Alma Bailey


Alma Bailey, 77 of Aitkin, passed away on Saturday morning, August 22, 2020 at her home on Cedar Lake, after a 5-year battle with Peritoneal Cancer. Alma was born September 29, 1942 in Brainerd to Leland “Pat” Arthur and Marie Helen (Kellerhuis) Laidlaw. She graduated from Aitkin High School in 1960, a member of the National Honor Society, the school band, and choir. She attended Macalester College in Saint Paul before returning home to marry Donald Roden in 1961. Together they helped her parents operate the Aitkin Surplus Store. Her parents owned the store for 17 years and they for 21 years beginning in 1966. They also operated Royal Clothing for 2 ½ years before liquidating in 1998. Her husband passed away in 1989.

Alma was united in marriage to Noel Bailey in 1993. Noel taught and coached at Aitkin High School until his retirement in 1998. They loved traveling with their motor home for 5 years. They were able to visit 49 of the 50 states until they found their favorite winter get-away on St. Simons Island, Georgia, where they spent numerous winters. Alma worked various jobs in the Aitkin area: Woodland Container, Aitkin Community Hospital, MLEC, ISD #1, and Grand Casino-Mille Lacs. She spent her time volunteering for : Rides for Health, Meals on Wheels, Riverwood Health Care Auxiliary for 27 years and a volunteer scheduler for 12 years. She was an avid reader of books and newspaper, and in the past was reconnected with lost families as she read the different obituaries. She loved listening to the birds, especially the loons. She would sit on her porch and watch the birds nesting and feeding their little ones. She was almost always willing to try anything and was very adventurous.

She was preceded in death by her first husband: Donald Roden,

brother: Donald Laidlaw, and her parents: Pat and Marie Laidlaw.

Alma is survived by her 3 Children: Todd, Terry (Cindy), and Becky;

Husband: Noel;

Sister: Vonnie Blount;

Step-children: Dawn (Angelo) and Lance (Jeni);

10 Grandchildren: Nick (Fiancée’ Mia), Noelle, Netanya,  Nathan (Fiancée Jasmin), Donald, Danny, Evanlee, Geordan, Bailey, and Amaris;

2 companion dogs: Remy and grand dog Kiya who were a comfort and joy to her.

Special cousin JoAnn (John) Lawrence of Fargo, ND

And many special nephews, nieces, cousins, other relatives and friends.

Donations are preferred in lieu of flowers to the Riverwood Health Care Center Auxiliary.

Visitation will be 5 to 7pm – Friday at Sorensen-Root-Thompson Funeral Home in Aitkin and will continue 1 hour prior to the 11am Saturday, August 29, 2020 memorial service at Noel & Alma’s residence on Cedar Lake (44358 348th Lane, Aitkin, MN. 56431). Reverend Dawn Houser will officiate. Private burial will be in Saint Thomas Cemetery, Aitkin. To leave a message of condolence please go to

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