Ernie Gottbreht (65) is not well
Message from Evie Gottbreht Pilkington (65): Irving, CA
Ernie Gottbreht is gravely ill, in a Minot hospital. Family and friends ask for prayers.
Evie, Our thoughts and prayers are with Ernie and his family. Please keep us posted. Gary


Arla Hall
Memories from Rod Hiatt (69): Bottineau, ND


I’ve been doing some more thinking on Vickie’s comment about Roy and Dale, and it was just a few weeks ago that Neola had a picture of her and Arla Hall, a former teacher. Arla Hall is what I would consider North Dakota’s version of Dale Evans. Arla Hall was no doubt the Queen of horse shows across the state. When Arla entered the arena in Parade class it was known that she would come out with a ribbon and more times than not she was going home with the first place trophy. I wish I had a picture of Arla in her younger horse showing days, as you could see the resemblance of her and Dale Evans, probably the biggest difference was that Arla rode palominos while Dale Evans rode Buttermilk, a buckskin.

Arla, again like Dale, always had a smile on her face. I never had the opportunity of having her for a teacher, but she was a good one, in fact she was one of a very few teachers that liked my brother Rick at that stage of his schooling(mainly because both of them being horse crazy).

The only time I can remember Arla being somewhat mad, was when the Bottineau Trail Riders came over to Dunseith and we took them on a cross country trail ride to Mineral Springs. . The trail that we had made was somewhat rugged, with crossing creeks, mud and hills that were almost straight up and down. I think it was my brothers Laurel and Earl, Garrett Myer and Dwight Lang that actually found the most difficult trail they could, I was quite young and innocent at the time. I can still remember Wilbur, Arla’s husband, backing her beautiful palomino out of the trailer. The tail was combed and almost touching the ground and the horse shined like a chunk of gold. There was a fairly large number of trail riders that showed up for the day, but the two that I remember clearly were Gary McNea and Larry Lawrence, who kind of fit in with the style of riding we liked. We crossed the creeks on the run, splattering anyone that was going through slow, rode down the steep banks that most led their horses down, and came shooting out of the trees on a dead run, hootin and hollerin like a bunch of wild renegades(I believe that was the term Arla had used on Gary and Larry at their next meeting) but most of us had a great time. They never did ask us to plan another trail ride, I wonder why.

Still today if I see a beautiful palomino or a picture of a pretty gal on a palomino horse I think of Arla Hall, because in my eyes, Arla is still the Queen of the Cowgirls in North Dakota.

Rod, I am sure Neola sent pictures of Arla on her horse, but at the moment I can not locate them among the 1,515 Pictures that I have in my Dunseith picture album that have been posted by all you folks too. Future genealogy buffs will have a hay day with all of our stuff. Gary
Audition for “America’s Favorite Trail Horse”.
From Trish Larson Wild (73): FORT COLLINS, CO

Hi Gary,

I’m attaching a couple of photos from a ride I took here in Pasadena California, near Los Angeles. My mare Maggie and I are training hard for our audition on April 9 in California for “America’s Favorite Trail Horse”. If we make the cut at the audition (held on Monty Roberts’ ranch in Solvang) we will move to the finals on a big ranch in Texas, where a bunch of famous clinicians will work with 100 horse and rider pairs selected from auditions held all over the US. (None in North Dakota or Montana though – I guess it’s just too cold!)
The competitor work in Texas will be filmed for a reality TV show that will be aired in 10 segments over the summer. Like the show, American Idol, the American Public will be voting for their “Favorite Trail Horse”. Winners will be chosen based on the number of votes (via text message?) counted. There are purses to be won, and fun to be had. Anyone can audition, but you have to be willing to join ACTHA (American Competitive Trail Horse Association) and travel to the audition site.
Maggie and I have been training a minimum of four hours/day. We think we have a good chance of making the finals and invite you all to stay tuned for updates, and vote for Maggie if we make the show!
If we don’t get to do the show, we’ll just keep up with the plan to ride 200 miles in every state. So far, it’s the most fun I’ve ever had! I’m trying to keep my blog updated, which can be a challenge. I really admire your tenacity in getting a blog out every morning.
Well that’s the update from the Equine Nomad. Thanks to everyone who drops by my blog and all the supportive comments and emails. Keep em coming!
And don’t forget to vote for Maggie if we make the show!
Trish Wild (Larson ’73)
The Equine Nomad
Trish, I enjoyed our little Facebook chat yesterday. I think I will give that liquid fasting diet a whirl one of these days too. Being an OR Dr. RN, I trust your suggestions. I’m not sure about the enema though. Gary




