Ardell L. Bjornstad
Ardell L. Bjornstad, 82, of Walhalla, ND passed away Tuesday, June 30, 2020 at the Unity Medical Center in Grafton, ND. A graveside service will be held on Monday, July 6, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. at the Hillside Cemetery, Walhalla, ND. Families prefers no flowers to be sent for the service, memorials are preferred to the Walhalla Ambulance Service or charity of donors choice.
Ardell was born on September 15, 1937, to Martin and Lydia (Amundson) Bjornstad on the farm that overlooked the Pembina Gorge, west of Walhalla, ND. He was baptized and confirmed at Big Pembina Lutheran Church. He was currently a member of Walhalla Lutheran Church. Ardell grew up at a time when hard work and simple living were commonplace. He and his six siblings at an early age learned how to do chores and make their contributions to the family farm, including his least favorite chore, cleaning the barn.
Ardell grew up hunting in the gorge, along with his brother, Donnie, and other family members. He attended a one-room country school through the 7th grade, until his family moved to Walhalla, where he continued his education until graduating from Walhalla High School. After graduation, Ardell enlisted in the National Guard, proudly serving for six years. He also attended NDSU, where he took some agricultural courses.
Along with his brothers Omar and Donnie, Ardell started Bjornstad Brothers’ Farm, and continued that farming business with three of his nephews, during which he judiciously carried out orderly and detailed tasks. During his later years, Ardell especially enjoyed two activities: hosting Christmas Eve for his extended family (a group that often numbered over 40 people, including young children) and spending time with family and friends at the “hunting shack” that overlooked the Pembina Gorge. Ardell was especially close to his sisters, each of whom he phoned without fail every evening. He was also a sports fan, with special attention given to the Vikings, the Twins, and local high school events.
Ardell is survived by his three sisters: Eileen Etterman, Laurie Anderson (Luther), and Judy Halvorson (Gerald); two sisters-in-law, Eunice Bjornstad and Julia Bjornstad; along with 19 nieces and nephews; and his life-long friends, Roger and Shirley Christianson.
Ardell was preceded in death by his parents, Martin and Lydia; brothers, Omar and Donald; sister, Muriel; brothers-in-law, Alfred Rogelstad and Richard Etterman; and great nephew, Derek Gordon.
Cynthia J. Gunderson
Cynthia Jane Gunderson, 64, Bathgate, ND, died peacefully at home on Monday, June 29, 2020, surrounded by her family. She was under the care of Hospice of the Red River Valley at the time of her death due to cancer. A memorial service will be held Friday, July 3, 2020 at 10:30 a.m. at the Bathgate Presbyterian Church, Bathgate, ND. Visitation will be held Thursday, July 2nd from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. with a 7:00 p.m. prayer service at the church. Both services will be live streamed at the Askew Funeral Homes Facebook page. Social distancing and masks are recommended.
Cinder was born on January 9, 1956 and raised in Fargo, ND, the daughter of Blanche and Cliff Cossette. She attended Shanley High School and North Dakota State University. Cinder married William (Bill) Gunderson on April 16, 1977 in Bathgate. They had three children, Stacey (Spencer) Reynolds, Brookings, OR; Joey (Denise) Gunderson, Grand Forks, ND; Daniel (Mandy) Gunderson, Fargo. They also had five grandchildren, Abby (19), Noah (13), Jack (10), Blake (8) and Eva (2).
Cinder understood the importance of relationships and worked to facilitate those relationships in her church, community and at home. She fostered these relationships through her care for missions, her involvement in her church, her caretaking of the Bathgate community or by making sure that family always had a place to gather.
She took the utmost pride in being a homemaker. Raising her three children, decorating her home, maintaining beautiful gardens and landscaping. She became an amazing grandmother to her grandchildren as well. She delighted in time spent with them and loved watching them grow into unique individuals.
Her greatest accomplishment in life may have been the 43 years of marriage to Bill. The foundation of their marriage was their Christian faith and their devotion to each other was unquestionable. They also shared a great passion for traveling to visit family and friends, something they did whenever the opportunity presented itself.
