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Rural Perham murder: Pipe wrench reportedly used in brutal killing of mother, son




Ethel Ella (Greiff was born on March 1, 1926 in Perham to George Henry and Ella Myrtle (Johnson) Greiff.

Ethel graduated with the Perham High School Class of 1944. She was employed at the Farmers and Merchants State Bank as a teller. Ethel's love for travel started the summer after her junior year, when she was employed as a shipwright helper in Portland, Ore. From there she moved to Washington State and worked as a clerk typist with the United States Navy.

On June 12, 1949 Ethel was united in marriage to Milo Woodrow Vaughn. Their marriage was blessed with three children, Sherry, Vicki and Tim. Ethel joined her husband Milo operating Vaughn Chevrolet. In 1960, they added Lund Boats and Mercury Outboards to their dealership. The two operated the dealership together until Milo passed away on July 28, 1993.

Ethel was active in the Charles D. Center VFW Ladies Auxiliary, Wadena Pilots Association, and she was a Cub Scouts Den Mother. Ethel was a very adventurous woman who loved to travel, hunt, fish, fly, snowmobile, bowl, and ride her banana seat bike around town. Ethel was the first area woman pilot. She was a very dedicated grandma, always willing to change her plans and drop everything for a trip to the community pool, to the lake for a cookout or water skiing lessons.

On June 20, Ethel passed away at Perham Living at age 87. She will be dearly missed by her family and friends.

Preceeding Ethel in death were her parents; her husband, Milo; and brother, Arland Greiff.

Ethel is survived by her children, Sherry (Robert) Veit of Fargo, N.D., Vicki (David) Lubitz of New York Mills and Tim (Diane) Vaughn of New York Mills; eight grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; sisters, Vila Von Ruden of Perham and Eileen (Erwin) Tolkinen of Dent; sisters-in-law, Camilla Vaughn of Coon Rapids and Bridget Greiff of Goodyear, Ariz; many other relatives and a host of friends around the world.

Funeral services were held on June 26 at Trinity Lutheran Church in New York Mills with Pastor Kirk Douglas officiating. The hymns were sung by the congregation and accompanied by Cindy Becker. Pallbearers were Paul Lubitz, Michael Veit, Philip Vaughn, Scott Peterson, Jeff Johnson and John Von Ruden. Ethel was laid to rest in Greenwood Cemetery, New York Mills. Arrangements were provided by Karvonen Funeral Home, New York Mills. Online tributes may be posted at