Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Wednesday, May 31, at 11:00 a.m. at St. Alphonsus Catholic Church in Langdon with visitation at the church one hour before the service for Margaret Kertz, 91, former English teacher and librarian, who died May 18, 2017 at Maple Manor Care Center in Langdon.
Inurnment will be at Calvary Cemetery in Langdon.
Anna Margaret Donovan was born on November 5, 1925, in Jamestown the only child of Charles and Anna (Tschetter) Donovan, teachers who instilled in her a love of books, respect for language, and progressive political leanings. In 1933 the family moved to Alfred where her mother was postmaster and her father ran a grocery store. She took three years of high school courses by correspondence, supervised by her father, and graduated from Jamestown High school in 1941. She attended Valley City Teachers College for two years before transferring to the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks to major in journalism. At UND she was yearbook editor and associate editor of the Dakota Student newspaper, graduating Phi Beta Kappa in 1945. Two weeks after graduation, as World War II was ending, she took a job at the Cavalier County Republican in Langdon, intending to stay for one year. That plan changed when she met and in 1948 married Victor Kertz, a veteran and Langdon businessman. They lived in Langdon for the rest of their lives, raising two daughters, Katherine and Camille. For 20 years the family enjoyed summer weekends in Killarney, Manitoba, where they fished, played cards and enjoyed the company of friends. Vic died in 1996. In 1949 she began teaching English at Langdon High School. For four years during the 1950s she taught at Osnabrock High School, then returned to LHS. In the 1960s she earned a master’s degree in library science from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. She spent the rest of her career as LHS librarian while continuing to teach. She retired in 1984. She was among the charter inductees to the LHS Educators’ Hall of Fame. When former students would say, “Mrs. Kertz, you were the toughest teacher I had—and the best,” she would tell her family, “That made my day!” It was never clear which part of the accolade she enjoyed more. In retirement she traveled to Europe three times and integrated her research, writing and editing skills on genealogy projects. She belonged to bridge clubs, loved board games and collected books obsessively. She was a loyal friend and loving mother whose attitudes, astute observations and Irish wit live on in vivid memories of her.
Margaret is survived by her daughters: Camille Kertz of Langdon and Katherine Kertz (Christopher) Stanton of Arden Hills, Minn.; granddaughter Dr. Victoria (Adam Stubblefield) Stanton of Mountain View, Cali.; brother-in-law James D. Kertz of Fargo; sister-in-law Marlyn Hall Kertz of Alvarado, Minn., and many nieces, nephews and cousins.
She was preceded in death by her parents and husband; parents-in-law John L. and Rose Kertz; brothers-in-law: John Kertz, Francis Kertz, Harold Kertz and Robert Kertz; and three sisters-in-law: Donna Platz Kertz, Elizabeth Dempster Kertz and Jane Gardner Kertz.
The family prefers memorials to the Great Plains Food Bank in Fargo, the Salvation Army or Calvary Cemetery Improvement Fund.
Brooks Funeral Home of Langdon is in charge of arrangements. Online condolences are available at www.brooksfuneralhomelangdon.com.