07/25/2017 (2444)

Class of 1967 50th Class Reunion
Posted by LeaRea Parrill Espe (’67):

Class of 1967 50th Class Reunion August 4-5

We finalized our plans and are looking forward to seeing everyone

Friday evening : Social at Dale’s Lounge
Saturday Morning: 9-11 AM    Commerical Club sponsored breakfast at Dunseith Elementary
11:15 AM      Meet near Dunseith Nursing Home to line up for Parade                                 Noon            Parade  (Jim Berube is getting a trailer for our float)                              12 – 2 PM     Meet at Sr. Citizen’s/American Legion for Pie Social after                                                parade (Social goes until 2)
3:00 PM        Meet at High School to tour the school                                                          5:00 PM        Meet at W’eel Turtle for a picture
6;00 PM        Meet at Dale’s Lounge for a short program                                                  6:30 PM        Supper at Dale’s

PLEASE NOTE: If you get this message please reply to me or Patti immediately so we know  that you have received it.  We need a ballpark figure for the supper and also want to know how many will be available to ride on the float.  All are welcome.

INFO: A full schedule of Dunseith Days is on Facebook. You would not believe all the fun events planned starting on Sunday, July 30 with a fishing derby at Lake Shutte and going until Sunday, August 6 with a kid’s golf tournament with many, many events each day of the week. Starion Bank is having a community picnic on Thursday at 5:30. North Central Electric is having a customer appreciation meal from 4-6PM on Friday.

We announced the reunion earlier and announced the date to coincide with Dunseith Days as soon as we knew it. We have waited until the events were set so we could fit our meeting times  into the overall schedule.  Patti Metcalfe Woods, Mary Helen Anderson Millang,  Jim Berube and I have met several times to try to figure out how to make contacts with all who were part of our class.  K. Flynn Richard, Beverly Azure, and Roger Counts have joined us for the last couple of meetings. We have all been brainstorming how to contact each one .  A reminder here that everyone is welcome whether you graduated or not.


San Haven aerial videos
Posted by Karen Loeb Mhyre (’70)’ Snohomish, WA.

I subscribe to this ND blog (of sorts) and found this story of interest!

Karen Loeb Mhyre
Snohomish, WA

Drone Footage Captured At This Abandoned North Dakota Facility Is Truly Sad



One Mountain Experience
Posting from Vickie Metcalfe (’70):  Bottineau, ND


Matthew House

I first  rented and lived in a furnished 3 room basement apartment  of  this building in Montana.

At the time,there was no where else to rent due to an exploding oil boom.

Later, I  moved up in the world to  the second floor. A couple years later I moved into another apt.

Finally  purchased  my first home which friends helped to renovate.


The owner of that first apt. an  elderly land lady.

Annie a kind and generous  person and her cat Putt  lived down the hall,  in the other basement apartment

Everyone shared the washing machine and dryer in a furnace room.

There were no egress windows, the main door was always unlocked and open.

If I locked my door I   used a skeleton key.  On the inside, I did use a safety chain!

Whenever a Chinook came,  the icy flat roof melted.

Brown water soon dripped and seeped though 2 floors of  insulation down to the apts  to the basement.

The ever resourceful elderly  land  lady  in winter months leaned  a ladder against the back of the building to the top of the entrance.

She’d drag up another on top of the entrance, climb up  to top of  the roof  finally, crawling to shovel  off  heavy snow.

In my apt. a  shower head hung just a wee bit above my head in the middle of the bathroom  ceiling_ in front of the  toilet stool .

This was surrounded by pull around plastic shower curtain. Water  would  drain  into a drain in the middle of the floor.

The floor drain  and bathroom  was  home to all sorts of water bugs and crickets.

After a few  crunches and squisheys at night, it was better to always leave the light on or wear shoes!

My roots were of hardy  wholesome stock of  the hills.

(The first month before pay day, I lived on  1 jar of Peanut butter, 1 gal.  of milk  and  bread)

I learned alot from my landlady;

About survival and  the people and history of the rural lower Yellowstone area.

How  as a newly wed, her first husband was mangled and died  in a farm horse run away.

And how she found domestic work through the Great depression and WWII rationing.

During those years,  I  also had many opportunities to further education.

I  along with others  attended several workshops.  One was   Domestic Violence.

I   finally understood,  battered people  and why they stay,

continue to be battered emotionally and physically…(Stockholm Syndrome).

I  attended  conferences with  Community people; spark plugs, like Father Ned, the Carranza ladies

from St. Matthew’s Catholic Parish, and others who later formed the  Domestic Violence Coalition.

The coalition had  volunteers who worked to find,  & write grants,

( I  believe  Annie had willed  her little estate for a higher purpose)

A company  donated an  expensive small experimental state of the art environmentally friendly  furnace.

Since leaving, the area I read today, that building  has been spifted up by community people.

(new windows,  roof was put on,  and  ramps and deck).

Living and working in Montana was a unique rewarding learning experience!

I learned  good and dark sides  about humans.

But, I discovered I was blessed.

During  that time my parents were  both alive  and I was able to tell each of them.

“Thank you for many things I took for granted.”

vickie m.


Blog (618) posted on November 10, 2009

Posted on November 10, 2009

Previously posted two days ago

From Susan Brew Roussin (59): Rolla, ND.

Remembering…. Do any of the older classmates from Dunseith remember early days when Paster Lovaas lived near the school house in town. He had a son named Danny. Danny worked for a while at the Peace Garden with my step-grandpa (Jerry Demo). I must have been in first grade, the teacher was Eunice Larson, if I recall rightly. We thought it was a good idea if we got these two people together. I don’t know how it actually happened, but we felt like match makers, when they did get married. Does anyone know where are they now. Have a great day. Thanks much, Gary and all who keep the past alive in our thoughts and prayers. “Daddy” Jerry was the gardener at the Peace Garden in the late 40’s.

Folks, I just had a very nice visit with Eunice. She and Dan are living in Arkansas. It’s a small world. Eunice was born and raised in the Turtle mountains south of Lake Metigoshe. I knew her brother Ledolph Larson very well. Ledolph and Edna lived on the lake road a few miles south of Lake Metigoshe. Eunice and I knew many of the same hills folks. She said she taught school in Dunseith for two years. She and Danny got married in 1951. Susan, she remembers you and your family. Shirley Olson Warcup, she remembers you too. She also remembers Don and Bernice Johnson. She said they knew Art Rude really well and would have visited him had they known he was living in Dunseith, when they were back in the area last summer. Shirley and Susan, I told Eunice that I would forward their email address to you. I have Eunice/Dan’s email address for those of you that would like to contact them. Gary

Daniel & Eunice (Larson) Lovass

5 Mansfield Dr


Bella Vista, AR 72714-5100

(479) 855-2911

Virgil Rude: Minot, ND

Folks, I received a very pleasant call from Virgil Rude several hours ago. Many of you folks remember Virgil from the National Guard, The Minot Schools, Bottineau, and the Turtle Mountains. Virgil is recovering well from the stroke he had several months ago. He said he drove for the first time yesterday and it went well. Geri, Virgil’s wife was surprised when a friend of hers mentioned she had heard of Virgil’s stroke from her daughter who lives in Fargo. Her daughter had seen it posted on our daily blog. Virgil did not know the daughters name, but thought it was Darcy or something like that. Virgil, Eunice Larson Lovass (listed above) also mentioned knowing your folks, Alfred & Viola (Bjornseth) Rude. She also knew Albert & Gladys (Bjornseth) Rude, LaVerne and Glen’s folks.

San Haven Memories

From Lloyd Awalt (44): Bottineau, ND

Hi Gary, me again talking about the San. No one has mentioned that they had there own farm. They milked cows morning and night, 40 at a setting. They had hogs, sheep, chickens. They planted all there crops potatoes, corn, beans, peas. Every thing there wasn’t much shipped in. More was shipped in after the farm closed Cliff Magnusson was the drayman for the san. I worked with Brenda Hoffman’s dad when he had the bakery, Eva Trafford was in charge of the kitchen. I worked out off the kitchen. Lloyd Awalt

Reply from Erling Lansverk (44): Portage, WI

Hi Gary and Everyone!

After listening to the Halloween pranks perpetrated by some of my fellow North Dakotans, I have been thinking that perhaps I should not have praised the populace to that degree. gracious, Dick Johnson, I am surprised at the length some of you went to cause havoc and mischief about the neighborhood. You see, We of the older generation never engaged in such antics, instead it was bobbing for apples and dancing to skip to my Lou. Of course, its possible that you may not believe that.As a matter of fact, I could be having some doubts myself Lloyd Awalt, you probably remember, since we were classmates, at any rate my father Gunder Landsverk and your Dad were great friends, and worked together on several projects through the years, My Dad always said that John Awalt is a hevk of a nice guy and great hard worker. I knew he meant it, and my Dad was no slouch when it came to hard work. Sorry I missed you in 2007. We could have gotten together and exchanged lies. Just kidding. I do remember you and your father quite well. Brenda, I am sorry about not noticing you trying to run us down but had i known about you, I would have gotten out and unhooked the horses , its a funny thing though, , the buggy was not equipped with seat belts. It was a great ride all the same. Next time we will wait for you Brenda, I promise.

On a more serious note, I am very concerne about my cousins my cousin Sharon (Landsverk)) Beckman tells me that 5 of her 6 brothers have cancer Could this have anything to do with the defoelegent that was sprayed in the fifties in that area. The landsverk farm has a lot of water surrounding it and perhaps this defoelegent may have gotten into the ground water, but then so have others near there. I know that many of the veterans I talk to who were in viet Nam either have cancer or know someone who has due to the defoelegent Agent Orange. i hope that some research has been done in this area, since I notice so many cancer deaths in the turtle Mountains. I wonder what they were trying to do or why did they do it. meanwhile, those poor guys along with others have to go through hell just because of “some experiment” ?

Erling Landsverk

Erling, When Virgil Rude called me today, he mentioned that Elwood Landsverk, Sharon’s brother, had visited him when he was in the Minot hospital. I’m wondering if Elwood is one of her brothers with cancer? Gary

Fort Hood Shootings

Reply from Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC

To Susan Malaterre Johnson

Thanks for taking the time to give Capt.John Gaffeney of Williston,N.Dak the mention that he deserves. That incident was horrific and unbeleivably sad. I was happy that the guy who did it,did not go out like the martyr I’m sure he thought he was going to go out as…I’m confident that they will find alot of worms in that can that he busted wide open. My heart and prayers go out to the families of Ft.Hood,and military families across America. God Bless You Susan and Take Care….Ms. Aggie

Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND


07/20/2017 (2443)

Dick and Vi (Hobbs – DHS ’54) Ziegler 63rd Anniversary
Posting from Dick Ziegler:  McMinnville, OR

Hello Gary,

Dick and Vi Ziegler just celebrated their 63rd wedding anniversary Monday, July 17th.

I met Viola (Hobbs) in late August, 1952.  I was working for Peavey Elevators in Dunseith, doing repair work on their elevator in Dunseith.  My job was finished in Dunseith, and I was headed out of town to reaturn to New Rockford.  As my friend and I were pulling out of our parking space to leave town, I noticed this pretty young girl step out onto the street.  Leroy, a friend I had met while in Dunseith, was hitching a ride, and I asked him if he knew who that girl was.  Leroy said yes, that’s Ole Hobbs, would you like to meet her?  I said I would, so we pulled up along side of her, and Leroy called out to her.  He said there was someone who wanted to meet her.  Vi came over to the car, and we were introduced.  She seemed very special to me, and I wanted to spend some more time with her.  The next thing I knew, I asked her if she’d like to go to a dance with me that night.  (Even though I didn’t know how to dance.) She said she would, and that changed my life forever.  We spent the next two years going together, and were married July 17, 1954.  If Vi had stepped out onto the street 10 seconds sooner, or later, we’d have never met.  I think there may have been some Devine Intervention involved.  We’ve had a beautiful marriage together.

Dick Ziegler


Don Johnson Pictures
Posted by Brenda (Dick) Johnson Dunseith, ND


I’ve been cleaning and sorting some pictures.  Some are very old and some fairly recent.  I came across 2 pictures of Dick’s dad I found interesting.  If he had been living he would have turned 89 last week on July 13.  The picture of Don outside of the Garden Tap on Main Street was taken in 1965 and I think that’s what most folks remember.  The picture of him in the band uniform was taken in 1946 (not sure of the exact date).  I thought my father-in-law looked impressive in his uniform and can clearly see his German heritage. Good deal he had a Norwegian side to even this out. :-)



Johnson, Don (2443)-1 Johnson, Don 2443-2


Blog (617) posted on November 9, 2009

Posted on November 9, 2009

Dr. Loeb & Erling’s Book

Reply from Brenda Hoffman (68): Greenville, SC

Dear Gary,

My Mom and Dad still talk about Dr. Loeb’s brilliance. They contend that if Dr. Loeb had not been our doctor at the San, mom and I would have been hospitalized much longer. Dr. Loeb’s high expectations encouraged San Haven employees to perform just a bit better. In the ‘its a small world category,’ one of Dave’s periodontal patients in St. Cloud, MN was a next door neighbor of the Loeb family and I was able to take a letter from her to Hannah Loeb at our last Dunseith reunion. Our patient also talked about Dr. Loeb’s expertise.

And then of course, I just finished Erling Landsverk’s book My Dakota Years ( which I loved -I asked him to write another!) and via our emails found out that he and his sister were in the carriage with Hannah Loeb at the reunion. I so wanted to talk to Hannah and tell her how grateful I was for all that she and Dr. Loeb did for me that I chased the carriage for a few blocks (running all the way!). The carriage driver and passengers (if I remember correctly!) thought is was kind of a silly sight to see me running as fast as I could in the back streets of Dunseith.

Brenda Hoffman class of 1968

Loeb’s & Erling

Reply from Lloyd Awalt (44): Bottineau, ND.

Hi Gary just some answers to some of writers. Karen Loeb Mhyre that was a very nice article about your dad. I worked at the San when I was about 15 I lived across the street from your mother Hannah I grew up in Dunseith. I’m glad to hear that Hannah is doing fine. Erling that was a good article about the dirty 30s. I grew up then and it was a hard time. reading the Dunseith blog it is very interesting I know most every one that writes knew your folks better . keep up the good work Gary.

Reply to Karen Loeb Mhyre

From Gary Morgan (54): GARRISON, ND

Thank you for your prompt response. I was right! it is interesting and enlightening.
That Intern Program during WW II is a dark chapter in our country’s history. Apparently, there were actually cases where the younger generation gave their lives fighting for their country while their country thanked them by confiscating all of their parent’s property and relocating them to prison camps.

Gary Morgan ’54

Danny Lovass

Reply from Shirley Olson Warcup (49): Ivans, UT.

Here is a little information on Danny Lovaas: Danny’s younger brother, Paul, and I kept in touch until his death about 6 years ago. We talked on the phone a few times a year and I remember once he mentioned that one of Danny’s daughters had come to Nebraska to see him. I believe he said Danny lived in Louisiana and that he had 3 daughters. I could be wrong about both state and number of children. I don’t think Paul ever named the city in La. I wish now I had written down some of that information. Paul was pretty much confined to his apartment by this time–he used a wheel chair to get around. He apparently had regular communication with this niece and appreciated her visit. A former co-worker of Paul’s called me after his death. He might know something about Danny, but I didn’t write down his name or phone number and can no longer remember either. Both Ron, my husband, and I appreciated Paul’s calls–if I wasn’t home Paul gave Ron a run-down on things and they always had a good visit. I wish I had more information!!

Shirley Olson Warcup

Shirley and Susan Brew Roussin, I believe this is Danny and Eunice’s phone number an address. I believe Kathy and Patricia would probably be two of their daughters. Do either of you want to call them? If not, I can call them tomorrow, that is not a problem. I’m sure they would be glad and pleasantly surprised to receive a call from either one of you. Danny is 82 years old. Gary


5 Mansfield Dr

Bella Vista, AR 72714-5100

(479) 855-2911

Household: Eunice D Lovaas

Daniel L Lovaas 82

Bella Vista,AR

Kathy L Lovaas
Patricia K Lovaas
Eunice D Lovaas

Reply from Gary Metcalfe (57): Forsyth, MO

Hey Bonnie, Thanks for the memories….you would have found someone else already sitting in the car if I had not found a dead furrow and a couple of shadows on the way out of harms way! What memories!

Sue and I have just returned from a Caribbean Cruise to the Bahamas on Norweigan Cruise Line, Sky. (Same as our Alaska Cruise Line). All fun and relaxation. Many of the crew was from the Phillipines and some even from Cebu. After talking to several young people we were diffinitely of the opinion that the natives of the Phillipines appreciate having families like Gary and Bernadette retire in the area. They told of how some of their very own neighbors were US born married to Phillipine natives and help out the neighborhood so much with social events that go on at church or community. We are already looking forward to the 2012 cruise! Gary Metcalfe

Gary M, Yes, the Filipino people are very receptive of us being here and yes we do our share of community service. At the moment one of our spare bedrooms is loaded with Christmas packages, many of which are for some of the neighbor kids. We don’t spend a lot of money on each, but with the numbers, it adds up. Many of these folks are very poor. Some of the kids have few clothes, so we concentrate on giving clothes. I told Bernadette that we have to draw a line. There is only so much we can do. Gary S.

Reply from Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC

Hi Gary,

It’s a beautiful Sunday morning here in the Carolinas,with the leaves at peak fall colors,against a clear blue sky,and a crisp cool in the air that makes a person happy to have a church family to go worship with,good friends to go out to lunch with,and get together to watch the Carolina Panthers beat the New Orleans Saints…Go Panthers!!!! And those of you who follow football, that statement about the Panthers beating the Saints is not one of those “LOL” moments….And I am so serious….Even though the Saints are undefeated,and the Panthers are every thing but….I still believe todays game, is “OURS”….Guess by the time everyone reads this,we will know for sure,now won’t we!!! GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO ! PANTHERS!!!!!

Gary,what I really e-mailed you about is that I’m not sure if I e-mailed these last couple names to you to add to the list,they are as follows…Mel & Kathy Khun—Bill Krause—-And yes Del Enno is the lady you asked about.

You also asked about my brothers…All I know is that, Joe ,Gerald and Rene and Jimmy had a great time at the last reunion,and that Aime and Bobby, expressed,kinda like…”Darn I wish I would of went”, all of them are on your blog I believe,and as a rule are kinda the spur of the moment kinda guys,so that’s all I can tell you… Guess will see…I sure hope so….

Well gotta go Gary,gotta go get my Panther Jersey on,and get ready for the “Show Down” in “Gumbo City”…. Thanks Gary! Ms. Aggie

Aggie, in several days we will publish an updated list of those planning to attend the Dunseith Alumni Reunion in May. Gary

07/17/2017 (2442)

Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe:  Bottineau & Minot, ND

Marlene Armentrout | 1939 – 2017

Call to Order Flowers by Phone
888-579-7953 Code: 69944

Funeral Service
Saturday, Jul 22, 2017
2:00 PM

Marlene Armentrout
April 04, 1939 – July 15, 2017

Sign Guestbook|
Send Sympathy Card

Marlene Armentrout, age 78 of Dunseith, died Saturday at a Minot hospital.
Her funeral will be held on Saturday at 2:00 pm at the Peace Lutheran Church in Dunseith.  Visitation will be Thursday from 5:00 pm until 9:00 pm with a prayer service at 7:00 pm at the Nero Funeral Home in Bottineau.
(Nero Funeral Home – Bottineau)


Funeral Service Saturday, July 22, 2017
2:00 PM
Peace Lutheran Church

Gary’s Comment:
Our condolences are with Marlene’s family with her passing. She was very well known and liked by all those that knew her. She will be missed. She did the Dunseith News for many years too. She was very dedicated to public service.


Blog (616) posted on November 8, 2009

Posted on November 8, 2009

Memories of the Rober’t family

From Diane Larson Sjol (70): Minot, ND.

This message is for the Rober’t family. I remember all the fun times
we had at your house as kids…your mother was a wonderful lady. I am
sorry you had to go through this tragedy. Please know that we are
thinking of you.

Diane Larson Sjol

From Susan Brew Roussin (59): Rolla, ND.

Remembering…. Do any of the older classmates from Dunseith remember early days when Paster Lovaas lived near the school house in town. He had a son named Danny. Danny worked for a while at the Peace Garden with my step-grandpa (Jerry Demo). I must have been in first grade, the teacher was Eunice Larson, if I recall rightly. We thought it was a good idea if we got these two people together. I don’t know how it actually happened, but we felt like match makers, when they did get married. Does anyone know where are they now. Have a great day. Thanks much, Gary and all who keep the past alive in our thoughts and prayers. “Daddy” Jerry was the gardener at the Peace Garden in the late 40’s.

From Susan Malaterre Johnson (69): Alvarado, TX

One of the Ft. Hood victims was born in Williston, ND. Capt. John Gaffeney.

Reply to Shirley Olson Warcup (49):

From Keith Pladson (66): Stafford, VA

Again, I’m delighted my family was able to help you folks out when you needed help. I would so love to relay your thanks to them, but unfortunately, both of my parents and all of my Dad’s siblings have been gone for several years. I have often wondered what life was really like back then and your little historical story and shone a bit of light on that. Thanks

Keith Pladson (66)

George Loab – Former San Haven Superintendent:

Reply from Karen Loeb Mhyre (65): Bellevue, WA.

You asked about my dad’s history before he came to the San. George L. Loeb was the only son of a German, Jewish Professor of Chemistry in Germany. Dad was born in 1912, in Gottingen, Germany. In 1914, his father was killed in a fall from a horse while he was serving in the German military in World War I. His father’s name was Loeb. Dad’s mother took my dad home to her parents in Celle, Germany. Her father was a Bishop in the Lutheran Church in a big cathedral in Celle, Germany. Dad’s maternal grandparents were names Beurker. With the help of her parents, my grandmother was able to go to medical school after the loss of her husband.

My grandmother, Lenke, met and married one of her surgery professor’s, a Dr Fromme. They had 4 additional children, all full blooded Germans. I think my dad was considered kind of a “black sheep” by this step father. In 1938 or 39, after my father had finished medical school in Germany, his stepfather arranged for him to go to England where some of his Loeb relatives lived. Dad’s Aunt Marie Tutour (a sister of the professor Loeb, Dad’s birth father) helped my dad with the arrangements needed to come to the United States. He traveled by ship to New York City, entering our country through Ellis Island. Dad would tell us that he spent about 3 months in New York City. Mostly he went to movies to hear English spoken and worked on his language skills.

Next, he moved to Atlanta, Georgia where he sold used cars! He always loved fast cars with big engines! From there he moved to New Orleans where he repeated an internship at the big Charity hospital we heard so much about during the Katrina Hurricane days. On Sunday, December 7th 1942, Dad was working on Obstetrics and stayed all night with a woman in labor. On the morning of the 8th at 7 AM, Dad and his supervising faculty physician were walking across the street from the hospital to have breakfast and to discuss their cases from the night before. In the street, coming towards them were 2 FBI agents who arrested my dad as an enemy alien. We were now at war with Germany. Dad told us that if he had not been arrested that morning, he had planned to enlist in the US Army!! Dad said that he believed he had been on a “watch list” by our government. My Dad was always a man of strong political beliefs and he felt strongly that the German government of that time (Nazi) was very BAD. Dad frequently would talk about the political climate in Germany and the rest of Europe. He loved a good political discussion. My dad believed that someone probably reported him for how he talked about the Nazi’s at the time and that he had a lot of knowledge about what he thought was going on in Germany. Maybe too much knowledge of our enemies for a person living and working in the USA, wanting supposeedly to become an American.

Dad was sent to Stringfellow, Oklahoma where he was “@&&’m qqinterned” with hundreds of other enemy aliens who were also arrested when we went to war. Most people know that the Japanese on our West Coast were interned in prison camps in Idaho, Oregon and other states as well. The German’s were interned in similar camps. I do not know how long they were in Oklahoma, but at some point Dad was moved by train to Fort Lincoln near Bismark where he spent most of the rest of the WWII. Dad was a physician, so in both camp locations, he was given responsibilities to help with the medical care of his fellow prisoners.

As the war was ending, and I am not sure exactly when, Dad was “paroled” to the San as they were in desperate need for doctors. He was required to report weekly to a US Customs official who was stationed at the Peace Garden border crossing. I think the man’s name was Nesse (?) or something like that. (Not Elliot Ness!!!) He was not allowed to travel any further than Dunseith. Any other travel required special permission, etc.

My mother, Hannah Higgins grew up in Dunseith. She was the daughter of Alida Olson Higgins (sister of Christine Olson Carlson), from Trail County near Larimore/Grand Forks. My mom’s Dad was Frank Higgins, an Irishman who homesteaded several farms in the area and managed the hardware store in Dunseith in the 30’s. Frank was a widower with one son who suffered from TB of the bone. This half brother, Francis was post master of the Dunseith Post office while my mom was growing up. Frank died fromop some liver disease when my mother was 16 (1937). Both my mom and her sister Pat, went to high school in Fargo at Sacred Heart Academy (now Shanley High) and then to nursing school at St John’s hospital in Fargo. My mom was a nurse at the flight training school after she graduated until the war was over in 1945.

With the war over, Mom went home to Dunseith and lived with her mother for a while. She got a job at the San as a nurse. She and my dad have social security numbers one apart from each other as they were hired nearly at the same time.

My parents were married in the spring of 1947 and I was born in October of that year. Dad continued to have to report to his parole officer for some time, even after he married my mom.

My parents stayed at the San until 1958 when Dad moved us (Mom and 4 kids aged 11-2)to Minneapolis so he could do a residency in Radiology at the University of Minnesota. Dad was 39 at the time. My youngest sister, Jane was born in Minneapolis during Dad’s first year of residency. Following the 4 years of residency, we moved for 2 years to Seattle, WA where he worked for the VA and ran the Radiology department while the man who normally had that job was on a sabbatical. In 1963 our family moved to St Cloud, Minnesota where Dad practiced Radiology at the St Cloud Hospital. He loved radiology and was greatly respected for his skills in seeing the whole patient, not just the Xray. in using his many years of treating TB patients, he was able to really communicate with his patients and they really appreciated his sense of respect of the patient as well as his great diagnostic skills.

Sadly, Dad passed away unexpectedly, May 29, 1975 (age 63). He had been suffering some sleep apnea related seizures that caused his sudden death. My mom remained in St Cloud for a few years and eventually moved to her summer cottage in Longville, Minnesota. In 1998 ???? my mom and sister, Jane built a home near Jim and I in Bothell, Wa. My sister, Marianne also lives with them. Mom is now 88 and is slowing down a bit, but she reads everything she can, as well as plays amazing games of Scrabble and Pinnacle, We are so lucky to have my sisters and Mom close by (about a 20 minute drive).

Dad was a man with a huge need to be a successful physician. I think he always was trying to show that step father that he was worthwhile. Dad never went back to Germany to visit his half brother & 3 half sisters and Mother until after the step father had passed away. It is interesting to us to think about what a perfectionist and man of high expectations he was. He was a tough father on all of us kids, but he expected a lot from my mom and anyone he worked with as well. It was not always easy for kids or his employees to live up to his standards.

It is sad that he passed before he could see what ‘our” next generation of scientists, physicians and horsewomen have accomplished. He would be very proud of all that has been accomplished. We all have our own troubles and failings as well. Those would have killed him for sure!!

Thanks for asking about my Dad’s history. I do ramble on, but then we all think he was an amazing man. I hope I have most of these “facts” right.

Take care, and again, thanks for asking!

Karen Loeb Mhyre

November 2008
Karen Loeb Mhyre (65) with her granddaughter Katelyn

November 2008
Hannah Higgens Loab (39): with her Great Granddaughter Katelyn

Reply from Tom Hagen (51): Mesa, AZ & Williston, ND.

Gary, thank you so much again for sending obituary for Loren Smith as we
had not gotten all of that even though Dot attended the funeral!!!!
So sorry to hear about Jose and pray his pain will soon end. You
really do a remarkable service in your daily messages and they are
always interesting. We know Clarice Aus well and enjoyed Aggies blog
about her!!

We love E-mail letters, Love Tom and Dot

Dot, I think some of our readers will remember your brother Loren, so I have posted his Obituary below. We are so sorry to hear of his passing. Gary

Loren E. Smith
Jan. 21, 1931-Oct. 21, 2009

POSTED: October 25, 2009

Loren E. Smith, 78, Rugby, died Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2009, at the MeritCare
Medical Center in Fargo.

Loren was born Jan. 21, 1931, in Rolla, the third of four children born to
Melford Dewain and Lillie Augusta (Carlson) Smith. He was raised in St. John
until the family moved to Rolette in January 1946. Loren graduated from
Rolette High School in the class of 1948.

He met Esther Violet LaVerne Tastad at Luther League and the two were
married July 29, 1951. They moved to Rugby that year, and Loren began
working at a gas station in town. He moved on to jobs at Anderson Funeral
Home and Jacobson’s Department Store before becoming the working partner at
Leegard and Smith Men’s Store. He later purchased the store, owning it until
1978, and then finished out his professional career as a traveling salesman.

Loren was an active member of First Lutheran Church from the time he moved
to Rugby until his death, serving as a Sunday school teacher, council
president, custodian and choir member.

He was also active in other areas of the community, as a member of the
Chamber of Commerce and Red Cross, a school and district PTA president, and
a charter member of the Heart of America Concert series. After retirement,
Loren kept busy cutting lawns for people around town, volunteering at the
Heart of America Hospital, and taking care of the grounds at the Rugby
Country Club.

Loren is survived by: his wife of 57 years, Esther, of Rugby; six children,
daughters Laurel (Kevin) Toyne, of Rugby, Naomi Schmitz, Cashton, Wis.,
Cynthia (Mark) Granger, St. Louis Park, Minn., Sidonia (Bob) Burnell,
Oshkosh, Wis., Sonja (Milt) Myhre, Fargo, and a son, Tim (Kristin),
Russellville, Ark.; one sister, Darlene (Thomas) Hagen, of Mesa, Ariz.; 14
grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; several nieces, nephews, other
relatives and a host of friends.

He was preceded in death by a great-granddaughter, Christine Cooper; a
son-in-law, Mike Schmitz; two brothers, Neil and Doug; his stepfather,
Seivert Solhein; and his parents.

Funeral service: Monday at 10:30 a.m. in First Lutheran Church in Rugby with
burial in the Persilla Watts Cemetery, Rugby. Pastor Sharon Baker,

Friends may call today (Sunday) from 4 to 7 p.m. at First Lutheran Church in
Rugby and for one hour prior to the time of services at the church on

Arrangements with the Anderson Funeral Home of Rugby.

Rick Casavant’s mothers Obituary

Note: Rick is married to Denise Wheeler. Rick/Denise are on our distribution.

Rick, we are so sorry to hear of your mothers passing. It’s always hard loosing a parent. Our condolences are with you and your family. Gary

Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Bottineau & Minot, ND.


Aug. 7, 1916-Nov. 3, 2009

POSTED: November 6, 2009

ROLETTE Alma Emma Casavant, 93, Fargo, formerly of Rolette, died Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2009, in a Fargo nursing home.

She was born Aug. 7, 1916, to Hector and Eugenie Malo in Union Township, Rolette County. She married Merle Joliffe in 1935 and he preceded her in death. She married Lucien Casavant on July 9, 1946.

Survivors: sons, Garry Joliffe, Chandler, Ariz., Richard Casavant and DuWayne Casavant, both Rolette, Doyle Casavant, Mora, Minn.; daughters, Janice Pickard, West Fargo, Julie Luoma, Tehachapi, Calif., Colette Olson, Fargo; 22 grandchildren; 46 great-grandchildren; 10 great-great-grandchildren; sisters, Rita Boe, Devils Lake, Jeanine Zeffero, Suttons Bay, Mich.

Funeral: Saturday, 10 a.m., Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Rolette.

Burial: Sacred Heart Catholic Cemetery, Rolette.

Rosary service: Today, 7 p.m., in the church.

07/12/2017 (2441)

Chase Fugere (Jeff – DHS 77 son) Obituary
Posted by Vickie Metcalfe (’77):  Bottineau, ND


 Chase Logan Fugere, 22, of Minot, ND died on Saturday, July 8, 2017 from complications related to a motorcycle accident.

Chase was born August 15, 1994 in Minot, ND the son of Jeff and Tammi Fugere. He was raised and educated in Minot, attended Our Redeemer’s Christian School, and graduated from Bishop Ryan High School in 2013. He worked three years as an apprentice electrician and graduated from the lineman program at Bismarck State College in May of 2017. He recently accepted his dream job as a lineman at MDU in Bismarck.

He loved sports and was a well-known basketball and football player in the Minot area. His awards were many. He played in the ND Shrine Bowl in Grand Forks. He was on the All State Football Team two years in a row. He started hunting and fishing at a very young age.

He loved his time outdoors with his dad and uncles who spent a great deal of time hunting and fishing with him. He was an expert marksman. Although Chase was an avid hunter, he had a genuine love of animals, especially his pets, Fluffy, Buster, Lily and Sophie.

Chase was a fun loving young man, a professional trickster. His mother says it could have been a second career. Unfortunately, he tried out 90 percent of his material, by playing pranks on his unsuspecting father and sister.

Chase had a wonderful sense of humor that will always be remembered by his family and friends.

Chase is survived by his parents, Jeff and Tammi Fugere; sister, Whitney Fugere (fiancé, Derek Borud); grandparents, Donna and the late Duaine Fugere and Terry and Marlene Thompson; aunts, Pamela (Gene) Schmidt, Debbie Fugere Fauske, Diane Fugere and Terri (Mike) Mongeon; uncles, David Fugere, Joel Fugere and John (Naomi) Thompson and 40 Cousins.

Chase was preceded in death by his grandfather.

 Celebration of Life Service: Friday, July 14, 2017 at 1:00 p.m. at Our Redeemer’s Church, Minot.

Visitation and an opportunity to say goodbye will be held on July 13, 2017 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the Thomas Family Funeral Home, Minot. There will be no reviewal at the church.
In lieu of flowers, the family would greatly appreciate memorials that will be used in special tribute to Chase.


Our Grandson, Tyler Mick, Visited us here in Cebu

Tyler, our grandson visited us here in Cebu from May 19th to June 14th. He was here nearly a month on summer break from college.  We so enjoyed his visit. He spent a week with us in December too. With that trip he asked if he could come back in May/June for a month and of course we said yes. He has literally fallen in love with the Philippines and plans to return each year. He loves the friendly people and the culture. He has connected super well with all of his relatives here too. They are well bonded. He couldn’t hold back his tears and many here too, especially the kids, when saying his good buys.

Tyler gave his Grandma Bernadette a lot of papering, love and attention too of which she truly liked.

Tyler is very mature, outgoing and super friendly. His domineer, personality and social skills are very similar to those as those of my Dad’s, Bob Stokes, and of course his Great Grandfather too. We are all looking forward to his return next year.

Tyler is our Daughter, Sheryl’s son, He lives with his dad in Tacoma, WA. He will be a Sophomore at the University of Puget Sound (UPS) in Tacoma, WA
Stokes 2441-1.

6th District Congress Lady, Nerissa Soon-Ruiz,
                          Novie, Bernadette and Tyler
Stokes 2441-2


Blog (615) posted on November 7, 2009

Posted on November 7, 2009

Reply when asked about the correct spelling of her Maiden name:

From Jeri (Gordon 55) Fosberg Neameyer: Moorhead, MN

The spelling is Fosberg. Didn’t think about correcting that when I replied to Dick’s message.

Jeri Fosberg Neameyer

Note: Jeri is originally from Rolette.

Dorothy Rober’t – (Killed in a car accident near Langdon – Messages 599 & 600)

March 25, 1933-Oct. 18, 2009

From Dianne Rober’t Johnson (76): Rolla, ND.

Morning Gary,

Back to work on the 26th of Oct, but just now getting thru my e-mail @ work. Darla & I would like to thank everyone for their thoughts & prayers. The last few weeks have been real hard for Darla & me.

We were the ones who had to take care of the arrangements, the other 3 were too far away.

In the hospital, after the accident, Darla, Aunt Marlene & I went into Mom’s room, to say our final good-byes. The Doctor came in and told us that she didn’t suffer, the steering wheel and airbag crush her chest and her main artery burst, she was gone within minutes. We got the 1st call @ 9:40 am, she was gone before we got half way to Langdon.

The man involved in the accident, didn’t see her and pulled out onto the hwy. From the Highway Patrols report, witnesses said “it looked like she didn’t see him either”, there was no signs of her trying to stop, her van hit just behind the front wheel, passenger side of the truck. He was hauling grain from the field to a grain bin, in his yard, across the road.

I figured people would like to know what happen.

Mom was in the process of moving back to ND and going to stay with Marlene in Langdon. She had been living with our oldest sister, Carol, in WI. I was so glad Mom was coming home to ND to live, I missed her.

I’d like to extend my condolences to Janice’s family. She was a nice lady.

Gary, thanks for posting this for me.

Dianne (Rober’t) Johnson – Rolla, ND

Dr. Loab (San Haven Supt.)

Question from Gary Morgan (54): GARRISON, ND

To Karen Loeb Mhyre,
Was not your father interned at the Bismarck camp during World War II? Did he ever talk about it?
I think it would be interesting and enlightening to hear of the hardships our predecessors endured that were not necessarily related to finances or weather. To know where we came from helps define who we are.

Gary Morgan ’54

Reply from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.

Gary and Friends,

Jeri Neameyer, thanks for the correction on who was who in Rolette. I
do remember Ron Cameron and now remember he was the coach who was
married to Myrna, not Ross Julson. Myrna was a very pretty gal, I do
remember that. Sorry to hear of her passing at such a young age. Thanks
for setting me straight and thanks Gary!


Correction from Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND.

UffDa Gary, Where was my brain? The class of ’70 were seniors in ’69
and ’70. The year of biology lab was our sophmore year! Although, I
believe Mr. Espe and Biology students continued the rabbit
Although, Ray had lots of younger brothers who were quick on the draw
and could get “wabbits” too.

Speaking of the Lagerquist Family. Being close neighbors, I knew the family well, However, those from Evon on down were not yet in school when I graduated in 1965. I left the country in 1966, so I wasn’t around the younger Lagerquist kids nearly as much. I remember their nice big two story house with a very large room on the north end that was often used for dances in the earlier days before my days. That house caught fire and burned down a number of years ago. Gary

07/10/2017 (2440)

Facebook 2 year memory.
Picture L To R: Darrel Stokes, Gary Stokes, Debby Stokes & Trish Larson Clayburgh

It was such a pleasure finely meeting Trish too. What a ball of fire she is. She joined me and many former Dunseith folks for breakfast at the Bottineau bakery too, where she saw several of her former DHS teachers, Les Halvorson and Terry Espe. They had some good memories and stories too. Trish is not one that is ever forgotten. Les remembered the many tests she aced too. Trish has a PHD in nursing, Dr. Trish Clayburgh. As many of us know, she loves horses too.
Stokes 2440


Reply to Larry Hackman’s, Hackman Peace Garden Posting
From Vickie Metcalfe (’70:  Bottineau, ND


What a neat bit of  family and Peace Garden history  shared!

My Great grandparents, Sam and Elizabeth (Welsh) Wicks and Grandparents, Robert and Sylvia (Wicks) Lamb  neighbored the Hackman family on Highway 43 East ( close to School Section Lake). My mother b. 1925 had fond memories of Celia Hackman. Mom  said, “Celia  who was older in her teens was very kind to younger children”. Mom  also remembered and shared:

Celia and her mother using a pedal sewing machine, and scraps of material were clever and generous  at  fashioning clothes for  mom’s only  doll.

