Dolores Darlene “Dee” Rager, age 96, of Pequot Lakes, passed away on December 31, 2021 in the care of St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Brainerd, Minnesota. Dee was born on January 6th, 1925 in Denver, Colorado to Jack and Sylvia Coons. At a young age, the family moved to Lincoln, Nebraska where she graduated early from Lincoln High School in 1942.
Dee was an enterprising, hard worker from an early age. Her outgoing and bold personality led to many different ventures which included: bookkeeper, politician, racing team manager, buyer for JCPenney and owner of multiple businesses. During the war effort, she worked as a bomb fuse inspector, radio inspector and spark plug inspector for B-29 bomber planes. Dee was the first licensed woman pilot in Nebraska. She was artistic and adventurous. She enjoyed painting, jewelry making, ceramics, telling jokes, hunting, fishing, boating, watching Nebraska Cornhusker football and was an avid fan of car racing.
Later in life, Dee moved to Pequot Lakes, Minnesota, to be closer to family. She maintained much of her independence through great friends Debbie Schmidt, Mary Etta Durham and many of her fellow Sibley Terrace residents. She enjoyed singing and dancing with her friends. Dee was a member of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church and participated in Bible studies.
Dee is survived by her son, Roger Rager; three grandchildren, Wendy Derhaag (Kevin), Ginger Kirschbaum (Pat) and Randy Rager (Abby); eight great grandchildren; and niece, Sherry Dee Hoffman. Each of them held a very special place in Dee’s heart. She was preceded in death by her parents, Jack and Sylvia Coons, and sister, Aloyce “Penny” Pentico (Reid Pentico).
The family is planning a celebration of life to be held at a later date. Arrangements with Kline Funeral Home, Pequot Lakes.