In addition to her husband, children and grandchildren, she is survived by six siblings, Julie (Scott) Knodel, Moorhead, MN; Mary Rustad, Fargo; Gayle (Terry) Pope, Burnside, IL; Tom (Nancy) Cossette, Humble, TX; Steve (Teri) Cossette, Fargo, and John (Terri) Cossette, Oakland, CA; brothers- and sisters-in-law Ruth Gunderson Campbell, Salem, OR; Scott (Ann) Gunderson, Bathgate, and Becky (Don) Kemp, Hamilton, ND, and numerous nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; her parents-in-law, Glen and May Gunderson, and brother-in-law Randall Rustad.
The members of Cinder’s family cannot begin to express our appreciation for all your support during her illness. She was a great mom and we are all so proud to be her kids. In lieu of flowers, please feel free to make a donation to Hospice of the Red River Valley, Bathgate City Park Fund or Bathgate Presbyterian Church.
Updated: John Alan Meagher
John Alan Meagher, age 78 died on February 21, 2020 in Gold Canyon, AZ; after an (11) year battle with COPD and most recently liver cancer. Johnny has been an inspiration to many for his positive attitude and uplifting spirit that carried him through to the end when God called him home.
John, better known as Johnny, was born on January 20, 1942 in Grand Forks, ND, the son of the late Thomas (Alex) and Margaret (Lawrence) Meagher. John lived all his life in Park River, ND; graduating from high school in 1960. He attended the North Dakota State University in Fargo, ND in 1961.
On January 6, 1961 he was united in marriage to Janice Freedland of Grafton, ND. Two children were born of this marriage: Robert (Tina) Meagher of Minot, ND and Kimberly (Todd) Jeffers of Richfield, MN; seven grandchildren: Jason Meagher and Justin Meagher, Steven (Chelsey) Rademacher and Miranda (Aaron) Brentrup all of Minot, ND, Tyson (Kelly) Jeffers, Kierra and Shayla Jeffers of Richfield, MN; eight great grandchildren: Rowan, Isla, Audra, Alaina, Kinley, Jaxon, Trace, and Cashtin.
John owned and operated various businesses in Park River including Standard Oil, Gulf Bulk Oil, Hi-Land Village and Meagher Mobile Home Courts in Park River and Northridge Mobile Home Court in Minto, ND. John also worked for John Deere Imp. For 10 years and was a school bus driver for 27 years.
John was a member of the Federated Church where he held many offices. He was a member of the Golden Valley Masonic Lodge, Hillcrest Golf Club and Curling Club. He served on the City Council for 35 years, and also served on the Park Board of Park River and Boy Scouts of America. One of his favorite “jobs” for 40 years was running the “chains” for the high school football games.
John enjoyed hunting with his son and grandchildren. He was active in curling, golfing, canoeing, skiing and loved watching his grandchildren play sports. Johnny had a great sense of humor and loved to tell jokes, especially to his Arizona buddies where John and Janice wintered the last 14 seasons.
He was preceded in death by his parents, sister Joan and brother Jimmy.
Memorial Services will be Thursday, July 2, 2020 at 2:00 P.M. at the park across the street from the Federated Church, Park River. The family requests that you bring your own chair. Inurnment will be at the Memorial Park Cemetery, Park River.
Eva M. Nelson
Eva M. Nelson went peacefully into the arms of God on Sunday, June 28, 2020 at the age of 94, at the Wedgewood Manor, Cavalier, ND. Funeral service will be held Thursday, July 2, 2020 at 11:00 a.m. at the Cavalier Presbyterian Church, Cavalier, ND. Visitation will be held at the church for one hour before the time of services. Social distancing and use of a mask is recommended. Funeral service will be live streamed on the Askew Funeral Homes Facebook page.
Eva Myrtle Wolfgram was born May 2, 1926 in Flasher, ND to Harry and Lora ‘Myrtle’ Wolfgram. She was the oldest of seven children, two brothers and four sisters.
