Long Prairie, Minnesota.  Vern was the third of five children.

Vern was baptized, confirmed, and served as an altar boy at St. Mary’s of Mt. Carmel Church.  He attended St. Mary’s Catholic school through 8th grade, graduating from Long Prairie High School in 1954.

Vern’s college journey started at Moorhead State.  His hope to make the football team did not go as planned, as he ended up on the practice squad.  Vern soon realized that his time would be better spent focusing on his studies than his body enduring the punishment of the practice squad. Vern transferred his second year to Mankato State College where he earned his Bachelor of Science degree.

Vern’s first job out of college was teaching high school Biology in the Minneapolis school district.  He also found time to volunteer as a firefighter. He then decided to return to Mankato State to get his Master of Science degree.  Upon graduation, Vern worked as the Dean of Students at a Minneapolis medical vocational school and later as Chief Microbiologist at Lamaur Corporation.

While at Lamaur, Vern decided to return to school to pursue a degree in nursing.  When he graduated with his RN, he went to work for St. Mary’s Hospital.  While at St. Mary’s he entered the Registered Nurse Anesthetist program, graduating in 1977.  Vern continued working at St. Mary’s as a Nurse Anesthetist eventually moving to North Memorial Hospital where he worked until retirement.

Vern’s faith was an important part of his life. Praying the Rosary and attending Mass were part of his regular routine.  His desire to promote his faith inspired Vern to fund the building of churches and chapels around the world.  Vern’s generosity allowed churches to be built in El Salvador, Kenya, Guadalupe, India, Philippines, Thailand, and Honduras, dedicating each one in memory of his parents or brothers Delmer and Duane.

Vern also enjoyed gardening, supplying neighbors and family with tomatoes, and traveling to foreign countries—visiting almost 50 different countries around the world.  He also enjoyed fishing trips with his brothers, Duane, and Lee.  Happy hour in the lodge and just spending time with his brothers meant more to him than what was on the stringer.

Although Vern was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in 2007, he managed it well and maintained his independent lifestyle. Vern went home to be with the Lord on October 5th, 2023.  Vern was preceded in death by his parents, Christine and Victor, and brothers Delmer and Duane.  He is survived by his siblings LeRoy (Marilyn) Motzko, Velora (Mike) Schoenberger, sister-in-law Isabelle Motzko, five nieces, one nephew, many great nieces and nephews and many friends.

Anyone who knew Vern will remember him for his love and dedication to the Lord and his dry sense of humor that kept his friends and family entertained.

Mass of Christian Burial will be 10:00 AM Friday, October 27 at St. Joseph's Catholic Community, 8701 36th Ave N, New Hope, with visitation one hour prior to Mass.

Interment at St. Mary's Catholic Cemetery in Long Prairie to follow.

In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to the Parkinson's Foundation or to St. Joseph's church.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Laverne C. Motzko, please visit our flower store.

Past Services


Friday, October 27, 2023

9:00 - 10:00 am (Central time)

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Mass of Christian Burial

Friday, October 27, 2023

Starts at 10:00 am (Central time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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