In those years, Celia who drove a buggy, would come by  stop for  mom and they would  go for drives  to Kelvin Store and pick up things needed.

She especially recalled a long drive south west of Lydie Lake with Celia. It was   beautiful clear summer  day Celia had an errand for her parents Celia took mom along for the drive to her  uncles  where she fetched something. That was the first time mom saw  Mr.  Henry Dietrich.

Then, Celia married and she didn’t take mom  for drives any more. Celia and her husband  had moved  to a little house just across #3  Highway close to  Kelvin Store.

One day  she was excited because her Uncle Carl  drove her  to see Celia’s new baby. Celia had a beautiful tiny and perfect baby girl  she named Erna.

In later years, Mom and Celia always enjoyed little visits at Peace Lutheran Church whenever  they served together at a church function.

Mom would  comment on that long friendship, and she’d  always inquire about Erna.

It was neat seeing the old photo of baby Erna and her mother  and new knowledge about the year, 1937.

Vickie Metcalfe


Blog (614) posted on November 6, 2009

May 22, 2009
Dunseith Alumni Reunion
Folks, For those of you that replied indicating you’d like to attend this reunion, I have passed your messages onto Aggie and Verena. I have not talked to Aggie or Verena about any of the specific’s of their plans, but I know that Verena checked with George Gottbreht about using the Bingo Barn and she can get that facility for a very reasonable price. The cost, divided up among those attending would be very little. I know they are considering the HS gym too. I know the Bingo Barn is all set up to accommodate this sort of an event. To even consider either of these facilities, they need the numbers, so please let them know if you’d like to attend. Remember, just because you tell them that you plan on attending doesn’t mean you are locked into attending if for some reason something comes up and you are unable to go. They are just trying to get a feel for the number of folks to plan for. Once they lock their plans in, it may be hard to change if more folks decide to attend.
Please just reply to any of these messages if you’d like to attend and I will forward your message to Verena and Aggie. I will not be posting your replies on the daily blog. Aggie will be sending me periodic updates of those planning on attending that I will be posting. Gary
Florence Pladson Sime has a phone at Good Sam – (701) 228-2310
From her sister Tina Pladson Bullinger (78): Bottineau, ND.
Just an update on Florence. She now has a phone in her room……the number is (701) 228-2310. Give her a call and say hi!
Tina, I did just that. I just called her. It’s 8:30 AM her time. I think I woke her up. Florence sounds great! She said she had lots of broken bones, so it takes taking time for all these to heal. She seems to be in good spirits too. Gary
Dunseith Community Nursing Home Caring Hearts Auxillary:
Request from Mary Eurich Knutson (62): Dunseith, ND
Hi Gary
We have a group of ladies here in town known as the Dunseith Community Nursing Home Caring Hearts Auxillary and they do an annual toy bingo/donation fund raiser for the nursing home every year. We were talking about the blog and wondered if it would be appropriate to mention and see what kind of a response we’d receive. If any would care to send small donations. Club is headed by Cheryl Haagenson and Kim Marion. What do you think? If interested donations can be sent to DCNH, Box 669
Dunseith, ND 58329. Thanks. Mary Eurich Knutson
Mary, Yes, by all means we can post this. How much more Dunseith can this be. With Cheryl Haagenson being one of the heads of this group, you’ve got good direction too. What a wonderful thing you guys are doing and for a great cause. Gary
Reply from Jeri Fosbert Neameyer (Gordon 55): Moorhead, MN
Reply to Dick Johnson—I don’t remember that and it could have been Lynette, but Laurel Mongeon may have been that singer. She has a beautiful voice and sang solo’s, duets and however many other groups they could put together., I remember Myrna (now decease1990) sang with Laurel. Myrna sang alto. I also had an older sister Carlene . Myrna married Ron Cameron who was the basketball coach in Rolette. That’s to many years ago to remember all those details.
Jeri Neameyer
Reply from Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND
You are SO WELCOME for anything I’m able contribute to your newsletters–I thoroughly enjoy being part of your newsletter recipients . Knowing (and hearing about) some of the Dunseith/hills area people and Dad’s owning a garage in Dunseith for a few years, gives me a feeling of being a small part of Dunseith, too, even though I never actually lived there.
I, along with everyone else, look forward to your daily newsletter. Thanks, Gary!
From Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND.
We have no school tomorrow here, as it is a comp day at Bottineau School. Many folks will be use the day hunting deer.
In regard to hunting, I believe the class of ’70 can boast of at least, two of our very own proficient hunters who began a little tradition. After carving lab frogs, two kids of the hills, Ray and Brian made a very convincing argument to our biology teacher.
Mr. Espe, our insightful teacher recognized teachable moments, was “game’ and in the course of a weekend in fall of ’69 or early winter “70, Ray and Brian filled a couple of Dunseith Public School lab refrigerators with rabbits.
Mr. Espe changed the course of his lesson plans and for a couple of weeks squeamish girls and tough boys diligently working in teams of two proceeded to dissect. The most amazing things happened. We learned how to skin, used microscopes, prodded at vital organs, stretched out intestines which we measured and compared the lengths.
Moving into the second week ,as the buses pulled into the parking lot at Dunseith High we were greeted by the……….aroma of those rabbits. There hath no aroma like the stench of an un-preserved rabbit!
Thanks. Gary.
Vickie, With the class of 70, we all know that has to be Ray Lagerquist and Brian Fauske that provided all those Rabbits. Gary
A message for Keith Pladson,
From Shirley Olson Warcup: (49): Ivans, UT
I’m sure it must have been your Dad and uncle who were always there to help us. It would have been in the latter part of the 1930’s–37,38, 39. There was always a bit of a discussion about the road as we made our way to Grandma Johnson’s house. I can remember my Dad expressing regret at having to always ask “The Pladson Boys” for help. Not only did they have to harness the horses, they had to put on rubber boots and work clothes because they knew they would get muddy. We were probably a real “pain in the neck” but they never gave any indication that we were causing them any inconvenience. And there was never a mention of money. Once we were out of the mud and on our way, my Dad always talked about “The Pladson Boys” and how generous and helpful they were. I never spoke to either of the boys and saw them only from the inside of our car but I have always had great respect for them for their willingness to help. I don’t know how old they were back then or if they are still with us now–but, if they are yet here–please convey my thanks–not just for getting us out of the mud but for being such “good guys”.
Shirley Olson Warcup
Dunseith Runion in May:
Aggie Casavant’s (69) reply to Susan Fassett Martin (65): Fort Mill, SC
Susan, Got you on the list…now if we can talk Crystal and Pennie & Cheryl Kester to go, that would be great! Looking forward to seeing you there. Ms. Aggie
Reply from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.
Gary and Friends,Thank you to Karen Loeb Mhyre for the great story of her childhood
memories of the San and Lake Metigoshe. I remember going to Vanorny’s
cabin that was just north of McKay Island. In those days (late 50s) it
seemed like a long boat ride from our cabin on the south end of the lake
to Jay’s folks cabin. Karen, your cabin would have been just west of the
old Metigoshe Store, so I bet you made a few trips there for treats!?!?
That was a neat place, with something for everyone. Things have really
changed at the lake in the last few years. There are very expensive
homes going up all over and the old traditional cabins are disappearing
fast. It’s amazing how your parents had a cabin on Girl Lake near
Longville, MN. In 1960 or ’61, when we were 10, Rich Campbell and I went
to a YMCA camp on Little Boy Lake, near Longville. I remember one of our
camp counselors told us about Little Girl Lake being not far away. Maybe
it was Girl, not Little Girl, I’m not sure. We were there for two weeks
at a place called Camp Olson—-Olsons in Minnesota—imagine that! It’s
a small world we live in anyway! We had a counselor who probably was
glad to see us leave. He had a habit of snoring so we zipped him
completely in his sleeping bag as the zipper went all the way across the
top. We also caught a small brown lizard and put it in his sleeping bag.
He about went nuts! We had a crafts class every day and I still have a
few of the things we made. They had a brutal way of teaching kids to
swim. We had to tread water for something like 20 minutes. When I was
playing out, I reached for the dock. One of the counselors put his foot
on my forehead and pushed me back out, and it wasn’t the counselor we
tormented either.I did pass the test and graduated to what they called
the ‘Sharks’–big deal! I’ll attach a picture from our big adventure. I
took the picture on my own camera so I’m not in the photo. The haggard
guy behind is the counselor! Rich is wearing a white shirt and is
second from the right. Thanks Gary!


07/07/2017 (2439)

Hackman’s @ International Peace Garden, ND 2017 & 1937
From Larry Hackman (’66): l Bismarck, ND

Dick Johnson’s reply on make and year of the Hackman vehicles from 1937 trip to the Peace Gardens pictured below.


From: Dick Johnson
Sent: Wednesday, July 05, 2017 9:27 PM
To: Larry & Marion Hackman
Subject: Re: Hackmans @ International Peace Garden, ND 2017 & 1937


The car on the left is probably a Whippet or other more odd make. The next is a  ’30-’31 Model A Ford.  The third from the left is a ’33-’34 Chevy and the car on the right is a ’28-’29 Model A Ford.  Those years are had to tell apart as the style was the same with only slight differences that can’t be seen in the picture.


On 7/5/2017 6:29 PM, Larry & Marion Hackman wrote:

From: Hackman, Larry

Happy fourth of July Everyone,

I made a Peace Garden run with my family.  They loved the Garden , the Hills, the jumbo burgers- some had two=one at noon and one in the evening, and the tours of the areas where the Hackman’s once farmed.

I put all the pictures I could find for when the Anton Hackmann family were at The Peace Gardens, 80 years ago. There are more pictures on face book, go  to my daughters page [Angie (Hackman) Leintz].  If anyone finds a correction or an addition that should be made, please let me know.  Dick I was wondering if you could tell me what kind of cars the Hackman’s were driving back in the day?

Love You all.  Friend,  Father, Grandfather, Great Grandfather, – Larry

Hackman 2439-1Larry & Marion Hackman, children, grandchildren and Layla in pink the Great Grandchild, all at the International Peace Garden, ND on July 1,2017.
This is eighty years after my Grandfather Anton Hackmann- Hackman and his family were at the same location with his children, Grandchildren and his great Granddaughter Erna (Walter) Pedersen in 1937.  I did not know this until I started looking at pictures after the trip was made. Enjoy the pictures

Hackman 2439-2
Hackman 2439-3
Grandfather Hackmann ,  Grandmother Elizabeth Hackman,
Aunt Josephine (Hackman) Birkland, Aunt Celia (Hackman) Walters holding daughter Erna (Walter) Pederson,
Other children shown are Birklands? At International Peace Garden, ND 1937
Hackman 2439-4
Hackman family looking down water fall in 1937.Water fall built by the Conservation Corp.as was most structures at the Peace Gardens.

Hackman 2439-5
From Rt. Grandfather Anton Hackmann-Hackman,  August (Gus) Hackman, Clarence Hackman,  Bill Hackman but I could have Bill and Grandpa mixed up?
Hackman 2439-6
Uncle Frank (Fixer) Hackman on the Lt. Dad,Clarence Hackman on the Rt., @2nd from Rt. Grandfather Anton Hackmann-Hackman, 3rd from Rt. August (Gus) Hackman, I think Bill Hackman  with dog,  The next guy with suit , I think uncle Ed Dietrich? Uncle Henry Birkland w/boy? @nd from Lt.——– neighbor Carl Wicks?
Hackman 2439-7
Grandmother Elizabeth Hackman, Celia Walter with Great Grandaughter Erna Walter) Pederson, and Grandfather Anton Hackmann-Hackman at the International Peace Garden,ND in the year of 1937.
Hackman 2439-8
Hackman family vehicles at the Peace Gardens in 1937.  They crowded that one because maybe the parking brake didn’t work and it occasionally slipped out of gear when parked, or the smaller ones just wanted to snuggle with that bigger one.  Your guess is as good as mine.


Joke of the day
Posting from Wally Garbe (Neola’s Husband)

My buddy Tom was a single guy living at home with his father and working in the family business. 

He knew that he would inherit a fortune once his sickly father died.
Tom wanted two things:

• to learn how to invest his inheritance and,

• to find a wife to share his fortune.

One evening at an investment meeting, he spotted the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. Her natural beauty took his breath away.

“I may look like just an ordinary man,” he said to her, “but in just a
few years, my father will die, and I’ll inherit 20 million dollars.”

Impressed, the woman obtained his business card.

Two weeks later, she became his stepmother.

Women are so much better at estate planning than men…



Blog (613) posted on November 5, 2009


Posted on November 5, 2009

Dunseith (All School) Alumni Reunion 

Reply from Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC

Hi Gary

I just woke up so I better get busy on my “To Do List” before I go to work tonite.

Now for the list of people who said they would attend…in the order that they notified me.

1. Paula Fassett

2. Debbie Fauske

3. Richard & Ele Slyter

4. Diane Winstead

5. Allen Poita & Mark Larsen

6. Billy Grimme

7. Lance & Helen Metcalf

8. Vicki Hiatt LaFountain

9. Charles & Geri Metcalf

10.Gary & Mary Lou Morgan

11.Mel & Kathy Khun

12. Neola Garbe
13. Pete & Verena Gillis

14. Dick & Brenda Johnson

15. Ron Hett

16. Aggie Casavant

If there is someone who notified me and I “messed up” and do not have you on the list,I “SO” apologize and please let me know.

I’m 99.9% sure I didn’t forget anyone, but there is always that chance… I hope this list generates more people that will come…”Don’t make me call you out by name!!!! But you sure are going to get an e-mail from me, if I find your e-mail…..Wink, Wink….. Well gotta go… and unto the next item on my “To Do List”.

Thanks Gary !

Ms. Aggie

Dunseith (All School) Alumni Reunion

Folks, Please let us know if you plan on attending this event. Please let us know even if you are not sure. Aggie and Verena need to know so they can plan accordingly.

This is a personal invitation to each and everyone of you from the hills, from the prairies, from the city of Dunseith, from the surrounding areas and to those from a distance to attend this event. If you like you can just reply to this message and I will pass it along to Verena and Aggie. I will not post any of your replies on the daily blog. I will just pass them onto Aggie and Verena. Those attending from a distance would love to see as many of you local folks as possible too.

Bill Grimme called me several days ago and he told me he plans to attend this great event also. Bill also plans to visit us here in the Philippines in July.

Please just hit the reply button if you plan to attend. Thanks, Gary

To be published in the local papers:

Dunseith (AllSchool) AlumniReunion

May 22, 2010

Dunseith location will be determined by the number of people planning to attend. The Dunseith High School Gym and the Bingo barn are available if enough folks sign up.

4:00pm to 6:00pm – Social Hour – Beverages available for purchase

6:00pm to 8:00pm – Dinner – Potluck or catered to be determined with a survey of those attending.

8:00pm to Midnight – Hwy 43…AKA Dick & Brenda Johnson & Ron Hett

The concept is to have fun by keeping the costs down.

To Attend, please contact one of the following to get your name on the list.

Note: For those of you reading this on the WEB site wishing to attend, just reply by clicking on the “Contact Us” tab on the upper left side of this site page. I receive all those messages. Gary

Aggie Casavant

Verena Gillis

Gary Stokes (360) 362-1222

Mrs. Aus

Reply from Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC


Much thanks to you, is how Neola fits in this picture. I have never met Neola, but we communicated thru e-mails off and on concerning different subjects on the blog. To say she’s been a blessing would be an understatement. Mr.&Mrs. Aus taught school in Minot after leaving Dunseith. A friend of Neola’s knew them quite well, so she contacted them on my behalf and got her address and phone number for me. What a blessing. I can’t wait for the Christmas cards to come out, so I can go find Mrs. Aus that special card for the special teacher…. And speaking of special, I’m looking forward to meeting Neola at the reunion.

Speaking of the reunion, I’ll be sending you the list of people going, tomorrow… I’m on my way out the door to go to work to slay some dragons……either before I get there or after I get punched in…..LOL! Thanks for the connections Gary!

God Bless You,and Take Care

&n bsp; Ms. Aggie

Aggie, Neola has been a god send to our daily blog too. She has provide so much and has connected so many loose ends. She knows so many people everywhere and can make lots of connections. Neola spends a lot of time researching her saved news paper articles, etc looking for stuff for us. She has sure found a whole bunch of stuff too. She has also spent so much time finding, scanning and sending us a whole lot of pictures too. She also keeps us abreast of the current newspaper articles that are published about our folks too.

Neola, we truly do appreciate everything you do. We all know that it takes a lot of time to research, scan and send all the stuff you provide. You, a Bottineau girl, have done so much for us Dunseith folks. It’s such an honor to be your cousin. Thank you, Gary

Mrs. Aus

Reply from Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND.

You wondered how I was involved with Aggie/Mrs. Aus. When I read Aggie memory, and she mentioned Mr./Mrs. Aus, I was quite sure she was referring to Perry/Clarice Aus. As you know, Perry is deceased ( He was a large man; I think he had health problems for several years before he passed away.). Perry/Clarice were good friends of Rodney/Sandra Wetzel, who are my good friends. I think, because of this, I had heard about Perry/Clarice before they came to Minot to teach. I can’t remember how many years they taught in Minot. Neither Perry/Clarice taught at Bel Air, where I taught. I understand the Aus’ have a very large/interesting house near Norwich, ND. I’ve never seen it, but I would like to have seen it. Perhaps Aggie will tell us about it after she visits Clarice this spring. 

Now, back to how I’m involved. I located Clarice’s mailing address/phone number on the internet and sent the info to Aggie. The rest, as they say, is history. 


Russell School – Blanche Wicks Schley

Reply from Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC


This is an e-mail that I got yesterday from Blanche Schley. I do not know her personally,but I thought her story was interesting enough to share. Who knows maybe there is someone out there who went to Russell School with her brother and sisters who is familiar with the Lake and Fassette family that she knew during that period of time. I remember an old vacant house down the road west of the school that we referred to as Alias Fassettes.But no one ever lived there when we were growing up. So interesting how this all comes together.

Thanks Gary

Ms. Aggie

From:Blanche Schley (42)

 Tue, November 3, 2009 10:03:00 PM
 Russell school

Is this the school that was near Thorne? My family lived in that area and my sisters and brother attended school there. We lived near a Fassett family and our neighbor was a Mr. Lake. One time when we went back to Dunseith we drove to this Russell school. It was a two story four rooms on each floor (reminded one of the school in Dunseith). Our family moved from the Turtle Mountains to Thorne and then to Dunseith in 1929. I have never known if my father was buy the farm or rented it, but in 1929 he decided not to farm anymore.

We moved to Dunseith and lived there until 1938.

They say that everyone has a story and I really enjoy the stories that are sent to Gary’s blog. Dorothy Schneider was a classmate of mine in grade school as was Alan Campbell and Emerson Murry, Barbara Nelson and Margaret Ann Myhre.

Have a good day!

Blanche Wicks Schley

2005 First Avenue North

Grand Forks, ND

Erling Landsverk’s book

San Haven

From Karen Loeb Mhyre (65): Bellevue, WA.

Hello Gary,

I was looking back through the email list and was trying to find the information about ordering Mr Landsverk’s book, “My Dakota Years”. Can’t seem to find it. Could you pass along the ordering information, please?

I have read the notes from various people about the San and have been thinking alot about the wonderful days we had as kids living there. It really was an idyllic world for the kids in the 50’s. Our family moved to Minneapolis in the summer of 1958, but we continued to visit the San almost yearly for many years. My grandmother, Alida Higgins had her place at Lake Metigoshi until the early 70’s, I think and we would always drive through the San after visiting the Lake before going on to my parents place in northern Minnesota. Their cabin was at Longville, Minnesota on Girl Lake. My parents lived for many years in St. Cloud, Minnesota. That cabin was no match for Metigoshi when it came to early childhood memories. We took swimming lessons at the little park near “Slemmons Store.” We would swim with the raft we built out of washed up boards out to what I think is Mac Kay Island. My Gramma’s cottage was next to some cabins owned by Bottineau and Minot Families, the Stover’s and I can’t remember the Minot family name. Jay Vanorny and his parents had a cabin a few doors down too. One of these cabins is now owned by Lola’s sister and her husband, a Mr Woods who is related to the Stovers, I think. We looked across at Rugby Point(?). I think most of the cabins over there were owned by Rugby families, but am not sure. I am also not sure what they call “our” side of the lake. After a few years my gramma sold the cabin to my Aunt Pat Black and she eventually sold it to a woman named Robin (also a Stover relative) who is a Veterinarian in Nebraska. We always heard that she planned to rebuild the cabin when she retires. We always stop and look at the cabin when we are in the area. In September, my brother Tom and I stopped. It is still the old cabin. We always remember it as a wonderful place with a beautiful screened porch and amazing fireplace made out of BIG rocks. it also had a huge wooden beam running the length of the main living room. When my husband built our home here in Bellevue, Washington, we tried to build the fireplace like the one Gramma had at the Lake.

It has been amazing to go back and see how small the cabin is really and that the fireplace was not so big either. It is so interesting to revisit the old places of our childhood.

Up until and including the year of the reunion we were always able to drive through the San and even get out and walk around and look at so many places we remembered. When I was born, my parents lived in the Children’s Building. We then moved to one of the Green buildings (I think) and then to one if the two white cottages that was across from the play ground. Eventually we moved to the Superintendent’s House when my dad became the head of the hospital. I only really remember living in that house. It had beautiful furnishings and many rooms to play in. The big enclosed porch on the east side of the house had red brick like linoleum on the floor and I remember practicing my roller skating there for hours. In good weather the kids living at the San would all be out on the sidewalks skating. My brother Tom (born in 1956) was born at home in one of the upstairs bedrooms. My mom had worked in surgery (she gave anesthetics for the surgery cases my Dad was doing) that day he was born and was very tired that night. I think she woke up about 2 AM, she had one pain and then Tom was born. My Mom says that after they cleaned up the baby and everything was taken care of, my dad went up to the hospital and brought home everything you would need to handle any medical emergency. Mom often comments that it was the only time she saw George Loeb not know what to do!!! I still have a visual memory of my dad coming downstairs with a metal pan to show my brother, Bob and my sister, Marianne and I the placenta. He never missed an opportunity to “teach”!! We three older kids were all born at the hospital in Rugby. My sister, Jane was born in Minneapolis after we moved away from the San.

The San was a wonderful place for kids in those days. We ran through the tunnels in the winter and had the most amazing times sledding on the little hills. the North Dakota snow made amazing drifts of hard compact snow that we would climb on and through.

I first watched television at my friend, Carol Jasper’s house. It took a while for my folks to decide TV was OK. Carol and I had wonderful collections of paper dolls which I kept at Carol’s house. I guess my Dad did not approve of “pretend” play with paper dolls. I guess they were a little on the sexist side. Kind of like paper Ken and Barbie dolls, I think. We loved going to the commissary to get the mail and look at comic books and buy candy. I remember a Hersey bar was 5 cents. Outside to the west of the Refectory building where the dining room was was a sidewalk triangle filled with what I remember to be three very large fir trees. We would play inside this treed area, pretending it was a play house, village, a fort and the like. The whole San really was a wonderful place to explore. The last evening before we moved to Minneapolis, I remember walking around to all the special places and saying “good bye” to these favorite places. The rows of holly hocks along the sidewalks where we would catch bees in the flower cups, the playground with swings, of course. There was a big hill below the Commissary building (maybe called the AD Building?) where my dad taught my brother and I to ski. It really was not such a big hill, but it seemed big when we had to sidestep up to the top. I remember how unbelievably cold we would get when we were out in the snow.

I remember our friendships with the other kids who lived at the San. Carol, Jay, the Hoffman’s, the Pearson girls, Link boys, Johnson’s and there were others too. I am just not remembering all the names. It was all such a long time ago. Sadly, I have not kept in touch with these long ago friends.

I better get back to my packing. I leave on Thursday to visit my daughter and her two kids who live in Ann Arbor. The University of Michigan!! Go Blue! Such fun being a grandmother.

Take care, and again thanks for all the email postings you send out. Many names are so familiar and it is just fun to read about the place where you come from.

Karen Loeb Mhyre

Folks, I forwarded an advance copy of Karen’s request to Erling when I got her message last night (10 hours ago). Erling has already called her. This is his reply. Gary

Reply from Erling Landsverk (44): Portage, WI

Hi Gary and Everyone:

I received your E Mail requesting information for Karen Mhyre. I called her this morning and had a most delightful conversation with her. It so happens that her mother, Mrs Loeb rode in the same buggy as my sister Borg and I did at the parade in 2007 that comemorated the 125th anniversary of dunseith as a city or village, I believe that was the year. In Addition, her father was the superintendent of the Tuberculosis sanitorioum during the fifties, and I guess we actually spoke to Karen, but in the hub bub of the celebration and the unexpected invitation to ride in the parade, I guess some things just didn’t come to the fore front. Thank you very much for forwarding her request to me. I was able to help her with the book. I would like to add that as I have more and more contact with former North Dakota residents, more esspecially those from our own particular area, the more interesting the history. Now i know I missed out on a lot of good things when we left so early, but of course you know as well as I that when Dad and Mom say lets go, we jump. Maybe its because i am blind now that I wax more sentimental about the Turtle mountains and the immediate area. I am not sure about that because I know how I felt about the hills and the people there when I lived ther , and the affection I felt for the land and for the people has always been with me. I know the living was tough in the 30s, I know because I lived it, but I learned a lot about life, and about the great folks that i met and and associated with. Perhaps its like this: they have been tempered by the harshness of severe winter, the difficulty with economic conditions like the great depression, and how their spirit of independence has made them a cut above the whining populace so often demonstrated in other parts of our country. . Has memory softened reality, I don’t think so, I read the reference to the Pladson boys who pulled us out of mud holes and snow drifts. That wasn’t done for moneyk they didn’t charge a nickel, It was doing something for your neighbor. God bless them. North Dakota folks looked after their own, just like the flooding crisis at Fargo last spring.

Erling Landsverk

Reply from Keith Pladson (66): Stafford, VA


This is a response to Shirley Olson Warcup’s input on your last blog.

Since you graduated, Shirley, the year after I was born, my memories of the past are somewhat different than yours. The Willow Lake Road past the “Pladson Farm” (my older siblings and I still refer to it as the old “home place”) wasn’t that bad as I remember it. But I’m sure it had been somewhat improved when we (my dad and mom and my siblings) lived there. That was in the early 50s. Since you are probably referring to an earlier time frame (mid thirties?), it would probably have been my Grandfather, Olaf and Grandmother, Thyra and there four children living there (though my Aunts may have both been married and gone by then). The two Pladson boys you refer to would then have had to have been my Dad, Elden and my Uncle, Arthur. That generation in my family is now all gone. However, when we were growing up, our dad often entertained my siblings and I with stories of his childhood on that farm and how different things were. Though pulling people through the mud on the road was not something I remember him specifically speaking of, there were many other stories of the use of horses on the farm and around the neighborhood. If it was my family, I’m glad they were able to help you out.

Keith Pladson (66)

Keith, I am only a year older than you, but I remember, Well, you guys living on that place. That would have been my pre-school days. Speaking of the Willow Lake road, I remember the road washing out frequently on the south side of the lake where the creek runs under the road. In the spring, the water used to run over the road. Clarence Bye, the county commissioner, lived close by though and he always got it fixed. Clarence and Helen were such wonderful folks too. We used to visit them often. In retired years, they visited my folks often. Gary

Halloween Story

From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.

Gary and Friends,

Just another story of Halloween tricks from days past. Dad taught in
Rolette from ’58-63 and told about a Halloween prank gone bad. A bunch
of high school kids went to sneak into someone’s yard and tip his
outdoor biffy. They figured the best way was to run up behind it in the
shadow of the building. The owner thought this was probably going top
happen so he moved the toilet toward the light and left the open hole in
the shadow. A tall girl named Lucy Doehlen (sp) was the poor soul who
got there first! They gave her a ride home—but she had to sit on the
front fender of the car! A couple messages ago (#603), Jeri Fosberg
Neameyer mentioned Dad teaching in Rolette and ending his concerts with
‘The Lord Bless You and Keep You’. I remember going to most of the
concerts in Rolette. He had some really good singers. One of the boys
sang Mancini’s ‘Moon River’ very well. I think it was Robert Graber. He
also had a girl in choir who had what is called ‘perfect pitch’. If the
song started in a certain key, he would tell her the key and she would
hum in that key—very rare! I believe it was Lynette Gilje. Jeri
Neameyer—help me here! I want to test my memory. I think the Fosberg
kids were–Myrna, Jeri, Deanna, and Chuck, who was my age. I might have
it wrong. If I remember correctly, Myrna married Ross Julson, who was
the coach for Wolford when Les Halvorson played for the Wolves. Les is
married to Myra Henning (DHS ’72). If I have any names or memories
wrong, please correct me. Thanks Gary!


07/05/2017 (2438)

Pride Dairies Vintage Ice Cream
Posting from Vickie Metcalfe (’70):  Bottineau, ND

Gary and Dunseith Friends,

I have been thinking a lot  about  a  buzz word  brought forth this past winter  by the media.


Rural kids in childhood on, learned,  practiced, worked and  lived  ‘MINDFUL”.

I spent  a large amount of time in the barn.

There a person had to  focus and pay attention.

Time management was learned by set routines of  morning and night  chores.

Farm kids learned to milk cows by hand and  later with machines.

On  a  family farm to experience sweet success,  everyone had  to work together.

We watched our elders keep animals healthy, well fed and content.

(At our  barn my  parents kept a radio station on country music which seemed to content the critters.)

Needs of the animals  always came before a country breakfast.

Clean  the cream separator, cream can and always a sanitary  milk room.

We drank  whole milk from a milk  cow, not a box purchased from a store.

(We knew chocolate milk didn’t come from Brown cows.)

We knew what day of the week the local dairy truck came to pick up the cream and leave butter.

One came from Pride Dairy. I wonder if Bob Stokes was once a driver?

In the last 50 years, rural area diversified  farms have experienced  extreme changes.

Weathering change as noted in a regional newspaper, is a local creamery.

I go to Pride Dairy to mail  gifts of  various cheese’s, syrup’s  and etc.  away at Christmas.

It is such a delight to be mindful in sharing local  treats to special people who have fond recollections of this area!

Until Later. Vickie

Todays in forum July 4, 2017



K.C. Annual Peace Garden Event
Posting from Vickie Metcalfe (’70 Bottineau, ND

Gary and  Friends of Dunseith,

The local  radio shared a public service announcement  about an  annual event to be held at the  International Peace Garden.

I believe it is to be Sunday Morn t July 9.

I  remember  Debbie Morinville proudly  sharing  her dad, Joe Morinville was very influential and  involved in spear heading this event in the early 1960’s.

“The Dunseith Knights of Columbus council, together with Harvey and Rugby councils in North Dakota and the Brandon council in Manitoba, formed the International Peace Garden Field Mass Association and held their first annual Field Mass in 1960. This Mass is organized every year to bring the Knights from Manitoba and North Dakota together to celebrate the peace between our two great countries.”

Of course thinking about this upcoming  event, I recall my dad and an uncle and possibly Art Seim discussing various community people who  seemed to get along and communicate with every one.

One name brought forth and in agreement with respect was  Joe Morinville.

Ah yes,  The Golden Rule……a cornerstone of Peace.

Until later,



Blog (612) posted on November 4, 2009

Posted on November 4, 2009

Folks, When I went through my messages this morning I remember seeing a request for someone to be added to our distribution list. At the moment I can not find that message. Whoever sent me that request, please send it to me again. Thanks, Gary

Mrs. Aus (Former Teacher)

Reply from Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC

WoW! It’s only 3:35 p.m. Not even 24hrs. since I sent my Russell School story about Mrs. Aus to the blog….I just got off the phone with her,talked with her for an hour….Thank You Neola Garbe for making the connection!!! Thank You so much! It’s hard to beleive Mrs. Aus is 75 yrs.old now,and talks like she just called us in from recess. Amazing! She remembered every detail about Russell School. She remembered everyone of us kids by name and age order,and incidents.It was totally amazing visiting with her… I will be stopping by Norwich on my way back to Bismarck to spend the day with her after the reunion…I can’t wait… Said,she hasn’t gotten involved in the computer age much,and doesn’t have a computer…but maybe just maybe will reconsider…We exchanged addresses,she said she will add me to her Christmas Card list and send pictures…Mmmmm “Christmas Card List” when is the last time you heard that term? Only someone like Mrs. Aus could keep that tradition alive…. Thanks Again Neola…Thank You So Much… Sincerely, Ms.Aggie

Ms. Aggie, Now we are curious. How does Neola fit into this picture? I’m assuming she must know Mrs. Aus. It’s wonderful that you were able to connect with her. Gary

Reply from Shirley Olson Warcup (49): Ivans, UT


My thoughts and prayers are with you, Bernadette, and other family members. Last spring Ron’s sister chose this same path. She had an incurable immune system problem and had tried all treatments–after several years of pain with no hope of a cure, she chose to be taken off life support. She spent her summers in Minnesota and her winters in Arizona. When things got worse last spring she was taken to a hospital in Las Vegas and decided she had had enough. She chose to go to a hospice unit–we went down as soon as they called us. She lived only 7 or 8 hours after they took her off life support. The people at the hospice unit were wonderful. Some of her friends from Arizona were there also–it was a very sad, but peaceful passing. Pat always did things her way–she was strong willed. Even in death, she chose the time!! We miss her, but know we’ll see her again–and considering our ages (Ron’s and mine), it may not be too long.

On another subject–Dick and Brenda just sent me Erling Landsverk’s book. It brought back many good memories. I was born 5 years after Erling, but lived in the same general area and could relate to all that he said. Those were sometimes hard years, but good years also. It’s a wonderful account of life as it was back then. Life was hard physically, but there was a “goodness” in people that made life good. I was 6 years old when we moved to a farm on the prairie. We went to my Grandma Johnson’s house for most holidays and there was one place on the Willow Lake Road where water collected and we often got stuck and had to have our car pulled through the mud. If my memory is correct, I think it was very near the Pladson’s farm. I believe they had a couple boys and these boys always seemed to have a team of horses ready to pull us through the mud. I used to wonder if, on holidays, they harnessed the horses and just waited, knowing there would be someone who would need help. Without that help we would never have gotten to Grandma’s house. A big THANK YOU to whoever it was!!

Shirley Olson Warcup

Reply to Striker family question:

From Dave Wurgler (64): Rugby, ND

Gary: Reading the Striker Family History from Ken kinda made my eyes open wide when I saw the obituary of Alan Allickson. I might be able to help with some history of the Allickson family. My daughter Teri Wurgler is married to Kevin Allickson, who is the son of Allen Allickson. Allens dad and Kevins grandpa was Herman Allickson. Herman married Ethel Lockhart and lived and Farmed north east of Rugby then sold the farm to Allen and moved into Rugby and lived there till their deaths. Ethel Lockhart was a sister to Virgil Lockhart, who married Della Striker. So would that make Allen a great grandson or a grandson? Hope this helps out.. Dave Wurgler (64).

Dave, It is indeed a small world. I am sure that Ken Striker will be getting in touch with you. Gary

Belcourt Police Picture:

Reply from Claudette McLeod (80): Belcourt, ND

Hello Gary,

I forwarded this picture to Duane Gourneau and he made all the corrections of who was who.

Claudette McLeod

Turtle Mountain Outreach

Office (701)244-0199

Fax (701)244-0215

The now deceased members are George Longie, Ken Sayers, Emma Brown, Joe McCloud, Theresa Davis, Lillian LaFountain and Joe Blue. When I find out who the 1st person is in the second row I will let your know… Again, thanks for sharing the pic…..Duane

Row 3 – Francis Thomas, Robert Gourneau, Wilton Vittelson, Gary Falcon, Gary Falcon, Howard Longie and Joe Blue

Row 2 – Unknown person, Emma Brown, Jeanette Grant, Ron Trottier, Joe McCloud, Theresa Davis, Lillian LaFountain and John Vittelson

Row 1 – Doug Manson, George Longie, Larry Laducer, Ken Sayers, LeRoy Jeanotte, Darrell Laducer and Duane Gourneau

07/3/2017 (2437)

Ackworth Cemetery Centennial Celebration
Posting from Glenda Fauske:  Dunseith, ND

Gary Stokes comments:

Thanks Glenda,

Folks, This sounds like fun too.

My Great Grandfather, William Stokes, donated the one Acre of land for the Ackworth Cemetery in 1917. My parents are both buried in Ackworth too.

Please send you donations to

Martin Peterson
10379 35th Ave NE,
Dunseith, ND 58329

Note: Please see clearer PDF posting attached too.


Blog (611) posted on November 3, 2009

Folks, Bernadette’s brother had a stroke several years. As with a lot of stroke victims, he never fully recovered. His right side and his mind were affected. Several weeks ago he started refusing all his medications. Yesterday he had another stroke that has pretty much done him in. He is currently non responsive on life support with no hope of recovery. They are currently making funeral arrangements. With Bernadette being the oldest, they are asking her to make the call for removing his life support. Bernadette has asked that his wife and children make that decision. I think they have agreed to remove his life support when they have his funeral arrangements made. He is living on the Island of Mindanao. Since he is from Cebu, they plan on bringing his body to Cebu for his funeral services and burial. His body will be at our house, on our porch, for 10 days for the 10 days of prayers and then he will be buried in the same grave sight as his father. There are 4 kids in the family with Jose being the only boy. Their youngest sister is married to a Japanese guy and lives in Japan.