Eva attended Hamilton School, graduating in 1944. Following graduation, and a summer session at Mayville State Teacher College, she taught for a year in a one room school in the Tyner School District, rural Cavalier, ND.
She married Lester Harvey Nelson on January 13, 1945 in Grand Forks, ND. They lived in Clyde, ND for four years and then spent the majority of their married life in Hamilton, ND.
Eva worked at Burke’s Bakery in Cavalier, and for fourteen years was a nurses aide and activity director at the Pioneer Rest Home in Bathgate, ND. For over twenty-five years, Eva filled many roles at the Chuckwagon Cafe in Cavalier. Her homemade pies, donuts and caramel rolls were her specialty. Eva finally retired when she was 80 years old.
Eva was a member of the Presbyterian Church in Hamilton and had a strong sense of faith. She enjoyed reading, crocheting, and sewing.
Family was everything to Eva and she treasured every in- person visit, phone call, letter and photo, as well as years of family gatherings; especially the annual mother/daughter shopping trips.
Eva had been living in the Wedgewood Manor Nursing Home since 2016. During that time, she developed many close and meaningful relationships with several staff members.Eva was preceded in death by her husband, Lester, two brothers, Virgil Wolfgram and Gerald Wolfgram, and two sisters, Fern Marcum, and Donna Henschel.
She is survived by her children, Roger (Connie) Nelson, Santa Fe, NM, Evonne (John) Blair, St. Thomas, ND, Brad (Susan) Nelson, Cavalier, ND, Paulette (Ron) Keney, Bismarck, ND, Brenda (Jeff) Schauer, Wishek, ND, Scott Nelson, Hamilton, ND, Lisa (Randy) Ermer, Cavalier, ND, 17 grandchildren, 35 great grandchildren; and sisters: Shirley (Erick) Lawonn and Darlene Henschel.
Dorothy (Johnson) Russum
Dorothy Russum, 91, of Grafton, ND passed away peacefully on Sunday, June 22 in Glenn’s Place at Edgewood Vista in Fargo with her family crowded around the window outside of her room.
Dorothy Mae Johnson was born on November 26, 1928 to Peder and Laura (Flaten) Johnson of rural Park River, ND. She thoroughly enjoyed growing up in the Pleasant Valley area with her siblings and many cousins nearby. She graduated from the Walsh County Agriculture School in 1946 and then began her nursing studies in Fargo. She graduated as an RN at the top of her class from St Luke’s School of Nursing in 1949, excited to begin her career that would last for over 50 years. She began work at Deaconess Hospital in Grafton and worked there until moving to the Lutheran Sunset Home in 1974. She retired from her position as Assistant Director of Nursing at Sunset in 1997 and promptly went back to work part time doing what she loved-taking care of patients! She finally dropped her nursing license when she turned 80 so Sunset would stop calling her to come to work!
She married Vernon Russum on January 14, 1951 and worked at hospitals in California and Maryland while Vernon was in the Army. Daughter, Judy and son, David were born during these years away from North Dakota. Back home in Grafton, they established a farmstead near the original Russum homestead when Vernon began farming and they continued to grow their family. Karen, Sandy and Cheri joined their siblings during this time.
Her strong faith in Jesus Christ was evident in her many passions. Vernon and Dorothy were very involved in the beginning days of the Association Free Lutheran Congregations and Bethel Lutheran Church of Grafton. She volunteered as Camp Nurse at Bible Camps for years and loved bringing grandkids to Family Bible Camp each summer. She also played important roles in the local and district Women’s Missionary Federation as well as teaching Sunday School for years!
Vernon and Dorothy’s love for their grandchildren found them on the road and in the bleachers across Washington, Montana, North Dakota, and Minnesota watching grandkids and later great-grandkids, in athletic and musical events along with baptisms, birthdays, confirmations, graduations, weddings and other family events.
