Evelyn Jalkanen 1918-2007
Evelyn Jalkanen ?1918-2007 (Evelyn) Pearl Jalkanen was born to Howard and Agnes (Birk) Trudgeon on April 18, 1918 in Calumet Michigan. She was part of the Copper Country Songsters (with her four siblings Viola, Jack, Bill and Marjie) who performe...
(Evelyn) Pearl Jalkanen was born to Howard and Agnes (Birk) Trudgeon on April 18, 1918 in Calumet Michigan.
She was part of the Copper Country Songsters (with her four siblings Viola, Jack, Bill and Marjie) who performed in many venues and had a radio show. She loved music and sang opera.
She finished Calumet High School and went to work to earn money to go to college - something very unusual in the late 1930's and early 1940's. She met her husband, Ralph Jalkanen, at college. She was the college soloist and he accompanied her on the piano. He attended seminary to become a minister for the Finnish Lutheran Church while she studied Finnish so she could help with the ministry. They married May 23, 1942.
They worked as a team at St. Peters Lutheran Church in New York Mills MN, in the mid 1940's and again in the early 50's, Trinity Lutheran Church in Chicago IL, and Bethany Lutheran Church in Ashtabula OH, while she also raised their four children. Pearl continued her operatic singing career particularly in Chicago where she was soloist for the Sibelius orchestra.
In 1960 they moved to Hancock MI when Ralph accepted the presidency of Finlandia University (then Suomi College). Pearl continued to be involved in her husband's work as she managed social obligations from various open houses for staff, visitors and students; entertaining dignitaries; and attending dinners and receptions with the President of Finland at the President Ford White House.
She was soloist in a choir that traveled through Europe and in the US and visited the president of Finland several times in Finland.
She met and touched the lives of many. She was gracious in the midst of difficult times.
After 40 years in Hancock MI she moved to Harbor Club in Port Washington WI.
She is survived by two sons, Paul (Kay) of Gaffney SC and John (Rozanne) of Encinitas CA, two daughters, Ruth (Bud) Sova of Port Washington WI and Anne (Tim) Miller of Naples FL, two brothers, Jack (Helen) Trudgeon of Mesa AZ and Bill Trudgeon of Warren MI, two sisters, Viola DuPuis of Lake Linden MI and Marjorie of Portland OR, six grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
Memorials can be made to the St.Peter's Hymnal Fund, St. Peters Lutheran Church, New York Mills, MN. Or to the Jalkanen Foundation, c/o Port Washington State Bank, Franklin Street, Port Washington WI 53074, www.pwsb.com .