Cover photo for Dianne Sherburne's Obituary
Dianne Sherburne Profile Photo
1940 Dianne 2023

Dianne Sherburne

April 20, 1940 — November 4, 2023


Dianne (Gjere) Sherburne left her mark on the world with kindness, compassion, and generosity. She had a smile that could light up a room. Whether a beloved family member, long-time friend, or new acquaintance, Dianne ‘let her light shine’ with those in her presence. She had a gift for making people feel at ease and connecting with others. She always had room in her heart and at her kitchen table for one more -- likely with a good cup of coffee, along with a cookie or bar.

Reflecting back on the year 1940 when Dianne’s life began, it was an incredibly turbulent time as Nazi Germany’s World War II offensive was in full force. Under the code name 'Operation Weserübung', Nazi Germany attacked Denmark and Norway on April 9, 1940. Denmark surrendered that same day, while the Norwegians resisted for two months then later surrendered on June 9, 1940.

While their native country of Norway was under attack, Harold and Bernice (Ingvalson) Gjere enjoyed a much more peaceful setting in a tranquil Norwegian settlement within the United States where they welcomed their first-born child into the world. Dianne Marlene Gjere was born on April 20, 1940, in Spring Grove, MN. She was baptized and later confirmed at Big Canoe Lutheran Church in Highlandville, IA. 

Dianne spent most of her childhood and adolescent years on the family farm in Highland Township with her parents and her sister, Harriet. She and her sister enjoyed many family gatherings with their Ingvalson and Gjere cousins at the farm. Holidays and birthdays were always a big deal, as they celebrated with the extended family. Cousin sleepovers were considered a bonus time for fun. Dianne cherished her time with her family and her cousins became her beloved “frousins” (Friend + Cousin = Frousin).

Dianne attended Highlandville School until the 8th grade then transitioned to Spring Grove High School, graduating in 1958. Dianne remained close to her country school and high school friends throughout her life, recalling their many adventures from their younger years while continuing to make new memories together.

After graduation, Dianne worked for Mansfield Industries, a Chicago-based company that rebranded and distributed movie cameras, projectors, accessories, and imported cameras from the late 1950s into the mid-1960s. Mansfield manufactured some products at its Spring Grove facility, where Dianne worked. She used some of her hard-earned money to buy a sweet car – a 1960 Chevy Impala.

That beautiful girl with a cool car met a cute fella by the name of Virgil. They fell in love and were married on June 30, 1961, at Big Canoe Lutheran Church in Highlandville, Iowa. They shared many interests, including fast cars, music, and dancing. Virgil and Dianne loved dancing -- they were known to stand out on the dance floor and even won a few local competitions. 

During the early years of their marriage, Virgil and Dianne lived in Houston and La Crescent before moving to Highland Township where they farmed until 1969. They eventually returned to Houston where they lived together for over 50 years and raised their four daughters -- Julie, Lisa, Jane, and LeAnn. They were blessed to have a close-knit community on West Anderson Street, where neighbors became friends, who became family.

As a young mother, Dianne stayed active playing softball with her pals on the Houston Creamery team, camping with family and friends, and bowling on leagues in La Crescent and Rushford. She and a few local mothers started a group called the Singing Sisters, which later evolved into the Sunshine Girls. The group was comprised of the Sherburne sisters and some of their closest friends. They would travel around the area performing at churches, nursing homes, and special events, including a television performance on the KTTC Cancer Telethon.

While juggling her responsibilities at home, Dianne worked as a proof operator and teller for nearly 25 years at a few different banks in the area, including a long-time role at Houston State Bank, until her retirement in the spring of 2000 -- just in time to follow the Houston Hurricanes to the state softball tournament.

In addition to her career and her family obligations, Dianne always found time to support her community. She was an active member of Cross of Christ Lutheran Church in Houston, where she volunteered in circle and supported various youth groups. She enjoyed volunteering for various community organizations, including the American Legion Ladies Auxiliary, the Houston Hoedown committee, the Houston Triathlon, Houston’s Volunteer Fire Department, Girl Scouts, and HHS Music Mothers.

Dianne was a fun-loving grandmother who was always up for an adventure or new experience. On her 70th birthday, she accepted a spontaneous invitation for a road trip to Kansas to watch her grandson play hockey. She followed her grandchildren to countless sporting events, dance performances, concerts, plays…whatever they were into, Dianne was there to support them. She loved them beyond measure! She would drop everything for a good game of cards, dominoes, Yahtzee, Sevens, or Uno.

After retirement, Virgil and Dianne spent their winter months in Apache Junction, Arizona. They enjoyed the warm weather, the dances, and social activities. Most of all, they loved visiting with their AZ neighbors and meeting new people. The Sherburnes always enjoyed a good road trip, and they both had a deep appreciation for classic and antique cars. They were members of the Viking Region Antique Automobile Club of America for many years. 

Above all else, Dianne loved spending quality time with family and friends. She was a devoted wife, mother, grandmother, sister, daughter, aunt, niece, cousin, neighbor, and friend. Her four daughters and their husbands, and eight grandchildren are all better for having known and loved her. 

On November 4, 2023, Dianne died surrounded by loved ones. She was 83 years old. She is survived by four daughters, Julie (Dave) Bruggeman of Mankato, Lisa (Tim) Missling of Burnsville, Jane (Rich) Jahnke of Hugo, and LeAnn (Aaron) MacLennan of Winona; eight grandchildren, Andrew and Tyler Bruggeman, Will and Emma Missling, Callie and Natalie Jahnke, and Anthony (AJ) and Lindsey MacLennan; her sister Harriet (Gary) Holland; two brothers-in-law, Dale Sherburne and Neil Sherburne; several nieces and nephews, cousins and long-time friends. She was preceded in death by her husband, Virgil; her parents, Harold and Bernice Gjere; her stepmother, Gladys Gjere; and her brother-in-law, Donald Sherburne; sister-in-law Joan Sherburne and sister-in-law Debbie Sherburne.

The celebration of Dianne’s life will be Monday, November 13 @ 11:30 a.m. at Cross of Christ Lutheran Church in Houston, MN, preceded by visitation and followed by lunch. Burial will be immediately following at the Stone Church Cemetery.

Special thanks to Dianne’s Heritage Court family for the love and care they provided during her time there. Also, thank you to the Houston Ambulance crew for their services over the past few months. Dianne’s family is extremely grateful for the love and support from the Houston community and their West Anderson Street extended family.

May God richly bless the memory of Dianne Sherburne to all who knew and loved her. Please share a memory of Dianne at 


Service Schedule

Past Services


Sunday, November 12, 2023

4:00 - 6:00 pm (Central time)

Hoff Funeral Home Houston

710 E Cedar St, Houston, MN 55943

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


Monday, November 13, 2023

10:30 - 11:30 am (Central time)

Cross of Christ Lutheran Church

201 South Chase Street, Houston, MN 55943

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

Funeral Service

Monday, November 13, 2023

Starts at 11:30 am (Central time)

Cross of Christ Lutheran Church

201 South Chase Street, Houston, MN 55943

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


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