Dorothy leaves behind a legacy of faithfully serving her Lord Jesus Christ, finding satisfaction in a career she loved and with a smile always demonstrating her compassion for others.
They moved from the farm into Grafton in 2013 and to Edgewood Vista Retirement Community in Fargo in January of 2017.
Dorothy is survived by five children, Judy (Bruce) Seibel of Fargo, David Russum of Fargo, Karen (Randy) Pederson of Tioga, ND, Sandra Harthan of Fargo and Cheri Nelson of Fargo; 17 grandchildren, Andrea (Adam) Berge, Stephanie (Michael) Bull, Emily (Eric) Netland, Kayla Russum, Micah (Jen) Russum, Malea (Matt) Williams, Daniel (Kaitlyn) Russum, Gracia (Aaron) Livie, David (Bree) Pederson, Chris (Megan) Pederson, Evan Pederson (Dani Halverson), Amanda (Nate) McCraven, Laura (Craig) Olson, Todd (Jenna) Harthan, Jonathan (Heidi) Nelson, Josiah (Katie) Nelson and Jordan (fiancée Ellen Barden) Nelson;41 great grandchildren; Timothy, Luke, Hannah, Josiah and Mattea Berge, Olivia, Charlotte and Amelia Bull, Emmerich, Easton, Elyse and Eddie Netland, Zianne, Talitha, Eisley and Diletta Russum, Haaken, Isla and Soren Williams, Asher and Judah Russum, Sophie, Ben, Lila and Isaac Livie, Julian, Chandler and Lukah Pederson, Ellis, Henrik and Harvey Pederson, Austin, Carter and Sophia McCraven, Evie and Maxwell Olson, Barrett Harthan, Jeremiah and Anja Nelson, Erin and John Nelson; and many nieces and nephews.
Preceded in death by her husband of nearly 70 years, Vernon; son-in-law, Phil Harthan her parents; and her siblings; Martha Troftgruben, Allerd Johnson, Howard Johnson, Lois Winther, and Marilyn Johnson.
Visitation: Thursday, June 25, 2020 from 5 to 6 PM with a prayer service at 6 PM at West Funeral Home, West Fargo, ND.
Funeral: Friday, June 26 at 2 PM at Bethel Free Lutheran Church, Grafton with visitation one hour prior. (This public service will honor & celebrate Dorothy and Vernon's life)
Burial: Grafton Cemetery.
The family wishes to express its sincere thanks to the staff at Glenn’s Place in Edgewood Vista and the people of Hospice of the Red River Valley for their wonderful care and kindness. Memorials may be directed to Bethel Church or a ministry of your choice.
West Funeral Home & Life Tribute Center
Dean Olafson, 86, of rural Edinburg, ND, passed away Monday, June 15, 2020, at the Lutheran Sunset Home, Grafton, ND. Funeral Service will be held Friday, June 19, 2020, at 2:30 p.m. at the Vikur Lutheran Church, Mountain, ND. Visitation will be held Thursday, June 18, 2020, from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the Askew Funeral Home, Cavalier, ND. Wearing of a mask is suggested and social distancing
Franklin Lowell Dean Olafson was born March 26, 1934, on the Olafson family farm in Thingvalla Township to Valdimar “Valdi” Franklin and Louisa Gudlaug “Louise” (Jonasson) Olafson. He grew up in Thingvalla Township and graduated from Gardar High School. Dean served in the United States Army and after his discharge, returned home to farm and work in the family construction business, working until the age of 80. In 1961, he married Janice Mountain and they had three children: Brian, Alan, and Melanie.
Dean was a member of the Milton, Cavalier, and Grafton Curling Clubs and the Mountain American Legion. He served on the Board of Directors at the Borg Memorial Home for many Years. Dean also enjoyed dancing.
He is survived by his children: Alan (Dana) Olafson, Edinburg, ND and Melanie Kelley, Farmington, ND; three grandchildren: Chad, Brock, and Bailey; brothers: Roger (Marilyn) Olafson and Curtis (Bjork) Olafson, all of rural Edinburg. Also survived by his nieces and nephews.