Christmas 2008:
Back: Bernadette & her sister Berlinda who lives next door
Front: Jose & Alot who lives in Japan
Belcourt Police – Lillian Burchum LaFontaine:
Reply from Vickie Hiatt LaFontaine (73): Grafton, ND
It was so neat to see the Belcourt police picture. My mother-in-law was Lillian LaFontaine and she took such pride in her job. She died on 9-30-05 and she is truley missed. She was from Dunseith maiden name Burchum and I remember when I first was dating Myron ( he being a divorced man and Lillian being Louies second wife) I remember her saying Well my boy I see you are like your dad you had to go to dunseith to get a good women. I married in to such a wonderful family I have truly been blessed.
Don Nelson:
Request from Tom Hagen (51): Mesa, AZ & Williston, ND
Hi Gary, thanks so much for all your work sending your daily blogs to us
older alumni of Dunseith High. Would you please include Don and Sharon
Nelson (my nephew) who lived with us nearly his entire life (mainly with
Orvin and Mom Hagen) He will know many of the people who write. His
e-mail address is : Thanks, Tom Hagen
Don or Donnie as Orvin would say. You are for sure Orvin Hagen’s kid. I know he and his mother raised you, after your mother died. She died when you were, I think, still a baby. Your mother was Orvin’s sister. Many of our folks will remember and know you.
Orvin was the head Gardener at the Peace Garden for years too. He still loves his flowers. What a great guy he was and continues to be today. Many of us had Orvin for a 4-H leader. He was a 4-H leader for nearly the entire duration of the Mountaineers 4-H club. That would have been 25 to 30 years. What dedication. Gary
Reply from Bonnie Awalt Houle (56): Becker, MN
Hi Gary and Dick Johnson,
I do remember Halloween in Dunseith, what fun times. The oil drums at Lamoureux’s Garage were a target for every generation. They would get rolled throughout the town, blocking streets, doors, and riding on the merry-go-round at the school. Out door “biffies” were also a prime targets especially Adrian Eggberts. After a while Adrian began moving his biffy around so you never knew for certain where the hole was, talk about offering up a challenge to Teens! One Halloween we went out to trick one of the local farmers, we sat on the corral fence flipping a penny to see who would have to go throw the switch on the main pole for the farm. That way the farmer couldn’t turn on the yard lights and catch us. But this farmer was waiting for us, he was sitting in the hayloft of the barn right above our heads. (He must have been laughing as he watched us light a match to read the penny to see who would throw the switch) I lost and ran to throw the switch but the farmer had already thrown the stitch so when I hit the switch it was like Christmas, every light on the farm came on!!!! The farmer let go with a blast of buckshot into the air and kids scattered everywhere. I was farther from the car then anyone else but was the first one back, I didn’t even wait for the door to get opened, I jumped through the window. That was one Halloween that the farmer had a much better time than the kids doing the Halloweening. It seems the community put up with a lot of monkey business.
Bonnie Awalt Houle 1956
Reply from Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC
To Dick J.
I couldn’t help but smile reading your memories of “trick or treat” night back in the days. I distinctly remember my Mom and Dad talking about the Sy Kadry outhouse incident…That was crazy…. I remember of hearing about the bike incident at the top of the flag pole.That was totally funny.And the paper bag full of “cow stuff” I remembering hearing about,but don’t recall an actual incident of it…but Russell Pigeon does come to mind….don’t know why…maybe cuz he rode our bus,and he would always have a story.
I came across your other story,about country schools. WoW everything you mentione was right on. The globe,big map.picture of the president. Your dad was right of hearing the same grade subjects over and over again,cuz there was 4 grade classes in one room. Our family went to Russell School. There was like 30 kids from the 1st to the 8th grade. It was divided into 2 rooms. They were called “big room” and “little room”.We went to school in Dunseith before I got to the “big room”. I started in Dunseith in the 5th grade.
I remember when Mr.and Mrs.Aus came to teach at Russell School. They drove this big shiney black cadillac.We only lived like 1/8 of a mile east of the school.One day they were driving around looking at the countryside,when our Mom saw them coming down the road a ways. She told us kids, ” The new school teachers are coming down the road,go sit out on the fron’t steps and wave to them,and say hi” so we all ran out and lined up on the front steps.They were coming down the road pretty slow,but came to a crawl when they saw all of us kids,lined up on the steps,all waving and giving a shout out,HHHIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII!!!! I remember big Mr.Aus waving and laughing,and Mrs. Aus smiling and waving. (We only lived like 75ft from the road,so we both got a pretty good look at each other) Later as Mr. Aus got to know our family better,he told us that, the day they drove past and saw all us kids,he told Mrs. Aus “I beleive this half our school right here”. Mr.and Mrs. Aus was so nice to us kids. They lived in the basement of the school,and sometimes,on Friday nites after all the other kids went home,they would have us kids over. They were campers,so they would clear the classroom,and would set up a tent in the classroom,and show us all there camping equipment,and feed us hot dogs and ice cream,and the “BEST” choclate cake.
I remember how sad to tears us kids were when they were going to close Russell School,cuz we would never see Mr.and Mrs. Aus again.I remember those being some sad,scarry summer months leading up to our first day of school in this “Big City School” without Mr.and Mrs. Aus.One day us kids walked across the field to say good-bye. I remember Mrs.Aus giving us a hug,and saying,”Guess what? Were going to teach in Dunseith…she said,”We just aren’t ready to say goodbye to our kids…Wheather that really played a part in it or not, it sure did make us feel loved and special.
Mrs. Aus had her classroom in the old gym up on the stage. Everyday for some time a couple of us kids were visiting her on our lunch hour.I didn’t realize it at the time,but I believe Mr.and Mrs. Aus knew in there hearts what a comfort they were to us kids during our transition.
Mr.and Mrs. Aus taught a couple years in Dunseith,then eventually moved back to Norwich,where Mr.Aus farmed his Dad’s land.Us kids were in touch with them over the years off and on. My family said they saw them I think at a reunion of some kind about 8 yrs.ago. Mr. Aus has since past away…I think Mrs.Aus still lives on the farm,her sons farm the land… I guess I’ll be looking up Mrs.Aus when I come home in May… I hope I didn’t wait too long… Ms. Aggie
Striker Family Information Request:
From Ken Striker: Dayton OH

Gary- I am forwarding an obit for Alan H Allickson. I would like to learn more about the family. He would have been a gr-grand son of settler Wm Elmer Striker (see H1c1 below):May 18, 1945-July 4, 2008 RUGBY: Alan Howard Allickson, 63, Rugby, died Friday, July 4, 2008, in a Minot hospital.He was born May 18, 1945, to Herman and Ethel Allickson in Rugby. He married Beth Hancock June 22, 1968, in Willow City. He served in the Army National Guard from 1964 until 1970. Survivors: wife; sons, Jay and Kevin, both Rugby; daughter, Tracy Corum, Rugby; seven grandchildren; sister, Roberta Heim, Amherst, N.Y.Funeral: Tuesday, 2 p.m., First Lutheran Church, Rugby.Burial: Persilla Watts Cemetery, Rugby

H1 William Elmer Striker b 14 Aug 1862 d 19 Dec 1953 Seattle King Co. WA
+Adele Schefter (16 Mar 1864- 2 Nov 1918) m 12 Jul 1884 Adams Co, IN. According to a W.E. Striker History written by Sylvia Lockhart Bergan of Bottineau N.D., on the occasion of the Dunseith Centennial of 1983, William Elmer and family left Berne IN in April of 1900 headed for North Dakota. They settled in Rolette Co about 13 miles north of Dunseith N.D, which is about a mile from the Canadian border. They came in two boxcars. William and the livestock were in one and the mother and children arrived earlier. William was a farmer and a blacksmith. Adele died from a flu epidemic of 1918. Adele is buried at Rolette Co ND Little Prairie Cem. In 1943 he and his daughter Ellen moved into Dunseith and later they moved to Seattle. He died at the age of 91. H1d1 Sylvia Bergan Lockhart and I corresponded in the mid 80’s. She was a big help with the Wm Elmer Striker family. H1j3 Joy Peterson provided update in 2009. Joy writes: “the house that my granddpa Striker and Auntie Ellen lived in at Dunseith is just across the street from me. We lived on a farm up by the International Peace Garden. My youngest son Scott is on the farm and lives in Dunseith.”

H1a Pearl Striker b March 1884 died ca 1895 age 11
H1b Perry Striker 1886 died as an infant
H1c Della Striker b 1 Aug 1887 Berne IN d 1971 Della was the eldest of the family
+Virgil Lockhart Sr. b 25 Jun 1879 Della is buried at Egeland Union Cem. ND
H1c1 Ethel Lockhart b 1908 Towner Co ND
+Herman Allickson b ab1906 4 children

06/30/2017 (2436)

Mud Cookies (Cow Pies)
Message from Larry Hackman (’66):  Bismarck, ND


Mel and Dick both had responses that are listed after this message.

Apparently you Gary, being the nice guy you are, rather than say something bad about the cookies you enjoyed on the farm back then decided to say nothing.  Dick apparently liked his cookies more after they had laid in the sun and aged for a while and apparently like to share them with someone?  Mel apparently wasn’t the guy that was rumored to be following the sheep around.  I don’t remember Virgil.  Is he still following that herd?  Mel said that he, himself was a picky eater.  Does this mean he used tooth picks as chop sticks to eat them cookies?  I know he has been cooking for a long time, I bet he has some recipes to share?


Dick Johnson’s Reply
I just wanted to throw in a thought.  Do you guys know what blondes and cow pies have in common?  The older they get,  the easier they are to pick up.

Melvin Kuhn’s Reply
I was a pretty picky eater but I could usually convince my brother Virgil to try about anything. I have two brothers and three sisters. I was unlucky enough to be the oldest.

Larry Hackman’s Reply
Back in the day, this is the way I looked (picture below) after being convinced to eat some of my sisters mud cookies. “Larry eat them damn cookies so that they quit their bawling and bothering me, I have to get these cows milked, the milk and cream separated, and calves fed, and supper cooked, the men will be in from the field soon, and they will be hungry.” Now, I know Dick and Gary don’t have any sisters so I suppose they followed the cows around the pasture in the spring time after they had been eating some of that luscious green grass, that was showing up after the snow melt or one of them beautiful Spring rains, to find their cookies? Do you have any pictures Mel?  I don’t recall if you, “Mel” had any sisters, but I heard tell of a young fellow that lived along Willow Creek, south of town, that followed the herds of sheep around the pasture looking for milk dudes?  I heard tell, you had to taste them damn things to find out if they were dud or ____, Is that right?

Gary Stokes’ reply
The Cow Pies I experience were fresh on the trees and brush following the cows home after fetching them for Milking. Also on the cows tail when getting swatted a few times while milking especially in the spring of year when they grazed on the fresh green grass. That made for some nice juicy pies especially when it was raining with the straw roof on our log barn. It leaked like a sieve in the spring of the year too when the snow melted.


Blog (610) posted on November 2, 2009

Posted on November 2, 2009

Follow up from yesterday’s comment about ‘All Saints Day’

Last year it took us two hours to get to Bernadette’s dad’s cemetery. With some traffic mods that were implemented this year, we got there in a half hour. The Cemetery was packed. This is a large cemetery covering, I’m guessing, about 1/4 section (160 acres). For exercise I walked all the roads while waiting to eat. After we ate our picnic type meal that we took to the cemetery, I came home. Bernadette and her sister took a cab and went over to their grandparents cemetery located about 15 miles on the other side of the city. They got home about 1:00 AM this morning. This morning we hired a Jeepney to go back to Bernadette’s dad’s cemetery to pick up the tent covers, tables, chairs and the dozen or so folks that spent the night there. They said they slept well on their blankets spread out on the grass next to the grave. The majority of Filipino’s do not have mattresses on their beds. A lot of folks do not even have beds. Most can sleep sound on hard cement. Gary

Florence Pladson Sime (62) is in the ‘Bottineau Good Samaritan Center’:

Message from Tina Pladson Bullinger (78): Bottineau, ND.

Hi Gary,

I have been with Florence for the past two days, and yes she is in Bottineau, though not at the hospital. She is in Good Sam and will be there for some time. In order to be in the rehab unit in Minot she has to be able to do therapy for 3 straight hours, so it will be a while before she can be transferred back to Minot to the rehab unit there, though her goal is to be able to dance (slowly) on New Year’s Eve. I think it’s great that she has a specific goal in mind.


Thanks again for keeping everyone up to date on Florence’s condition and for the e-mail updates in general!

We will keep you posted as updates occur.


Follow up message from Tina:


Florence is doing some better today, anxiously awaiting tomorrow, when she can start some serious physical therapy!!

She know it will be hard but she’s determined.

I asked the home (Good Sam) if there is an e-mail address if people want to send Florence a note……..it’s as follows


In the subject line put Florence’s name and they will get it to her.


Holloweene Story

From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.

Gary and Friends,

With last night being Halloween, I wanted to tell of some of the
Halloween pranks from the old days. I remember Sy Kadry being in his
outdoor toilet when it was tipped over on the door. He was yelling for
help through the toilet hole! Bikes mysteriously were hoisted to the top
of the flag pole. Windows got soaped with soap bars if no one was home
to give treats. Windows weren’t too bad to clean but someone soaped our
screen door and it was nearly impossible to get out. My grandpa told
about a neighbor who was bragging that his dog was so mean he didn’t
have to worry about pranksters. Grandpa and some buddies filled the guys
car with straw, right in front of his house, and then put the ‘mean’ dog
inside the car too! This would have been back in the 30s or so.
Pranksters used to put wood wheeled farm wagons on top of the school or
garages and one story of such an event, was when several kids pushed a
set of wagon wheels on a single axle down the stairs to the basement of
the old Overly school and overdid it. The wheels knocked both of the
double doors completely of the frame. I remember some eggs ending up on
one of the teachers trailer homes next to the school. As I said at the
time, “I didn’t have anything to do with it !” I slightly remember
something about a dead skunk ending up under the same teacher’s porch.
Those must have been really rotten kids back then! The skunk smell was
hard to get rid of–especially from my school jacket! I remember when Ed
Conroy had way to many tomatoes and left hundreds in a pile near the
alley behind his house. That’s not a real good place to leave tomatoes
the night before Halloween. One prank I only heard of and never
did—truthfully—was to put soupy wet cow manure in a gunny sack on
someones step and light it on fire just as you knocked on the door. The
guy would attempt to kick it off the step or stomp it out. Either way,
same result! Happy Halloween! Thanks Gary!


Reply/Picture from Luella Boardman Bjornseth (49): Bottineau, ND

After seeing the picture you posted of our family, I thought you should have a newer one. This one was taken when we were in Minnesota for Bob’s funeral and shows how much older we all are. Note the boys lack of hair compared to the other picture. That is what 28 years has done to us. Luella

Luella Boardman Bjornseth’s (49) family:
Back: Ralph
Front: Mark, Janice, Luella & Ron

06/26/2017 (2535)

Condolences to the Carlson Family

From Larrett Peterson (’71): yolacorvera@yahoo.com Crosby, ND


Sending Our condolences to the Carlson family …from Larrett Peterson… !





Lorraine Handeland Millang (’61) was married to Orly Kjelshus
Posting from Vickie Metcalfe (’70)Bottineau, ND

Gary and Dunseith Friends,

Last evening, I had the opportunity to attend a wonderful celebration  at the Bottineau Armory.

Yesterday, Lorraine(Handeland) Millang  was wed  to  Orly Kjelshus in a private church ceremony.

It was a delight  to see Lorraine and Orly sharing happiness with so many friends and relatives.

I believe, I saw  every  old neighbor from the hills accompanied by, their  grown children, grandchildren and even great grandchildren!

Many  of these people have shared  friendship and neighboring  back….. 3 , 4  and 5 generations in the hills!

It seems, Orly and Lorraine danced every dance be it, a waltz  or  a  polka.

Wow,  neat  to see children and grandchldren learning  how to keep time in

old time dance steps from patient grandparents and great grandparents.

Like the dances of long ago a  lunch was made by the family and served simply.

Lorraine’s  great- niece, Amber made over 250 cupcakes for the occasion.

Congratulations Orly and Loraine on your journey  TWO-STEPPING through life together!

Vickie Metcalfe


Posting of the day
Larry Hackman’s (66) message to Mel Kuhn (’70)”


Back in the day, this is the way I looked (picture below) after being convinced to eat some of my sisters mud cookies. “Larry eat them damn cookies so that they quit their bawling and bothering me, I have to get these cows milked, the milk and cream separated, and calves fed, and supper cooked, the men will be in from the field soon, and they will be hungry.” Now, I know Dick and Gary don’t have any sisters so I suppose they followed the cows around the pasture in the spring time after they had been eating some of that luscious green grass, that was showing up after the snow melt or one of them beautiful Spring rains, to find their cookies? Do you have any pictures Mel?  I don’t recall if you, “Mel” had any sisters, but I heard tell of a young fellow that lived along Willow Creek, south of town, that followed the herds of sheep around the pasture looking for milk dudes?  I heard tell, you had to taste them damn things to find out if they were dud or ____, Is that right?



Blog (609) posted on November 1, 2009

Posted on November 1, 2009

Folks, don’t forget to turn your clocks back. Today, November 1st being ‘All Saints day’ is one of the most major holidays in this country. Everyone flocks to the cemeteries to visit their loved ones. Most set up tent covers and spend most of the day and tonight too, with lots of food and drinks (no alcohol is allowed in most cemeteries). Some even have food catered. Bernadette has prepared a lot of food that we will be taking to her dad’s grave sight today. We set up several tent covers over his grave yesterday. I will accompany her to her dad’s grave sight today along with a lot of her relatives. Later this evening she and her sister will join more of her relatives in the other part of the city where her grandparents are buried. Tomorrow morning we will pick up the tent covers along with some of those that spent the night at her dads grave. With all the traffic today, it will probably take us several hours to get to her dads grave sight 5 miles up the road. In these conditions, I have just learned to be patient. Gary

Florence Pladson Sime released from Hospital

From Vickie Metcalfe (70): Dunseith, ND.

Gary, Note the discharges from Trinity. I know Florence Sime will continue to be involved in PT. Physical Therapists are most relentless in motivating people to recovery. Go Florence Go!

October 31, 2009
TRINITY HOSPITAL Discharged 5 p.m. Thursday through 5 p.m.Friday:Florence Sime, Dunseith.

Email address correction for Jim Metcalfe

Gary S & Gary M,

I’m sending a correction to our brother, Jim Metcalfe’s email address; it should be
The j at the beginning was left off.

Geri, The mistake is mine. Your brother Gary sent it to me correct. When I copied and pasted Jim’s email address for posting the “j” got dropped. I had it correct in all of my other lists. Thanks, Gary

Message to Gary Metcalfe:

From Trish Larson Clayburgh (73): trishclayburgh@yahoo.com

Thanks for your stories about your horses – you are so right! My earliest memory is of being horse crazy. My mom Hazel had it bad before me, and some of you knew how crazy my uncle Jake Gardner was for sulky racing. My passion for horses has never gone away…and Colorado is my dream place to live with them – so many great mountain trails, lakes, rivers, streams and vistas.

The other day I was riding in Rocky Mountain National Park, near my home. The Elk herds are everywhere in Estes Park – they must know they are safe. Anyhow, this wonderful little calf had a very aggressive blue jay on his back. We watched as he nudged it off with it’s nose, and when the bird flew onto a rock, he was so curious! The bird seemed curious too, and stayed put as they went nose to nose for at least 5 minutes. Eventually the bird flew onto a cow elk, who was VERY offended, and at last the herd bull came and chased the bird off. Very entertaining!

Later that day we got our first winter storm of the season. Two feet of huge flakes fell over an 18 hour period! And no wind… My ranch was transformed into a winter wonderland. Luckily I was “off work” the next day and got to stay home and enjoy the beauty of the new snow, with a fire in the woodstove. The place I’m living makes me feel like a pioneer, cutting and splitting and heating with wood, shotgun over the fireplace, chainsaw on the deck….

So that’s life in Colorado!

Picture from the Achieves:

Top Row: Viola, Lois, Morris, Rosalie (Azure )Thomas
Sitting: Cecelia (Azure) Thomas, Delia, Fred, Christina and Carol Azure.

Sitting: Doug Manson-George Longie, Chuck Laducerm, Kent Sayers, Leroy Jeannotte, Darly Laducer & Daune Gourneau
2nd row: ? Wessel’s, Lillian Lafountain, Maryann Delorme, Pewe Jeannotte, Ron Trottier Jeantte Grant, ? Freddie Blue
Back row: Francis Thomas, Bob Gourneau, Duke Vettleson, Gary Falcon, Howard Longie & Joe Blue

06/21/2017 (2534)

Richard “Chops” Carlson Passed Away.
Memories from Rod Hiatt (’69):  Bottineau, ND


This past week we lost a very close friend and part of our family. Richard “Chops” Carlson was taken from us way to early.

Chops was part of the Hiatt Family for the last 25 years, not by blood but by choice, both his and ours. He was like a younger brother to us, an uncle to our kids and that extra son to my parents. He and Shelley were the same age, so we always said that they were twins, but Chops got more of the milk when they were younger.

I recall walking in the house with what we thought was a nice bouquet of flowers for Mothers Day, and there was already a huge floral arrangement on the table for my mother from Chops, and the time when Dad ended up in Minot in the hospital and Chops was in Denver over the road trucking. He told his dispatcher to either get him a load back to N. Dak. or he was leaving the truck and flying home. Well they loaded him that day and when we got to Minot the next day to see Dad, Chops was already there.

When he came to work for us, he said “ I will drive truck, do repair work, but I don’t want anything to do with those things(as he was pointing at the horses)” Within a years time he was not only out helping with the horses, but telling us how and what to do.

Chops was a very smart and talented man. If he went somewhere, he would remember every road, exit and best place to eat from here to the east coast, he could tear apart an engine, a transmission or any vehicle or piece of equipment and have it back together and running perfect, his carpenter skills were excellent and this was all self taught.

We would let the kids pick out a colt in the spring of the year and when we sold them in the fall the kids got the money. Chops somehow got in on that but he kept his and that is where the famous team of Midge and Madge came about. Chops spent countless hours with this team of horses and by the time they were old enough to drive, our Dad had made sure that he had harness, collars and a wagon. Breaking the team was the easy part, the hard part was trying to make a teamster out of Chops, But again when he was told how something should be done and what was not to be done, you didn’t have to tell him the 2nd time.

Chops was the kind of a guy that would help anyone, anytime and for any reason. If you need $5.00 he would give you $10.00 just to make sure you had enough. He was also the guy that if you asked for the time he would explain to you how to build a clock. I know that he was loved and is going to be missed very much, but personally I can sit back, chuckle and smile at things that we had done over the past years, his sayings that he used and the friendship that I was fortunate to have with a guy named CHOPS.

Richard “Chops” Carlson
October 04, 1962 – June 12, 2017
Richard “Chops” Carlson, age 54 of Bottineau, died Monday at his home near Bottineau.  A memorial service will be held on MOnday, July 3, 2017 at 11:00 am at the Lakeside at Lake Metigoshe.
(Nero Funeral Home – Bottineau)


Memorial Service

Monday, July 03, 2017
11:00 AM

Metigoshe Lutheran Church
10605 Lake Loop Rd E


Reply to Kay (Lund) Hildebrandt:

From Vickie Metcalfe (’70):  Bottineau, ND


Thank YOU for your great story  about your Dad.

He sounds like he was quite the survivor.

It is wonderful that your dad shared experiences with you and you can pass on and share.

Knowing the strength of your roots and sharing stories of survival with your family is a gift.

My mom’s cousin lived her married life in Anaconda. Her husband worked in the mines.

A few years ago while spending  a few days with her, she  took  mom, aunt and myself over to Butte to visit the historic Butte mining site.

Much of the equipment was still there.

( side note My aunt Leona Metcalfe and Winifred Pritchard Eurich  were fond friends from school years of days gone by.

On her last visit to  ND,  Leona   stayed with me,  and was a delighted to spend a day  visiting with Winfred at her farm.

Also, my sister in law, Sally  is Winifred’s granddaughter.

Her children,  my niece  and nephew’s thought the world of their Great Grandma Winifred. She was a special lady indeed. )

Again,  many thanks.

Vickie Metcalfe


Roger Hiatt Mystery solved
Reply from Dale Pritchard (’63):  Leesville, LA


Quite some time ago you published a Hiatt Family Tree that you (or someone) had put together.  I think Roger was listed in there.  My hard copy disappeared so there’s no quick check on my part.  I forget who Roger said his dad was but I remembered the name at the time.  Roger said that in addition to living in the Dunseith area, he actually grew up in Spokane, Washington.


Gary’s Comment
I pulled up the matrix and Roger is there listed in next to the last box, on the bottom, in the matrix below. His Grandfather was Henry Hiatt, brother to Will J, John, Amos, George, Walter and Harry. His mother was Lilie Chase. Henry and Amos were half-brother’s to the rest of the Hiatt Siblings. Henry moved west before I was born, so I didn’t know his family. My dad spoke of him often though so I know of him. Florence Dahl and Elenore Fauske (Stubby) and other Hiatt’s of that generation may be able to fill us in on more of the details of this Hiatt family.
Thanks Dale.



Recipe Books
Reply from Doreen Larson Moran (BHS ’61): Spokane, WA

HI Gary – I love the recipe books from the ND homemaker and church groups and from Washington state too.  I am afraid I have a much too large collection that I might have to thin out some day. J  The recipe for the flatbread is different than lefse.  Hence the use of buttermilk and whole wheat.  Flatbread is rolled verrrry thin and I believe baked in the oven.   It is brown in color due to the whole wheat.   I have my aunt Lois Ydstie’ recipe but she always brings a batch to family gatherings.  Earl Thompson also makes a great batch of flatbread.

I do enjoy your Blog.  I am always amazed at the Dunseith names that I recognize.  That proves it is a small world after all.!!!! Doreen Larson Moran – BHS ‘61


Blog (68) posted on October 31, 2009

Posted on October 31, 2009

Peter Gillis’ address in Kosovo

From Pete (65) & Verena Gillis: Dunseith, ND.

Our son is now in Kosovo and says it’s fine over there. He gave me his
address so for those of you that asked for it…..

Spc. Gillis, Peter J.
TF Defender Co. A
KFOR 12 Camp Bondsteel
APO AE 09340

Pete & Verena Gillis

Jim Metcalfe Request

From Gary Metcalfe (57): Forsyth, MO

Gary, My brother, Jim would like to be included in receiving the daily blog.

Thank you. Gary Metcalfe

John & Margaret Bedard’s new contact info

From John Bedard (65): Lake Metigoshe, ND


Letting you know that we have moved permanently to Lake Metigoshe

and have new home and e-mail addresses as follow.

18 Birchwood Heights Rd N

Bottineau, ND 58318



John and Margaret Bedard

Dunseith Alumni reunion in June & message

From Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC

Gary, So how’s your domestic construction going? Looks like you have a really nice place.Looks very coastal,like a beach house. It seems strange for it to be built right in the middle of such poverty,but I guess the zoning laws are different in each country.The only thing that bothers me about living around poverty would be the crime. Do they have much crime in the Phillippines? Where I live is minimal,but then you can go 7 miles on the other side of the S.C.border in Charlotte N.C. and theirs every crime imaginable. It’s a shame cuz it’s such a beautiful city,but it’s the result of not controling our borders. We have a gang problem in Charlotte,that’s completely out of control. The drug cartel from Mexico has moved in and to just drive from my home in S.C. to across the border in Charlotte at night can get pretty tricky sometimes.You sometimes see stuff on the way to work,robberies,shootings,and either road rage incidents or carjackings.Whats shocking is this is in really nice areas of town.The place where I work is in a beautiful part of town,but the apartment community that is side by side with our facility,on week-ends especially during summer months,you can hear gun fire,police cars and ambulances. In the winter,fires. There has been 4 fires in the 7 yrs.that I’ve been on my job….cause on all 4 fires,”cooking drugs” I think they call it,free basing…where you melt “crack rock” in a spoon for a syringe…what’s really ironic about this is this is an upscale apartment community,with white collar residents…The bottom line is that drugs has taken over this country,and we the citizens of this country have no one to blame but ourselves…The American people were too trusting of people in high places in this country,who have chosen to turn a blind eye to this mess cuz everyone wants a peice of the pie. With the drugs has come every other dispicable crime,child pornography,prostitution,pedophiles(this crime has gone rampant in this country…why???? Cuz no-one wants to pass a law to execute these people…and they deserve nothing less….So much for America The Beautiful!!!

The other night at work,this guy from Lyberia came over to talk to me. He made the statement,”For America being the “Greatest Country” in the World….I said, “The Greatest Country in The World??? “If Americas the greatest this worlds got …then this whole world is on it’s way to Hell”. People get really angry with me when I make statements like that,but I tell them,”As long as we as a country,stay in denial about the problems in this country,this country is going to continue on, in a downward spiral,and I don’t know how much further we can go with out smashing into the bottom head first”,and as long as we want to beleive how “Great” we are,we have no reason to change…How sad…In closing on this subject,I want to close with a saying I read some where, it went like this: “When The People of This Country Cease To Be Good,America Will Cease To Be Great”. Don’t get me wrong,there is alot of good still left in this country…but there is “ALOT”that has gone unchecked for too long,which in turn is rapidly eroding the greatness of this country…This is the point I was trying to make in a nutshell,but it seems I am always forced to make a “Hair raising,fighting words statement” before I can get anyone anymore into a problem solving,thought provoking conversation”. I’ve had it all said to me,the old over used statement,”Love It Or Leave It”. But I find the people who say stuff like that are either,content with the downward spiral,are not aware of what’s going on in our country, have there own drug lab,or marijuana field in there back yard,or are too fearful what people might think if you speak out…or don’t believe they can make a difference…..As you can see ,I’m none of the above. It doesn’t mean it makes me a better person,it just means:”That if a person feels that they are one of those people….don’t criticize or put down those of us who are trying to make a difference…Like the old saying,”Lead, Follow or Get Out of The Way”

Well, Gary, I bet you would never guess what I really started writing you about… So far I got 17 people including Hwy 43,Verena,Pete,and I. I thought for some reason that we would have a bigger response thru the blog alone…Maybe putting it in the paper isn’t such a bad idea after all. If you would like to check with Verena what she thinks,and maybe we could run it in the paper for the month of November.

Thanks Gary for all you do.It would be interesting to see what the whole process is you go thru getting all this out

Thanks Again,


P.S. This letter wasn’t written for the blog, but if you want to put it on, it’s fine with me…

Aggie, Yes I want to post this. I can assist you guys with getting this in the papers too. I’m hoping they will view this as a community activity involving many of their readers, of which I think they will, and publish this info when we send it to them.

Folks, Aggie, Verena & Pete are trying to get a head count for those interested in attending the Dunseith Alumni reunion they are planning in May. Please let one of us know if you are planning on attending. Our contact info is listed below. When they know how many plan on attending, they will choose a facility to accommodate accordingly. If enough folks plan on going, they can use the High School Gym. They just don’t want to reserve a larger facility if they don’t have the numbers. Their goal is to keep the costs to a bare minimum.

May 22, 2010

4:00pm to 6:00pm – Social Hour

6:00pm to 8:00pm – Cook Out

8:00pm to Midnight – Music & Hanging Out

Band: Hwy 43…AKA Dick & Brenda Johnson & Ron Hett

Aggie, now to address some of the other topics of your letter. You talked about security concerns with the ramped poverty of our Filipino neighbors. We have absolutely no problems at all. In the Filipino communities, everyone knows everyone and knows what belongs to everyone. If anyone sees anyone putting a hand on anything that is not theirs questions are asked and folks are confronted. That seldom happens though. Our garage is located about 300 feet from our house up on the main road. If there’s any strange activity going on or if something goes wrong in the area of our garage, we are instantly notified, day or night, by the folks up there. Everyone knows who belongs in their communities and are very inquisitive when visitors come. These folks especially love seeing our American friends coming to visit. After their first visit, they are not forgotten with return visits. Gary

Messages to Ken Stiker & Trish Larson Clayburgh (73):

From Gary Metcalfe (57): Forsyth, MO

To Ken Striker

I am going to scribble out a couple stories and see if Gary decides to post them. Ken I think you live somewhere near where old Pap Striker originated from. He was a Hoosier. This story is about Erman or E.D. Striker, brother of Lee and Elmer. Erman in the years I knew him, was a tea totaler who did ride a horse from that Peace River Country in Canada to Ten Sleep, Wyo. Erman was absolutely one of a kind to wife Tina and good, clean living. Working together they could have lived entirely off the land. When the bell would ring on Carpenter Lake in November at noon, muskrat trapping was on and everyone set or claimed as many houses as they could. I really admired Erman’s ability to skin a rat and have a pelt in his hand in a matter of seconds. Hunter and trapper, fruit trees, fishing….thanks to Tina, Erman always looked as neat as a pin. A common scene to see was Erman and Tina in the fall months, parked out in the woods, little green ’48 chevy pickup, with a right saw (cousin to the chain saw), with a picnic lunch, enjoying life and nature to the fullest.

Lee Striker was a friend of my dad’s, not a tea man, but a great visitor.

To Trish Larson

It is very evident that you have a deep love of horses, so I want to share some horse stories from my life. My dad’s association with horses started at a young age. It was a respect and partnership more than a love of horses. Old Dewey was a fixture on our farm for a lot of years, he came on about 1946 when Grandpa Evans asked my dad to knock him in the head. I think at about 2 years old their teeth get loose and they can’t forage very well in deep snow in winter. So dad loaded him on a stone boat and hauled him up to our place then commenced to pull him up and down with a wire stretcher for a couple months. Pretty soon he was in harness along with half brother, Jim. A perfect match.

Our first team was Nellie and Squirrely and our last team was Bird and Doll who we got from Jake Thiefoe. Then came a saddle horse fit for a cowboy, Scottie. Harold Kelly found him over by Belcourt. The Davis’ had him on their race adjenda. Scottie was one half Arabian from Aladdin. Aladdin was a magnificient horse who met a sad fate down near Willow City. He had too much spirit, he would pick up a fence post and would run with it. One day he hit the corner of the barn and killed himself. Anyway when Scottie would get warmed up, he was back in the race, so my dad was the only one on the farm who could ride him, one day when Dad had Scottie’s head pulled around, eyeball to eyeball, he jumped over a willow bunch right into the Johnson Lake. So that called for a new type of bit. Pretty soon, he had a horse fit for a king, tough, fast and he earned a great retirement….run of the oat bins and hay stacks, you see my dad was a horse man way more than a tractor man. Horses were a source of absolute power to a person who knew how to handle them. Especially in the deep snow and mud on the Canadian border. They were used a lot and had a feeling of being needed. Trish you look like you are right where you like to be, on a mission. By the way I had a quarter horse mare that was a joy to ride and easy to catch. Like anything else it is hard to find a good one for you. You surely are in the right place to enjoy horseback riding and hunting. Gary Metcalfe

Luella Boardman Bjornseth’s (49) family

Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND.

Comment: Ralph sure looks like his father Jacob in this photo. Gary

Back: Luella & Ralph
Front: Mark, Janice & Ron

06/19/2017 (2533)

Roger Hiatt

Reply from Vickie LaFontaine Hiatt (’73):  Grafton, ND

I never knew a Roger Hiatt


Roger Hiatt

Reply from Rod Hiatt (’69):  Bottineau, ND

I guess that I had never heard of a Roger Hiatt either. When I get into town, I’m going to ask my Aunt Stubby if she would know. Another one of those things that I wish I would have listened to my Dad more when I was younger instead of thinking I already knew it all.



From Kay (Lund) Hildebrandt: K Murrieta, CA.

Note: Kay was a Cousin to Robert, Corbin and Winifred (Eurich) Pritchard. Her mother was a Thompson


I’m one of your silent readers, but never miss a day.  My grandmother was Candace Thompson (daughter of Anthony and Esther) Grandma Candace married Charles Torbert, farmer in Minnesota.  Their daughter, Margery, married Hugo Lund.  My Dad was considerably older than my Mother, and a few of the letters today reminded me of some of his experiences before he and my Mother married.

He was one of those miners trapped in the Anaconda copper mine in Butte.  He had graduated from high school in 1915 and with his $5.00 graduation gift, he and a friend rode the rails from Minnesota to Montana, looking for adventure.  A little guy, but friendly, the miners in line waiting for a job took a liking to him, and talked the boss into hiring him.  He was a 1,000 feet down that day in 1917, but close to an elevator shaft, probably in the adjacent mine, the High Ore.  One of the lucky ones.  The miners went on strike after that; out of a job; the war started, and he was called to duty.  He missed his bus, was considered awol, and marched into Camp Lewis in Washington at gunpoint.  Off to France and the battle of the Meuse-Argonne.

He returned to Butte, but family called.  He and several brothers spent the next seven years in Manitoba, attempting to raise wheat on land that had never been touched by a plow.  Their first house was the chicken coop.  They finally had acres of wheat, almost ready for harvesting.  No insurance against inclement weather in those days, and they were hailed out.  Home to Minnesota, where he and Mom met and married–just in time for the Depression!  But they were hard workers, and eventually had a profitable flower shop/greenhouses, and retired to California.

Thanks for the great blog, and the opportunity to share my little family history.  Kay (Lund) Hildebrandt


Kelvin Homemakers Club Cookbook
Posting from Lynette Honsey:   California

Note: Please see Gary Stokes’ comment at the bottom of this posting.

Hi Gary ~~~ just a quick question.

Lynette  (Honsey)

An old cookbook I received from my mom.
Stokes 2533-1

Is this lady, Elaine Stokes, related to you?
Stokes 2533-2

You just sent a picture of this lady in your email.  Now I know who wrote this recipe.
I’ve never heard of buttermilk in Lefse.  Sounds good.
Stokes 2533-3

Gary Stokes comment:

Note: Lynette is the daughter of Leonard and Lois Peterson Honsey.

Yes Lynette, Elaine was my mother. This cook book brings back so many memories of the Kelvin Homemakers club that my mother and so many others, of your mothers too, were members of. I believe the club is still active today too. In my childhood day’s the Kelvin Homemakers club was very large with many members. They had their monthly meetings in the member’s homes. It was always a full house. Do any of you remember the Secret sister thing that they had each year. They sure had each other guessing as to who their secret sister was.


Melba Alice Lund passed away
Obituary posted by Vickie Metcalfe (’7 Bottineau, ND

Gary & Friends of Dunseith,

Please  note the passing of Melba Lund.

Melba worked for  Marie Allard at the Beauty shop on Main Street.

In those years, I believe she roomed  many years at the Martha Handeland home..

My mom was one of Marie’s first “girls”.

As WWII  was concluding, Mom traveled with her ‘Pop’ to Yakima WA finding work as an elevator operator.

Mom  was always quite  frugal and saved  her  money  to further her education upon her return to ND.

She  lived with 4 other young women  one winter in a Fargo apt while they attended NW Beauty College.

After completing the course, Marie hired  Mom.

Mom left Marie’s when she married  dad  in 1947 and moved to Washington.

Returning to ND,  Mom continued cutting hair for  friends and  neighbor’s.

Mom often  shared she enjoyed many experiences of working for Marie.

Over the years, many young ladies  came to work in Dunseith at Maries Beauty Shop.

Marie told mom most of the   gal’s’ worked  about a year  leaving  to get married.

But, Melba was  one who stayed with Marie for a greater length of time.

Thanks Gary.




Melba Alice Lund
(July 11, 1947 – May 28, 2017)

Guest Book | Sign Guest Book | Send Sympathy Card

Melba Lund, age 69, of Dunseith, ND passed away on Sunday, May 28, 2017 at her home.

Melba Alice Lund was born on July 11, 1947 in Stanley, ND to Leonard L. and Alice Amanda (Person) Lund. She was raised in Stanley and completed her education there as well, graduating from Stanley High School in 1966. Melba worked as a beautician in Dunseith for over 30 years. She enjoyed working at “the plant” in Dunseith until she retired after 15 years. Melba liked knitting and needle work, gardening, fishing, and spending time with her nieces and nephews. She loved hearing stories of how they were doing. Melba will be lovingly remembered and greatly missed.

Melba is survived by her sister, Vanda (Louis) Wander of Moorhead, MN; nieces, Denice (Rick Bertram) Wander of Moorhead, MN and Nancy (Jerry) Kapaun of Park Rapids, MN; great nephews, Jared Jenstead, Avery Kapaun, and Baylor Kapaun; great niece, Ramsey Kapaun; and cousins, Anna Person, Allan Person, Rose Person (Mrs. Clarence Person).

She was preceded in death by her father, Leonard L. Lund (1971), mother, Alice A. Lund (1989), infant brother, Lyle Lund, nephew, Dean Wander, niece, Janelle Wander, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and a cousin.

A gathering in Melba’s Memory will take place on Thursday, June 1, 2017 from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Elick Funeral Home, Rolla, ND. A private family burial will take place at White Earth Cemetery, White Earth, ND.

Elick Funeral Home, Rolla, ND.



