- About Us
Robert and Cynthia (Nelson) Ellsworth took over the funeral home in 1979, following John's death. Bob was born and raised in Estelline, South Dakota, where his parents, Ray and Blanche Ellsworth, started the Ellsworth Funeral Home in 1948. He graduated from Estelline High School, Augustana College in Sioux Falls, and Dallas Institute of Funeral Service. Bob moved to Madison following his internship with the Hermanson-Kahler Funeral Home in Dell Rapids. Cindy graduated from Lincoln High School in Sioux Falls, and Augustana College. She is a retired elementary teacher. Both Bob and Cindy are active members of Trinity Lutheran Church and many community organizations. They have two sons. Adam owns Molton Logic, a sound and light production company in Sioux Falls and recently married Carly McCuen of Nunda. Andrew is a Family Practice Physician at Brookings. He married Laura Vogt from Magnolia, Minnesota and they two children, Eli and Lydia.
The Ellsworths have made many improvements at the funeral home, including the addition of a chapel, which seats 150, a casket selection room, reception area and a garage. They have also completely re-decorated their facility, always striving to preserve the "homelike" feeling. The Ellsworths believe their home is an extension of a family's home during their time of need.
Sue Janssen has been with the Ellsworth Funeral Home since 1997, serving in various capacities. As Family Service Counselor, she visits with families in the days and weeks following the funeral of their loved one. Often times questions and needs arise when the service is over and Ellsworth Funeral Home feels it is important to address all aspects of funeral service for each family. Our service does not end when the funeral is over.
Sue is also skilled in pre-arrangements and is a licensed funeral insurance agent. She assists Bob and can meet with people at the funeral home or in the comfort of their own home. There are many options in funeral planning today and each service can be tailored to meet the needs of that person. Many families feel they are better served when the funeral home records are complete and planning in advance provides them peace of mind. Of all the things a person can do for their family, planning and funding the funeral may be one of the most considerate and caring.
Sue grew up at Peever, South Dakota and graduated from Wilmot High School. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Dakota State College and graduated cum laude in 1982. During college, she was active in several groups including serving as Student Association President. Following college, she served as president of the Dakota State Alumni Association and was on the board of directors for the Dakota State Foundation.
She married Paul Janssen of Madison in 1986. Paul retired in 2016. He owned Enterprise Auto Repair since 1985 and is an A.S.E. certified Master Automotive Technician. They have two sons who graduated from Madison High School. Nathan is a major in the US Air Force, stationed at Luke AFB, Arizona. Logan is an electrical engineer with East River Electric Power Cooperative in Madison. Sue and her family attended St. Peter Lutheran Church at Orland until it closed in 2017. She taught Sunday School for several years and served on the church council in various capacities including congregational president. They live on the Janssen family farm near Orland.
The Ellsworth Funeral Home in Madison and the Willoughby Funeral Home in Howard are pleased to announce that Alex Nurnberg, a licensed funeral director, has joined their staff. He will be working with Bob Ellsworth and Terry Lee to serve families in the Lake and Miner County area. Alex and
Alex is a native of Watertown, SD, the son of Russ and Paula (McBrayer) Nurnberg of Watertown and the grandson of Elma Nurnberg of Forestburg and Bonnie McBrayer of Ethan. He graduated from Watertown High School. Following high school he attended the University of South Dakota before graduating from Mortuary School at the Des Moines Area Community College in Ankeny, IA. He served his internship at Furness Funeral Home in Clark and has worked at Crawford-Osthus Funeral Chapel in Watertown since January of 2016. Alex married Brooke Donahue, the daughter of Mike Donahue and Sara Clarke. Brooke is a certified dental assistant and the granddaughter of Dave and Wanda Clarke of Howard and Ardell and Bev Donahue of Fedora. They have two children, Millie and Jaxon. Alex is an avid outdoorsman and enjoys whitetail deer hunting. He is a lifelong fan of the Denver Broncos, Minnesota Twins, and the North Carolina Tar Heels. The couple looks forward to getting involved in both communities and will be attending St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church in Madison.