Vida R. Belardi

April 2, 1925February 27, 2013

Vida R. Belardi, age 87, of Peoria, formerly of Owatonna, MN, passed away peacefully Wednesday, February 27, 2013, 10:48 a.m. at Independence Village in Peoria, where she was a resident since October 2008.

She was born April 2, 1925 in Dodge Center, MN, to Elmer and Irene (Budahn) Smith. They preceded her in death along with one brother, Hugo Smith, and two sisters: Melba Benson and Maida Lloyd Milford.

Survivors include three children: Kathryn (David) Storlie of Princeville, IL, Steven (MaryAnn) Smith of Owatonna, MN, Mary (Jon) Erickson of Kerkhoven, MN; six grandchildren: Ara, Risa, Tanya, Tammy, Justin, Joseph, and six great-grandchildren.

Vida graduated from West Concord High School in 1943 (salutatorian of her class). In 1948, she received a Liberal Arts degree from Roberts Wesleyan Junior College in North Chili, New York. She graduated magna cum laude from Seattle Pacific University, Seattle, Washington, in 1950 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English (minor in history), and from the University of Minnesota in 1961 with a Bachelor of Science degree in education. Later she did graduate work at the University of Minnesota from 1975-1976 to obtain secondary reading certification.

She taught English and history in the Claremont High School (fall 1961-spring 1966) and English in Owatonna High School (fall 1966-June 1987) for total of 26 years in public schools, retiring in June 1987. She directed class plays and coached declamation in both Claremont and Owatonna and implemented a developmental reading program at the Owatonna High School. After she retired, she taught for two years at Taiwan Adventist College, Yu chih, Nantou Co., Taiwan (1988-1990) and one year at Marantha Adventist School in Dodge Center (1990-1991).

Vida worked part time as a copy editor and editorial writer for the Self-Supporting Worker in Dodge Center after her return from Taiwan.

As a Christian woman, she was a student of the Bible. She loved to memorize Scripture, share what she was learning, and spend time each day praying for her family and friends. She was an avid and gifted letter writer and enjoyed reading and sharing information. She put helping others and giving ahead of herself.

She was a member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, where she taught an adult Sabbath School class, directed plays, was a lay speaker for the church service and a speaker for Women’s Prayer Luncheons.

Cremation rites have been accorded. A memorial service will be held Saturday, March 23, 2013, at 2:30 p.m. at the Seventh-day Adventist Church, 4019 N. Knoxville Avenue, Peoria, IL. Visitation will be one hour prior to the services at the church.

Burial will be in Riverside Cemetery, Dodge Center, MN, at a later date.

Memorials may be made to Adventist Frontier Missions, Answers in Genesis, or Hospice Compassus.

Please view Vida’s obituary online at


  • Visitation Saturday, March 23, 2013
  • Memorial Service Saturday, March 23, 2013

Vida R. Belardi

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April 9, 2013

For Mary,Jon and Joe: Read your mom obituary in the paper. Sorry to hear about your mom,mother-in-law and grandma passing away. God be with u all through this difficult time. Miss u people since u left Waseca. Donna Vitha

April 1, 2013

Mrs. Belardi was a wonderful English teacher. Her influence in my life extended to majoring in English and teaching. I remember her with much
joy. Maureen Salmon Speltz Claremont HS

Beverly Goble

March 22, 2013

Auntie Vida was my favorite. It didn't matter how long the gaps between visits, it was always as though we had just been together. Kathryn, Steven & Mary you are so in my thoughts and prayers as you travel through the pain of grief.

Lucille, Galen, & Debbie Thomas

March 22, 2013

Dear Kathy, Steven, Mary and families.......we want to share our sincere sympathies with you at this time. Vida was a wonderful friend whom we enjoyed visiting with throughout the years. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your families.

Lucille Thomas (Owatonna, MN) and Galen & Debbie Thomas (Dubuque, IA)

Kris, Kara & Charlie

March 18, 2013

Auntie Vida will always live on in our precious memories of her. We'll hold you close in our hearts as you process this loss and keep you in our prayers. Love to you all...

Joe Belardi

March 18, 2013

Dear Kathryn, Steven , Mary, and family... I often say "all mom's are special" ..I know that ours were,they were also very close, although they lived far from one another.

All the fond memories and lessons that mothers teach help to comfort us , of that, I am certain... Joe Belardi, Bellmore , NY

Carmie Arnoldt

March 18, 2013

Dear cousins,

We share your loss, Kathryn, Steven, and Mary. Aunt Vida has been a powerful presence and role model in our family; we were blessed to have known her caring and loving ways and will miss her.
Carmie and Belardi cousins

Jim and Dahni Lermon

March 7, 2013

We are so sorry for the loss of your dear mom, Mary. May your good memories help to comfort you.