Blog (607) posted on October 30, 2009

Folks, our place is like a bee hive this morning. We have guys here replacing screen doors on our house, screens on the outside kitchen, and several windows in the house. We also have another crew installing outside ceramic tile and another crew installing some decorative planters on part of the cement wall around our property. These folks need my attention, so today’s message will be kind of short. Gary.
Reply to yesterday’s picture
From Evon Lagerquist (77): Dunseith, ND.
Gary, I think the man in the last photo with Mary Ann Hagen is Elvin Haagenson……
Evon, you are so right. That is Elvin, Cheryl’s dad, not Willard. That was my mistake. Thank you so much for the correction. Gary
Elvin Haagenson & Mary Ann Hagen

6/17/2017 (2532)

Roger Hiatt from Rolette
Posting from Dale Pritchard (’63):  Leesville, LA


I spent the last 8 years of my service time, 78 to 86, at Dyess AFB, Abilene, TX.  Sometime between 80 and 82, a new guy showed up on the flight line.  He had just come in the from Clark AB, Philippines.  The first time I saw him I noticed that his name was “Hiatt” and he was almost a mirror image of Albert Hiatt.  In talking to him, he said his first name was “Roger” and he was originally from Rolette.  Based on his similarities to Albert Hiatt, I started naming off what I thought were his aunts and uncles.  Needless to say, he was surprised.

Gary’s Comments
Dale, in my growing up day’s I claimed to have known every Hiatt, but Roger I didn’t know. I’m very sure some of our readers knew or know him and can fill us in on who he is. I’m very curious who he is too and which Hiatt family he belongs to?


Dennis Lafloe (Cheryl Counts Lafloe ’71) Passed away
Obituary posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe:  Bottineau & Minot, ND

Dennis Lafloe
November 09, 1947 – June 12, 2017
Dennis Lafloe, age 69 of Dunseith, passed away on Monday at a Rugby hospital.  His funeral will be held on Monday at 10:00 am at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church near Belcourt.  The wake will begin on Sunday at 5:00 pm with a prayer service at 7:00 pm at the church.  Burial will be at the church cemetery.

Dennis Peter LaFloe, Sr. a son of Robert & Rosalie (Davis) LaFloe was born on November 9, 1947 in Belcourt, North Dakota, the youngest child in a family of 4 sisters and 5 brothers. Dennis was a change of life baby and this title stayed with him throughout his life, especially with his aunties and as a child they called him the little miracle. He was treated with so much love and respect, but he surely deserved it because Dennis was always respectful and gracious toward others.

On November 6, 1971 Dennis married the love of his life, Cheryl Counts, and together they had three beautiful children, Denise, Dennis, Jr. and Christopher. Family was so important to Dennis and it showed because they not only had their own children but he also helped Cheryl in raising and providing for Cheryl’s brothers and sisters, Myrna, Karen, Yvonne, Dale, Bobby and Susie in a home full of love. Dennis appreciated the family he was given throughout his marriage. Dennis surely enjoyed camping trips, picnics, family and friends get togethers with his kids and yes, those wonderful grandchildren. Dennis was his grandkids biggest fan when it came to watching them playing in sports such as basketball and football games. Each of his grandkids hold a special place in his heart. Dennis openly spoke of how his life was a better place because of his children and especially his grandchildren and great- grandchildren. Love is beautiful, yes it is especially with family. Dennis cherished and loved his family. Ella (Chi-Chit) and your husband Alvin, you know how much Dennis loved you and how you shared a special bond with your brother. Your memories together will forever be cherished. The many nieces and nephews, there are many, and he loved each every one of you dearly.
Dennis worked hard throughout his life and during the early years of his career, he worked for his brother-in-law, Jerome Aberle, putting in water lines and water wells throughout South Dakota. Dennis received job training as Heavy Equipment Operator and specialized as a Finish Operator. Dennis built many roads throughout his career in North and South Dakota and Minnesota, which meant one of his sons was by his side working with him. He worked for various construction companies throughout his 49 year career but some he was most proud of were Close Construction, Gratech Constructions, Dunnick Bros. Construction, Roadmakers Construction, Harris Construction and most recently with Farden Construction.  Due to a health issue, Dennis retired 2 years ago. Dennis thought highly of his only daughter-in-law, Kellie, and his only son-in-law, Chris Schroeder. Dennis was a member of St. Anthony’s Catholic church and was a very strong believer in his faith. Dennis will be lovingly remembered and missed by many.

Dennis is survived by his loving wife of 45 years, Cheryl, and daughter, Denise (Chris) Schroeder, and his two sons, Dennis Jr.(Kellie) of Belcourt, and Christopher of Dunseith, 4 grandchildren, Cole (Cassandra) Schroeder, Johnna LaFloe, Hunter Rose Schroeder and Tate LaFloe and 2 great-grandchildren, Schieyer Makoti Hart, Willow Donna Schroeder, and his second family who he loved and raised as his own: Terrance(Myrna) DeCoteau, of Dunseith, Leslie (Karen) Davis of Dunseith, Dale (Peggy Poitra) Counts, of Minot, Robert (Vicky Morin) Counts of Belcourt, Fabian (Yvonne) Strong Jr., of Coon Rapids, MN and his loving sister, Ella (Alvin) McLeod of Belcourt, and two very special sisters-in-law: Rita LaFloe of Rolette and Leona LaFloe of Belcourt, North Dakota.

Dennis was preceeded in death by his parents, Robert and Rosalie (Davis) LaFloe, sisters, Evelyn Delorme, Angela Allery, Christina (Tina) Aberle, brothers, Louis LaFloe Sr., Lawrence(Gil) LaFloe Sr., Charles (Chuck) LaFloe Sr., infant brothers: Ralph and Frank LaFloe and grand-children Lane and Coy LaFloe and brothers-in-law Jerome Aberle, Jack Allery, and Norbert Delorme and sisters-in law Colleen Reinhardt and Susan (Tipton) Counts.
The family would like to invite everyone to a meal in the church hall immediately following services.
At this time Dennis’ family would like to thank everyone for the kindness of words and prayers during this difficult and sorrowful time. Arrangement made by Nero Funeral Home of Bottineau, North Dakota.


Posting from Vickie Metcalfe (’71):  Bottineau, ND

I’ve rather enjoyed many travels across Montana through the years.  The Flatlands East to Mountains  West, North on the Highline 2  to South on 94.  Hiking  the Missouri Breaks to riding horseback  the Bob Marshall wilderness to a high Mountain glacial lake.  Marveling smells of bubbling hot sulphur springs to watching herds of elk or antelope boing-boinging across prairies.  Usually, accompanying me are my loves; history, nature, laughter, eagerness  to listen to tales, and a cousin or  someone  who enjoys life with a childlike heart.

Today, while reading the Montana Standard online, I was caught up in the tales about the horrible Butte mining disaster, which occurred on June 8, 1917. I thought of miners working in treacherous conditions and how they must have felt as the perilous event unfolded. The horror they faced knowing they were doomed to buried deep in the bowels of the earth.

I was hit with a  recall of the  heavy feeling of foreboding. I  once experienced many years ago exploring the Lewis and Clark Caverns on a cousin road trip to Western Washington with my cousin Elaine.  We saw the exit sign, Lewis and Clark Cavern.  She said,  “Hey, that may be really interesting”.  I said to Elaine, “Do you remember, What’s the difference between a stalagmite and a stalactite?”   She said, “Lets go see.”

Elaine drove to the entrance, we got out and paid our fees. We followed the guide who scrambled down to a little motorized cart  on narrow rail,  getting in with several  other people, away on fun little ride into a tunnel… a ways more into the mountain.  We then were instructed to exit the cart crawl through a hole.  (Not fun) Yep, we crawled  along single file,  on hand and knees through a  skinny little tunnel through rock. Down, down, down disturbing skittering stones often stabs of pain from sharp stone.

Suddenly! Feeling of foreboding hit! My chest got tight, my stomach started to turn. I wanted out.  NOW!  Home to ND.  I need a guide line to keep me safe.

But, I put on my face my silent ‘thoughtful look’.

We crawled on our bellies _into ,”Wow, a  warm sunlit cavern. Dust motes floated down from somewhere above the formations of silent, fragile, stone icicles. Some up! Some down! Trickling water.

Damp cold!

My cousin, Elaine was a person who always exuded confidence and serenity. That day, she kept me centered. All around us were  the U of Montana ‘Earth Science’ people. They kept wandering, looking excited and talking scientific terms .

While, in my mind, I continued to call the protruding ups and downs… ‘icicles’. My thoughts, “There we’ve done that, saw it.  Now, lets get out of here!”   Finally, the guide got the others rounded up. I might have been first in line. Crawling up the tunnel was harder work! UffDa. Huff, puff breathe.

I was ever so happy to be out of that cavern with feet planted on sweet terra firma.  Once again, Elaine and I were on interstate looking for another adventure.

After that crawl into the bowels of the earth with Elaine,  I was absolutely sure,  I did not want to go down again. Or teach Earth Science.

In the many years since then, I’ve done road trips with _ my kids _a.k.a children of my siblings. I have  always been  quite  determined for each of them to have an educational experience.   I never wished to repeat the cavern experience.  I          never again  want to take the Lewis and Clark Exit.   Today, reading about an event in 1917,  I was  awakened  of a fond memory of Elaine.

And I  wonder… about the strong  feeling  of foreboding those 166 miners must have felt 100 years ago down in the bowels of the earth.

Thanks Gary.



Letter from Lee Stickland (’64):  Dickinson, ND


90 degrees here today.  We are in bad need of rain.  Farmers have begun to sell their cattle as there is no green grass.  SW ND is cattle-country so it is sad to see the wheels of economics turn, adversely.

I would have a bad case of ulcers if I were a farmer and had all my assets in the ground, awaiting the throw of the dice of the weather.

Then, there is always the WHITE COMBINE, HAIL.  The cost of insurance is just a cost that needs to figure in each year, regardless.  Of course, a guy could GO ALL IN and not insure and find out later what is left.

Darrel has a daughter who works in Mayo at Rochester.  She has her Doctorate in Pharmacy and therefore has a very good job at one of the hospitals.  Dean has two (2) daughters.  The oldest, Sara, is a missionary for the faith that we three (3) boys practice and believe in with all the merits of our folks.  The younger daughter, Susan, is married to Scott and they have a son, Justin and a daughter, Kari.  Scott is a helicopter pilot and gives narrated tours of the Grand Canyon.  They live in Henderson, NV.

Both Dean and Darrel work at the craftsmanship of fixing homes, making additions, adding walkways, i.e., down to the puget sound.  Dean also makes violin bows and is well-known in the vastly-expanding area for his excellency.  He has sold bows for as much as $1600 each.  Dean is the finite guy of the Stickland’s.  He has retired from Boeing, who I believe absorbed the company who at one-time made the engines for the space shuttle, Rockdyne.

Nice talking to ya, Gary.  I did attempt to use the MESSENGER but I am less-than computer-savvy and not very patient.

See you on the next turn-around.  I was in Boston  April 20-25 and Eric and drove thru New Hampshire and to Maine.  I now have Vermont to visit before I will have been to ALL states of the union. Enjoyed seeing Paul Revere’s home, being in the church where he signaled from.  It was interesting, there are no pews.  Families had boxes, compartments with seats, some padded, some not, some on all sides, some not, with a name plate on the outside of each door.  The minister spoke from a quite elaborate pedestal in one corner for the benefit of acoustics.

Oh, Gary, one more story.  When I was getting ready for a talent show on the 3rd of March, I was tuning my guitar and the bridge, the portion where the strings enter the top of the instrument on the right side, popped up.  BINGO.

Sent it away to the ALVAREZ company for repair.  Got it back 3 months later.  NO CHARGE.  21.88 hours of labor and an extensive list of things that were done, as listed on the work order.  I had forgotten what I paid for the guitar so I called the local fellas here in town, where we also bought our son’s $4000 piano in 1983, and learned that I had paid $1953 in 2007.  Which computes to a bit over $2300 in today’s dollars.

On the day I got my guitar back, I promptly wrote a letter of THANK YOU to the person listed on the Work Order as the craftsman who had done the work.  Too often, people assume that such repair cost are built into the cost of purchase,  That may be but it does not say a hearty TKU to someone who spends a lot of time making things rights.

I will quit, this time   Lee


Blog (606) posted on October 29, 2009

Posted on October 29, 2009

Landsverk’s book

Comments from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.

Gary and Friends,

The last couple of nights I have been reading Erling Landsverk’s
book, ‘ My Dakota Years’. I have to say it was most interesting to me to
read about the life of his family through the depression and the war.
This is a great documentation from first had experiences. Erling has
done a really good job of remembering so many of the small details that
make his book hard to put down. It is a ‘must read’ for anyone
interested in the early days, 1920s through 1940s, here in the Turtle
Mountains. Thanks Erling, your book is one of my treasured pieces of
local history! Thanks Gary!


Florence Pladson update following her car accident

Message from Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND

July 09:
Florence, Keith & Becky

I visited Florence today for a short time (I was on my way to meet Wally for supper.). The lady whose daughter was injured in the same accident, was visiting her when I arrived. I chatted a bit/left caramels for both ladies and left. Florence looks/sounds very “good”. She said “they” are checking into her going to the Bottineau Hospital for therapy, if they have room for another patient. She would, of course, like to go there. If not, she’ll most likely be transferred to the former St. Joe’s building in Minot. Apparently, that’s where Trinity’s rehab is now.

I don’t know if you want to post this, but if you do, please check with Tina Pladson Bullinger before you do. I want my info to be correct, and also that it’s OK to post it.



Reply from Florence’s Daughter

Becky Sime Coles (82): Spokane, WA.


That sounds accurate to me. I spoke with my mom this afternoon and she sounded in good spirits. She says the only pain that she really has is the burning in her hand and up to her elbow. This is most likely due to the regeneration of the nerve in that area. They have had her up and sitting in a wheelchair and it is quite exhausting after having been in the hospital bed for so long. She is hoping to be moved to the facility in Bottineau but as of today they did not have a spot for her. Her doctor has advised her that he doesn’t want to move her until the pain in her hand/arm is better. She has a long road of therapy ahead of her bur her spirits are good and her goal is to be up and dancing again in time for New Years!

She passed on her thanks to the people that have sent emails, cards, flowers etc. She said the messages brighten her days.

I would like to thank all of you as well for your thoughts and prayers. Keep the positive thoughts and prayers coming for all that were involved in this terrible accident.


Message/Picture from Vicky Bergan Dietz (82): Princeton, Minnesota

Hi Gary,

The following picture is of Randy Haavisto, Son of Vicky Bergan-Dietz (1982 DHS) and grandson of David and Glenda Bergan Dunseith, ND. He has enlisted with the United States Marines Corp, we are all so very proud of him. He arrived in San Diega, California , Camp Pendelton, Monday eve, 10-26-2009 for Marines Boot-Camp. We are looking forward to an awesome reunion when he completes his training camp!


Vicky Bergan-Dietz

Vicky Bergan Dietz (82) with her son Randy Haavisto

Pictures from the Achieves

Clarence (Deceased) & Mary Ann Hagen

Willard Haagenson & Mary Ann Hagen

Article written by Gary Woodford (55)

06/07/2017 (2531)

Darrel (47) and Dorothy Strietzel (46) Fassett’s 70th Wedding anniversary
Posting from Susan Fasset Martin (’65):Spearfish SD

My scanner is not working so I took this photo of a page in my dad’s scrapbook. Today is Darrel Fassett and Dorothy Strietzel’s 70th wedding anniversary. Maybe you can post something on the blog. I also posted a pic on FB. Hope all is well in Cebu. I am recovering from hip replacement surgery and Paula is my nurse/cook/housekeeper. I’m doing well
Fassett-1 Fassett-2 Fassett-3

                          Darrel (47) and Dorothy Strietzel (46) Fassett
Fassett Darrel 2531

Gary’s comment
Congratulations Darrel and Dorothy. You are both looking so well and doing great. You will have many more years together. It is always a pleasure seeing you folks too, with our trips back to area, when we run into each other, normally at Wal-Mart in Bottineau.


Dale’s Jumbo Burger
Posting from Don Martel (Principal):  Rosemount, MN

On our recent trip to Dunseith, I just had to have one and It was just as good as ever. They are now called, “King of the road.”, on the menu.


Blog (605) posted on October 28, 2009

Posted on October 28, 2009

Sympathy to Marie Iverson Staub (60)

From Susan Brew Roussin (59): Rolla, ND

We send our sympathy to Marie Staub. I have been a widow for 17 years, but I still miss the conversations with my dear husband. You may feel you are in a fog for awhile, but with faith and love from family and friends you will be able to move on and hold fast the good memories. Love and prayers to you and yours.

Update on Virgil Rude (Stroke): Minot, ND

From his Aunt Luella Boardman Bjornseth: Bottineau, ND

We had lunch with Virgil & Gerry last Friday. They were on the way up to the farm to cut the grass one last time before winter. Virgil isn’t allowed to drive yet but is doing real good. He is taking theropy 3 times a week and will be taking it until the end of November. He walks good now but uses a cane to steady himself part of the time. Is still a little weak on the right side so has to take his time. He talks plainly now and says he doesn’t have any pain. He thought he would be able to run the riding mower and Gerry said if he had a problem with it she would be able to finish it off. We haven’t talked to him since so haven’t found out how he made out.


Virgil, A lot of our folks know you and knowing that it’s OK with you, I wanted to post this message of Luella’s. It’s wonderful that you are doing so well. It’s wonders what a positive attitude has. Mind over matter is a lot of the name of the game. Gary

Reply from Pam Lagerquist (68): Minneapolis, MN

I don’t remember some of you, but it’s so nice to see what’s going on with you. I was only in dunseith for 1 year (senior), but I met so many nice people, teachers and towns people. Pam Lagerquist

Memories from Dick Morgan (52): Washburn, ND

A common stereotype is of a young person, living in a small, rural town, whining, “there is nothing to do here. I can’t wait to get away from here.” As I recall, when I was a young person living in a small, rural town, we had:

Turtle Mountains for all those wonderful, colorful characters “living in the hills”; Peace Gardens for picnics and nocturnal naughtiness; Steve Cook’s Kelvin for beverages; Willow Creek for hiking; Shelver Drug for soda fountain; Reservation for pow wows and bush dances; Mineral Springs for camping; Metigoshe for fishing; Lambert’s Hill for skiing; Althea for three different movies a week; Shutte for swimming; Peterson’s Hall for Ole Bersinger’s “Rubber Dolly”; Butte St. Paul for beer bashes; Indian Mound for digging; Rolla for rivalry and hard fought games; San Haven for “San bags”; Shanty Town for more colorful characters; Memorial Hall for just about anything; Bottineau for unsuccessful cruising for girls; Round Barn for dances; Ole Evan’s pasture for gopher hunting; four lively bars; bakery for oh such good bread and raised doughnuts; church for Christmas programs; Great Northern gravel pit for Fourth of July fireworks; Main Street for Saturday nights; Crystal Cafe for hot pork sandwiches and sour cream raisin pie; and, of course, dear old DHS for sports, plays and Miss Schurr’s college prep classes.

NOTHING TO DO!? There weren’t enough hours in the days or nights.

Dick Morgan ’52

Email address Change for Bob & Donna (Sunderland 52) Leonard (51): Dunseith, ND

I have changed the location of my computer to Dunseith, and wanted to maintain hi-speed internet for the winter months. In order to accomplish that, had to change servers. My new e-mail address is I understand this is case sensitive.

Hopefully, this will not create a problem for any of you.



Bob, This is no bother at all for me to make these changes. In fact I encourage folks to keep me updated with all of their changes. We try to keep all these records as current as possible. Thanks, Gary

Reply to Erling Landsverk from Lois Lilleby Fielding (51): Prescott, AZ

Reply to Erliing Landsverk from Lois Lilleby Fielding: Yes, Erliing, Arnold was my father and for several years we lived on ‘Main Street” next to his garage. I remember playing around bags of wool, I think, in the garage. In addition, living next door to K.C. and Margie Sine’s store, I would go there to “help” rearrange the cans of food in the bins. Then, after my “work”, Margie and I would share an orange. The Sines were the Best!! I love hearing stories of K.C. on the blog.

Good luck to you with your book! Lois Lilleby Fielding.

Dunseith News posted by Neoal Kofoid Garbe:Minot & Botttineau, ND


Pictures from the Achieves

 About 1967:
Standing L to R: Lola Metcafe, Patt Metcafe, Joan La Croix
Bottom L to R: Joann Houle, Corliss Allard, Randi Mongeon

2007 – Sheally Baker Engebretson (65)

Evie Gottbreht (65) & Patty Boguslawski (65)



06/05/2017 (2530)

Picture Identified

Reply from Carol Allard (’65):  Sidney, MT

This picture is of my dad, John Allard.
Carol Allard

Reply from Dick Johnson (’68):  Dunseith, ND

    I am quite sure that’s John Allard.

Reply from Mel Kuhn (’70):  St. John, ND

The man in the picture is John Allard. He is my uncle. He is Carol’s dad I’m sure she will fill you in.

Reply from LeaRae Parrill Espe (’67):  Bottineau, ND

I am pretty sure the picture is John Allard.

Reply from Jay Vonorny (’66):  Dunseith, ND

I am quite sure it is an Allard, contact Dawn and Larry Allard

Reply from Larry Nagel (DHS Teacher): Shields, ND

To whomever,
He might be one of the Robert boys (that is pronounced  French) I am not sure, but if  related to Alfred Cote  family that built the round barn  South of Dunseith.
Larry Nagel

Allard, John 2530

Message from Aggie Casavant (’69):   Modesto, California

Hi  Gary, finally  got  down to  the  library  and  have  been  sitting  here  really  enjoying  everyones  stories.  I  especially  enjoyed  the  story  that  Dick  told  about  Mrs. Conroy and  giving  that  girl  that  swore  at  her  the  “what  for”. Just  as  I  was  leaving  the  house  this  morning  to  come  to the  library  there  was  this  kid  on  the  news whining  to  the  t.v  cameras that he  wasn’t  going  to  be  allowed  to  walk  with  his  class  at  graduation cuz  he  worked  over  the  asst. principle. They  said  there  are  1000 class mates  and  friends  who  are  marching  and  protesting  to  let  him  walk…..Seriously….he should  be  in  jail  for  assault….  ….  Jeri Neamyers  post  about  Don Johnson was  so  nice  to  read. Alot  of  nice  memories  of  better  days….”Where have  all the  flowers  gone…..  Thanks  Gary  for  hanging  with  us…. Aggie.


Round Barn
Reply from LeaRae Parrill Espe (’67): e Bottineau, ND

The round barn was owned by Pat and Johnnie Myer.  I believe their daughter Holly Myer Wheeler is the current owner.  It has been on the register quite some time.  Pat had the barn redone before she passed away and I am sorry I can’t remember what year that was.


Posting of the Day
Hee Haw Classic.
Grandpa Jones and Tennessee Ernie Ford were True Classics



Blog (604) posted on October 27, 2009

Marie Iverson Staub’s (60) husband, Marvin, passed away.
From Marie: Seattle, WA
Just wanted to let you know my husband Marvin Staub, who you met at the Seattle reunion passed away on October 18th. He had heart problems but you are never prepared for something like that. We were married for 43 years it’s going to be difficult for sometime without him. I will even appreciate your e-mails more now. I know he talked to Bernadette at the reunion and she invited us to come visit and he was thinking about it but it won’t happen now. I am blessed, as I have two great boys and a lot of good friends. It’s just going to take some time.
Marie Staub
Marie, We are so sad to hear of Marvin’s passing. Yes, I remember both of you well from the Seattle reunion on July 24th. I know Bernadette had a nice chat with Marvin too. Being at the reception desk, she spoke more one on one with everyone than I did. You must have been at the same table as Phyllis McKay and her friend Leo. Marvin was sitting next to Leo in this picture.
Marie, It’s tough loosing a loved one. We know this is a really hard time for you. Our condolences are with you. We have not forgotten you. That invitation still stands for you coming over to visit too.
Gary & Bernadette.
PS – Marie is related to the Iverson’s in Bottineau. They are close relatives.
San Haven
From Lois (Bev Morinville’s friend, originally from Rolette, that she met at the Log house in Dunseith): Helena, MT.
Dear Gary,
Please keep up the wonderful news about San Haven from you and your friends’ memories! I read and forward the wonderful written memories to my cousins also! I think we all in that area had someone at the “San” at one time or another during those early years!
Again, I so appreciate the news and hope to read more! Lois Tweten
Reply from Luella Boardman Bjornseth (49): Bottineau, ND.
Gary thanks for keeping on sending the alumni news. It is really interesting reading all the things different ones are remembering of the years past. I wonder if Erling remembers how to play steal stiks? I can rember playing it when I went to the old country school but don’t rember the rules. We used to have lots of running games at recess and everybody got to play. keep up the good work.
Folks, Luella is married to Ralph Bjornseth. Ralph was a mechanic at the International dealership in Bottineau for years. Following his employment there, he and Clem Helgeson teamed up and did ‘on sight’ overhauls all over the country. Those guys were some of the best Diesel mechanics of all times. Ralph’s dad was Jacob Bjornseth. Their home place was 1 3/4 miles west of us up in the hills. Ralph’s sister’s, Gladys and Viola, married, twins, Albert and Alfred Rude. LaVerne Rude, Albert/Gladys boy, is married to Carrole Fauske (66). I have know all these families, well, my entire life. Great folks. Some of you know Virgil Rude too. His folks were Alfred/Viola. Gary
Request from Delmer Fugere, Son of Lois (Hiatt) & Orelle Fugere
Bonney Lake, WA
Hello Gary, I sure enjoy reading the blog. I mentioned the blog to Dale Evans (Mary Petersons Son) He would like to be added to the list. His email isThanks, Delmer Fugere

Dale, With your Dad, Martin (Deceased) having been a brother to Ella (Jim) Metcafle, that would make you a first cousin to Gary Metcalfe and all of his siblings. With your mother being a Peterson, you are first cousins to all the Peterson’s and of coarse Howard and Vida (Peterson) Hiatt’s siblings. That’s a lot of folks, a big percentage of whom are on our distribution list. I know I’ve missed a few too. I found an address listed for you in Algona, WA. Would this be your correct address? Algona I believe is near Renton/Auburn. Gary

Thank you / Reply from Erling Landsverk (44): Portage, WI

Hi Gary and everyone:
Thank you Gary and Lois Fielding, Brenda hoffman and dick Johnson for your kind words. I don’t deserve them, but I will take them. Lois, was Arnold Lilleby your father, I knew him quite well, Dad bought all his gas there as well as other automotive repairs.. When you people make comments about Dunseith on Gary’s Blog, its just like old home week.
Gary, you mentioned my book, well as I have said before, its not fair or right to use this great community get together for any other purpose than to stay connected. Anyone can get in touch with me with a short E Mail and I promise to get back to anyone who is interested. As for myself, I am not any different, (I like to think) than any other North Dakotan. I just do what I need to do, and am proud to be associated with all you folks.
Best wishes to Everyone!
Erling Landsverk


Henry Boppre’s Obituary posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND.

Ann Boppre Perry’s (72) Reply: Dunseith, ND.



I have been gone so didn’t get this until today.

Yes, Dick, was right. Henry and my Dad were brothers. Now there are
only 2 left out of 11.
Dad and Henry were married to sisters (Ester and Mary James)Dick’s cousins
on the Stretzel (SP) side. Ester died and Dad married MOM, so my sisters
are double cousins to Henry’s children.
My sister, Donna, is married to Walter Weaver, Judy’s brother.


06/01/2017 (2529)

Identify Picture

As I was going thru the Dunseith Alumni Website I notice a photo was photo on the front page—-or title page—Do you have a name to him or anything about his family ?

I am doing research of Dunseith and Bottineau and learning of families there—here is his photo

God’s Blessings

Thank you –Pastor Shepherd

Please Identify this guy


Reply to Stokes Twins
From Marlys Hiatt (’71):  Dunseith, ND

Those precious babies are so beautiful and to be born 100 years after your dad – WOW.

Marlys Hiatt
School Social Worker

Gary’s comment
Sorry Marlys for the late reply. I just noticed I had not yet replied.
Thank you so much for the nice compliment.

Brydon and Bryce Stokes: Born 9/2 and 9/3 2015
Brydon and Bryce


Blog (603) posted on October 26, 2009

Larry Took’s (71) email address: Souris, ND.
From Cheryl Haagenson (71): Dunseith, ND.
Gary will you please add Larry Tooke ( 71) to the distribution his email is
thanks for keeping this up, See you in Feb 2012.
Cheryl Haagenson
Larry, it’s great having you on board. Your family was a big part of Dunseith in my days.
Cheryl, We are so looking forward to seeing you in Feb 2012 on our next Dunseith Alumni Cruise. The Alaska Cruise was so much fun and this one will be even better now that we know the ropes. Gary
Erling Landsverk
Reply from Lois Lilleby Fielding (51): Prescott, AZ
To Erling Landsverk: Thank you for your very descriptive and absorbing story. I wanted it to go on and on! I don’t believe I ever knew Harry Larson, but I wish there were more of his kind today teaching our grandchildren. Lois Lilleby Fielding, Class of 1951
Erling Landsverk
Reply from Brenda Hoffman (68): Greenville, SC
Dear Erling,
I loved your story. Please let us know when your book of short stories is available for purchase.
Erling Landsverk
Reply Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.
Gary and Friends,First, to Erling Landsverk, very good memory and great story. Although
I never attended a rural school, my dad taught several and I did go with
him on occasion. He always said the kids from a rural school really
learned their lessons because they had the lessons from all eight grades
for all eight years. As the younger ones listened, they learned the
older kids lessons as well. I do remember going to a program when Agnes
Berg was the teacher at one of the rural schools. I think it was
Wetherelt but it could have been Beaver Dam–I was real young, maybe
4-5. They had a bunch of fun things to do for the kids and the parents
and then had a drawing for some door prizes and I won a red slide open
pencil box. I don’t know how many folks younger than me know what a
pencil box was? It was made like a match box but larger. I treasured my
prize as it was the first thing I ever won! Several of the things that
all rural schools always had were a globe, large maps of the world, and
a picture of one of the early presidents–usually Washington–on the
wall. In the back was usually a crockery water cooler with a lid. We
lived in town so I started school in the big old white school building.
I had many good teachers over the years but I always liked Mrs. Conroy
the best. She, too, had a way of making class interesting and had us
looking forward to the next day. She was also strict but almost never
had to do much in the line of discipline because everyone respected her.
There are still people who confuse respect with obedience. Teachers can
demand obedience but they have to earn respect from the kids. I do
remember one time we got a new girl from a boarding school in South
Dakota. When Mrs. Conroy told her to do something, she swore at Mrs.
Conroy—BAD! Mrs. Conroy walked around her desk and grabbed her by the
hair and then picked up a meter stick and took her in the small room
just off the fourth grade room. We heard whack,whack, whack,whack! The
door opened and the girl went back to her desk. Mrs. Conroy came out and
threw the meter stick in the trash can by her desk–in three or four
pieces! We had no problem with the deal. The girl deserved it for saying
what she said to Mrs. Conroy–and I still feel that way!I would
certainly have deserved it if I had said it.We have come full circle now
and can’t understand why kids are unruly and mouthy. We can always give
them some sort of tranquilizing drug to lessen their aggression. Of
course if a teacher spanked a kid now, lawyers would be in the school
the same day filing charges and counselors would be called to help the
kid cope with the trauma. What a mess! Thanks to Erling and Gary!Dick

Folks, for some reason Erling’s story did not get attached as a Word document in yesterday’s message so I have re-attached it with today’s message.
Erling has published a book too. I know that his cousin, Sharon Landsverk Beckman who works as a checker at Jerry’s Jack & Jill in Bottineau, has copies. Other than that, I’m not sure how to get copies. I’m hoping Erling can provide us with that info.
Erling, This was a beautiful story. Many of us are looking forward to reading the short stories you are working on too. You do not let your handicap of being blind prevent you from doing the things you love to do with your writings and music. You are a remarkable guy, one we for sure all look up to. Gary
Prevoulsy posted with message 180 on 08/03/08
Message/Picture from Gary Morgan (54):
Gary & All,
Attached is a snapshot of the entire 1950 football team that my mother took after we had beaten Belcourt in our first game of the season. We had previously thumped Towner in a practice scrimmage so we were on a roll. Back row: Billy Leonard, Marshall Awalt, Clayton McKay, Bob Leonard, Jerry Blake, Don Hiatt & Stephen Renault. Front row: Gary Morgan, Eddie Leonard, Dick Morgan, Jerry Williams, Glen Williams & Don Hosmer. White jersey: Barry Shelver. We only had 12 game uniforms so Barry, being only a lowly 8th grader didn’t get one. However, in the next game, against Leeds, Stephen got his nose broken, a not uncommon occurrence in those days, and was out for the season. This was a good thing for Barry cuz now he got a game uniform. I don’t know why Bill missed the team picture. This was the first football team Dunseith fielded since before the war and we took our lumps. We played Belcourt twice so got two wins but were humiliated by Leeds 60-13 and also beaten by Rolla, Towner and Bisbee twice for a record of 2-5. We were competitive in all but the Leeds game.
The next year, we won our first two games but in the second one, against Rolette, Don Hosmer’s head met Eddie Leonard’s knee and they were both knocked out of action. Since we only had three subs to start with, including 90 lb. Barry Shelver and 75 lb. Gary Woodford, we had to cancel the rest of the season.
Janice is right. Old school friends are special.Gary Morgan
Back row L to R: Billy Leonard, Marshall Awalt, Clayton McKay, Bob Leonard, Jerry Blake,
Don Hiatt & Stephen Renault. White jersey: Barry Shelver
Front row L to R: Gary Morgan, Eddie Leonard, Dick Morgan, Jerry Williams, Glen Williams & Don Hosmer

05/31/2017 (2528)

New England Cemetery
Posting from Jim Mellmer (“72):  Mandan, ND

 Jim Mellmer and crew went to New England today to put flowers and pay our respects to Pete and Viola Mellmer and Jim’s grandparents today.


Dunseith Trip
Posted by Don Martel:  Rosemount, MN

Sometimes we don’t notice the things we see frequently. When you have been away for some time, these same things become very interesting. So it was with the “Round  Barn”, for me.
How long has it been on the National Register of Historic Places?
Whoever owns it, is to be commend on its up keep.
I just now noticed that it is made of cement blocks.
I used to go to dances there, but I think it looks as good or better than 60 years ago.
Another interesting piece of Dunseith history.
Round barn 2528-1 round barn 2528-2 round barn 2528-3


Blog (602) posted on October 25, 2009

Posted on October 25, 2009

Harry Larson – Erling Landsverk’s first grade teacher

Story from Erling Landsverk (44): Portage, WI

Hi Gary:

The story is off to Janice Myhre, and I am attaching a copy for you along with many thanks for your help. I actually am thinking about publishing it. . Or perhaps include it in a book of short stories I have been working on. At 83 years of age, I guess I better do something before I begin to get elderly. I do spend a lot of time with my music. I play the guitar, both classical, and popular favorites along with Latin American and of course a smattering of rag time just to keep the audience from walking out too soon. Its been a great life, and now I can do some things I always wanted to pursue. Thanks again Gary for your most welcome help and kind words.

Kindest Regards


Erling, Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful well written story of your childhood school days with Harry Larson as your teacher. You bring back many memories to those of us a little younger too. You mention Florence Christianson in your story too. She married Vernon Williams. Several of her children are on our distribution. Lori is married to Ray Lagerquist, whom I know well.

Folks, Janice Myhre is Harry Larson’s daughter. She lives in Spokane, WA. Janice returned my phone call last week. We had a nice chat. She said her dad was dedicated to his teaching an absolutely loved every minute in the class room. Teaching was the love of his life. Until Erling got in touch with her, she had not known that her dad had taught at Loon Lake school. Harry Larson is listed in the Dunseith book as being hired to teach in Dunseith in 1937.

Folks, I have attached, in a Word Document, Erling’s story. I have also pasted a copy at the very end of today’s blog.

San Haven

Reply from Jeri (Fosbert) Neameyer wife of Gordon Neameyer (55):Moorhead, MN

Seeing my aunt and uncle Grace and Benny Frovarp mentioned in Brenda Hoffman’s article I just have to share a little about the time we would visit with Grace and Benny. My sisters and I would spend a couple days every year with them and playing with Sharon and Charlene Pearson. They knew where to go and we would go through the tunnels and remember them being very hot. Had lots of treats at the commissary and ate in the dining room. I thought the apartment that the Pearson lived in was the greatest, it was at the top of the one building and could look out and see all over the area. It was fun times at San Haven. I remember the Hoffman name but Brenda was much younger. I think they lived in one of those green houses along the tunnel sidewalk. I thought those people had it made–they never had to clean house or cook meals.

I read about all of you having had Don Johnson as a teacher and I should have wrtten about how we in Rolette also had Don as our choir director when he taught at Rolette High School in the late 50’s. He was very well liked and remember he always closed his concerts with “The Lord Bless You and Keep You.” He alwys had everybody singing there best.

Jeri Neameyer

San Haven

Reply from Bob Hosmer (56): Lynnwood, WA

Hi Gary and all,

All the memories of San Haven and Mona Johnson’s remarks on the Laundry spurs me to comment as well.

One summer (or part of a summer) in the ’50s, I worked with Chuck and Mona at the Laundry as a teenager.

I remember the steaming of the prepared soap in the barrels used in those big washing machines. It was an amazing experience working with them–watching Chuck dump those bloody gauzes in the floor sink and running cold water over them to get all that blood washed out before washing them and getting them ready for use in OR again. They both were so gracious and patient with me during that summer. And seeing how husband and wife worked together as a team made a deep, lasting impact on me; so that my own marriage operates as a husband and wife team in all our work.

I miss the beauty of San Haven. I loved to go there whenever I could. We used to bicycle there, run in the tunnels and enjoy the freshness of everything. Once in a while the family would go up to have dinner on a Sunday in the dining room. It’s hard to go back and see the destruction done to the facility. But the memories are precious. Bob Hosmer

San Haven

Reply from Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC

I found Brenda Hoffmans memories of the San interesting. It’s like it was a little suburb of Dunseith,with it’s own stories within it self. I never realized so many families lived up there.

I worked night shift at the San for like 2years with my cousin David Casavant,and Gerard Barbot,after moving back to N.Dakota when my brother Jimmy got burned at his graduation party. I remember it being alot of fun,playing cards all night and telling ghost stories.You could really get attached to some of the patients.

I remember from where we lived on the farm,at sunset during the summer months,the sun would hit the windows of the San,and it would look like the whole place was on fire. I remember us kids would come running in the house hollering,”Mama!Mama! the Sans on fire! The first time we said it, it startled her,but after that she was like “whatever”.

Brenda,don’t worry about your spelling,no one can be as bad as me. It was the only subject in school I was good at,but as the years go by it looks like my spelling has gone the way of my “math,and history” grades. LOL …you know it’s bad when the computer age even offers spell check…and I still can’t get it right….don’t know how to use… Oh but lifes Great! Ms.Aggie

Brandon Halvorson

From Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND.

