Karen Solyntjes

Office Manager

Karen was raised on a farm in Hager City, WI in the Big River area. She graduated from Ellsworth High School, married her high school sweetheart, and earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Elementary Education at UW-River Falls in 1989. She worked with disabled adults for many years, and then taught kindergarten and first grade at Hillcrest Elementary in Ellsworth for eighteen years. Karen considered it a privilege and loved working with the adults and children. She retired from teaching in 2015.

Karen is delighted to be a part of the O’Connell-Benedict team, dedicated to providing personalized service. She brings a compassionate, caring, and a calm manner which serves her well when assisting families. She currently designs custom memorial products, creates video presentations from family photos, prepares printed materials and obituaries, and assists with services provided by O’Connell-Benedict Family Funeral Home in River Falls.


Karen and her husband, Paul, have four sons: Luke, Nate, Dane, and Matt, and look forward to welcoming a daughter-in-law, Bailey. She enjoys vacationing and spending time with friends and family, reading, making strawberry jam, trying new recipes, planting flowers, golfing, and decorating for the changing seasons.