Cover photo for Jewell "Judy" (Ernest) Abendroth's Obituary
1924 Judy 2024

Jewell "Judy" (Ernest) Abendroth

May 14, 1924 — May 4, 2024

Jewell (Judy) Abendroth, born May 14, 1924 to Hugo and Blanche Ernest, passed to her Glory on May 4, 2024, just shy of her 100th birthday.

Judy grew up in Backus, Minnesota, where her father ran the rail road station. She had two brothers and two sisters. Her Mother and Grandmother were grand ladies, artists and homemakers with a love of fine things, a love that Judy continued throughout her life. Her family arrived from the Old Country in the early 1500's, founding a town in Kentucky before founding and settling near Annandale, MN., where her family held land, eventually becoming dairy farmers with 200 head. Her great grandmother was an English ballerina who danced for Tsar Nicholas of Russia. Her beloved Grandmother was a founding member of the organization supporting Civil War widows and orphans, receiving a commendation from President Lincoln.

Judy's sisters and Mother passed away while Judy was still a child, and she grew quite close to her Father, a community leader, and her older brother Dan Ernest, an accomplished war veteran, well-loved by all. She attended Backus High School where she was a cheerleader and general trouble-maker. ("Ricketedy-Rackus Russ! We're Not Allowed to Cuss, But Never-the less We Must Confess, There's Nothing the Matter with Us! Yeaaaaah Backus!") She graduated from Bethel University, and after a brief career with a printing company, married the love of her life, Urban Abendroth, an architect, on May 29, 1952. Together they raised a family of five children, all of whom have expressed deep gratitude for the happy and loving childhood their parents created for them. Mark was their first-born, followed by Jo, Jeanne, Bob and Lisa. Loving and guiding children was the central theme of Judy's life, not only loving her own children, she welcomed any child who needed her, notably Mike Gau and Jon Ulrich, amongst others.

Judy and Urban began their life together in Plymouth, MN, where they built their first home, one that Urban designed, before moving to Wayzata, MN where they raised their large family, also welcoming numerous young people and exchange students into their home-on-the-hill. Judy was active in the neighborhood and at her children's schools, organizing and planning fun events for the children in her life. She was a Girl Scout leader and active as a lifelong member of Wayzata Community Church. In the 1970s, she was recognized by Hennepin County as a noted volunteer working with youth groups, child abuse survivors and prison inmates.

Early on their life together, Judy and Urban built a cabin near Grand Rapids, MN, on Deer Lake. Every summer, the family moved to the cabin, with Urban commuting for the weekends. The cabin became the center of life for the family, with kids being kids and enjoying boating, skiing, fishing and the beautiful Nature that God provides. They built spectacular memories for their children, and grandchildren and great-grandchildren, all of whom came to love the simple pleasures of family life on the lake. Everyone loved Judy, their playmate, their friend, their guide.

Judy and Urban also had a home in Sun City West, AZ for many years, and they loved their life there. The friendships they developed in Sun City became some of the most important of their lives, and their group of friends became dearly-loved extended family.

Judy and Urban were both born explorers, and they loved to travel. They brought their children and grandchildren on many wonderful adventures in Arizona, Montana, Canada (Banff!) and throughout Europe. As a couple, they went on to explore nearly every continent, hand-in-hand, sweethearts for life.

Judy, like her ancestors before her, was a noted beauty, always stylish, always wearing lipstick and earrings, and whose role model became Jacqueline Kennedy. She loved her friends and "the girls" and was a regular with numerous bridge groups. She played bridge until the last few years. Everyone loved playing cards with Judy, although she won without mercy, LOL. Judy was also an avid reader, reading almost a book a day until her eyesight failed her. She loved adventure stories, which allowed her to be "out in the world," even when her body said no.

Judy often said that Laughter was the elixir that gave her a long and beautiful life. As we remember Judy, and her magnificent long life, she would say that her family meant everything to her, and she loved each and every one. She is survived by Mark and Linda Abendroth, their children and grandchildren; Jo Pihl (Doug Pihl, deceased) and their children and grandchildren, Jeanne and Bill Derrick, their children and grandchildren; Robert and Anette Abendroth and their children, Lisa Abendroth and Robert Phillips, their children and grandchildren, and all who loved her.

Judy's life will be celebrated at a Memorial Service on Wednesday, May 8 at 3pm at Simple Traditions by Bradshaw, 671 Snelling Ave. South, Saint Paul, Minnesota, 55116. Visitation one hour prior.

Memorials preferred to the Deer Lake Association via PayPal or mail (Marcus Fuller, DLA Treasurer, 4145 Washburn Ave S., Minneapolis, MN 55410).

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Jewell "Judy" (Ernest) Abendroth, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Wednesday, May 8, 2024

2:00 - 3:00 pm (Central time)

Simple Traditions by Bradshaw - Highland

671 Snelling Avenue S, Saint Paul, MN 55116

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

Celebration of Life

Wednesday, May 8, 2024

3:00 - 4:00 pm (Central time)

Simple Traditions by Bradshaw

671 Snelling Ave S, St Paul, MN 55116

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


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