Hey there Gary and all,
Its Saturday afternoon in Bottineau town. I just rang up Ed
Berg, maternal Grandpa of Brandon Halvorson and inquired how that
cowboy is getting along. Grandpa Ed told me, Brandon is out of the
hospital and under the TLC of his mom Becky.
I said, “I suppose if I asked Brandon how he was doing he
would have, responded with a doing fine and shrugged it off.
Grandpa Ed said, “Yes, he would but, Brandon will have a long,slow
recovery probably up to three months. He’s in a lot of pain, as his
muscles were severely damaged. The doctors told him broken bones
would have been far less painful , taken less time to heal, and he
needs to also recover from that concussion. ”
Lets all continue sending warm thoughts and get well
wishes to Brandon the Halvorson cowboy who hung on in the saddle as
long as he could, then survived many of pounds of horseflesh rolling
over, squishing him in the muck and says……… “doin fine”.
Thanks. Vickie


Reply from Keith Pladson (66): Stafford, VA

Like you, I’m far from being a great bowler. But I enjoy the game regardless of what my average is. We are a money league, but also a fun league. The difference is that on the real money leagues, the players are very competitive, the prize fund is higher (thus it costs more to bowl) and many bowlers carry averages of well over 200. I’ve bowled on some of those and never really enjoyed them — too competitive. In contrast, our league is all about having a good time, and if you win some money at the end of the season, great! That doesn’t mean our bowlers aren’t competitive, they (we) are, but it’s just not the same. We have bowlers with averages of 220 or higher, but we also have many who carry averages of around 100. As for me, I’m somewhere in the middle. Last year I finished the year with a 172 (which is right around where I usually am). Unfortunately, this year (through week 6 of 32) I’ve been in a bit of a slump and am struggling to stay above 160. Oh well, there are many weeks to go. Keith Pladson (66)

Keith, It’s nice to be competitive, but having fun is the name of the sport. I inquired about the bowling fees for pleasure bowling here in the Philippines and one can choose to pay by the game or by the hour. By the game it’s $1.20. The hourly lane rate is $3.00. Our league collects $1.00 per game from each of it’s players and then pays the hourly rate. Our league makes money on the deal.

Reply to Angelina Metcalfe, Gary’s Granddaughter

From Ele Dietrich Slyter (69): Dunseith, ND.

A few years ago I heard of a diet that helps with some seizure patients. It is called the Ketogenic Diet (spelling?) and has done wonders for a lot of people. Johns Hopkins hospital was in charge of this diet, but that may have changed. Apparently, this diet can actually stop the seizures, but it is very strict and must be done very carefully under doctors supervision. If it works the patient does not have to be on it for the rest of their lives either. Johns Hopkins published an article that stated even those who did not stop having seizures at least were helped in that the episodes became less severe and did not happen as often. They said no one has regretted trying the diet.

Just a thought that may help Angelina, or at least be something that they may want to look into for her.


Erling Landsverk’s Story



The ensuing story is an account of my experience with an unforgettable individual who was also my teacher during my first year of elementary school.

It is important to remember that although I relate this story as a young boy, much of my understanding and comments about him, came later as a result of my vivid memory of what he did as a teacher and why. The setting of this story is equally important, because it reflects the economic conditions of our country,the feeling of distrust of our elected officials, and the banking industry, coupled with a drought so severe as to challenge that ofOklahomaduring the same time period. It was a beautiful area that at times was uninviting due to extreme cold, and unpredictable weather.However this same area wasinhabited by strong willed and determined high plains people that looked for ways to solve their problems, and did so with resolve.These same people had a high regard for education, and were determined to ensure a proper education for their offspring’s.My own parents were among those great folks for which I am most grateful.Many of the young students in this area went on to perform a great service to their community, their State and our Country.I am certain that the teacher in this story must have had an influence on many of these during his teaching career.

The year was 1933, Franklin D. Roosevelt had just been sworn in as our new president, and the country was in the depths of a severe depression.This story takes place in theTurtleMountainsregion ofNorth Dakotathat was suffering a drought that was causing indescribable damage to the land and its inhabitants. This all sounds quite grim given the immediate outlook at that time, but to a 6 year old boy beginning his first day of school, nothing seemed to matter except the new adventure of attending school.The hot dry days of summer passed slowly it seemed, but finally the day arrived, and I trooped off with my three older siblings (Rolf, Borghild, & Ossie) into the next chapter of my life.

We walked on wagon trails that wound through deep woods, around meadows and over dry creek beds for a mile and a half until we caught sight of the little school.There were children playing near the building and then I saw a tall man waiting on the steps of the school. I asked my siblings who he was, and they said that he must be the new teacher they had learned was going to teach us this year.As we drew near he calledouta greeting to my older siblings, and asked their names, after looking at a note book he had in his hand, he turned to me asked them , “who is this young man? They told him that I was their younger brother and that I was just starting my first year. He smiled shook my hand and asked, can you tell me your name?I stammered my name, Erling, and he smiled and said “you must be Norwegian”.I nodded and he directed me inside to a seat. After a few minutes he took a small bell from his desk, went out on the porch and rang it summoning everyone inside to begin school. He began by calling out names and asked the pupil what grade he or she was in, then he seated them at appropriate desks. This took only a short time, but at the end of the seating arrangement he noticed four boys who looked older than my oldest brother Rolf, and Rolf was 14 years old.The teacher asked them if they wanted to attend classes.They told him that they were just going to watch.The teacher said that this would not do, and they should leave.The leader of the group stepped forward a few paces towards the teacher and said that they did not have to leave and that they were going to stay. After hearing this the Teacher took a couple of quick steps toward the leader, grabbed him by his shirt front and loudly told him, “I said leave”, whereupon he gave the boy a shove that sent him sprawling in the aisle.There was a dead silence in the room, and the big boys looked at the Teacher in astonishment and quickly left the school.The Teacher turned to the students in the class room and said, “Those bullies won’t bother you any more and you are here to learn and I intend to see that you do”.I learned later that the boys that the Teacher had directed to leave had been bullying students and intimidating lady teachers for the past couple of years, and so the school officials felt that it was time to stop it.That was quickly accomplished by our new Teacher, Mr. Harry Larson! That was his name and as he stood at the front of the room he wrote his name on the blackboard, repeated his name and told us that we could address him as Mr. Larson, or Teacher, and that he was there to help everyone learn and ask him questions anytime except for the time he was conducting a class.

Mr. Larson began with my two classmates and myself, by giving us instructions on how to write our names. And to keep practicing until we could do it well. He continued by giving us an encouraging word, he must have known how surprised and fearful we were after the initial scuffle that took place. His manner with us was entirely different and we began to look at him with admiration and wonder, as I believe all the students did. The morning recess came and ended to soon we thought. Mr. Larson continued to assign work to each class until the noon hour.We all had our lunch and began playing when Mr. Larson came out to the small playground and called everyone to gather around.After all were near, he asked how many of us would like a place to play ball. Everyone held up their hands or shouted yes.Mr. Larson pointed out an area east of the school and said, we will have to clear that land right there and we will begin tomorrow, and I expect you to all help during your morning and noon recess. The very next day, Mr. Larson brought an axe and at the morning recess instructed the older boys to pile up the small trees and brush as he cut it. He gave the girls a rake and a basket and told them to haul the leaves and twigs to a designated place off the playground.Everyone had something to do, and after about two weeks of hard work, the area had been cleared of the undergrowth and small trees.A nearby farmer brought a horse drawn disc over and leveled the ground so the players could run without stumbling.Mr. Larson gathered us all together at the new ball field and told us that we had a new ball diamond because we were willing to work and build one.Then he said the same applies to your school work, if you want to learn and have good grades, you must work for it. We all grew quiet; I will always remember that lesson. Looking back, onecould say it was basic, but I think it was more than a simple basic lesson, consider how we learned to set goals, we learned creativity and planning, we learned working cooperatively for a common goal, we learned consideration and compassion for each other as we moved towardsthe final outcome. Mr. Larson was more than a teacher of reading, writing and arithmetic.He taught human values that would sustain us for a lifetime.

We had given up some of our play time to achieve a ball field, but we had not given up class time, and with the encouraging words from Mr. Larson, the classes forged ahead with surprising result. Report cards that we all compared before bringing them home for our parents to inspect and sign began to show better and higher achievement signs.Deportment was also considered quite important by Mr. Larson, and the improvement in that area was also evident. I remember listening to older classes recite, and at times Mr. Larson would use a competitive quiz to spark more interest, and just when one would think he would only ask those who were waving their hands, he would walk down to the silent student and quietly ask for an answer, to the question he had just posed.Most times the student knew the answer but was to shy to enter into the noisy portion of the quiz.By going down to the student and receiving a correct answer he would say loudly, “that is correct” I know this helped the shy student build up self confidence.I know, because Mr. Larson also used this practice on myself, for which I am most grateful.He seemed to have an uncanny way of increasing a students desire to learn.

In those early days, there was no PTA, but Mr. Larson, simply visited the homes of the children that attendedLoonLakeSchool# 2.This gave him the opportunity to discuss the child’s progress with the parents, and to get an understanding of the child’s home life and get acquainted with the parents. As I reflected on these visits, it became increasingly apparent that he was accomplishing more than a single purpose, he began a friendly relationship with the parents, he looked for anything that might be the cause of a behavioral problem, if there were any and also find ways to improve the students study skills. By late October he had completed his visits to the families, and of course he had also visited our home.On that day, he walked home with us, and mother invited him to stay for supper.He accepted, and as the meal progressed, he discussed each of us with our parents.It went quite well for all of us and after the discussion, he looked around at us and said, they are doing quite well, but there is always room for improvement.I believe that was his way of saying that we were all doing O K. but he always encouraged us to do better.WhileMr. Larson, Mother and Dad were finishing their coffee, Mr. Larson mentioned that he had learned of our parents talents for music, and asked if they would play a couple of numbers for him. Mother and Dad never refused a request if they had time, so Mother seated herself at the piano and Dad took down his Violin and they proceeded to play a couple of classical numbers. Then Dad turned to me and said why don’t you get the banjo and show Mr. Larson how you can play.I had pestered my Dad for the past year to help me learn some simple chords on the banjo, and Dad was more than happy to do that, but I was pretty nervous when it came to playing for Mr. Larson, but Dad asked me, and I knew better than to disobey.We all three played some folk tunes, with my brother Ossie chiming in with his harmonica.When we finished Mr. Larson applauded and said he enjoyed the entertainment, then he excused himself and said he had to leave. After he left, Mother and Dad remarked that he certainly appeared to be a good man and surely was interested in our education,

Mr. Larson had innovative skills in dealing with nearly everything he was faced with.As winter came on snowy and cold, the recess activities were addressed in the most unusual ways. Because of the depression, the school district had no funds for playground equipment, so Mr. Larson proceeded to invent team games, using whatever materials were at hand, such as fire wood, logs, and an imaginative mind.The result was a game called by steal stix. A very exciting game that gave all the students an opportunity to participate.The game provided great physical exercise, good balance and quick decisions on the part of the players.This game was played outside only when weather permitted.On bad days, Mr. Larson organized tic tac toe contests between teams of players, and they used the two large blackboards at the front of the room. He used the little board on the east side of the room to teach us younger folks how to play the game. Sometimes he even let us make paper airplanes, and then he instructed us about air currents by flying a paper airplane over the warm air register atthe front of the room, explainingthat warm air rises and cold air falls toward the ground, and how it affects airplanes. A short physics lesson to think about.He applied learning to virtually everything including our recreational time. Attendance was very good, and reflecting on it years later, it was because he used many unusual ways of teaching that opened up new worlds for the students, and the students found themselves eager to learn more.

The days passed quickly and soon we found ourselves preparing for the annual Christmas program. Mr. Larson approached the program with the same enthusiasm as other academic work.He handed out dialogues, for the Nativity scene, then he listened to trial readings, and chose the participants by their ability to perform well, giving other parts to those who preferred less exposure. Everyone worked hard on their parts, and Mr. Larson was very determined to teach all of us the true meaning of Christmas, in the Christian sense, and avoided chatter about Old Saint Nicholas, or Santa Claus, although he never objected to students talking about it on their own time.The Christmas Carols were rehearsed and rehearsed until Mr. Larson was satisfied with the performance. On the day before the program, Mr. Larson asked me to bring my banjo to school. During our final practice, Mr. Larson asked me to play the banjo and then he assembled about 6 boys and told them to sing Oh Susannah, while I played the Banjo. Everyone knew the words because the song was heard a lot and was heard on many records of vaudeville entertainers.After he heard us, Mr. Larson said he was going to have us entertain the next night. The evening of the Christmas program was a beautiful and somewhat warmer evening, and our little school was filled to overflowing with parents and neighbors. The Program was an important part of the school curriculum, and about the only live entertainment in our little neighborhood, given the state of the nation, and the distance to the nearest town. The program went well, and just before the closing Carol, Mr. Larson trooped out myself and the 6s boys including my brother Ossie, and with a smile announced to the people gathered in the school room that he had a special treat for everyone, where upon he signaled to us to begin.He had placed some old straw hats on our heads and we sang Oh Susannah at the top of our lungs with me doing my best to play the banjo.At the end of our number the applause was deafening.The closing carol was Silent Night, Holy Night, and Mr. Larson asked everyone to join with the students in that beautiful Christmas song. The response was immediate as if the whole world were raising their voices to Heaven. Whenever I recall that particular Christmas, I believe something special happened that night and the entire crowd sang as one that brought a sacred aura into our little school. Somehow, Mr.Larson had managed to reach the people witha message of hope that Christmas that brought them peace of mind despite the many problems that prevailed, and also to give theman opportunity to laugh and enjoy our little act, all in a way that must have given anxious parents a more positiveand optimistic outlook. Harry Larson distributed the bags of candy for all the children, including yours truly and when he handed me my bag he whispered a thank you for the banjo music. Everyone there exchanged Christmas greetings and enjoyed a good old fashioned visiting session.Then it was a ride home on the bob sled and enjoy the two weeks of vacation ahead.

When we returned after our Christmas vacation, we found that we had more snow to walk through and the temperature seemed determined to stay below zero most of the time.No Matter, Mr. Larson continued to urge all of us to improve in our particular grade, and make every effort to make the last half of the year just as good as or better than the first half.I found myself and my classmates doing work in the second grade, Mr. Larson also encouraged us to memorize many things because he said when you have memorized them you will always remember them when you need them the most. I also remember his lesson in honesty and ethics very well.One of the students in a higher grade was caught cheating on a test they were taking.Mr. Larson asked the student why he hadn’t studied the text book so he would know the answers to the test questions.Then he said, “If you got away with cheating, do you think it would be fair to deceive your parents by having a grade you didn’t deserve”.Then he turned to the rest of the class and said that if you cheat on a test you are only cheating yourself, because sooner or later you will be found out, and then you would be considered not trust worthy and undependable.He explained further that if you fail to get a top grade, at least the grade you got was an honest one and that if you really want to you can improve by studying harder. The school year ended with all of the students maintaining a great attendance record, and a marked improvement in their grades,learned this from my older siblings.Mr. Larson did not return to LoonLakeSchoolthe next year, and we missed his way of making learning an interesting way of life.I saw Mr. Larson 4 years later when our family moved to Dunseith for one winter, and our 5th grade class had a math class across the hall in an adjoining classroom.I walked into the class room and looked at the front for the teacher and there was Mr. Larson. He noticed me at about the same time, and he came to my desk and called me by my name, shook my hand and asked about myself.I was delighted to receive so much attention from him, but then I remembered that he treated all his students that way.I never saw My Teacher after that, but I am often reminded of him and have never forgotten the way he taught, and great lessons he taught us all

He made our schoolwork an adventure in learning, which only encouraged us to study harder and learn more.We also learned about Ethics, Honesty, Compassion for others, Fair Play, Courtesy, working together respect and Belief in Deity, Help one another.I am sure that many teachers work very hard to help their students in similar ways, but to me Harry Larson is the epitamy of what a teacher should be. Finally I would be remiss if I didn’t relatethis humorous incidentthat aptlydescribeshim as a teacher; My sister borg had the good fortune or seeing him at one the earliestall school reunions held at Dunseith, wherein the course ofdiscussing old memories she asked if he remembered how embarrassed her and her class mate Florence Christianson were when he had them demonstrate some foolish prank they weredoing when Mr. Larson caught them, andthen suggested firmly that they should perform this prank in front of the entire school, which they did.Yes he said, however he said, “you deserved it didn’t you”?He laughed and gave her a hug.

Most of us have a teacher or someone special whom we remember with fondness and respect.I am certain that Harry Larson has many of his former students including those who are not with us now that number in the hundreds as someone we all remembering with fondness and respect.

05/26/2017 (2527)

Cemetery Trip
Posting from Don Martel (DHS Principal):  Rosemount, MN

Hi Gary,

Around this time, every year, Colleen and I make our annual trip to the Dunseith-Rolette area to decorate and take care of the graves of our loved ones.

We have her parents graves, Ed & Florence Conroy, at Riverview cemetery near Dunseith.

Her paternal (Conroy) grandparents and  aunts and uncles at the Crary  Cemetery, east of Devils Lake.

My parents, Albert & Irene Martel and brother Rick, at Sacred Heart cemetery near Rolette.  My paternal grandparents, Arthur and Martha Martel, and several great aunts at St. Mary’s Cemetery (Maryville) south of Belcourt.

Some years it entails a lot of work, filling holes, pulling weeds, trimming trees or bushes, etc.  Most years it involves only decorating the graves, because the cemeteries are in immaculate condition.  Congratulations and thank you to the local people and caretakers.

It is a labor of love, but not all work.  We usually encounter some of our friends from years gone by and enjoy a good visit, maybe even have lunch together. (Can’t wait for my annual “Dales Burger”, and yes I can eat the whole thing).

Thanks again Gary for keeping us all connected.

Don & Colleen(Conroy) Martel


Blog (601) posted on October 24, 2009

Condolences to Raphael Poitra and his family
From Ron Longie (65): Yakima WA


It is with great sadness that I write this, my heart goes out to Raphael and his family for their loss. The reunion of 2007 was so much fun seeing the class of (65) especially Pete and Raphael, I will always keep those few days very near to me. May the good Lord keep you in the palm of his hand, and help you through your time of sorrow.

Ron Longie

Class of 65 reunion – July 12, 2007
Raphael Poitra and Pete Gillis


Janice Metcalfe Poitra’s funeral
From Ele Dietrich Slyter (69): Dunseith, ND.
Vickie is very right..it was a very beautiful day today, one too nice to say good bye in. The congregation was very diverse and a testament to a
very well loved and respected lady. Hillbilly’s, prairie dogs and city dwellers alike shall not forget her. The pastor said something about her dying of a weak heart and then went on to disagree with that. Oh how right he is. Janice had one of the strongest hearts I have ever had the pleasure to find. She was so loving, giving, humble and strong. Elaine mentioned that Janice was also a take charge type of person and that she, at the age of 2, was ‘bossy’ and unafraid to put people in their place when need be. We should all take a lesson from her. I am also reminded today of the poem ‘Foot Prints In the Sand”. There were many prints left in the sand today, but none were left by two people. HE carried us through this day, so there is only one set there for all to see.
Perhaps I have not written this very well, but I think all will understand how special Janice is/was, and what a change her passing will make in all of us.
Thank you so very much for all you do for all of us Gary.
Janice Metcalfe Poitra’s funeral
From Geri (Metcalfe 59) & Chuck Munro:
Hi Gary and friends,
We have just returned from Dunseith today after the visitation/funeral of our cousin, Janice (Metcalfe) Poitra. What an amazing two days it has been, to see so many of our old friends from the Kelvin and Dunseith community. Dick, Brenda and Ron, it was wonderful to hear your music and to hear you sing, Dick, “The Wayfaring Stranger” at my cousin’s funeral. We had a warm and loving visit with so many from the area–we love those dear hearts and gentle people. The people of Peace Lutheran Church did a great job of preparing food, and ministering to those of us who were present in their church. As Lea Rae said this week, we are grateful for those who give so much of themselves to keep the church going and make it available for funerals/weddings.It was great to see so many of you from the Cruise, and we hope to gather with many more in 2012. Gary and Bernadette were so totally organized and everything fell into place for such a smooth reunion in Seattle, and the cruise that followed. Bernadette is the beautiful lady behind the successful guy that Gary is—we appreciated you all so much. It was fun to see pictures of your home and improvements that have been made to the area surrounding you.

Sincerely, Geri (Metcalfe) and Chuck Munro

Geri, Thank you so much for the very nice compliment. Yes we are gearing up for another cruise, Presidents Day week in February 2012, in the Caribbean. Phyllis McKay and Bill Grimme will we working with us putting this one together. As soon as the cruise schedules are published, we will be deciding on a cruise line and a cruise. At this time we know the date and that it will be a Caribbean cruise so folks can start making their plans. With this being the 2nd cruise and being in the Caribbean and in the Winter months, we are anticipating a larger group with this cruise. The Caribbean Cruise prices I think are less too. Feb. 2012 is only a little over two years away.
About our home and those pictures I sent last week. We are currently in the process of installing Ceramic Tile on the upper area between my workshop and our office and also on the wall below the recently installed railing. When it’s finished, I’ll send another picture. Gary
The Morgan’s
From Kay Hosmer (77): Crown Point, Ind.
Reply to Dick and Gary Morgan from Kay Hosmer (’77) – I had warm fuzzy feelings after reading the messages from Dick and Gary. I grew up a block away from Kenny and Margie; they were significant members of the “older generation” to me. Also, I enjoyed a wonderful relationship with John Morgan’s family in that I baby sat for his children for many years in Dunseith. Mike, Greg and Beth were special children and I was even invited to attend a summer vacation with them in MN. The whole Morgan family was dear to me.
Reply from Sharon Zorn Gerdes (62): Windsor, CO
Gary, I don’t know Trish Clayburgh, but she sure has a beautiful horse. Also wanted to mention some of my most favorite memories of San Haven was the excellent food. The baker up there was amazing !! Lots of good people, and a very unique and beautiful place. Its very sad and unnecessary that it could have been destroyed it was. Thank you for the tremendous job you are doing, this blog is my number one priority daily
Sharon, Yes that is a beautiful horse with a beautiful rider that Trish Larson Clayburgh has. Gary
San Haven History
From Mona Dionne Johnson (48): Lake Metigoshe, ND.
Gary: Brenda Hoffman asked me to give a little history of San Haven, so —

Re: A little history regarding my husband, Chuck & the Laundry, etc. at San Haven

Chuck was working under his brother, Bud, when Bud decided to go to Alaska, and Chuck got the job and Dr. Loeb sent him to Laundry Mgt. School in Iowa. Chuck was living in Bismarck before coming to San Haven. His dad started up laundries in Bismarck & in Montana and elsewhere. When his dad came to the San in ’38, he started making all soap used in the laundry. It was made in big barrels, with a pipe (steam) down the middle to cook it. That was carried on with Bud and Chuck doing it until in the late 50’s or early 60’s. Saved the State a LOT of money ! I continued to work at the San for about 6 months after we moved to Bottineau, then began work at St. Andrew’s Hospital in Bottineau in Mar. ’66. When I headed the Dietary Dept. just prior to going to work in Bottineu, I had about 33 people under me. Chuck continued on and in the years prior to closing, he was also Safety Officer and Housekeeping Dept. Head in addition to Laundry Mgr. He was there for the closing in Feb. ’88.
Chuck and I attended all our high school years together in Dunseith and graduated in ’48. My Dad farmed in the early years of my life, and in ’38 when he got hailed out, he bought the store and it included the post office in Thorne, ND (village between Rolette & Dunseith) and retired in Rolette. I kept store (worked) for him a lot during the World War II years when he helped his brother harvesting. I even got to help him shocking the grain bundles.I probably wasn’t much help, as you can imagine little old me with a bundle, but I was game and we all did our part during the war.
I will try to give a little history (don’t know if people will be interested) of the care and progress in the treatment of TB at San Haven after I began working March ’51 , at a later time.
Mona Johnson ’48

San Haven History
From Brenda Hoffman (68): Greenville, SC
First, I want to apologize for not spelling names correctly. I remembered seconds after sending my original emails to Gary that Dr. Loeb is the correct spelling, not Laub. And I had no idea how to correctly spell the Boguslowski’s name. So if anyone notices errors, please help me correct them!

I believe San Haven was founded in or near 1912. The original campus consisted of the Administration Building (Ad building which later housed the Commissary and Post Office and the most – I thought- upscale apartments at the San – Barbara Schlat (Occupational Therapy and former patient), Marjorie Lilico (office); Clifford (power house) and Maxine (office) Magnuson; Benny (Commissary/Post Office and former patient) and Grace (nurse) Frovarb and Edna M?
Prior to the discovery of the penicillin family of antibiotics, there were no certain cures for the strain of TB prevalent at the time. Many doctors felt that cold, crisp air and fresh, wholesome food was the best solution. North Dakota selected the Turtle Mountains as their sight for obvious reasons, not the least being the ability to isolate the TB population. In addition to the nude sunbathing and sleeping on the outdoor porch in the winter, doctors often removed a patients lung – that particular treatment required removing some ribs also. I believe Barbara Schaalt had that treatment. When I was a very little girl, I remember Mom having pneumo treatments – deflating her lungs. I’m guessing that treatment was an offshoot of the treatments prior to penicillin and just retained for whatever reason. I remember either Herc Nicholas or Benny Frovarb laughing about how a group of male TB patients all lived in the cottage that ended up being my family’s home in 1959. All of the patients had to provide sputum for a daily or weekly test. They started getting a dog to provide sputum for one of the guys and yet the test always remained the same!
The Children’s Building was a the children’s building. A number of families had both the mother and father hospitalized for TB and their children lived in the Children’s Building. Also guessing that those patients who were school age were housed there or received schooling there. In the mid 1950s, the school part was closed down and all of the books thrown – large rolling laundry carts of them. My Mom managed to save series like the Bobbsie Twins, Pollyanna and even All Quiet on the Western Front. I read everyone of those books at least once and I still love artwork from the early 1900s because of them.
Somehow, and I never questioned it at the time, the San Commissary seemed to receive a large number of comic books and paperback books without covers. Benny would sell us a package of 10 coverless comic books for a quarter and an extremely reduced paperback rate. Superman, Archie, Batman and Katy Keene were comic book favorites and paperback mysteries. I pretty much read anything I could get my hands on – including True Story and magazines about the US West – someone always seemed to be cutting their foot off to escape a trap!
A number of San patients were upset because they could see the cemetery near Lake Shutte from their windows. As I understand it, the bodies were finally moved. But then, that might have been a false piece of information as my buddy, Brian Johnson and I loved to take our peanut butter sandwiches and hike to the cemetery and eat those sandwiches near a remaining tombstone with a little lamb and a girl’s name contemplating what happened to that little girl. I know – odd but true!
I don’t know about other parts of the world but both the United States and Europe created TB Sanatoriums – a couple of books were written by TB patients in the Switz Alps sanatoriums in the late 1800’s and early 1900s.
Eating at the dining room was awesome. Granted the food was bland (I used to love airplane food because it reminded me of home!), but the setting was lovely. We had linen tablecloths and each family had their own table – the tables were square and seated four people. I remember Mom’s horror the day she discovered that someone had sat at our table and eaten our peanut butter. The most spectacular dining experience of the year was Christmas Eve. Everett Olson was the head of the dietary kitchens when I was a little girl and he set the standard for the Christmas Eve feast (all Scandinavian of course with a name like Olson!). So every Christmas Eve we had ludafist, lefsa, rosettes, oyster stew and krumcaca. There was a huge Christmas Tree in front of the food service area, lit candles on the table, Christmas decorations throughout and Christmas music provided by Eva Trafford’s record player. My family always dressed up and I considered that meal the start of Christmas.
Meal service started at 6:00, 11:00 and 5:00. Dad always needed to be early to everything so every evening our family paraded through the tunnel, when we lived in the Children’s Building, or down the sidewalk to the Dining Room to ensure that we were there at least 15 minutes before the doors opened. I had many great hours talking to San employees as they also waited for the doors to open.
My first summer job at age 16 was working in the hospital kitchens. I met some wonderful people working there, but it was not the most interesting job – washing dishes in such hot water with so many chemicals that the skin on my hands peeled. At 17, my summer job was working in the employee kitchen reporting to Eva Trafford. Whoa. Did she run a tight ship. K. Flynn, Jenny Bouche (sp?) and I (esp. K and I) tried to maneuver around her but that was not an easy task! That’s when I also worked with Cynthia Johnson, Alice, Natilie Kalk and so many other nice women. Eva Trafford’s brother ended up marrying Veona Schocker – my Dad’s cousin who was hospitalized at the San for 13 years.
In the 50s and 60s, we kids must have been the bane of our parents existence! Down the hill from the Chuck Johnson cottage was our cement swimming pool and outdoor grill. Charlene once decided that we should have warmer water in the pool so she used all hot water to fill it. Guess that when she used up all of the San’s hot water, Chuck Johnson at the laundry and the power house guys weren’t exactly pleased with her!
When I was very young, some of the adults converted the unused barn (the San used to have horses to haul garbage and I think milk cows) into a skating rink. I think the barn was eventually torn down.
Summer and fall nights, we would roast marshmallows and cook hot dogs in the outdoor grill. In the winter, we would use that hill to slide down. It was absolutely perfect especially the large bump halfway down! Across the sidewalk leading to the doctors house and down from the Pearsons, was our playground – slide, swings, sand box and merry-go-round. And Halloween! Everyone at the San handed out complete candy bars, not that penny candy stuff – we made some hauls!
Gary Metcalfe’s (57) granddaughter, Angelina
From Vickie Metcalfe (67): Bottineau, ND.
Gary and friends,
How many of you have “hearts delight”?
Yesterday, I e-mailed all my Metcalfe Kith and Kin and told them of the Dunseith communities fond farewell of Janice yesterday. I also shared and expressed wonder at Janice’s two grandkid’s; I refer to them as her “hearts delight”. They are just so loving, kind, polite, fun and healthy.
I, the cousin was warmed and delighted with their joyful exuberance!
As many of you know, my Metcalfe cousin Gary Metcalfe and his wife Sue went to Alaska on the cruise this past summer with their daughter Leah and granddaughter Angelina.
Angelina is Gary’s “heart’s delight”. His little Lina lives each day with health issues including juvenile diabetes and Pitit mal seizures.
I received a heartfelt e-mail from Sue today and with her permission am sharing with you, our eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeex-tended Dunseith Community. As ever. Vickie

from Sue Metcalfe.

Today we are requesting prayer for Angelina, my granddaughter. She is seven years old and in first grade. She has been having petit mal seizures for about a year and a half, but since mid October they have increase dramatically. We would like to have prayers covering her today for wisdom in knowing how to control the seizures. She has “stare offs” and comes right back to where she was before it started. She is going to school this week, but it is difficult. Prognosis is that she will outgrow these seizures in time, but until then we need to know how to control them so she can function. She is a fisty little girl, so I am certain that she will overcome this situation. Our desire is for it to happen soon. For God to protect her and heal her and lead her parents and drs. to the right treatment for her. Thank you all for your prayers. Sue
Angelina Metcalfe with
Gary & Sue above
Maryann Casavants Boucher’s (67) email address: Rolette, ND
Posted by Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC
Hi Gary
Just got a message from my sista Maryann,she would like to be connected to the Dunseith blog. I’m not sure if you have her old e-mail but this is her new one,just a tad bit of a change. It is as follows: Thanks Gary for all your hard work keeping us all connected. Ms.Aggie
P.S. The count so far is 10 for the mini-reunion.
Folks, Please let Aggie know if you are interested in attending the Mini-Reunion that she and Verena Gillis are planning in the Dunseith area. They would like to know before December 1st so they can make all the plans. The place will be determined by the number of folks interested in attending. I’m sure hoping there will be more than 10 that plan on attending. I’m not sure of the allowance for growth once they’ve determined a location, so if you are the least bit interested in attending please let them know. Gary
Date: May 22,2010
Time: Social Hour 4:00pm to 6:00pm
Cook Out: 6:00pm to 8:00pm
Music & Hanging Out : 8:00pm to Midnight
Band: Hwy 43…AKA Dick & Brenda Johnson & Ron Hett
Reply from Sybil Johnson: Cheyenne, WY.
I too, received a message on Facebook from you, but because I hesitated to open it, according to your message here, I was lucky. I deleted it as soon as I saw it. I didnt think it was from you. For one thing, you are too busy to send out invites to have your name placed on our friends list. Thank you for the alert. Sybil Johnson
Sybil, I did not realize that the person who sent me that message on Face Book really didn’t send it. When I opened that message I was asked if I trusted the source because there was a potential problem. I trusted that is was OK and opened it. When I opened it, it down loaded a file that sent weird messages to all my friends listed in Face Book. I played hell getting that out of my computer too. What I ended up doing was restoring my computer to a previous state earlier in the day. The message I opened with the virus was from a Dunseith Alumni too. I got messages from several other folks in Face Book too with weird messages that are not part of the Dunseith Alumni that I did not open. I think this was a ramped virus that affected many Face Book folks. Gary
George Gottbreht & K.C. Sine hunting story
From Sharron Shen (59): Everett, WA.
A few weeks ago I told George that the 1930 census made a record of veterans; those that had served in the first world war are indicated by “WW”. I was amazed and edified to see our well known friend K.C. Sine had stepped forward to serve although he had come to this country so few years before in 1912. George knew this. I had just failed to note it in the Centennial book. George told me he had stopped to see Grandpa George one afternoon, looking for some small change for retail activity at KC’s. Grandpa had only two pennies; he told George to go ahead and ask for his “best” deal. “Tell K.C. your grandpa sent you!” That is exactly what George did. K.C. studied his candy shelves making this and that selection – not too much, not too little. I think we all received a splendid and more than fair deal with this absent friend and Vet.Loved the story of K.C., the marksman; thanks for that. George said that K.C. and Dale were quite the duck hunting buddies. K.C. would travel north to the hill lakes in his small pickup and dad would meet him there. On one occasion George the boy was with dad, he said K.C. stood about 100 ft in front and would get off one shot with each flight of ducks; dad always fired 3 shots in succession. If the ducks were pushed up by the first blast, all the better; Dale’s favorite target was the high flying blue bills. George, about age 8, was their retriever and he had been directed to make small piles of 5 or 6 ducks near surrounding trees. After an hour of serious shooting it was time to leave. Dad then quietly told George to load up the bed of K.C.’s pickup; dad and K.C. would tell their tales and other lies and have a few laughs. K.C. pulled out first and stopped at the first rise, looked back into the truck bed and shouted “Gosh darn, Dale!” George is certain that K.C. must have made several stops on the way home to distribute a few ducks here and a few there of the 50+ kill. Dad would often do this as well and the next day 5 or 6 very fit carcasses would arrive at mom’s door for her attention. Everyone had large families and welcomed the game meat whether fish, fowl or venison.

Game laws and limits were approved of by Dale, but often observed in the breach. Today, the blue bill population is far less than in the 40’s and 50’s. Studies show that the warming of the tundra where they breed is responsible. This is just a CYA disclaimer! I do not want you to be scandalized by the two esteemed men in this story.

The picture attached is of Ernest Boucher and Dale Gottbreht taken after August 4th, 1943. Uncle Ernie had a good laugh when he saw this old picture and remarked about dad’s love of fishing and hunting. Alma would not have allowed Dale to take his wee son in that shallow bottomed boat. He was pictured on shore and at their cabin taken at Lake Shandy, MB. George and Ronnie joked about needing good a bailing can and emergency wire with that skiff! The tail of the pickup shown reminded me of Kassam C. Sine.

Oh God! Your sea is so great, our boats are so small! Not my words, but a fine prayer. Sharron

Dale Gottbreht & Ernest Boucher

05/24/2017 (2526)

Good day folks,

I don’t have any posting this morning, so I will share this picture of our Twin Grandson’s with you.

The picture of the twins was taken this past January.

The Picture with Bernie and Lorelie with the twins was taken on their first Birthday in September last year.

Face Book posting
Stokes 2526-1 Stokes 2526-2 Stokes 2526-3


Blog (600) posted on October 23, 2009

Posted on October 23, 2009

Warning -Face Book Virus

Folks, I got zapped with a virus from Face Book. My McAfee Virus software warned me, but I trusted the source and opened it. In doing that, the virus sent weird messages to all my friends in Face Book. I learned my lesson. I seldom, if ever, send messages via Face Book. Please do not open any messages in Face Book that have come from me. I have not sent them. Gary

Janice Metcalfe Poitra

Farewell from Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND.

Gary, When we said farewell to Janice today we were reminded by her
daughter Kelly,of how much she loved the lyrics of The Mull of
Kintyre. Fitting lyrics to see her off. Love and fond farewell my
dear cousin. Vickie

Archie & Shan Metcalfe, Jay Vanorny, Chris OlsonKevin St.Clare & David
Fugere were pall bearers. Elaine played the guitar and sang “This
Little Light of Mine”. Inside the funeral program were the lyrics to
“The Mull of Kintyre, a favorite song of Janice.
Travis, Debbie, Jake, Mike and Melissa Metcalfe flew in from Arizona.
It was a bright cool but sunny fall day. She and Kathy rest side by
side now. Her grandson, Joss kept everyone entertained. After the
church luncheon, We cousins, gathered at Kelvin Clinic, hosted by
Raphael, Jaime and Kelly. Where grandson, Joss kept everyone
entertained. Oh for the heart of child! He and and his sister
Kennedy were Janice’”hearts delight!” Vickie

Oops I cannot forget Dick & Brenda and Ron Hett who also played at
todays funeral. Ron played the mandolin which Janice also played,
among other instruments. V.

Reply from Glen Williams (52): Missoula, MT

Gary….I do not use facebooks much and will use it even less after your warning…

The account was set up by one of my daughters….and I seldom use it…

So would guess that the messages on facebook were not from you…

Thanks for the tip..

Keep up the good work…enjoy reading about the old gang from the former Dunseith…It is not the same place today…Someone said the the San Haven has changed a lot…and I would say the same about Dunseith…

Glen Williams class of ’52 one of the old codgers…..

From Lynn Henriksen (64): Tiburon, CA

Dear Gary,

I haven’t responded to the batch of emails you sent to me and those on Face
Book, since I think there’s a hoax (or worse) going. So if you really sent
those emails, please reply to this email with what ever it was you said.
Kinda crazy stuff going on – several from Jim Kester, too, and others.

By the way, can you get any information on the DHS play that I know Colette,
Evie, Dale, and I (to name a few) were in. I think it was “Fun on the Run”
or something like that – should have been 1963 or 64. I wonder if anyone has
the script.

Thank you so much. I had the chance to look at some of the pictures you all
took on your cruise – looks like you had a whale of a time!

Keeping Spirits Alive,

Lynn Henriksen, The Story Woman(tm)
President, Women’s Nat’l Book Assoc-San Francisco

Ph: 415.435.5969 Cell: 415.435.6000
Blog: www.thestorywoman.com <http://www.thestorywoman.com/>
www.telltalesouls.com <http://www.telltalesouls.com/>
Red Room Author, Where the Writers Are

From Sharon Longie Dana (73): MIssoula MT

To the Robert Family,

I am so sorry for your loss. I always remember how kind your mother was to me growing up.

Sharon Longie Dana (73)

San Haven

Reply from Don Martel (Former DHS Principle): Rosemount, MN

Brenda Hoffman, what a wonderful story that was about living at the San. Being a kid from Rolette, we would usually make a tour through the San on our way to the Peace Garden. This would happen only about once or twice a summer. It was always a mystical place to me as we were never allowed to get out of the car, for fear we might catch TB. As I recall it was always so neat and well groomed.

I have always had a fascination with it, but never had the opportunity to actually visit any of the buildings. Several pictures of San Haven can be found by googling ‘San Haven’.

I wonder how many people on the blog were connected to the San, either as a patient or employee.

Don Martel

Pictures form Margaret Seim Lawston (54): Citrus Heights, CA

Sent by Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.

Gary and Friends,

I will send some of the pictures sent to me by Margaret Seim Lawston.
These were some of her mother, Eva Seim’s collection. There are several
pages and I will post more as time allows. I think these are cute and
really brings back early school memories from our days in the old white
school building.These are from 1958.

Top: L-R Crystal Fassett, Rod Hiatt, Arlinda Fauske.

Middle: Randy Flynn, Randi Fuchs, Clarence Azure

Bottom: Tim Martinson Allen Cote, Not sure of this girl–thought it was
Lola but ???