Preceding him in death were his parents, son, Brian; sister, Donna Sapa; brother, Robert Olafson; three siblings who died when young: Donald Wayne, Karen Elizabeth, and Linda Darlyne.
Jonathon L Hughes
Jonathon L. Hughes, 55, of Grand Forks, ND, formerly of Neche, ND, passed away Saturday, June 13, 2020, near Grand Forks, ND. Funeral Service will be held Friday, June 19, 2020, at 10:30 a.m. at the United Lutheran Church, in Cavalier, ND. Visitation will be held Thursday, June 18, 2020, from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. with a 7:00 p.m. prayer service at the church. Social distancing and wearing a mask are recommended. Funeral service will be live streamed on the Askew Funeral Home Facebook page.
Jon was a 1983 graduate of Neche High School. After enlisting as a Marine, Jon graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1989. Upon commission, he was assigned to Training Wing (TW-5), Pensacola, FL for flight school and was designated a Naval Aviator in June, 1991. He was reassigned to Helicopter Mine Countermeasures Squadron (HM)-14 in Norfolk, VA to fly the MH-53E Sea Dragon. Hughes returned to Pensacola as a flight instructor in 1995. In 1998, he left active duty but remained in the reserves, assigned to HM-15 in Corpus Christi and flew commercially for Trans World Airlines and Atlantic Coast Airlines. After returning to active duty in 2001, he was deployed in January 2003 to the Persian Gulf and again in 2004, this time as Officer-in-Charge, HM-15 Det. 2. He commanded the 90 person detachment until his transfer to Fort Worth in January, 2005. On October 1, 2006, he was promoted to Commander and assigned to the Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base, Fort Worth, TX. On July 15, 2007, Jon took his last command of the Navy Operational Support Center, Alameda, CA.
After retiring from the Navy in 2010, he moved to Grand Forks and flew commercially for Sky West Airlines until the time of his death. He also drove beet truck for area farmers and contracted with Trans Systems in the winter months.
Jon enjoyed travelling, camping and boating, snowmobiling, motorcycling and attending sporting events. He remained active in the VFW and spent many of his weekends on water throughout the summer. Jon also spent many evenings and weekends watching his nieces and nephews play sports.
He is survived by his mother, Judy (Bert) Warner of Pembina, brothers, Jeff Hughes, Neche, ND, Jeremy (Beth) Hughes, Thompson, ND, sisters Jackie (Steve) Johnson, Reiles Acres, ND, Laurie (Allen) Williams Montrose, CO, nephews Daniel (Sarah) Williams, Samuel Williams, Jacob Williams and Marcus Hughes, nieces Rachel Johnson, Mara (Joe) Gramling, Lauren(fiancé BJ) Johnson and Mackenzie Hughes, grand-nephews Thomas Johnson and Oliver Johnson.
Curtis A. Jerome
Curtis A. Jerome, 58, of Walhalla, ND passed away Thursday, May 21, 2020 at Altru Hospital, Grand Forks, ND. A memorial service will be held Thursday, June 18, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. at the Walhalla Lutheran Church, Walhalla, ND. Military rites will be provided by the U.S. Marine Corp Funeral Honors. Service will be streamed on the Askew Funeral Homes Facebook Page.
Curtis A. Jerome was born on May 8th 1962 in Cavalier, ND, the second of five children to Waldemar & Ida Melsted. He was baptized and confirmed in the Lutheran Church. Curtis grew up and attended school in Walhalla, ND. He enjoyed wrestling and football during his school years. Curt was quite excited with placing in the top three of a Walk-A-Thon held walking the distance from Cavalier to Walhalla. During his teen years, Curtis was employed by Ray’s Fairway.