Pictures from Trish Larson Clayburgh (73): Fort Collins, CO.

Hi Gary! Here are the Elk Hunting photos as promised – what a great time! Trish

Provided by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND

05/22/2017 (2525)


Our Grandson arrived Yesterday (Saturday) Morning from Tacoma, Washington.

 He had a direct flight from Seattle to Taipei, Taiwan. That was a long 12 hour flight. He actually flew over the Philippines in route to Taipei. He had a two hour layover in Taipei. It was a 3 hour flight from Taipei to Cebu.

 Tyler is very happy to be here and we are very happy to have him too. He will be here until June 14th.



Blog (599) posted on October 22, 2009


Posted on October 22, 2009

From Lynn Halvorson Otto (75): Seoul, Korea

To the Halvorson family! I’m so sorry to hear of Brandon’s accident. He is in our prayers and thoughts. Lynn Halvorson Otto

Does anyone have an address to send memorials to for LaVonne Getzlaff Allard? I’d appreciate it very much. Thanks, Lynn Halvorson Otto

From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.

Gary and Friends,

This is a very sad week for our entire community. I think I’ll send
condolences to nearly everyone as most are related to, or at least
friends with someone who has left us this week. This has to go down as
one of the worst times of losing neighbors and friends in many years. I
believe the last count was at seven deaths from the local area in just
over a week. I hope we have seen the last for a long time. Thanks Gary.


Obituary Provide by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND


March 25, 1933-Oct. 18, 2009

ROLETTE Dorothy Ardis Rober’t, 76, Langdon, formerly of Rolette, died Sunday, Oct. 18, 2009, in a Langdon hospital of injuries suffered in an automobile accident near Langdon.

She was born March 25, 1933, to Elmer and Isabella Hjelden in Minnewaukan. She married O.J. Rober’t on Dec. 2, 1950, in Dunseith.

Survivors: daughters, Carol Braun, Osceola, Wis., Darla Armstrong, Rolette, Dianne Johnson, Rolla; sons, Duane, Hiawatha, Kan., Russell, Wahpeton; 10 grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; brothers, Burton, Greenbrier, Ark., Lloyd, Leeds, Ronald, Deer River, Minn., Sydney, Two Mexico, Mexico, Vernon, Grove, Okla., Larry and Paul, both of Minnesota; sisters, Helen Stalvik, Binford, Barb Solberg, of Dorothy, Minn., Marlene Petri, Langdon.

Funeral: Friday, 2 p.m., Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Rolette,

Burial: Island Lake Cemetery, Rolette.

Rosary service: Thursday, 7:30 p.m., in the church.

Visitation: Thursday, one hour prior to the service, in the church. (Elick Funeral Home, Rolla)


Reply from Keith Pladson (66): Stafford, VA

Gary, It amazes me how much difference there is in the cost of things there versus here. I, too, am a bowler. Alice and I have been league bowling for many years, though Alice decided to take this year off. We (just me this year) bowl on a money league and with the lineage fee, the prize fund fee and the league secretary’s fee, it costs $16.00 dollars per week. Our league bowls Thursday nights and we have four person teams of which at least one member must be of the opposite sex. On our team (Osima, which stands for: “Oh s#@%, I missed again.”), we have a lady and three men. This year we lowered our overall team age. Since Alice decided not to bowl we were able to find a lady to replace her and she is only fifty. I’m next at 61 and our other two guys are 76 and 77 respectively. But we do pretty well. Two years ago, our team finished in third place out of 30 teams. Last year we finished in 22nd (a real let down). And so far this year we are in 5th. Its a fun family type sport and a good night out. Just to set the record straight, my average is a bit higher than yours. But who’s counting, ha, ha. Keith Pladson (66).

Keith, I know our League has a bank account with a considerable amount of money that has been collected from the $1.00 per game that they collect when we bowl. I’m not sure how much of that they give to the bowling alley for the use of their lanes though. I’m not sure what the lane costs are for individual pleasure bowling, but I’m sure they are less.

I forgot to mention that we have several Norwegians and Swede’s in our league too. Their accent’s sure brings back memories of being with my Dad’s biological relatives and a whole lot of the older Bottineau County Turtle Mountain folks too.

Keith, What is your average? You won’t make me feel bad. Our high bowler has a 210 average. I’m near the bottom of the rung. Some of the guys are competitive, but not to the point of being bothered with their buddy having a higher average. Several of the women on the other hand are quite bothered not being on the top. The guys wife with a 210 average is also one of the top Lady bowlers. She gets very upset if someone tops her score. They are a nice friendly couple too, both being retired medical doctors from Florida. She, like Bernadette, is originally from here. Gary

Lawrence and Eva Struck

Folks, I forgot to post this message of Paulette’s that went along with the Lawrence & Eva Struck Newspaper article that she provided yesterday. Gary

From Paulette LaCroix Chisholm (68): Newark, Delaware


Here’s the last part of the entire one page article about these two fine business owners in our little Dunseith community. I had the pleasure and privilege of working for Lawrence Struck in Hosmer’s Store after school and Saturdays during my high school years. I felt he had high expectations of me and I tried to live up to them. Helen Nelson and Evelyn Pladson were long time working partners and were just the best. It seemed they knew every family, name, and face in and around the town..unlike me. It was great fun though to meet and greet all the interesting characters and patrons in the town. These people bring many warm memories.


Fortune & Alice Berbe
Article provided by Paulette LaCroix Chisholm (68): Newark, Delaware
Question: What year was this article published? Gary

Obituary provided by Neola Kofoid Garbe: neola@min.midco.net Minot & Bottineau, ND.

05/19/2017 (2524)

Good day folks,

I don’t have any posting this morning so I will just go with the reposting of prior postings from 2009.

Tyler, our grandson, will be arriving tomorrow morning from Tacoma, WA. He will be here until June 14th. Everyone here is excited for his coming. He spent a week with us just before Christmas too. He liked it so  well here and asked if he could come back in May/June for about a month. He is a people person and especially likes kids, very much the same as his Great Grandfather, Bob Stokes.  He is very mature too, easily mingling with the old as well as the young too. He just finished his freshman year at the University of Puget Sound (UPS) in Tacoma.

Needless to say, Bernadette is in cloud nine for his arrival.




Blog (598) posted on October 21, 2009

Posted on October 21, 2009

Janice Metcalfe Poitra (71) Obituary

Janice PoitraOct. 4, 1953-Oct. 18, 2009

POSTED: October 20, 2009

DUNSEITH Janice Leigh Poitra, 56, Dunseith, died Sunday, Oct. 18, 2009, in her home.

She was born Oct. 4, 1953, to Emil and Elizabeth Metcalfe in Seattle. She married Raphael Poitra in September 1978 in Valley City.

Survivors: husband; son, Jaime, Dunseith; daughter, Kelly Olson, Bottineau; two grandchildren; sister, Elaine Metcalfe, Grand Forks; brother, Travis, Meza, Ariz.

Funeral: Thursday, 10 a.m., Peace Lutheran Church, Dunseith.

Burial: Little Prairie Cemetery, rural Dunseith.

Prayer service: Wednesday, 7:30 p.m., in Nero Funeral Home, Bottineau.

Visitation: Wednesday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., in the funeral home.

Condolences to the Robert and Metcalfe/Poitra families

From Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC

To The Dorothy Robert & Janice (Metcalf) Poitra Family

So much saddness right before the holidays…My thoughts, prayers, and sympathy goes out to both families. Sincerely, Ms. Aggie Casavant

DOROTHY ROBERT, 76, Langdon, formerly of Rolette, died Sunday in a Langdon hospital. Funeral Friday, 2 p.m., Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Rolette. (Elick Funeral Home, Rolla)

Lucille Strietzel was Don Johnson’s (Dick’s Dad’s) Aunt.


March 25, 1924-Oct. 17, 2009

POSTED: October 20, 2009

ST. JOHN Lucille Louise Strietzel, 85, Rolette, formerly of St. John, died Saturday, Oct. 17, 2009, in a Rolette nursing home..

She was born March 25, 1924, to Ernest and Rose Dawson in Rolla. She married Carl Strietzel on June 27, 1943, in Portland, Ore.

Survivors: sons, Ronald, Anaheim, Calif., Carl, Huntington Beach, Calif., Donald, Lakewood, Calif; daughters, Carlette Timm, Anaheim, Sheryl Aird, St. John; 14 grandchildren; 13 great-grandchildren; sisters, Louella Timlick, Issaquah, Wash., Evelyn Albright, rural Rolla.

Funeral: Wednesday, 10 a.m., St. John Presbyterian Church, St. John.

Burial: Rolla City Cemetery, Rolla.

Visitation: Wednesday, one hour prior to the service, in the church. (Elick Funeral Home, Rolla)

Memories of Janice Metcalfe Poitra

From Daina Honsey Fiebiger (71): Cooperstown, ND

What a schock. I have great memories of playing with Janice when we were younger. The fun we had sitting around singing with her sisters. Our prayers go out to the famiy. Janice was a beautiful person and will be greatly missed.
Diana Fiebiger (71)

Update on Florence Pladson Sime (62)

From Keith Pladson (66): Stafford, VA

Response to Neola Kofoid Garbe, Re: Florence Sime. Thank you for the web site to send messages to those in ICU at Trinity. I use it daily to send short messages to my sister. She has had surgery on her elbow, her shoulder and her hip and will have surgery on her wrist on Wednesday morning. She is doing pretty well, but has a lot of pain. Her wrist is the most painful, but she also has trouble breathing as she suffered eleven broken ribs in addition to all the other broken bones. I would not want to ever go through what she is going through, but she is a very strong person, so I’m sure she will meet each challenge she will have to face going forward. Thank you again, Neola. Keith Pladson (66).

Repost of Neola’s message

Reply From Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND.


I was shocked/stunned/etc. to read of Florence Sime’s accident. I’m including a site where emails may be sent to her. I think the emails are read once per day (probably morning)/the messages are printed on card, along with who sent them/delivered to the patient later in the day. Wally received several of them when he was hospitalized. I’m sure Florence would enjoy hearing from friends/family/etc.



San Haven

Reply from Mona Dionne Johnson (48): Bottineau, ND

When you were hospitalized at San Haven, the capacity was 350 !, and at
that time, we had them in the halls – I believe about a
367 census ! That was top for all the years that San Haven was ! If
only North Dakota had listened to other states that had tried out group
homes for the mentally challenged (retarded at that time), San Haven
would never have closed, the residents wouldn’t have been moved out of
their home, and possibly part of it could have become a nursing home.
But then, the” powers that be” would not listen to all of the people
affected. What a beautiful place it was. And, I really enjoyed
learning of some of the doings of our children back then, Brenda.
Mona Johnson ’48

Brandon Halvorson, Curt & Denise’s grandson, injured

From Vickie Metcalfe (68): Dunseith, ND.

Gary and friends, I just spoke with Amy (Berg) Hanson, she said it is quite alright to share and print information about her nephew, Brandon Halvorson’s recent accident I shared with her you, Gary are very careful about getting information out to share with concerned people, no sensationalism,and that makes you, such a great creator/editor of this Dunseith blog. Thank You.

The weather conditions last week in this area of ND were much less than perfect. As you all have probably heard for a time there was snow, wind, sleet, freezing rain, snow and icy road conditions creating hazardous travel.

The hills and foot hills were covered with between 5-8 inches of snow.

Under the snow was muck. Toward the later part of the week conditions changed. An autumn warm up began and folks started wearing the muck on their shoes.

Fall is gathering time on a cattle ranch, everyone who can helps out. Be it the one who stands patiently waiting at the gates, to the cowboy bucking the brush. The drive is on as folks begin first steps of the gathering to bring herds closer to home. Riders of the foothills-hills, including Brandon were rounding em’ up.

As I understand, the ground was nasty; it twas slickery over all the muck! Under Brandon, his mount slipped, slid, and had dirty fall battling, scrambling,trying to regain it’s balance……finally, rolling over Brandon’s head. The cowboy did his best, the horse did it’s best. The slickery mucky conditions were just too much!

Brandon was taken to the Minot hospital intensive care, with a very severe head concussion. He’s in a lot of pain as his cowboy body is very sore. Now, because of the head injuries he’s having some trouble with his short term memory. However, visiting with Amy, she said, yesterday was a break through when he remembered twice which horse he was riding….Was it the black or the buckskin?

Further note; Brandon has lots of Dunseith-Bottineau hills and prairie connections. He’s loves and lives the cowboy way. Son to Brian, Son of Becky (Berg), brother of Cory, Grandson of the Curt Halvorson’s and Ed Bergs, Great- grandson to Tillie, nephew and cousin . He’s a friend to many young and old.

Please join us all in wishing the best for Brandon and keep him in prayer as his body heals.

Thank you. As ever, Vickie

Gary and friends,

I sent my… Metcalfe Kith and Kin the exact same info regarding Brandon, in today’s + a personal note.

Within a few hours I received from Laverne our Canadian Cousin,(her father was.. a James Alexander Metcalf) We met Laverne only once in person at our 1980 Metcalfe reunion. Her response I’d like to share with all family and friends of Brandon.

Thanks for the unfortunate news about Brandon Halvorson. Sorry to learn about his accident. I have placed him on our intercessory-prayer list. He’ll be prayed for every night.Would you keep us up to date on his progress?

We’ll believe for the best for this young man. We’ll see a real blessing worked out in his life!!

take care, love , Laverne.

Reply from Pam Lagerquist (68):Minneapolis, MN

Thanks so much Gary, this morning knocked me over! I’ve tried to go to classmates to find someone I went to school with and there was no information, I can remember from it. thank you again and God Bless you. Pam Lagerquist

Folks, It’s taken me two years to find Pam Lagerquist, but I found her. I first located her mother and she was able to give me Pam’s phone number. She remembers her Senior year well at Dunseith. She was only in Dunseith the one year.

Note: Pam is not related to the John Lagerquist family. Gary

Pam Lagerquist & Dan McKay

DHS Class of 68 pictures & Lawrence/Eve Struck Article

From Paulette LaCroix Chisholm (68): Newark, Delaware

Hi Gary,

Got your email the other day suggesting I send some pictures of us 4 classmates who try reunite on a regular basis. While going through boxes of old photos, I found a picture of our ’68 class and one of the Grimme twins taken at our 25th HS reunion ( more than a few years ago.) Thought it would be nice to see the two of them together. Betty Hackman, Beverlie LaValilie, and Janet Parril were at the union, but somehow we missed getting them in the picture. I’ll send more of “us girls” later. For now I’m almost literally knee deep in photo albums and don’t know how I’ll put these back!



Gwen & Greg Grimme

This is a great photo. I recognize a lot of you folks in this photo, but not nearly enough of you to start listing names. I need some help. I will repost with names. Thanks, Gary

Bowling in the Philippines


Today is Wednesday, our Bowling day. Bernadette and I Joined a bowling league. Everyone is for themselves. Their are no teams or team competition. It’s all for fun. The league consists of about 30 guys and 15 women. We guys are mostly all foreigners, in our mid to late 50’s & 60’s, and from English speaking countries (England, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia & USA). Most of the gals are Filipina. This league was organized in 2001, so it’s been around for awhile. The facility is a modern 48 lane Bowling Alley. The league cost is $1.00 per game and $0.50 shoe rental. We play the normal 3 games and of coarse our games and averages are recorded and distributed to us via email. My first game last week was 81 and my second game 181. What a come back. I’ve got a whopping 125 average.


05/17/2017 (2523)

Good day everyone.

I hope all is well with most of you. It’s a nice partly cloudy morning here in Cebu with 82F temp.

 Bernadette had a rough night last night and isn’t good this morning. Her balance and mental state of being are really affected. We are still taking her for her scheduled therapy for her left arm following the healing of her compression fractured shoulder.

 Tyler, our grandson, will be arriving from Tacoma, Washington, this Saturday, for nearly a month long visit. He just finished his freshman year at UPS (University Of Puget Sound) in Tacoma.



Rendahl  Cemetery News
From LeaRae Parrill Espe (’67):  Bottineau, ND

The spring cleanup and annual meeting for Rendahl is scheduled for Saturday, May 20 at 1 PM.  If it rains it will be held on Wednesday, May 24th at 4 PM

Current board members are Robert Bott, President,  Allen Pladson and Darin Nelson, directors, and LeaRae Parrill Espe, Secretary-Treasurer.

A few years back an extra half acre was purchased on the West side. We will have expenses to clear brush and fence that area in addition to regular upkeep expenses..   All donations and memorials are greatly appreciated.. Lots are available for $100 for four. Bob Bott has the map.

Kim Bott has been doing a fine job with the mowing and upkeep for a number of years. Floyd and Luella Dion have placed US flags on the graves of Veterans for Memorial Day. Allen Pladson has volunteered his time and Bobcat to move dirt to fill in sunken areas.  Oliver Nelson (Darin, Darcy, and Darlene) family has painted some of the older tombstones. Jim and Sharon Hanson were quick to get up and start the cleanups. Floyd and Pat Pladson served as directors for a many years  All of these folks and others spent time putting up new fence and a new gate a few years back. Thanks to all of them for their dedication over the years. It looks so nice.

A special thank you to the families and friends of Ralph Johnson and Arthur Rude, Sr. who gave memorials to Rendahl this past year.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions.

LeaRae Espe, 401 Alexander St., Bottineau, ND  58318   701-228-2911

It would be great to hear from other area cemetery associations on this blog.  I believe Joan Salmonson is Treasurer for Little Prairie and they traditionally have their clean up day the first Saturday in May. Gary you probably know about the Ackworth.

I don’t know who currently looks after Riverside in Dunseith.


Blog (597) posted on October 20, 2009

Posted on October 20, 2009

Janice Metcalfe Poitra (71) passing

Posted by Vickie Metcalfe (70): Dunseith, ND

Janice (Metcalfe) Poitra passed away at her home north of Dunseith,Sunday October 18, 2009, yesterday morning. She leaves behind her; her husband Raphael, son Jaime, daughter Kelly & son-in law Chris Olson, Grand children Kennedy and Joss, her sister Elaine, brother Travis & sister -in law Debbie, and Melissa, Morgan and Mike her nieces and nephew.

She will be dearly missed by,many Metcalfe and Oswell Cousins.
and Many friends including, Kelvin Patrons and folks who shopped at Wayne’s Jack and Jill years ago when Janice worked there.

Janice’s funeral Is Thursday 10 AM Peace Lutheran in Duseith.

Veiwing 12 noon Wednesday.


Condolence’s to the Janice Poitra and Dorothy Robert Families

From Bernard & Robin Morin (76): Dunseith, ND

To the families of Janice Poitra and Dorothy Robert we offer our sincere condolences. Our prayers and thoughts are with you all in this time of sorrow.
Bernard & Robin Morin

Thanks. Bernard

Condolence to the Metcalfe/Poitra family

From Pete (62) & Verena Gillis: Dunseith, ND

We are sending our condolences to the Metcalfe/Poitra family. If there is
anything I can do to help, please call me at 244-5249 ext. 122. Raphael is my cousin and Janice was a good friend of ours.

Verena & Pete Gillis

Memory of Janice Metcalfe Poitra (71) from Laverne Christianson:

Posted by Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

My sincere empathy to all who are related or friends of Janice
Poitra,who’s early death occured on October 18th.
Words always seem so futile at this time but may all reading this
E-mail be comforted knowing that she is ill no more, she is free of
any discomfort she experienced and that she loved all of you dearly.

She been taken far too soon but no doubt she has left a “Beautiful
Legacy” for all who knew her, to follow.

with love to all you,

Laverne Christianson, your Canadian cousin.

Condolences to Janice Metcalfe Poitra’s family

From Paula Fasset (71): North Branch, MN

It was a shock and I was very, very sad to read that Janice (Metcalfe) has passed. Janice was a great person – always friendly, always smiling. She was my classmate and I considered her my friend. I know she will be missed. My condolences to Raphael and her children – and her entire family. God bless.

Paula Fassett-Pfuhl

Condolence’s to the Metcalfe/Poitra and Allard Families

From Lynn Halvorson Otto (75): Seoul, Korea

To the Metcalfe family: I’m so sorry to here of Janice’s passing. I’m sure she’ll be missed terribly by her family and friends. May God give you some comfort during this difficult time. Lynn Halvorson Otto

To Duane Allard and family: I’m so shocked to hear of LaVonne’s passing away. I spoke with her and Duane at the all class reunion in 07. LaVonne and I worked together many long hours at the music camp when we were in high school. She was so fun to be with and I’m so sad to hear of her death. I’ll pray often for her family and friends. Very saddened, Lynn Halvorson Otto

Message to Vickie Metcalfe from Sally Knutson Metcalfe ( wife to Archie and Daughter of Mary Eurich Knutson):

Vickie, should we do flowers from the family ?
I am assuming arrangements will be made today so if you hear when the
funeral is let me know. I am going to make some potatoe salad and ham
but I thought I would take it over the day before the funeral.
I saw Raphaels car at the house and the place was all lit up this
morning. Looks like it might have been a hard night.
Let me know.Thanks

Arnold Zeiler Family memories

From Helen Metcalfe Barden (62): Fargo, ND.

What wonderful memories I have of Arnold Zeiler in my growing up years. We were neighbors about 1-1/2 miles apart. His daughter, Sandy, and I were classmates, starting in “town” school in our sixth grade, having gone to different country school our first five years. Arnold drove our bus and he loved it that we loved to sing on his bus, especially those 50s songs. He said it kept things peaceful. Arnold was like a second dad to me, always so good natured. Just as Lorna was a second Mom as Sandy and I would stay over with one another.

A fond memory was when they had TV before us and invited us over to watch professional wrestling. That was something!

Helen (Metcalfe) Barden


Gary, Our new address for our Class Directory Record is:

4336 37th Avenue S.

Fargo, ND 58104

San Haven Memories

From Brenda Hoffman (68): Greenville, SC

Even though I hadn’t lived at the San since 1969, I was devastated when the San closed in the early 80s. I couldn’t attend the auctions – I started crying whenever I thought of all of that history and beauty gone. Fortunately, Dad bought a few pieces for me – some Dining Room silverware, a tray and a chair. The first time I went back after the barbed wire went up, I tried closing the windows – so the snow and rain couldn’t destroy the buildings. The next time I toured, many of the roofs were gone. I don’t think I want to see it as Allen Richard recently described it. Thank you Allen for your political assessment of the San’s downfall. I didn’t know that part of the story.

Brenda 1968

Part two from Brenda Hoffman:

In 1952, both my Mom and I were diagnosed with tuberculosis (TB) and that’s why my family moved to San Haven. I was discharged in 1953 (at the age of three) and my Mom the following year. When I was in the hospital, someone gave me a nickel which I promptly swallowed and needed to be rushed to Minot wearing Jay Vanory’s clothes and being held by Cynthia Johnson, Dick Johnson’s Grandmother. I survived that incident as well as climbing the hospital wall pipes and “breaking out” of my crib so frequently that I was written up in the San Piper(I think that was the name), the San Haven patient newspaper. The hospital was filled when we were patients – 200 beds? and we were discharged so soon because of the discovery of the penicillin family of drugs shortly before WWII. My Dad had a cousin hospitalized at the San for 13 years – from the time she was 13. Prior to the discovery of the penicillin drugs, all sorts of odd treatments were provided including sun bathing nude on the lawns (men and women separated of course) to sleeping outside as the last phase of treatment before being sent home – those lucky winter patients – they were provided with a hot brick to place at their feet.

Mom’s first job following her discharge was babysitting the Chuck and Mona Johnson’s boys. Brian Johnson quickly became my best friend. Mom, Dad, Dale and I lived in the Children’s Building and shared bathroom facilities with the other people on our side of the hall. The building telephone was also in the hall and only provided service until ten o’clock at night. Charlene and Sharon Pearson lived in the Children’s Building Penthouse that had both bathroom and a kitchen. The Boguslowski’s (sp?) (Alice and Eddie, Allen and John) had the first television in the Building – maybe at the San and the kids would gather in their living room to watch those great cowboy shows. Carol Jasper and her family also lived in the Children’s Building. By this time, Dad had shifted from working in the hospital kitchens to the San Haven baker – the bakery was located in the basement of the Dining Room.

My family walked the block or so to the Dining Room for all of our meals. In the winter, we gratefully used the tunnels that ran throughout most of the San. Charlene and her family eventually moved to a large private house accessible by the tunnels – I still remember her answering the tunnel door to her house when I knocked (how odd is that!).

My brother, Dale, and Jay were playing with matches in the woods behind the Children’s Building one summer and nearly burned the San down. I don’t think that was a good day for either of them! But then, with Jeanne Nicholas, John and Allen, Brian, Charlene, Jay, the children of Dr. Laub – Karen and Robert and eventually the Caudrado’s, something was always going on. Roller skating (clip ons with a large metal key) and bike racing (always putting playing cards in the spokes for that special sound!) on the high and low sidewalks, croquet in the large open field beside Charlene’s house, wading in the fishpond (making Francis Baker the gardener crazy), anti-I-over (sp? over Charlene’s house seemingly always when her mom was trying to take a nap) and paper dolls. Charlene and I saved our money to buy the large Katy Keene paper dolls – I think they cost a dollar. And then of course the Kool-Aid stands strategically placed so that all of the hospital employees needed to walk by our stand BEFORE they arrived at the Commissary for their afternoon coffee. Jay, ever the businessman, brought extra stuffed animals to ensure that we caught the eyes of the workers.

Lorraine Pearson and Benny Frovarp ran the Commissary located in the basement of the Ad Building. Benny and Arlene Sand were responsible for the post office (zip code 58371) located in the room next to the Commissary. The third floor of the Ad Building had a number of empty, fully furnished apartments that were unlocked. Talk about having a great place to play house! Of course, we had to be extra quiet when we snuck in though – Mom was Executive Housekeeper by that time and was responsible for the apartments. Oh and the water balloon fights. Poor Benny F. We used the Post Office bathroom (always unlocked also!) to fill our water balloons and he had to clean up our mess.

Jeanne and her family lived in a large apartment above the Dining Room. On the second floor of the other Dining Room entrance was the movie theater that was used up until the early 50s I believe because TB patients were not allowed to interact with the public. We kids loved sneaking into the projector room and playing with the old equipment. I had my 16th birthday party in the theater room.

As Jean stated in an earlier blog, we had a pretty ideal environment. It was a bit like living in a country club – everything was done for you. San Haven staff planted our gardens, fixed our television set and delivered our Christmas trees.

Brenda Hoffman 1968

San Haven Reply

From Sybil Johnson: Cheyenne, WY.

Thank you, Dick and Allan’
I was saddened to learn the outcome of San Haven. Like I said, it has been years since I was up in the Dunseith area. To me, one cant call that progress, it was greed and lack of interest from the government. There were many buildings like San Haven that had been remodeled, after all the asbestos was removed. That was another cop out by the feds! I also remember when you were in office Allan.
Dick, that building was called Old Main. I remember it will, since I had gone to MSU in 1989, only to leave Minot, in 1992; being transferred down to CSU in Fort Collins, Co. Old Main had been a day care for those who were going to MSU at the time. During my time there, they began rennovating all of MSU and it was an experience I will never forget.
Sybil Johnson

Dorothy Robert’s accident

Article from Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND.

Ivy Eller Robert’s (74) reply:Everett, WA.

Yes, that is about Dorothy Robert. They couldn’t release her name until her family was notified. She was living there in Langdon with her sister Marlene.


DOROTHY ROBERT, 76, Langdon, formerly of Rolette, died Sunday in a Langdon hospital. (Elick Funeral Home, Rolla)

Wesley Schneider Story

From by Vickie Metcalfe (70):Bottineau, ND

Gary, I go for a walk and I seek out friends when I’m sad
and today was one of those days.

The furbabies and I were on our quick walk this afternoon
when turning a right, Buie zipped up Ovidia and Wesley’s driveway.
I thought he was heading in that direction for one of Wes’ dog
treats. A quick rap , Ovidia opens the door and Buie hurriedly moved
around her into the Schneider sitting room. I soon realized that
Buie was clearly on a mission.
Yesterday, when Wes tried to entertain Buie with a little
stuffed orange pumpkin toy (about the size of a small basket ball)
which when turned on, rolls around and makes a buzzing sound. He
acted quite scared and decided he didn’t want to play with Wes’ new
toy anymore (fickle dog). But today, the little dog with some new
found courage took a most ferocious aim at the living room intent on
finding Wes’ pumpkin.
Once happy that he had faced down the dreaded enemy, he
strutted and turned his attention on Wes’ treats, dancing on two
feet and begging until he got his allotted one! We three do try
to be polite neighbors!

Settled down at the table with Wes scratching the dogs, I
prepared myself for a Wes Tale. I was not disappointed. I’ll
summarize it best as I can to share with you.

Years ago when Wes was a young lad, about 15, his dad gave
him a gun. Wes would take that gun out and move around the hill so
he would come in from the south of his favorite hunting place. He’d
lie on the ground on his stomach intent, patient, take aim and wait.
Fire. Oft times the impact of the firing gun would send him back a
few feet. But he loved the feeling of being able to sometimes hit
what he intended.
Often, a well known Dunseith store keeper, would come out to
the Schneider farm because he too enjoyed hunting. One day, the
guy pulls up his rifle and says to young Wesley, “Take off your hat
and throw it up in the air and I will shoot it.” Wes says to the
store keeper , “You show me how….you go first, throw your hat up in
the air.”
So the guy did and BOOM with one shot, Wes hit the hat
before it hit the ground! Well the guy says to Wes. Now it’s my
turn.” So worriedly Wes takes off his old hat, his only hat, and
throws it up high into the air. High into the air it sails….The
storekeepers gun fires… boom, miss, the hat glides down and lands
in the dirt without a mark.
Disgruntled. The store keeper stomps over to the hat …
“BOOM, BOom, boom…. Wes’ hat destroyed.” And there he was Hatless
and unhappy Wes. Nothing more was said.
A few days later… Hatless Wes goes to town and into the
store. The storekeeper had seen Wes coming, and from under the
counter pulls out and gives Wes a…….. fine new hat.
And that is a tale of K.C.Sine and young Wesley Schneider.
Later. Vickie

Message from Vickie Metcalfe

Yes I stayed up and here it is in print……the Minot Daily.
What a thing denial is. For me, news has to be in newsprint to be
My little dogs do not think I should be up in the middle of
the night and keep prowling around my feet, pacing back and forth to
the bedroom. Those little Westies,are good mood sensors,which I
call my Pair- of -Dice. Sven, the cockatiel has been making
sounds like he’s fighting some creature in his cage. We four…. a
molting…motley grieving crew.
While I wind down I’ll tell you of my latest crawl space adventure.
This summer I purchased an antique oak buffet, really
neat, except it seems to have brought with it an unsavory smell. In
a discussion with friends, one advised charcoal placed in an egg
carton would extinguish the smell. It was a miracle Wal-mart
yesterday bags of charcoal were on sale at 1.00!
Great Scot! What a bargain! Suddenly I had a flashing
brilliant idea….would charcoal take care of the musty smell in my
crawl space? So, I haul out 15 bags, packed them in my car…drove
home and threw them down that wretched smelly space, then crawled
around opening and placing them.
However, nothing in Bottineau goes unnoticed. This morning
as I was reading the Sunday paper at our local bakery, the cook comes
out of the kitchen and commences to comment that he witnessed me
with so many bags of charcoal. He says to me, “What are you doing
with so much charcoall, Vickie are having a barbecue?”
I told him I’m winterizing my crawl space and for 15.00 I am
using the charcoal, instead of air freshners. The guy has to be
more Scot than me because he replies. Oh, that will work and you
can haul them up the spring and barbecue then…… Hmmm. Now that’s
an idea!
Wound down. Vickie

05/15/2017 (2522)

Thanks to the Dunseith Alumni Blog Reader
From Keye K. Lystad-Kirk: Fargo, ND

Hi Gary,

I wanted to thank everyone who responded to my query about why my great grandmother was possibly hospitalized at San Haven for a short time in the 1940s. The consensus is that she most definitely had TB, but a very mild case.

One explained that San Haven had too many people needing care to provide hospitalization for anything else. From Brenda Hoffman I found it interesting to learn that, “Each state had a TB sanatorium in the highest, coldest part of the state as the original cure was plenty of fresh food and cold, fresh air.” So even though my great grandma was already living in Bottineau, they moved her to San Haven as they had the addition of the medical facilities. (Thank goodness for her family that she didn’t have to go far!)

I also found out from several others that many people found their spouses at San Haven–whether they were patients or employees!

And in the end what is so sad is that they let the beautiful building and grounds go to waste. Even though there was asbestos in the tunnels, it makes me wonder if they could have just closed down the tunnels and still kept up the buildings and the grounds. What a waste of a stunning setting up there.

Kaye K. Lystad-Kirk


Aasness & Bjornseth Reunion
From Keye K. Lystad-Kirk: Fargo, ND

Hi Gary,

I have another message for your Dunseith blog I’m hoping you’re willing to post for me:

Greetings to All Aasness & Bjornseth Relatives and Descendants,

This is a “Save The Date” message to let you know of an upcoming Aasness / Bjornseth Reunion on Saturday, July 28, 2018, at the Christian Center at Lake Metigoshe; with an optional breakfast on Sunday morning, July 29, 2018!

There will be more details to come regarding the venue, places to stay, meals, etc.  So that you receive further reunion communications, may I ask you to PLEASE…

  • Forward your email address to either me, Kaye Lystad Kirk, or Benda Berseth, so in the future we can communicate with you via email (our email addresses are at the end of this message)
  • Forward this message to as many other Aasness and Bjornseth relatives and descendants as you can
  • Forward to me or Benda all of the email addresses that you just used above, because we need to be sure everyone receives future communications from us regarding upcoming reunion details

Thanks everyone and we hope to see you in 2018!


Reunion Organizers:

  1. Benda Berseth, daughter of Della & Clarence Gronneberg, originally from Cooperstown, ND, now in Brookings, SD. (Descendant of Inga Bjornseth)    EMAIL: berseth2@gmail.com
  2. Kaye Lystad-Kirk, daughter of Joyce (Emerson) & Willie Lystad, originally from Bottineau, ND, now in Fargo, ND. (Descendant of Clara Bjornseth)    EMAIL: klystad1@gmail.com


Blog (596) posted on October 19, 2009

Posted on October 19, 2009

Janice Metcalfe (71) passed away

From Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND


Gary my siblings had been trying to reach all am. When I connected
with them by telephone……..
They told me,our cousin Janice Metcalfe Poitra died this morning.
Raphael is her husband. Jaime Metcalfe is her son. Kelly(Poitra)
Olson (daughter in law of Terry Olsen) is her daughter.
Travis and Elaine are her surviving siblings.
Kennedy and Joss are her grandchildren.
Emil and Ann were her parents
As of right now I’m in strong denial so need to sign off……I
think this news ….. will end up in the Minot paper then when I read
it in print I will have to believe …….what was told to me is

Vicky’s reply when asked about posting:

Yes Gary, I think by now Travis and Elaine have been notified.
Janice passed away today at her home, Sunday October 18, 2009. I
spoke with Shan who was in the area today when emergency vehicles
were in the area. He’d spoke with her son Jaime who told Shan that
his mom had passed away.

I understand she had been seeing doctors for a heart condition. We,
the Metcalfe Kith and Kin will miss her deeply. Our hearts ache for
Raphael, Jaime, Kelly and Kennedy and Joss. Vickie

Vickie, I am so sorry to hear of the passing of Janice. Raphael was in our class of 65. What a super person he is and I’m sure Janice was the same. My condolences go out the Raphael, his family and all of the Metcalfe family with the loss of Janice.

Folks, Raphael and Janice have been the owners of Kelvin for a number of years now.

Dorothy Robert was Killed in a car Accident.

From Ivy Eller Robert (74): Everett, WA.

I just got a phone call from my son, Jonathan, who lives in Minot, North Dakota, letting me know that Dorothy Robert was in a serious car accident and died this morning. She is the mother of Carol, Duane, Russell, Darla, & Diane Robert, was married to Orphula Robert, who died about 10 years ago. Jon didn’t have any of the details of what happened yet, other than saying that, the accident was near Langdon. Orphula & Dorothy were like second parents to me all of my life, and I will miss her!

Ivy Eller Robert (74)

Ivy, our condolences are with you, and the whole Robert family with the passing of Dorothy. Gary

LaVonne Getzlaff Allard passed away

From Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND

WILLOW CITY LaVonne Allard, 52, Willow City, died Thursday, Oct. 15, 2009, on arrival at a Rugby hospital.

She was born March 1, 1957, to Norman and Margaret Getzlaff in Bottineau. She married Duaine Allard Oct. 24, 1975, in Willow City.

Survivors: husband; daughters, Jessica Allard, Bottineau, Lindsey Lorenz, Williston, Brittany Allard, Bismarck; sons, Riley and Tyler, both Willow City; four grandchildren; parents, Bottineau; brothers, Jerome and Ardell, both of Cleveland, N.C.; sister, Sherry Bullinger, Gillette, Wyo.

Funeral: Tuesday, 10 a.m., First Lutheran Church, Willow City.

Burial: Memorial Park Cemetery, Willow City.

Visitation: Monday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Nero Funeral Home, Bottineau.

To the Allard and Getzlaff families, our condolences are with you with the loss of LaVonne. I did not know LaVonne personally, but I knew her aunt Gloria Hagen very well. Carol & Larry Allard, her husband Duanine’s siblings were in my class of 65. Gary

San Haven’s fate

From Allen Richard (65): Midland, MI

The San came under attack not long after it began serving an overflow of residents from the Grafton State Hospital for the mentally handicapped. The Association for the Mentally Retarded (ARC) Had won class action suits in several states when they filed against ND.

The legislature fought long and hard but lost in the end. The San was closed in favor of group homes scattered through out the state. I was in the ND house and Senate from 76 through 90, so being the only legislator that could see the hospital from my home south of Dunseith, I was up to my ears in the issue.

The state put a few million dollars in upgrades, but that went nowhere. The ARC won the case and a number of larger cities across the state began planing and promoting group homes in their communities. Eventually the votes we had from these cities began to fade away as other places saw ways of making economic gains at the expense of Dunseith and the whole Turtle Mountain area.

After that, the state tried to sell the property — or rent parts of it to a number of business entities. The turtle Mountain Tribe expressed an interest in taking it over and turning it into a casino/hotel. I’m not really sure what happened, but the idea never flew. I think the facility was too big and the older parts or of it were packed with asbestos making remodeling very costly. Maybe a few other things..

I only drove by on HWY 3 when i was back in 2007 and didn’t have the heart to stop in. I drove through and risked ruining my tires in the late ’90s and the big buildings and housing were gone. The main hospital was partly demolished ad what remained was a shell of the building with no windows. It was being gutted for the value of the structural steel — so I was told.

I still have trouble driving up HW 3 from Rugby. I was so used to seeing the building as I came over the hill that is the Rolette County line. Now I hear that most of the site is a cow pasture.

That is about all I know. That is my perspective. I’m sure that those who lost their jobs and others who had more direct ties to the place have other ideas. I just know that a lot of friends, neighbors and relatives got hit very hard in the pocketbook.

Allen Richard

San Haven Memories

From Sybil Johnson: Cheyenne, WY.

Good morning Gary and all,
I remember San Haven and how it overlooked the wide open spaces. Augie’s sister Barb had resided there for years, until the order came down
to relocate all the residents. I thought it wrong then and I still think it was wrong. We use to go up and see Barb, everytime we came up to
Dunseith. She worked up in the nursery and several times, she would take us up there. It was sad to see those babies in their cribs, but I knew with Barb, they got good care; for she loved each and everyone of them.
I also remember Kelvin and all of the memorabilia that was there. Also, many times going up there with mom and Pa Johnson, to listen to the
band. There was one gentleman, Tiny, that I use to dance with; even though he wasnt very tiny. I also had a couple of showings up there with my Parklane Jewelry. It was alot of fun. Sybil Johnson.

Don & Bernice Johnson pictures

From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.

Gary and Friends,

One evening last month Elouise Boppre gave me a picture she had of my
folks just after they received their teaching standards from Minot
State. This was in 1946 and I think she had also received hers that day.
I took two of our pictures out of an album that were taken that same
day. The building behind them is Old Main on the Minot campus ( I think
they call it Old Main). With this 6 week certificate, you were allowed
to teach school. Dad taught on this Standard until 1964 when he got his
Bachelors Degree in Music Education. He received his Masters two days
before he died in 1980. I just thought these pictures may be of some
interest to so many who had Dad for a teacher. Thanks Gary!

Lorraine Olson’s obituary reposted with picture

From Eileen Brudwick:Fargo, ND


Funeral Services will be held Monday, October 19, 2009 at 2:00 pm in Trinity Lutheran Church in Binford , ND .

Visitation will be Sunday from 5:00 till 7:00 in the Church and one hour before services in the Church.

Family Service at 7:00 pm in the Church

Interment will be in the Trinity Cemetery , rural Binford , ND .

Lorraine Olsen, 84 of Binford , ND , died Thursday, October 15, 2009 in MeritCare Hospital , Fargo , ND .

Lorraine Pederson was born March 21, 19 25 on a farm five miles north of Binford , ND , the daughter of Palmer and Julia (Hoffich) Pederson.From infancy she was raised by her grandparents John and Sina Pederson.

Lorraine married Melvin Ingvold Olsen July 2, 19 43 in Binford , ND . The couple farmed in the Binford area.Melvin passed away February 2, 1972 .She left the farm and moved into Binford on the east side in 1976 where she resided until her death.

She worked many years as a cook and baker at the Red Willow Lake Resort.She was well known for her baked goods, bread, Norwegian “Goodies” and thousands of yummy lefse rounds.

She was very active in her Church.She enjoyed music by performing organist duties and singing in the choir.Bible study and Ladies Aid were important arms of her spiritual life.Social friendship was enjoyed many years through the Willow Homemakers Club.

Lorraine is survived by three children: a daughter, Joan Richard, Dunseith , ND ; son, Barry (Faith) Olsen, Moorhead , MN ; son, Neal Olsen, St. Louis , MO ; nine grandchildren, six great grandchildren with one expected in February, two step great grandchildren and many others that called her Grandma.

She was preceded in death by; her parents, husband, grandson, John Melvin Richard.

05/12/2017 (2521)

Victoria Bouvier: Reply to Scott Brady: sbrady.hfd@gmail.com
From Floyd Dion (’45):  Dunseith, ND

On your blog May 2 # 2518 a Scott Brady from Vernon Connecticut said
he thought he was related to the Dion’s . Scott is a 3rd cousin of Victoria
Bouvier. Victoria is my Grandmother who died in 1900 ten days after
giving birth to a daughter. She is buried in Tarsus cemetery.



Dunseith Memories
From Bill Hosmer (’48): Tucson, AZ

 Gary and all my friends of long ago who may still be with us.

Every time I see one of the episodes of this legendary document about people I spent time with in our unforgettable town, and people who I grew up with, swam naked in the creek  with  just off the old road to Bottineau, and other scandals that came with growing up in the late thirties and early forties in Dunseith, I get so deep in memories that I forget to punctuate, but never forget the people that were part of my past.

Gary, the gift of your post is a valuable and important recording of many generations of us, which  has been a gift and miraculous treasure of memories of those who helped me be  whatever I turned out to be.

I will be 87 later this year, but I still remember all the people in Dunseith who encouraged me to do what I wanted to do and gave me hope to reach my personal goal, which was to be a career Air Force guy and fly fighter airplanes and do what I could do in the service.

When I look back on this, I conclude that the whole Dunseith community kept encouraging me to do it and do it better. In any case, I just want to express a gratitude I feel about the community we all came from and the encouragement they gave me to do what I needed to do.

I am blessed with what you do for us all, Gary. Thank you for doing what you do, and being who you are.

Also, please hug your bride and remind her of our rendezous on the streets of Bottineau some time ago.

Cheers, Bill Hosmer

Gary’s comments
Thank you Bill for these nice comments. I really enjoy doing what I’m doing. Over the years doing this I have learned to know so many folks whose names I only knew in the past. Bill you were one of them too. In the past 10 years we have learned to know each other and have become good friends. I’m hoping these blogs have done the same for others too. The neat part about these blogs is when they are posted, everyone knows that all the rest of the folks on the distribution have seen them at the same time too.


San Haven Reply
From Sharon Zorn Gerdes (’61):  Windsor, CO

 In reply to Kaye- at that time the only way you could be a patieint at the San was to be diagnosed with tuberculosis.  They had patients with TB of the bone, but most I think were lung patients.  I know they did lung surgeries up there .  Wasn’t it build there because of the cold clear air?   Someone else will know far more than I do- my memory  is missing.  Sharon Zorn Gerdes


San Haven Patient records
Reply From Mel Kuhn (’70):  St. John, ND


This is for Kaye Lystad-Kirk looking for her great grandmother at San Haven. We have all those old record books of patients at that time at the Museum in St. John. If I had a name I would gladly look and see if I could find her listed in either patient or employee.

Mel Kuhn


Reply to Florence Pladson Sime’s Accident
Reply from Jean Took Berger (’75): Mandan, ND

Hi Gary I thought she was in another one by Rolette?

 Gary’s Comment
I have not heard of Florence being in another accident, but maybe. I sure hope not. I’m sure someone can tell us.


 Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe:  Bottineau & Minot, ND


Blog (595) posted on October 18, 2009

Posted on October 18, 2009

Memories and Condolences to the Arnold Zeiler family

From Gary Fulsebakke (71): Devils Lake, ND

Hi Gary,
Kelvin was a wonderful place for those of us who lived around or north
of Hwy.43 and a considerable distance from Dunseith or Bottineau. It
was a place to get groceries and supplies and to catch up on the
latest local news. Midge was a great storekeeper and a wonderful
person. She and her family lived in a nice apartment in the back of
the store. Even though Hal was a few years younger than me, we played
together often and I envied him because it seemed he had access to an
endless supply of candy, popicles, pop and ice cream. I thought he
lived in paradise! The “store” had a good supply of essentitial
groceries and general merchandise, much like a modern “C” store and
had a small bar connected on the south side. Midge was not only
bartender, but also an effective bouncer if the situation called for
it. She was an amazing lady. There were 2 Mobil gas pumps outside
where my Dad would often get his “2 bucks worth” of gas to carry him
thru the week. It was a sad day when Midge decided to sell the store
and move her family out west. One of my favorite memories was when
our bus driver, Arnold Zeiler, would drop us off at Kelvin while he
made his western route on 43 and then would swing back and pick us up.
While we were there we feasted on nickle candy bars, dime pop and a
game or two of bumper pool. When the weather was nice, he would drop
us off at the corner of 43 and 281 and we would walk all the way to
the top of Peace Garden hill picking up empty pop bottles along the
way which we redeemed at Kelvin for 2 or 3 cents a bottle. Those were
the days! We all thought Arnold was the greatest bus driver and one
of the nicest people you will ever meet. Arnold and Lorna were our
closet and dearest neighbors, and the entire Fulsebakke family offer
our deepest condolences to Lorna, Lyle and Sandra on your great loss.
Gary Fulsebakke

Condolences to the Arnold Zeiler family

From Sharron Gottbreht Shen (59): Everett, WA.

When I walked into the Rugby nursing facility attached to the hospital in mid August, it was so right to find Arnold and Lorna Casavant Zeiler seated in the sunroom, Arnold in a wheel chair all bright and cheerful and Lorna dressed for company quietly by his side. I so admired their devotion to each other. My condolences to Sandra and Lyle, both such a source of pride to their wonderful parents. Some years ago when I visited them at their apartment in Dunseith, Arnold went into great detail telling me about Lorna’s restored cardiac health; no other place or thing was more important than Lorna. Sharron

Arnold & Leona Zeiler

From Vickie Metcalfe (67): Bottineau, ND.


At 10 of 10, I ventured over east this morning to attend the funeral of an always kind,honorable man from the Peace Garden hills of Dunseith. When I got to the Catholic Church, I tugged on the doors, I found them securely locked. Baffled. Hum. I decided I must have read something wrong and I am here early.

Ah ha. I spy a couple cars to the side of the church. So, marching around to the side door, Yes! It opens, and bounding down stairs I go, to find Lorraine Peterson and Helen Boguslowski busy preping for lunch. Say I confidently, “What time is the funeral? Am I early?” Lorraine replied, “The funeral is in Bottineau at 10:00.” “Un oh.” Embarrassed. I think, “Boy, I really hate it when kids don’t read directions.” Lorraine and Helen kindly let me place forks on the place settings, make the lemonaide, and butter buns which was a fitting penance for this (Lutheran) teacher who apparently didn’t read facts and “assumed”.

Smells of scalloped potatoes and coffee filled the air when Bob and Supan Brennan arrived. Supan headed for the kitchen. Yep. Penance had been served and the St Michael Archangel Ladies came with more cakes. We three,Connie Peterson Lagerquist, Bob and I sipped decaf coffee and reminisced about the Zeiler team, “Arnold and Lorna“. As kids we recalled, where one was, the other was close by…….unless it was on Arnold’s bus. Bob said, “While riding school bus one afternoon, years ago Arnold told him he had to hurry and get home because it was he and Lorna’s anniversary.” Donna Fugere told us later that Arnold and Lorna were a married pair of about 67 years.

Fair well and God Speed Arnold.


Condolences to the Arnold Zeiler family

From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.

Gary and Friends,

My condolences to the Zeiler family on the passing of Arnold. We had a
lot of fun with Arnold and Lorna back in the early days of snowmobiling.
Good people.


Joan Richard’s mohter, Lorraine Olsen, passed away

From Vickie Metcalfe (67): Bottineau, ND.


Stopping by the Family Bakery early this afternoon, I saw Joni Richard and was saddened to hear from her of the passing of her dear mom. Joni is currently teaching at Dunseith High School, each of her three children are Dunseith High graduates. Joni, is quite active in leading the Bottineau women’s choir and also lends her talented musical gifts to playing for Peace Lutheran Church.


Today’s in_forum obit;

Lorraine Olsen
Binford, N.D.
Died Thursday, Oct. 15, 2009, at age 84 in MeritCare Hospital, Fargo.

Survivors: two sons, Barry (Faith) Olsen, Neal Olsen; and a daughter, Joan Richard.

Services: Visitation will be Sunday from 5 to 7, with a prayer service at 7, and Monday from 1 to 2, followed by the funeral at 2, all in Trinity Lutheran Church, Binford. Burial: Church ceme-tery.
(Quam-Plaisted-Cushman, Cooperstown, N.D.)

Repy to Doreen Bailey’s picture posted yesterday

From Lloyd Awalt (44): Bottineau, ND.

Reply to Doreen. I know every one on that picture. Mrs. Joe Cota is right I think my mom had a picture like this one Lloyd.

San Haven Memories

From Jean Nicholas Miller (66): Glendale, AZ.

Regarding San Haven, it is truly a shame what happened to it. I have many wonderful memories of it and history as well in my family. Back when it was a TB sanitarium my parents met there and fell in love and were married. My father(Herc Nicholas) was a TB patient there in the mid to late 40’s and my mother (Aggie Nicholas) was a nurses aide. When my father got out he worked there as an orderly. He and my mother got married and then he ended back in as a patient after I was born. My mother used to take me up to the grounds as a baby so he could see me through the window. Later we lived in Dunseith and move back there when I was around 10 as my parents both worked there then. It was a great place to grow up. Charlene Pearson, Dale Hoffman, Brenda too, Jay Vanorny, Ramona Thiefoe, the Cuadrado family and the other Cuban families too. Anyway it was great!!

San Haven

From Allen Richard (65): Midland, MI

About the San–I’m sure there are literally hundreds of opinions on what should or should not have been done in those last years. We all have different perspectives. I’ll give mine in a note to Shirley to begin with. It is still a major sore spot with me going back to ’76 when I was first elected to the legislature.


Answer to Gary’s Question

From Shirley Olson Warcup (49): Ivans, UT


Both of our sons were dentists–one still is. Our second son sold his practice about 10 years ago. His great love is golf!! He has some other business investments that don’t need daily “looking after” so he now can golf whenever he wants to. Next week he’ll be here in St. George to play golf. We have a multitude of golf courses. (We also have a grandson who is a senior dental student at the U. of Ohio.) Personally, I tried playing golf once and that was enough–I’d much rather read a book or watch a basketball game. I developed a love of basketball at Dunseith High School–watching, not playing. We had some very good teams. I’m a big NBA fan and have been known to not answer my door when I’m watching a close game and don’t want to miss the action.

Once again, Gary, many thanks for keeping us all connected!! I may have lived in California for 47 years, but I still consider myself a North Dakotan!!

Shirley Olson Warcup

Reply from Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC

To Ele Slyter& Richard:

Quite a hansome grandson that Devin is. You are both so blest to have a grand son that age who wants to serve his country,and not go the way of so many teenagers today in the grip of drugs. I especially liked the picture of Richard and him together saluting. That was priceless. Your daughter Sherri sure enough looks like her Mama. Thanks for sharing the pictures. Can never get enough pictures. Looking forward to seeing you and Richard at the mini-union. Ms. Aggie

Reply to Dick Morgan’s letter

From Gary Morgan (54): Garrison, ND.

Gary & All,

It was a bit of a surprise to see a letter from my brother, Dick, yesterday. Since he probably won’t see it for a month or more, I’ll attempt to answer your questions: I faithfully make copies of all your blogs and every month or so Dick stops by and picks them up. He then reads them in chronalogical order, one or two a day. Since he is uncomfortable with and distrustful of anything “new” he will not touch a computer. He can type, (he was assigned Postal Clerk in the army because of his typing skills) however he prefers to handwrite his correspondence because it is more warm and personal. He disdains ballpoint pens as they have no personality. He has my son-in-law special order ink. Unfortunately, the resulting correspondence is sometimes a little difficult to make out. More so in recent years. With this in mind, I’ll attempt to correct a few errors in your translation: It should be “phenomina” rather than pneumonia; he beat his head against his “crib” rather than “circle” and his grandparents were Harriet & Charlie Watkins. Other than that, you did really well.

Some members of my family think Dick is just a tad eccentric.His afore mentioned characteristics coupled with his preference to sleep in the back of his pickup under his trusty buffalo robe rather than in a bed sort of lead to this conclusion.In recent years, his bodily functions have compelled him to sleep in the house in the winter time.He confessed to me that he decided that was the prudent thing to do one winter night when it was like 20 below and he found himself debating with himself whether it was worth it to crawl out of his warm nest to “take a whiz” which he urgently had to do.

He is a wonderful brother who has always looked after me and has kept my family entertained all of these years.

Gary Morgan

Gary M, I have made the corrections to Dick’s letter posted below. Thank you so much for this reply. We’d love to hear more from Dick too. Gary S

Corrected copy

20 Sept. 09

Yet another perfectly beautiful day in North Dakota.

Hi Gary,

You could not have conceivably anticipated the incredible phenomina you would generate and create with your project to compile a directory of DHS graduates.My wife is baffled and bewildered by the outpouring of loyalty and love expressed in your dispatches.Some months ago, Jack Flynn telephoned to inquire why I was not contributing.Jack is well aware that I am a professionally trained and experienced historian and story teller, absolutely dedicated to truth and accuracy. So the following is for “Uncle Jack”.

Few know or care that the Morgan’s, Marjorie and Kenneth lived in Dunseith during the early 1930’s. That is how I came to be born in Bottineau.The first glimpse my mother and of her beautiful lovely boy, my head was covered with blood.Nurse said I was beating it against the crib, no doubt about that.I have not spent a night in the hospital since.Mother always contended that the nurse had dropped me on my head.Mother said that explained a lot.

As soon as I could walk I commenced to run away.Consequently I was tied with a piece of clothes line to the clothes line behind my grandparents, Harriet & Charlie Watkins.As I was straining against my leash, around the corner of the house came an older boy running at full speed.He caught my leash across his throat, which stopped and dropped him.I was projected up into the air.As Billy Jack Hosmer observed my graceful arc across the sky, he determined then and there to become a world class flier and pilot. I landed on my head.Mother said that explained a lot.

Dick Morgan (52)

Supt. “Big Ed” Conroy used to say the class of 52 was the “Quality Class”, well of course!We had both Don Hosmer and Kick McKay.

1987….at lake Mirond Canada…Note who has the fish….
Gary Morgan, Glen Williams and Dick Morgan

Gary Morgan’s family:
Standing L to R: Laurel, Pamela, Stacy, Mark & Rob
Sitting: Mary Lou & Gary

05/10/2017 (2520)

San Haven
Reply from Jean Took Berger (’75): Mandan, ND

In reply to Allen Richard I totally agree with you I worked there and it so refreshing when I went to work driving in to see how beautiful it was and the state sold it and just let that beautiful place go to hell. So sad.

I  so sorry to hear about Florence I pray for a speedy recovery  thoughts and prayers are being sent to her and her family

Gary’s Reply
Hello Jean,
Great hearing from you.
Because we have so many new folks and because I don’t always have things to post, for the past several years I have been posting previous blogs. Florence Pladson Sime was nearly killed in that horrible car accident she had in 2009. It’s a miracle she survived. She recovered very well and is doing fine today.


Reply to Margaret Metcalfe Leonard Casavant (’65)
From Ramona (Mona) Dionne Johnson (’48):Bottineau, ND

Margaret –   The Commissary (grocery store you spoke of) along with the

Post Office was located in the basement level of the “AD Building”.

There were apartments above- where we once lived at the beginning of the years we spent at San Haven until we moved our family to Bottineau.

Ramona (Mona) Johnson -’48


Reply to  Kaye Lystad-Kirk’s question
From Theresa Sivertson Delikat:  Box Elder, SD

In answer to Kaye’s question re: hospitalization at San Haven. San Haven at that time was only for cases or  suspected cases of Tuberculosis.  More than likely if the stay was short she did not have active TB.  She was lucky not to become active when in close proximity to other patients.


Blog (594) posted on October 17, 2009

Posted on October 17, 2009

Arnold Zeiler pasted away

Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND.

ARNOLD ZEILER, 89, Rugby, formerly of Dunseith, died Wednesday in a Rugby hospital. Funeral Saturday, 10 a.m., St. Mark’s Catholic Church, Bottineau. Scriptural service today, 5 p.m., in Nero Funeral Home, Bottineau. Visitation today, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., in the funeral home.

Sandra & Lyle, We are so sorry to hear of the passing of you dad. He was a wonderful man. He will be missed dearly. We are so glad that you guys have been able to spend time with your folks the last while. Sandra & Mike, I know you guys have been making a lot of trips to Rugby. It’s so wonderful that you have/are able to do this for your parents. Gary & Bernadette.

From Lynn Halvorson Otto (75): Seoul, Korea

To the Pladson family! I so sorry to here of Florence’s accident, she will be in our prayers. We pray for a complete and speedy recovery. Lynn Halvorson Otto

Update for Florence Pladson Sime (62) from her daughter Becky Sime Coles (83): Spokane, WA.

Florence remains in ICU. She has had a few surgeries to date. The latest was to place rods in her shoulder and hip. She will have to have another surgery, perhaps next week, to fix her wrist which was severly crushed. She is in a lot of pain, understandably so, but ocassionally feels well enough to give the nurses a bad time.

Letter from Dick Morgan (52): Washburn, ND

20 Sept. 09

Yet another perfectly beautiful day inNorth Dakota.

Hi Gary,

You could not have conceivably anticipated the incredible pneumonia you would generate and create with your project to compile a directory of DHS graduates.My wife is baffled and bewildered by the outpouring of loyalty and love expressed in your dispatches.Some months ago, Jack Flynn telephoned to inquire why I was not contributing.Jack is well aware that I am a professionally trained and experienced historian and story teller, absolutely dedicated to truth and accuracy.So the following is for “Uncle Jack”.

Few know or care that the Morgan’s, Marjorie and Kenneth lived in Dunseith during the early 1930’s. That is how I came to be born in Bottineau.The first glimpse my mother and of her beautiful lovely boy, my head was covered with blood.Nurse said I was beating it against the circle, no doubt about that.I have not spent a night in the hospital since.Mother always contended that the nurse had dropped me on my head.Mother said that explained a lot.

As soon as I could walk I commenced to run away.Consequently I was tied with a piece of clothes line to the clothes line behind my grandparents, Harriet and Harley Watkins.As I was straining against my leash, around the corner of the house came an older boy running at full speed.He caught my leash across his throat, which stopped and dropped him.I was projected up into the air.As Billy Jack Hosmer observed my graceful arc across the sky, he determined then and there to become a world class flier and pilot. I landed on my head.Mother said that explained a lot.

Dick Morgan (52)

Supt. “Big Ed” Conroy used to say the class of 52 was the “Quality Class”, well of course!We had both Don Hosmer and Kick McKay.

Dick, Thank you so much for sending me this letter. I hope I have typed it all correctly. Please let me know of any mistakes I may have made. I have a question for you. With what you say in this letter, you are getting these daily messages. I don’t have an email address for you in my files though. Gary

Question from Dick Johnson’s Aunt, his mothers sister.

Shirley Olson Warcup (49): Ivans, UT

Gary, Allen Richard or??

What has happened to San Haven? I haven’t heard anything about it for quite some time. I always thought it was such a beautiful place.

Shirley Olson Warcup

Shirley, It has been a long while since San Haven has been discussed. Many folks have been added to our distribution since that topic was discussed. I will let Allen or someone else re-address this subject. I will tell you this much, it’s a shame what has happened.

I got a personal reply from Brenda Hoffman to yesterday’s message telling me her husband is a retired Periodontist (Doctor of the Gums). I’m thinking you have a son who is a dentist as well? You have never said, but I think that is what I heard a while back with something that was said. Gary.

Ricky Kuhn’s address in Kosovo

From his dad Mel Kuhn (70): St. John, ND.

Howdy Gary,

I remember a while back that someone wanted an address for the guys when they get to Kosovo and my son called from Germany this morning with this address for him.

SPC. Kuhn, Ricky


TF Falcon-Eng

Camp Bondsteel

APO AE 09340

He said they are really getting into some intense training and will leave Germany for Kosovo next week.

Mel Kuhn[70]

Reply from LeaRae Parrill Espe (67): Bottineau, ND.

Someone mentioned Mr. Lykins yesterday and I, too, had been thinking of him yesterday as I was substitute teaching in the “keyboarding” class. They have to use cardboard keyboard covers so they can’t peek at the letters. I shared with them how our old Royal typewriters did not have the letters on the keys so we did not have any chances to peek. (One kid said he had seen one those typewriters and knew what they looked like!) So where have you been hiding Mr. Lykins. You haven’t been attacked by a Side Hill Gouger, have you? Does anyone else remember celebrating Side Hill Gouger Days? They were introduced to us by Mr. Lykins.

LeaRae, you need to wonder no more with Mr. Lykins reply below. Gary

Bob Lykins (DHS teacher in the mid 60’s) reply: Hutto, TX.


I am still alive and very busy. I have been doing a great deal of traveling and just returned from visiting my young son and his mom in Germany. My son took golf lessons through his school. Since golf equipment is so much cheaper here than in Europe I bought him a nice starter set and bag and took it with me on the plane to Germany. We played in a tournament in Garmisch as well as several times at a course near my wife’s home. Most of the time my son played alone with me driving the cart as it was so expensive ($75.00 for one for 18 holes). Since “Dad” was paying it was better for my pocket book not to play. At a municipal course near my home in Hutto seniors only pay $22.00 for 18 holes, a cart, breakfast and lunch. My son and I also spent 4 days in Vienna, Austria touring the sights as well as attending the opening of a major Impressionist art exhibit and an evening concert by the Vienna Mozart Orchestra. Surprisingly, my 13 year old thought the concert his favorite experience in Vienna. One day, while my son was in school, I thought I’d get more culture so I rode the bus down the mountain and hopped a train to Munich and the Oktober Fest. That is always a fun time. While there I was interviewed by a major German TV channel, ZDF. It seems that day the American Government had issued a travel advisory against traveling to Germany because of threats issued on TV by Al Quida to create “incidents” if the German electorate did not vote for political candidates and parties, in elections that next week, that were advocating the withdrawal of all foreign troops from Iraq and Afghanistan. The reporter asked me how I felt about the advisory. I told her that it did not bother me and that I had full faith and confidence in the German security agencies to handle any threat. (I wanted to say that nothing, not even threat of bodily harm, was going to keep me from drinking the finest beer in the world. But, that might have been too flippant). She also asked me if I was taking any precautions. I told her that I wasn’t going to sit next to any un-attended packages. I forgot all about it until latter that night, after I got home, my wife asked me if I had done an interview for TV. It seems relatives and friends had been calling asking my wife if she had seen the interview on TV (she hadn’t) and so there went my 15 seconds of fame.

I am now back in Hutto enjoying the fall Texas weather. I keep busy by working around the house as well as working part-time with Pearsons Education. They called me back to work and I will be doing a solid 3 weeks starting next week. I need to make enough to pay for my flights to Washington, DC and back to Germany in December to visit family. In the spring I plan to head up to Alaska to visit my daughter and her family at Elmendorff AFB. I’m also working for the University of Texas Athletic Department as an events usher. I work the football games which allow me to see a good deal of the home games. It’s fun and I enjoy joshing with the fans.

By-the-way, I remember buckle overshoes and the long string of yarn that connected both sets of mittens and ran up one arm, across the back, and down the other arm in my coat.

Sorry to learn about Gregg Grimme. My condolences to the family. I remember well the Grimme children in school. It wasn’t difficult to tell who was a Grimme as it seems they all looked alike and they were all good students.

My best to all.

Bob Lykins

Reply from Vickie Metcalfe (65): Bottineau, ND.

Gary, A few e-mails ago Ivy (Eller) Robert asked about Hal Dupee. Was she referring to Hal, the son of Midge Cook Henrikson the proprietor of Kelvin Store? Didn’t his older sister write in a while back about him. I relayed that tidbit of info to my sister, Cyndy who recalls him as a nice kid.

Ivy, my sister Cyndy, Connie Peterson, Jesse Marion, Emil Dubois, Alexis Machipiness, Lorraine Cote, and Hal were just some of the kids in the same early grade classes together. At the our supper table every night, Cyndy would exuberantly talk about their wonderful teacher, Mrs.Fortune Berube. Cyndy would also entertain us with talk about her classmates ….. we’d hear tales of exploits of (some) kids. None of the comments were bad, just amusing to my dad. Cyndy thought the world of Mrs. Berube and of her classmates.

Later, Vickie

Vickie, You are so right. What a memory. I am pasting Lynn Henrikson’s message below that she posted with message 367 on February 10, 2009. I have highlighted in bold blue what she has to say about Hal. Gary

Previously posted with message 367 – 2/10/09

Reply from Lynn Henriksen (64):

Yes, of course I remember Dot & Tommy Hagen! Mom loved you both so much. I always remember you as being so nice & fun. The names you just brought up & even the mention of the cabin behind Kelvin bring up so many wonderful memories – it actually brings tears to my eyes and tightens my throat, so I’m glad I can type, not have to speak right now, since I’d break down bawling. Seems like a million years ago – and the stuff we each have tucked inside can be triggered so easily by just the mention of a name. Thank you for think of us!

Briefly, Dana and Rick and families are all happy & healthy – Dana in Idaho, Rick in Oregon (1/3 of the time in Baja developing his “casa” project).

And yes, all the play time & boyhood memories between Markey and Hal. Hal had a horrible, crippling accident about 20 years ago – he is amazing, doesn’t let quadriplegia stop him – has a beautiful “saint” of a girl friend, writes, etc. I’m sure he’d love to hear from Markey & from you two – don’t know if I should put his email address in this reply, so please email me at & I’ll give it to you.

Keeping Spirits Alive,

Lynn Henriksen

Website: http://www.telltalesouls.com

Blog: http://www.thestorywoman.com

Folks, this is a personal message that Vickie Metcalfe sent to me with some of our one on one correspondence. I have her permission to share this wonderful message with you.

Alcoholism is a devastating disease. There are quite a few folks I know who lived in tough home situations. After leaving Dunseith, while attending graduate school I came to understand the disease and realized I would have been a perfect enabler. Whooeee. Insight.

As an elementary counselor in Montana, I was fortunate to work for a school board and administration that encouraged all certified staff to gain further education in understanding the disease concept of alcoholism to help children in prevention.

I owe so much to that school system who enabled me to continue growing as a person. But, I owe even more to those kids who shared with me their pain.

This another lesson of life, any time a kid shares emotional pain with me I am humbled and honored.

Particularly kids who live with their unspoken family rules, “don’t trust, don’ feel and don’t talk” . As each layer of education from classes and lessons from kids who’ve walked the walk. I automatically start recognizing family roles; ie “The active alcoholic, the charming alcoholic, the dry drunk, the co-dependent, the perfect child, the lost child,the troublemaker, the family clown.”

I strongly believe in the power of hope. I found through this life journey parents who got involved in their recovery through the 12 step process and ended up in being the most awesome healthy parents I’ve worked with.

Children of alcoholics need to believe in hope. And kids need to learn there’s a genetic pre- disposition in this disease. If they can recognize they are at risk so much can be prevented. Oh boy, here there I go again into the teacher mode bandwagon and you are playing the violin by now. When I start with that business of judging others, I remind myself to STOP, take a deep breath and say to myself,”But for the grace of God , there go I.”

So enough said. Thank you for sharing, it does make one stop and marvel at a life miracle, “some folks change their destiny”

And Justly reaffirms. HOPE. Later. Vickie

Message/Picture from Doreen Bailey (Vance Bailey 46 deceased): Tempe, AZ

Gary Metcalfe Mention the Cota family that lived across the road from the Old Bailey farm on the hill. Vance has this picture of a Picnic at Carpenter Lake 1912 of Bailey, Anderson, Cota, & Wagner ladies and children. I remember him mentioning he was not positive about Mrs. Cota’s husbands first name, he has Joe on the picture. Also that they were neighbors of his Grandparents.

Doreen Bailey

05/08/2017 (2519)

San Haven Memories
From Margaret Metcalfe Leonard Casavant (’65): Rolette, ND

Hi Gary,

I think about you and Bernadette fondly and often.  Thanks for keeping us up to speed
on our activities.  Always enjoyable to hear how things are with you.

Looking at those old, beautiful pictures of San Haven makes me sad when I remember how immaculate the lawn and gardens were back in the 60’s when I spend many fun days there with Carol Jasper.  Such great adventures and memories of the people who lived and worked there:  Red and Lorraine Pearson, Sharon and Charlene, Marjorie Lillico, Edna Mohagen, Mrs. Conroy’s brother, don’t recall his name, Marlys Fitzvold, Bennie & Grace Frobarb, Maggie McGee, Harvey & Alice, Dale and Brenda Hoffman, Virgil and Beane Vanorny and Jay, Mike and Olga Jasper and Carol, Pete and Clarice Link and Joe and Ronnie, Dennis DuBois parents, Jean Nicholas’s family, I think her sister’s name was Ellen Graff, Karen Loab’s family, Thiefoe’s, Andy & Arlene Sand, just to name a few that I remember.

We babysat for Chuck and Ramona Johnson’s boys, going door to door trick or treating at Halloween, eating in the dining room was a new and fun experience, (first time I ate a black olive).  Exploring the old theatre and the tunnels brings back special memories, closing the dairy and the sale at the barn, Lake Shutte just down a little road, the old golf course on the north and a cemetery on the south; it was a lovely campus.

I can’t place the grocery store.  Thanks for sharing these pictures and the trip down memory lane.  Can’t thank you enough for creating this amazing communication tool!!

Wishing you the best,  Margaret Casavant


San Haven Patient Question
From Kaye Lystad-Kirk:  Fargo, ND

Hi Gary,

Is this the right email address I should use if I ever have something to contribute to your blog? Or should I use your aol address?

My query is this: 

One of my great grandmothers was in San Haven for a “short period of time” (sorry, I don’t know how short) in the 1940s. She would have been anywhere in her mid-50s to mid-60s.  Can anybody give me any reasons why one would have been in San Haven then? As of right now, I can’t find a family member that can tell me why. And as far as I know, she had no health issues prior or after her stay. Thank you.



Blog (593) posted on October 16, 2009

Reply from Keith Pladson (66): Stafford, VA
just a brief follow up to my niece’s (Becky’s) notice on her mother Florence Sime. I’ll let Becky keep you all updated on her status.However, Becky didn’t mention much about the accident — probably because, like me, she hasn’t heard that much except to say it was a horrific accident. What we do know in that others were also badly injured and I would like to ask for your prayers and best wishes not only for Florence’s recovery, but for the recovery of all those injured in the accident. Thank you in advance for your prayers. Keith Pladson Class of 66

From Verena & Pete (65) Gillis: Dunseith, ND.
> Re: Florence SimeWe are so terribly sorry to hear about her accident. I hard about the
accident after work yesterday. The roads were so terrible throughout
Rolette County and Bottineau County. As I understand she was hit by
another car who was trying to pass her, as she was out doing her rounds.
You would think people that have lived around here all their lives would
know enough to slow down and not try to pass in these conditions. We will
be praying for her recovery. She is a wonderful lady!

Pete and Verena Gillis

Reply From Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND.
I was shocked/stunned/etc. to read of Florence Sime’s accident. I’m including a site where emails may be sent to her. I think the emails are read once per day (probably morning)/the messages are printed on card, along with who sent them/delivered to the patient later in the day. Wally received several of them when he was hospitalized. I’m sure Florence would enjoy hearing from friends/family/etc.
From Bobby Slyter (70): Wichita, Kansas
I just wanted to add to Ele’s message about my great nephew Devin Millang, I am so very very proud of this young man that the buttons on my shirt popes off when I see him in uniform,he is not only a brave young man but a very respectful, passionate and courteous person, we all wish him well in his next adventure in the marines, it is a great pleasure to be his great uncle
Reply from Allen Rickard (65): Midland, MI
Just two things: First the date you picked would have been Dad’s 90th birthday. Second, seeing those pictures of the San makes me both angry and near nauseous when I think of what became of it and how all that history and beauty turned into a pile of rubble.
Allen Richard
From Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND.
Do you recall having any “wayward” horses back on the farm? I figured you might feel the need to lighten up and grin at this piece of info out of WY.from the Billings Gazette. That bit of cowboy humor got me thinking about those who get together and jam. My sister in-law Sally’s aunt Shirley and uncle Carl are a couple of folks with music in their bones and Carl’s compositions….make one think he’s got the soul of a cowboy poet. VickieCowboy cited after horse wanders away from bar

Click on the link or Copy and Paste the address into your internet browser window.

Reply from Cheryl Larson Dakin (71): BEDFORD, TX
HI All
In reply to Bonnie Awalt Houle, I do remember those overshoes…..mostly when the buckles would become packed with snow and it was hard to unhook them with frozen fingers. And they would melt all over the floor when we did get them off. Mom was constantly having to mop up after us. I don’t remember wearing them in the rain as much as I do in the snow. The good old days when we could be out in it for what seemed like hours and not be as miserable as we would be now.
Cheryl Larson Dakin
Reply from Sybil Johnson: Cheyenne, WY.
Good morning Dunseith and Neola,
It was my cousin’s husband from Virginia, who sent the update of Reachelle Smith. I had forwarded the Amber Alert to them and Chuck did
some checking on the story. Maybe and this may sound like a fluke idea, but some of the law enforcement shows on TV have run past cases like hers’. Maybe, this is a way to go. This is just an idea. Thank you Neola. Sybil Johnson
Folks, After sending yesterday’s message, I realized I had forgotten to answer Dick’s question that I have highlited in blue below. Gary
Bonnie Awalt Houle–I sure do remember the 4 and 5 buckle overshoes. I
always new when the kids from the hills got to school in the
morning—-ka ching ka ching down the hall. The amazing thing to me was
that shoes and overshoes were all we wore in the winter. My feet got
numb after a half hour and stayed that way all day! If we would have had
pack boots and Thinsulate liners then, most of us wouldn’t have
arthritis now. Let me try a guess—I seem to remember Gary Stokes
always wore zipper overshoes to school. Am I right Gary?

Dick, You are so right about those zipper overshoes. I had totally forgotten about those too. When I started high school I graduated from the buckle overshoes to the zipper type. Those were my Sunday overshoes too. I had earned enough money working the summer months for Norris/Bud Knutson and Carl Melgaard to be able to buy those too.
The last winter I was back in ND was in January 1971. The Army granted me 2 weeks convalescent leave at that time following corrective surgery that I had on my Jaw. I was very fortunate to have been in a dental unit with one of the best Oral surgeons that recognized I had a petruding jaw that could be surgically corrected. He cut my jaw bone on both sides, in the back, completely off with an angle cut and slid my whole jaw back nearly a half inch. I was wired shut for the next 6 weeks for the healing. I ate thin strained foods through a straw. At the time I was working for a Periodontist (Gum Dentist) who was very good friends with the Oral surgeon. Being a periodontist, he was very concerned with the alignment of my teeth, so he assisted with the surgery to make sure things got aligned correctly. He also took pictures (slides) of the whole operation of which I have. To this day I have had zero problems. I was so fortunate to have had such wonderful caring profession folks in my life at that time. Needless to say, my facial features were considerably altered/corrected with this operation. It was fun going back into the civilian world following this surgery with folks wondering if that was really me. I was stationed at Fort Riley Kansas, following my year in Viet Nam, at the time.
Reply/Pictures from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.
Gary,The picture posted by Gary Morgan of Billy Wright’s grocery store had
to have been taken the same day as the Post Office picture with similar
hail storm damage. The history book says the storm was in 1943. My
grandparents bought this store in 1947, according to the Dunseith
Journal. I remember the building when Joe Morinville had his store there
in the mid 50s and before he moved to the building north of Said (Sy)
Kadry’s pool hall. For those who don’t remember this building, it stood
across from Woodford’s Bar in what is now the parking lot for Wayne’s
grocery store. Attached are two items–first the Journal article and a
pencil I have from when my grandparents had the store in the late 40s.
Thanks Gary!


Dick, Speaking of the Morgan’s, When I picked up my mail from the FPO office yesterday, I had a letter from Dick Morgan (52). Dick does not have email that I know of. I will utilize the valuable typing skills I received from Mr. Lykins class and type his letter into tomorrow’s message. Speaking of Mr. Lykins, we have not heard from him in a while. Gary

05/03/2017 (2518)

Dion relative seeking information
Message from Scott Brady: Vernon, Connecticut


My name is Scott Brady and I recently came across your blog while doing family research.  I believe I am related to the Dions from Dunseith through Victoria Bouvier who was a 3rd cousin of mine.  If there is anyone you know who may be interested in contacting me to share family information please feel free to pass this email on.


PS Your blog is a truly wonderful use of social media to foster community unity and preserve local history.


Letter from Lee Stickland (’64):  Dickinson, ND


We ALL know that you are an enduring gentleman but unless I missed it, I do not recall an earthquake reference in any of you SENDS ?

All is well in SW ND, little rain would always go a long way, most crops are in.  We took a bus ride thru the TRNP north of Medora last week and it is wanting to “green”  up.  Saw so new wild horse foals, many buffalo, more mule deer than white tail.