Curtis joined the USMC at the age of 18. He was stationed in Okinawa, Japan and Camp Pendleton, CA. He was trained as a Motor Vehicle Operator and Generator Operator. He earned his Rifle Marksman Badge, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon and a Good Conduct Medal. Following an Honorable Discharge in 1984, Curtis served two years in the Marine Corp Reserve. Curt’s service in the military proved to be a great source of pride for him. It was during his military career that Curtis returned home to be united in marriage to his high school sweetheart, Cindy Dumas. The following years spent with his one true love were described by him as “the most happiest times of his life”.
Upon his return home from the military, Curt was employed with the construction of the Walhalla Ethanol Plant. He then moved to Grafton, ND where he was employed by the State School. Later, he moved to Grand Forks where he attended the EGF AVTI and earned his Diploma in Parts & Service. Curtis had an extensive employment record working for various construction and labor companies. Curt enjoyed his time with Hogenson Construction in Western ND constructing elevators. He also worked at Tarnel Trailers in Walhalla. He loved to travel and camp and enjoyed hunting with his brothers, Steven and Craig. Curtis held a strong work ethic while his body held out and allowed this of him.
During Curt’s entire life, he held close relationships with many of his family members. Several of his cousins’ children as well as his friends’ children fondly referred to Curt as “Uncle Curtis”. Curt was a relied upon babysitter and he absolutely loved it.
Curtis possessed a great love for all animals. Special to his heart were Shadow and Misty, his cats and Levi and Shiloh, his dogs. He had a deep passion to own horses. Curt also enjoyed the compassion and loyalty of close-knit friendships over the years. He held many, but two stand out for their commitment and longevity, Tork and Scot. They meant the world to Curtis; he cherished these friendships. Curtis loved his family deeply, not just his immediate but his extended as well-his uncles, aunts and cousins. They all held a special place in his heart.
WE LOVE YOU WITH ALL OF OUR BEING AS WELL, CURTIS.
Those left to mourn are his parents: Waldemar and Ida Melsted of Walhalla, ND. Brothers: Marlin (Michelle) of Bossier City, LA., Steven and Craig of Walhalla, Sister: Rita (John) of East Grand Forks. Nephews: Johnathon & Michael of Bossier City, LA., Brandon of Valley City, ND. Niece: Erin (Jordan) of Grand Forks. Great nephews: Nolan & Graden of Grand Forks. Also, his entire family, both near and far.
Gloria J Becker
Gloria J. Becker, 59, of Cavalier, ND, passed away Thursday, June 11, 2020, at the Altru Hospital in Grand Forks, ND. Memorial service will be held Tuesday, June 16, 2020 at 10:30 a.m. at the St. Brigid of Ireland Catholic Church, Cavalier, ND. Visitation will be held Monday, June 15, 2020, from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the Askew Funeral Home, Cavalier, ND. For people attending social distancing and a mask are recommended.
Gloria was born December 16, 1960 in Cavalier, ND, to Raymond and Jean (Lucier) Cook. She grew up Svold and Backoo area and graduated from Walhalla High School in 1978. She worked at Motor Coach Industries for over 30 years and retired in April of 2018.
On September 27, 1997, Gloria married Randy Ostlie in Langdon, ND. He passed away on January 11, 2006. On November 2, 2006 Gloria married Dean Becker in Cavalier, ND. He passed away on April 13, 2018
Some of the things she enjoyed were gardening and crafts.
Gloria is survived by her siblings: Bill (Jeanette) Cook, New Salem, ND; Pat (Carol) Cook, Baudette, MN; Tom Cook, Walhalla, ND; Pam Cook, Walhalla, ND; Glen Cook, Cavalier, ND; and Lori (Bryan) Kalis, Walhalla, ND; she was also survived my several nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents, and nephew, Bryon Kalis.
Edna M. Bellerud
Edna M. Bellerud, age 85 of Park River, ND passed away on Wednesday, June 10, 2020 at Valley Senior Living of Grand Forks, ND.
Graveside services will be held Tuesday, June 16, 2020 at 2:00 P.M. at Memorial Park Cemetery of Park River. There will be a visitation time one hour prior to the service at the cemetery. Social distancing guidelines will be followed and masks are encouraged.
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