Just returned from a week in Boston with my son Eric, his wife, Kim and my 9 year old Gson, Sam.

Walked the “Freedom Trail”. saw the house where Paul Revere raised 14 children, over time, in one bedroom.  This home was built in 1650.

We also visited the Old North Church where Paul Revere hung the famous lantern(s).

Eric and I drove thru a corner of New Hampshire and into Maine on one day.  This leaves only Vermont on my “bucket list” to visit each state.  When I drove an 18-wheeler for 11 months in 1998, I went around America 4 times but missed a few states.

Near forgot: We took a subway/trolley/narrated bus ride for a few hours one day.  The driver took that bus around corners where I was very surprised it would fit; His name was Little Mike and he weighed over 300 pounds so possibly he has good practice getting where others would not attempt to go?

I wanted to see the corner that my favorite author uses as the placement for his office in each of his books.  It is right across the Boston Commons from Interstate90 which runs from Boston to Seattle, thru Rapid City, SD and Billings, MT. NO stop signs

Interstate 80 is the Ho Chi Ming Trail of America as it runs from Sacramento, CA to NY City.

SNUF babble.  Good to see YOU, Gary.  Hello to ALL   LEE

ps I have one more trip, to SC   A fella moved to Dickinson from Penn to work in the oil patch for four years.  His company paid him very well, paid his rent in Dickinson, gave him a new PU each year to drive, paid the gas and the time to drive to work.   He wants me to come see him in Sumter, SC where he works for his brother in the concreter business.  83 degrees there, right now,  60 degrees here at 12:58 am MT  May DAY

Gary’s Reply
Thanks for this nice letter Lee. It’s wonderful hearing from you. In regards to your question about the earth quakes. In the past several months there have been several, but small. I really only felt one when the closet doors rattled in our bedroom at 4am in the morning.


Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Bottineau & Minot, ND

Funeral Service
Monday, May 08, 2017
10:00 AM

Richard Lindquist

May 23, 1951 – April 27, 2017

Sign Guestbook|
Send Sympathy Card

Richard Lindquist, age 65 of Thief River Falls, MN died Thursday at Thief River Falls.  His funeral will be held on Monday at 10:00 am at the Eagle Heart Cultural Center in Dunseith.  A wake service will begin Sunday at 4:00 pm at the center.

(Nero Funeral Home – Bottineau)


Blog (592) posted on October 15, 2009

Posted on October 15, 2009

In reply to Aggie’s message posted below:

Folks, I know that this reunion Aggie Casavant (69) and Verena (Pete 65) Gilles are planning will be a smashing success. I know that whenever you have Verena involved with an activity it will be a success and I know Aggie is right in there with her. The only thing they are asking from you folks is a reply letting them know you plan on attending so they can make their plans accordingly. I’d suggest letting them know even if you are not quite sure. An occasion of this nature does not come along often. For all of you both far and near, please make your plans accordingly and plan to attend this reunion if at all possible. Think of the fun you will have seeing so many folks from the past. To top things off, your entertainment for this event will be Highway 43 with Dick & Brenda Johnson and Ron Hett. I’ve got their CD playing as I speak. It’s great!!

It’s not often an event of this nature is held, so take advantage of this great opportunity and attend. Please pass the word to those that do not have email.

I told Aggie they will have to get some stick on name tags too for this event so folks know who you are and you know who they are. We do change over the years.

Please let Aggie know your plans.


Dunseith Alumni Reunion plans posted by Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC

To: The Dunseith Bloggers:

Just got off the phone with Vereena Gillis,(and yes Gary she is as nice a person as you said she was…sweet as can be) this is what we have so far with plans for the Mini-Dunseith Reunion:

Date: May 22,2010

Time: Social Hour 4:00pm to 6:00pm

Cook Out: 6:00pm to 8:00pm

Music & Hanging Out : 8:00pm to Midnight

Band: Hwy 43…AKA Dick & Brenda Johnson & Ron Hett

I’m sure by now your wondering about the location…So are we…. LOL. What we need from all who are interested in attending, is an e-mail or phone call to me by

December 1,2009 so Vereena has an idea of what size of facility to get,so we have more of an idea how much to charge.

As for the food,all we know so far is that it’s going to be a cookout…Dick has a grill that he built,that can cook up to I think he said 35 to 40 steaks and/or hamburgers at a time.(Thank you Dick!) Some have suggested pot luck, some have suggested catering, Please put your preference down when e-mailing me,that again would give us more of an idea also, what the cover charge would be. The whole concept is to keep it, Fun,& Simple and to keep the cost down,so as not to pose a hardship on anyone who would maybe like to attend,but short on funds… I would rather give up the frills,and be able to sit and chat with an old classmate.

We will update you with info as we get it….Right now we just need a head count. Again Please let me know by Dec.1,2009 if you plan to attend.

If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please give me a holla at…

Florence Pladson Sime (62) was in a bad car accident

Posted by her daughter Becky Sime Coles (83): Spokane, WA.

Florence (62, Keith (66) & Bechy (83)

Mom (Florence Sime) was in a car wreck today. I just got off the phone with the hospital. She has a compound fractured wrist, broken shoulder, broken ribs, punctured lung, broken hip, tear in her spleen and many scratches on her face. All this was on the left side. The doctor is putting a tube in her lung to keep it from collapsing and when she is stable from that they will be taking her into surgery to repair her wrist. She will be in ICU from there. When she is able they will be performing additional surgeries. No contact number for her yet. She is in the Minot Hospital. Drop me a note or call if you have any questions. I’ll keep you posted on her status. My phone number is


Reply from Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

Hey Gary, Dick, and my dear KITH and KIN,

Another response from Ardis Metcalfe Steggall, to my earlier questions about the Cota’s.

Hi Vickie,

George’s brother, Alfred, was a good friend of my parents. He lived in the Tri Cities in eastern Washington and would go to Seattle every year for a check up on his throat. He had throat cancer and the voice box removed but communicated very effectively with burps of air. He and his wife would always get together with my parents when they came to Seattle. My parents also visited them a few times in eastern Washington. Very nice people.

Have a good life,


My pondering reply.

I remember Alfred Cota coming to Uncle Emil’s when they lived in the big green two story house surrounded by fields of strawberries at MARYSVILLE, WASHINGTON in the fall of 1963. This was whom the Cliff Metcalfe family lived with in Marysville, until our mom found the Hanson rental house on Schultes Road.

Later, when my folks were back living at the farm north of Dunseith , Alfred Cota stopped by and visited there too. He and dad would talk about times past and about his travels visiting people. Mom would brew coffee and put together a lunch.

The feeling of “true fondness and warmth”, come back to me as I recall the strong emotions evoked when George and Lela Cota were around Jim and Ella Metcalfe. That feeling was also there when Dad , Uncle Emil and the uncles and aunts were visiting Alfred Cota, as the record player was playing Uncle Emil’s Johnny Horton LP at the big green house.

I don’t recall meeting Alfred’s wife. I just knew he was a special adult friend the “Metcalfe’s ” held in high regard (He was up there with a few others. I think the our folks expected us to call him Mr.

I recall warm cozy feelings of true affection and happiness of old friends who were fondly together again.. The clinkings of moms making a lunch, jolly laughter and voices some like a smooth creamed coffee, another gruff, another quite different but ok because he was an old friend. I know what I experienced was true AGED friendship, comparing that to an AGED fine cognac (smooth and easy.) Special kind of friends, that knew each others weaknesses but focused on strengths and loved each other as friends.

Later, Vickie

Reply from Gary Metcalfe (57): Forsyth, MO

Hello, Dick I think that little girl that Mae is holding is Joy, her granddaughter and Alfred Cota’s only child. Alfred Cota was full of vim and vigor, we were neighbors in Spokane, Wa. He had to have a voice box due to cancer, but that did not slow him down a bit. I would guess Vance Bailey would have been able to identify with this Cota family as they were near to the old Bailey farm.

Another guy I should mention is Art Seim’s brother, Morris. My dad’s age. He and his wife Victoria, and daughter Dorothy, used to visit us back and forth in Seattle. Morris sold insurance and he always carried milk with him for his ulcers.

Bonnie I was trying to forget them!!

Aggie some people can live a full life in a short time, you are one of them, don’t settle down….keep on making memories. They are so useful when you get older, and unlike most everything else, no one can take them away from you. We went over that Estes Colorado Mountain in 1978 in an old camper on our way to Phoenix.

Gary Metcalfe

Reply from Dick Johnson68): Dunseith, ND.

Gary and Friends,

And so the plot thickens! I contacted my aunt, Shirley Olson Warcup,
and she looked up the year George and Lela were married—1936 for sure.
This means that 1961 was their 25th and 1976 was their 40th
anniversaries. The picture must have been in the camera for a couple
months because it was developed in 1977. I’m sure this is of no interest
to most of you, but Geri and Vickie had some question about it. It
seemed to me the anniversary at Rendahl was in ’61 so I asked my aunt
for the right information. Now everything lines up.

Bonnie Awalt Houle–I sure do remember the 4 and 5 buckle overshoes. I
always new when the kids from the hills got to school in the
morning—-ka ching ka ching down the hall. The amazing thing to me was
that shoes and overshoes were all we wore in the winter. My feet got
numb after a half hour and stayed that way all day! If we would have had
pack boots and Thinsulate liners then, most of us wouldn’t have
arthritis now. Let me try a guess—I seem to remember Gary Stokes
always wore zipper overshoes to school. Am I right Gary? Thanks!


From Ken Striker: Dayton OH


I have noticed recent issues of Dunseith Alumni that the pictures do not come up.

Ken, If some of the pictures come up, my guess is that it could possibly be a server problem. Sometimes if you do a reply or forward to the message, the pictures will appear. I have not had a problem with the copies of these messages that I send to myself. If all else fails and you are still having problems, I post all these messages and pictures on the Dunseith Alumni WEB sitehttp://garystokes.net/default.aspx

Folks, please let me know if any of the rest of you are having these same problems. Gary

‘Amber Alert’ reply from Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND.

Hi Gary/Sheryl/Sybil,

I see Sybil sent info about the missing Minot girl, Reachelle Smith. What Sybil wrote is right; the “person of interest” killed himself. Since then, as far as the public knows, there have been no “breaks”/leads in the case. I have not seen updated pictures of Reachelle; I don’t know where one could be located. It’s as if Reachelle/the case are off the radar, so to speak. Except for receiving the amber alert email occasionally, I have heard nothing about Reachelle.

Sad/bewildering case. She’s a cutie.


Devin Millang the New Marrine

From Ele Dietrich Slyter (69): Dunseith, ND.

Here is a couple pics of our grandson Devin Millang…we are so proud of him and yes tears were flowing at the graduation ceremony. The second pic is Cam, Sherri, Tanner, Alyssa and Devin. The third pic is two generations of Marines, grandpa Richard Slyter and Devin.

Thank you Vickie for your comments about Devin going to school for lunch with Alyssa.

Ele’s reply to Gary’s question:

Yes, you have the relationships correct.

Graduation was held at Marine Corp Receiving Depot at San Diego, CA. We flew out of Fargo on the 7th of Oct, had family day with Devin on the 8th and he graduated on the 9th. We had an awesome time in CA. and were able to bring Devin home with us for a 10 day leave. He returns to Camp Pendleton on the 20th for his infantry training for about 3 weeks, then off to MOS training. We are not positive just where yet.

I have included his graduation photo with this email in case you want to add it to the others I sent this morning.

Thank you for sharing our pride in this wonderful, brave young man.


Devin Millang

Devin Millang

L to R: Sherri Slyter Millang, Cam Millang,
Alyssa Millang, Tanner Millang & Devin Milliang

Richard Slyter with his Grandson Devin Millang

Folk, This is the way I remember Richard Slyter in the picture below. I knew Richard and his brothers well in my childhood days. I have not seen any of them in nearly 45 years. We all change, but one always has a mental picture of folks from the way you saw them last. Richard, I must say that the ladies would probably say you are still the handsome looking guy your were back in the days. Gary

Richard Slyter

Request from Marshall Awalt (51): Newport, NC

Gary, Please add Harlyn Oppeboen to the daily blog as he went to Dunseith school through the sixth grade before moving he now lives in Colorado.His e-mail

is hco@aol.com. He sent these pictures of the hail damage in Dunseith and pictures of the San Haven.

Thanks Marshall 51

Harlyn, I am assuming your were in the same class as Marshall, class of 51. For now I will include you with his class. Please let me know if this is incorrect. Gary

Bill Wrights – Hail damage

Oppeboen Home – Hail damage


04/30/2017 (2517)

Wendell Cattron: Reply to Ivy Eller Robert
From Kathy Cattron Fontaine (69):  Lakota, ND

(received on April 23rd)

Ivy, I am Kathy Cattron Fontaine, Wendell Cattron’s sister.

Wendell moved to Fargo, ND before graduating from high school.  Then went to college there.  After college he got married to a girl from Minneapolis, MN. Wendell & Gwen have 7 children.  He works for Desoto Associates as a chemist and is now living in Chicago, Illinois.

Take Care, K&J


Wesley Schneider
Reply from Florence Hiatt Dahl (50):  Anchorage, AK

Gary, you are amazing.  I don’t even remember writing about Wesley, but I certainly remember his riding  backwards on a bicycle.  He was an amazing person—kindness personified.  .Bless you for all your work  Gary.


Posted by Allen Richard (65):  Midland, MI

In Memory of
Louise HORSMAN (DHS Class of 1943)
Pigeon Horsman, Louise 04-30-2017
April 3, 1925 – April 23, 2017


Louise Horsman was born to S. Cephas & Hortense Pigeon on April 3rd, 1925. She was raised in Dunseith, North Dakota where she and her siblings helped their parents on the farm and in their country store. Louise married Brice Horsman, also from Dunseith. They made their home in Seattle, Washington where they raised three daughters. Louise quietly passed away Sunday, April 23rd at the age of 92 and in the presence of family. She was preceded in death by her husband, sister and four brothers. She is survived by her three daughters–Karen Moe, Lori McMahon (Earnie) and Julie Gerringer (Chuck); three grandchildren–Eric Moe (Bobbie), Brian McMahon and Amy Savage (Erik); the light of her life-her five great grandchildren–Brice, Samantha and Ethan Moe, and Duncan and Kiera Savage; and sisters-in-law Dorie Davis and Eunice Marshall. She will be buried at Acacia Memorial Park, Seattle. At her request, there will be no service.


Blog (591) posted on October 14, 2009

Posted on October 14, 2009

Folks, Today is our bowling day, so I am kind of cramped for time trying to get this out before leaving here at noon. I slept in a bit this morning too. If there are any mistakes, I’ll correct them tomorrow. Gary

I am reposting this to correctly identify Evelyn. I errored big time yesterday.

Reply From Florence Hiatt Dahl (50) sister to Evelyn Hiatt Schneider Deceased.

Anchorage, AK

Did you know Wesley Schneider does not ride bicycles normaly? He rides them backwards. I wish I had taken pictures of him doing this. He was a wonderful friend to Don and I. We were so much younger then our other brothers and sisters and Wes was so kind to us….He would even take us fishing………………….

Florence, I have heard talk of Wesley Schneider and his backward bicycle riding skills too. It was some of the talk of my childhood days. Gary

Reply from Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND.

Hi Gary,

I forwarded the two newsletters pertaining to Wes/Ovidia Schneider, to Ruth Sletten Gust. She is also Ovidia’s daughter. She is married to Ronald Gust, Wally’s godson. Ronald/Ruth live on Wally’s parents’ “homeplace”, a mile north of Kramer (Wally’s grandfather, Herman Garbe, originally owned the farm.). Ruth and her daughter, Renee, have an antique business on the farm. Renee/husband/daughter live in Bottineau.

Ruth enjoyed the newsletters/found them very interesting.


From Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND.


Alysa a sixth grade student, was accompanied to lunch today by a tall, straight standing, handsome, clean cut MARINE. He came the elementary school to eat lunch with his little sister smartly dressed in his uniform. This young man, graduated from here in May of 2009 and is currently visiting his Family Roots in the hills north of Dunseith and also Bottineau School Roots.

He took time to visit with some of his former teachers, one former homeroom teacher became tearful when she saw him.

Hopefully, his proud grandma Ele will send you his photo. God Bless this MARINE, Devin Millang on his journeys. Thanks. V.

From Bonnie Awalt Houle (56): Becker, MN

Dear Gary,

I am certain there must be other people out there that remember having to wear 4 buckle overshoes. (Hateful darn things) When your fingers were cold it was harder then heck to unbuckle them, if you didn’t buckle them they made an awful racket when you walked. The racket from all those boots irritated the teachers to no end. When you came down the stairs at the end of the day with lots of us not buckling the boots we would catch it from the 1st, 2nd and 3rd, 4th, grade teachers that stood at the bottom of the steps to stop kids from jumping the last few stairs or from running down the steps. After wearing the boots without buckling them the buckles would break off, now you were in more trouble. Who else remembers these overshoes?

Bonnie Awalt Houle (56)

Reply from Sybil Johnson: Cheyenne

Gary, My cousin sent this to me, in answer to this AMBER ALERT. Evidently,
this little girl has been missing for sometime. I wish the Wingates would
have sent an updated picture and story. It doesnt take away anything, but
an updated picture and story would have helped much more.
Thought you would like to know. Sybil Johnson
From: usofrnr@cox.net
To: great_grandma2007@live.com
Subject: Re: (591) Dunseith Alumni……AMBERT ALERT
Date: Tue, 13 Oct 2009 09:05:03 -0400

She has been missing for three years and is now six if she is still alive.
The man who police thought might have abducted her committed suicide and
no sign of her was found. I fear if she is alive she won’t look at all
like her photo

From Geri Metcalfe Munro (59): Fargo, ND

Hi Gary–In response to my cousin, Vickie Metcalfe in #591:

Yes, George and Lela were with my folks at Jim and Ella’s 25th anniversary
; the picture upper right is George and Lela in 1933; I believe they were
married that year and my folks were attendants, Lower left is on Jim and
Ella’s wedding day with George and Lela as attendants on July 9, 1934, and
lower right is Jim and Ella on their wedding day. They were lifelong
friends. Lela’s maiden name was Johnson, sister of Dick’s grandma, Myrtle


L to R: Ella Metcalfe, Lela Cota, Jim Metcafle & George Cota

George and Lela Cota in 1933

Jim and Ella’s wedding day with George
and Lela as attendants

Jim and Ella Metcalfe on their wedding day

Reply/Pictures from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.

Gary and Friends,

I have several more pictures of George and Lela Cota and will post
another one. This picture is of their family at their 40th anniversary
in 1977. George and Lela are seated with their grandson Dean. Gary and
his wife Darla and son Maynard are standing behind them. They had their
25th anniversary at Rendahl church in 1962 and my dad had just gotten
his new 8 MM movie camera, so he filmed the entire event and I still
have the film. Dad filmed many events over several years and we have a
large basket full of his reel to reel films. There is no sound, just
color movies, but they are sure fun to watch. I would like to have them
all put on DVD someday so I could make copies for others too.

Vickie–you are right, George Cota’s mother, Mae, was a Keeler and
they lived where Emil Morin later lived. I will attach a picture of Mae
Cota (holding a small girl I don’t recognize) and Gary. This would have
been in the early 40s. I do remember Mae, but never saw her husband that
I can remember. I think he may have died before I was born or shortly
after. Thanks for the info and thanks Gary!

George and Lela Cota are seated with their grandson Dean. Gary and
his wife Darla and son Maynard are standing behind them.

Mae Cota (holding a small girl I don’t recognize) and Gary

04/26/2017 (2516)

Reply to HAPPY PEOPLE LYRICS Posted by Vickie Metcalfe
From Roberta (Gary-’63) Houle:  Champlin, MN

Hi Gary–

The music and lyrics “hit the spot” for me too.  Thanks for the link, Vickie.

Roberta (Gary-’63) Houle


North Dakotan Secret  Service Agent
Posting from Vickie Metcalf (’70): Bottineau, ND

Gary and friends of Dunseith,


I was a 6th grader at Schultes Elementary School in 1963-64.

Every week, Mr. Gadwa the 1/2 grade six teacher&  1/2  principal drove a bus into Marysville  to Liberty School.

Liberty School shared their  library with our school

I loved to read and  I immersed myself in that library, often carrying  home as  many books I was allowed to  check out or carry.

I ‘d put nose into a book, reading on the bus ride back to Schultes.

One afternoon,  my nose was into a book when Mr. Gadwa pulled over and  stopped the bus.

He rose stood, with a grim look, quietly, and calmly speaking, ” Listen.”

The bus radio crackled  news was broadcasted.

President,  John F. Kennedy had been shot.

Mr. Gadwa’s eyes filled as tears streamed down his face.

In silence, the bus went back to school.

The next few days our nation grieved while  listening to Walter Cronkite.

At home, our family gathered around the black and white.

Gower and TIna Hanson, our landlord’s told us we could watch activities with them.

Gower and Tina lived in an apartment in what had once been a dairy barn.

The day of the president’s funeral,  mom walked  us walked to Gower and Tina’s.

Sitting on the floor we watched and listened to the Presidents funeral in living color.

Gower and Tina  staunch  Seventh Day Adventists were calming influences.

Walter Cronkite was TRUSTWORTHY  he’d speak  about relevant events in  serious confident tones.

Mr. Gadwa embodied  solemn strength as a teacher / principal. ( I discovered years later like President,  he was a WWII vet)

I  never  forgot  the week our President was assassinated or the amazing  strength of our nation.

Years later,  I became an educator.

Whilst in Sidney, one of my friends shared that her paternal cousin had served as  secret service agent.

My friend, Becky  and many of her cousins and extended family  were from the Roseglen, ND  area.

At the time I thought, WOW. “What an interesting bit of  family trivia”.

Now I realize it certainly was not trivia.

Secret Service agent, Clint Hill was  in Dallas at an awful November 1963  moment in American history.

I will be looking for his  book at the Public library.

Until later, V.


Blog (590) posted on October 13, 2009

Reply From Florence Hiatt Dahl (50) sister to Florence Hiatt Schneider Deceased.
Anchorage, AK
Did you know Wesley Schneider does not ride bicycles normaly? He rides them backwards. I wish I had taken pictures of him doing this. He was a wonderful friend to Don and I. We were so much younger then our other brothers and sisters and Wes was so kind to us….He would even take us fishing………………….
From LeaRae Parrill Espe (68): Bottineau, ND.
There was a very nice service for Joey Millang. So many of us old hillbillies came out to support Lorraine and her family. The Handlelands and the Millangs were big families and Joey had many cousins. Pastor Glenn Berge had comforting words for all of us. I am so thankful that our churches can keep going so they are there when we need them. Joey worked for a farmer by Starkweather and that family attended the funeral and praised his work ethic and said he will be so hard the replace.
Terry went to Lockhart country school with the Handlelands so he has always know them. Of course, Monte Espe & his siblings are first cousins to the Millangs on his mother’s side ( Effie House Espe and Jessie House Millang were sisters) and a cousin to Terry on the Espe side so the Art Espe family are mutual cousins.
From Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND.
Hey Gary ,
I just came back to school, from Joe Millang’s funeral. Lots of family & friends were there. Dick, Ron and Brenda musical gift sounded excellent.
I sat next to friends of Joe’s from Devils Lake. They told me they were very fortunate to arrive in Bottineau safely. They encountered very narrow escape with a semi coming up on the icey roads from Devils Lake area this morning.
From Vickie Metcalfe:
Karen Larson is one of Ovidia’s daughters. Karen owns the Spectrum. Karen’s husband, Dr. Larson just retired from practicing medicine in Washington state and arrived back in Bottineau this weekend. Ovidia’s daughters are quite active in helping out the Ovidia and Wes. Last month, Wes and Ovidia celebrated their 30+ ..something ……. wedding anniversary! Also in September, Ovidia celebrated her 91st birthday with her family. I believe Wes’ daughter from Minnesota was here too. Wes likes to pick his apples with this daughter when she comes in the fall and shares. However in September, the apples weren’t quite ready, kind of sourly green…Oh but ah.. the last few sunny weeks (prior to the windy and cold snow) they became quite rosy red and with the last frosty freeze… quite sweet.
From Vickie Metcalfe:
Regarding Lela and George Cota, who were very good friends of Uncle Jim and Aunt Ella Metcalfe. Somewhere in the depth of my memories I seem to recall their presence at anniversary parties for Uncle Jim and Aunt Ella. Hey cousins Geri & Gary, were the Cota’s (witnesses) present the day your parents were married in 1934?
I also know George Cota grew up on the farm stead, later occupied by Emil and Genevieve Morin. George Cota’s maternal uncle was married to the paternal (Metcalfe) cousin of Uncle Jim and my Dad. The Keeler’s, lived somewhere north of the William and Rose Metcalfe farm….. east of the Cota farm.
Neighbors; George’s adopted sister, Carroll Carlson’s sister, and our Aunt Leona were noted horsewomen as teens.
George and Lela were solid, generous and true steadfast friends of many hill folk and active in church activities.
The Medlang twins were also from the hills,north of Rendahl or south of Little Prairie. They were cousins to Odin Medlang and Mrs.Kavali.
Ingolf was the long time caretaker at the Peace Garden for many years after Kenneth and Kathleen Sebilius. He’d also go over and help out the cooks in the kitchen at music camp.
Ingolf, a quiet,shy, unassuming bachelor was very active at Peace Lutheran Church. He’d be the guy cleaning,shoveling, vacuuming and putting things in proper places after church or funerals or weddings. He wasn’t afraid to pick up a dishtowel if needed. I think he might have served as treasurer. He was one of those folks who was sometimes overlooked but a sincere, true blue, solid citizen.
Thanks. I’ll hush up now. Vickie

Folks, I know many of you knew Banks Sieber. He was the Bottineau County Agent for many years. I remember when I was a kid, Banks and his wife stopped at our place for a visit when they were out for a Sunday drive. It wasn’t just one of those quick visits either. Banks was an Icon, so that was a special treat. He made good on our dad’s offer to stop in for a visit if he was ever in the area. Gary

Banks Harold Sieber • 1920- 2009

Banks Harold Sieber (88) passed away on October 9, 2009 at Trinity Nursing Home in Minot, ND.

He was born on November 17, 1920 on the family farm SW of Wolford, ND to Banks J. Sieber and Helen (McNitt) Sieber. He attended Wolford Public School and graduated from NDSU with a BS in Agriculture in 1942.

Following college he entered the US Army and served in the European theater for nearly two years receiving an Honorary Discharge on November 11, 1945. On May 22, 1945 he married Evelyn L. Sanderson of Willow City in the Presbyterian Church in Texas where he was stationed. Banks and Evelyn returned to North Dakota after his discharge from the service, to live in Center, ND where he began his career as a County Extension Agent. His career continued in Sheridan County and eventually Bottineau County, where they spent the majority of their life raising four children. He retired August 30th, 1980 after thirty-five years of service.

Banks was active in many community activities and service groups throughout his entire lifetime. He was most proud of the 4-H, Tractor Safety School and Homemakers programs where he was able to shape many young peoples’ lives. He continued to work after retirement with the Bottineau County Weed Board, ND-Manitoba Zero Till Association, the Bottineau Chamber of Commerce and as an independent farm management consultant. In 2007 he was inducted into the ND Agriculture Hall of Fame where he was recognized for his dedicated career with such outstanding accomplishments as organizing the rural water and telephone services. Banks and Evelyn moved to Minot in 1997 where Banks stayed active with the County Weed Board and Golden Kiwanis.

Banks will be remembered not only for his contributions to agriculture but for his friendship and humor which resulted in many lifelong friendships. He and Evelyn enjoyed traveling throughout the United States and were fortunate enough to have visited a number of foreign countries. One of his favorite quotes that depicts his character came from Theodore Roosevelt, “What a man does for himself dies with him. What a man does for his community lives forever”. He enjoyed traveling, reading, watching sports, visiting and keeping up with friends and family from across the country.

Survivors include his wife Evelyn of 65 years, sons Dennis (Jan) Sieber of Bismarck, Byron Sieber of Fargo/Grand Forks, and daughter Elaine (Bob) Anderson of Cedar Hills, Texas, grandchildren Tracy (Jack) Garza, Scott Sieber, Elizabeth Anderson, Erika Anderson, Matthew Anderson, and Benjamin Sieber, Great grandson Ryland Garza, Sister Maxine Strand of Rugby, and sister-in-law Helen Sieber of Pennsylvania and many nieces and nephews.

Banks was preceded in death by his parents, daughter Loretta Sieber, daughter-in-law Karen Sieber, brother Robert Sieber and sister Margret Braaten.

Funeral Service: Tuesday, October 13, 2009 at 2:00 p.m. at Vincent United Methodist Church, 1024 2nd St. SE, Minot, ND .

Visitation: Monday, October 12, 2009, from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. at Thompson-Larson Funeral Home, Minot.

Internment: Wednesday, October 14, 2009 at 1:00 p.m. at the North Dakota Veteran’s Cemetery in Mandan, ND.

Those wishing to sign the online guest register or share memories of Banks, may access the online obituaries at www.thompsonlarson.com

In lieu of flowers memorials are requested by family to go to the North Dakota 4-H Foundations, NDSU Dept. 7280, P.O. Box 6050 Fargo, ND 58108-6050.

Amber Alert From Sheryl Stokes Wingate: Port Orchard, WA.
Hi Dad and Neola,I received this today, and thought that we have a pretty good network out in North Dakota. Can you forward this to everyone you have in your email.


Sheryl Wingate


Missing Girl from North Dakota ! You never know where this email could end up and I’m not going to
stop passing this one around if it means a little girl can be found!!!

Please spread this picture far and wide…. You just never know.

Reachelle Marie Smith, Birthdate: 9/10/02. Answers to Peanut.

Sue & Barry Wilcox

(406) 961-4064

04/24/2017 (2515)

Reply to Boucher Question
From Sharron Gottbreht Shen (’59):  Watertown, NJ

Hi Gary,

I am sure that Kay must have an answer to her Boucher question by now. Sorry to be so late with this reply to her question.

Olivier Boucher/Emma Cunegunde Casavant were the grandparents of Merle Boucher.

Louis Boucher/Emma Lord were the parents of Anna and Cora Boucher. Louis and Olivier were brothers.

I descend from a younger brother, Victor Theodor Boucher and Emma Casavant. My grandmother Emma Casavant was a niece of Emma Cunegunde Casavant.

Kay would be welcome to my BOUCHER master files.

Thank you for all you do dear friend. Sharron Gottbreht Shen


Happy People Lyrics
Posted by Vickie Metcalfe (’70):  Bottineau, ND

Very nice Vicky, Thanks for sharing. Gary

G’morning Gary and Bernadette!

I woke up to this song  playing on my radio.

‘Little Big Town……Happy People’

I fell in love with the lyrics and melody  immediately!

I needed  to share  with  you ALL.

Tomorrow,  when  I am with the sixth graders, I hope to share it.

(Last week I,  along with the sixth grade teacher  shared, Tim McGraws, “Always Be Humble and Kind.”)

As ever, I am still country and it is still COOL.

Fond regards.vickie

Happy People Lyrics:


Ole Hagen, Sr. photo and mystery son
Photo from Kaye Lystad-Kirk Fargo, ND

Hi Gary and Neola,

I didn’t know who I should send this query to, because I know you both can reach out to tons of different people.

Here’s my situation: I went through my grandma Emerson’s stash of old pictures AGAIN and found yet another photo that I’m questioning that might have a relative in it (through marriage). I’m attaching the photo to this email.

As you can see, the photo is of two men..an older and a younger man. On the back of the photo Grandma wrote “Ole Hagen Sr.” So I’m assuming that’s the older gentleman. And I’ll also assume the younger one is a son, but which son?

According to the Bottineau County Centennial book, Gro & Ole Hagen, Sr. had four sons:

  1. Thomas (1885-1934)
  2. Ole Jr. (1892-1978)
  3. Charley (1895-1977)
  4. Gilbert (1904-1974)

Do you think there would be anyone that knows anymore which son is in this photograph? The reason I ask is because Ole Jr. is in my Bjornseth tree as he married Olga Aasness. And Charley is in my Torgerson tree as he married Amanda Torgerson. So if it’s one of those two, I can use this photo in my family history.

I’d appreciate it if you can think of anyone who might be able to help.

Thanks and have a nice “rest of your weekend!”


    Ole Hagen, Sr. photo and mystery son


Blog (589) posted on October 12, 2009

Posted on October 12, 2009

Joseph Millang’s Obituary

POSTED: October 11, 2009

BOTTINEAU Joseph Kevin Millang, 43, Starkweather, formerly of Bottineau, was dead Thursday, Oct. 8, 2009, on arrival at a Devils Lake hospital.

He was born Sept. 29, 1966, to Curtis and Lorraine Millang in Bottineau.

Survivors: mother, Bottineau; brother, Jamie, Lincoln; sister, Pennie Graham, Cadillac, Mich.

Funeral: Monday, 10 a.m., First Lutheran Church, Bottineau.

Burial: Little Prairie Cemetery, near Dunseith.

Visitation: Today, 1 to 9 p.m., Nero Funeral Home, Bottineau.

Reply from Gary Morgan (54): GARRISON, ND

Gary & All,
In answer to Larry Liere, Mr. Haines was an Immigration Inspector. Actually, Kim was his son. His daughter’s name was Nan. He transferred out of Dunseith in either 1946 or 47 and was replaced by Les Greener. Thus began a string of great independent basketball teams that Dunseith enjoyed in the late 40s.
Greener later transferred to Seattle, WA and was replaced by Findel Helgeson. In the middle 50s Helgeson transferred to Baudette, MN and was replaced by Kenny Shirk.

Gary Morgan

Question from Ivy Eller Robert (74): Everett, WA.


I’ve been reading these blogs asking if anyone remembers “so & so”! Well I have one, Does anyone in the class of 74 or any other classes remember a guy named Hal Dupet (I’m not sure of the last name spelling). If I remember correctly, I think his folks or at lease his Mom owned or ran Kalven Klinic Store many years ago! I remember him being in the first grade with us, but not sure any other years. Does anyone know what became of him and his Mother?

Also, there was another guy that was in our class for a few years in grade school. His name was Wendell, but I don’t remember his last name. I remember he had moved to Dunseith from Fairbanks, Alaska. For me, it was fascinating to listen to him talk about living up there! How ironic that I lived in Alaska for almost a year, but I was in Anchorage. That was August of 85 to June of 86. While I was there in Anchorage, I ran into Sam Tooke. Well, he came into the store I was working at and I waited on him. Sam graduated the same year as I did. Sometimes it seems like we live in a very small world.

I’ve wondered for years, what happened to Hal & Wendall? Does anyone know?

Ivy Eller Robert (74)

From Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND.

Gary and folks,

After a little deep cleaning, and crawling down under the house to winterize the vent, a pleasant October Sunday afternoon came to Bottineau. All is calm.

The best part of my afternoon was walking the “furbabies”. Lochbuie and Molly love the Schneiders, “dear hearts” who live across the street. Wes was spied by the two stubborn Westies and they determinedly pulled me up driveway.

Wes and Ovidia keep treats on hand and my dogs know it. They also love getting gentle strokes from Wes. After treating the dogs, Wes and Ovidia treated me to garden delights. Actually, Wes carried over and set two boxes in front of my door. Yum. Red potatoes and red onions straight from fall harvesting of the Schneider garden. I thought I was pretty lucky. Whoa! I hit another Jack pot! I was invited over to pick some apples from Wes’ prize “Sweet Sixteen Tree”. What an afternoon.

I’d purchased an apple peeler/ corer at a rummage sale this summer and was “fixin” to try it out. Isn’t fall the best time for apple crisp? But then, since the juneberry pies turned out in August maybe I’ll try Apple Pie!…………..

Folks,Wes is an original from Dunseith. He often regales me with tales of his youth in Dunseith. He told me once, he graduated from 8th grade but was unable to attend high school as he was needed on the farm. He retired from Bottineau Pride Dairy when he was well into his 80’s. He enjoyed making ice cream there. He and Ovidia are wonderful kind, steady neighbors! And two dogs best neighborhood friends!

Later, Vickie

Vickie, How well I remember Wesley Schneider working at the Creamery from the days that dad hauled cream from the hills. Wesley was married to Evelyn Hiatt (43) until her death in 1963. Evelyn was a sister to Charlotte Lang, Eleanor Fauske, Florence Dahl and Howard Hiatt. Wesley’s step daughter, Ovidaia’s daughter, is the owner of the Spectrum store on Main street there in Bottineau. At the moment I have forgotten her name. Several years after dad’s death when I was in the Spectrum store she said to me “You must be Bob Stokes’ son”. I’m not sure how she figured that out, but she did. I was alone. She then introduced herself as Wesley’s step daughter. She was so friendly and nice. I utilized her professional services having her scan several documents for me and sending them to me via an email attachment. Gary

Message/Picture from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND.

Gary and Friends,

I found a picture of some of our well known folks (at least to many),
from days gone by. It looks to me that the writing on the back says
1937. Those in the picture appear to be dressed up for a wedding or
something. They are George and Lela Johnson Cota and, I think, Inga and
Ingolf Medlang, who are twins. It is definitely Ingolf but I’m not sure
about the other gal. Inga was always Lela’s best friend even into the
later years. I was wondering if it could have been Lela and George’s
wedding? I don’t know if I ever heard the year but it should be about
right. They are the parents of Gary Cota who graduated from DHS in
1956. Gary is a first cousin to my mom, as their mothers are sisters.
They all grew up in the Willow Lake area. Thanks Gary!


L to R:– Inga & Ingolf Medlang–Lela & George Cota.
Don’t know the guy in the car.


I thought I’d throw in several pictures today to show you our latest project here in the Philippines. These pictures were taken from our upstairs bedroom window. As of yesterday they finished installing the Baluster Railing in the foreground. What I thought to be a 3 day project turned out to be a 2 week project. Thank god for inexpensive labor. These guys did a nice job though. The total labor cost for 3 guys working 11 days was $190. I paid them premium wages too. With Marble Balusters and ceramic tile, this railing is pretty much maintenance fee. That is my work shop in the foreground and our office partially seen on the right. These two buildings are both the same size, 16′ X 24′. For those of you that are Catholic, the monument on the end of the work shop is of Bernadette’s saints, Bernadette and Lourdes. Gary

This picture, taken in 2005, is of the same area as the picture above before developing. We purchased this lot adjacent to our house after our house was built. We had not planned to live in this area when we initially started building our house. It was to be a temporary house. Our plans were to live in a development. In the process of building our house, Bernadette expressed a desire to make this our permanent home next door to her sister and I agreed. This lot adjacent to our house is 70′ X 210′. We have the entire lot enclosed with a combination of buildings and an 8′ high cement fence. This is a very secure area. We have never had any theft problems at all. Our front gate remains unlocked at all times. There were seven homes/houses including the two in this picture that we had to ask to relocate. That was a painful process, but we got them out of here. There’s no doubt that we are different and a contrast to the neighborhood, but they love having us here as much as we like being here. The Filipino’s are super friendly folks.

This picture is looking the other direction from those above. The building in the back is a three unit apartment. Our helpers live in the first unit. Bernadette’s niece lives in the unit partially hidden to the left. Directly under her unit, we have a gust Apartment. The building to the left is our outside Kitchen and Laundry room. Those are only screen windows in this building, no glass. To the left down the hill on the bottom the lot we have a 4 unit apartment that several of Bernadette’s nieces and nephews live in. Our place is located about 300 feet from the road. We have a garage up on the main road where we park our car.