Joke of the day from my good Irish friend, Michael (Barbara) Kenny, from right here in Cebu:

One afternoon a lawyer was riding in his limousine when he saw two men along the roadside eating grass. Disturbed, he ordered his driver to stop and he got out to investigate.

He asked one man, “Why are you eating grass? “”We don’t have any money for food,” the poor
man replied. “We have to eat grass.

“”Well, then, you can come with me to my house and I’ll feed you,” the lawyer said.”But sir, I have a wife and two children with me. They are over there, under that tree.
“”Bring them along,” the lawyer replied.

Turning to the other poor man he stated, “You come with us also.”The second man, in a pitiful voice, then said, “But sir, I also have a wife and SIX children with me!” “Bring them all, as well,” the lawyer answered.

They all entered the car, which was no easy task, even for a car as large as the limousine was. Once underway, one of the poor fellows turned to the lawyer and said, “Sir, you are too kind. Thank you for taking all of us
with you. ”

The lawyer replied, “Glad to do it. You’ll really love my place. The grass is almost a foot high.


Tom Nikolaisen from Rolla
Folks, Do any of you know or remember Tom Nikolaisen from Rolla? Tom and I were Drafted into the army together along with Kenny Nerpel in June 1968. Following our Basic, Tom and I were both sent to Fort Sam Houston, Texas to learn how to be dental assistants. Tom had just graduated from UND with a teaching degree. Following our AIT, Fort Sam picked Tom up as an instructor in their dental school. Tom was a farm boy too. Since those days, I have long lost touch with Tom. I’d love to make contact with him again. Gary
Reply from Gary Metcalfe (57): Forsyth, MO
Hello all….I need to put in a plug for the 2012 cruise on the NCL, Pearl. We were on the Pearl in January, out of New Orleans and that ship was carrying the number 1 spot in customer satisifaction for NCL fleet and it was the best time. We have a hard time waiting until February 2012 to take another cruise.

Bill Grimme you are a breathe of fresh air. What good is life without an opinion? Thanks for the extra input on Cliff Dickinson in a personal note. That was on the unique side of Dunseith. I am not sure how many people know of that side.

Bill we spend a night in Vicksburg on occasion when we drive to New Orleans for a cruise or whatever. Christmas Eve 2009 will not soon be forgotten! Coming into Vicksburg and wanted to go to church. We found an all black church, Baptist with the history of being the oldest church in Vicksburg, and the building was originally started by the slaves. We were the only white folks in the church and felt very welcomed and totally enjoyed the service. Like Barbara Fairchild says, “They really know how to have church!”
I might mention Bill that I know something about the seige at Vicksburg. The citizens were starved to the point of eating wall paper paste.

Gary Stokes you are a humanitarian and promoter of tolerance. Besides that you did chores before you went to school.

Something I feel I would like to set straight is the fact that Ole Evans was wounded three times. The PPMM book says, “twice wounded”, but he was wounded one more time after that news report. Anyone has access to the military records at the County Court House.

Sharron Gottbrecht Shen, to answer a question that came up and I have not responded too is that Ole and Bing Evans were not twins. Both were sargents in the Mediterrean Campaign.

Susan Fassett….again thanks for the tapes of your dad’s songs. Am still enjoying them

Deer Heart Lodge
Pictures from Richard & Rita Langer: Belcourt, ND

Hi Gary: Here are a few pictures taken at the Deer Heart Lodge complex in the early 50’s I am the tallest, and sure wish that I had that thin stature, instead of me being as wide as I am tall. My mother tooks us kids to this complex and to Peace Garden, Butte St. Paul and other interesting places on Sunday afternoons when we were younger. We did enjoy all of the rock formations that were built around the gardens, along with all the other creations that were there. Hope these pictures turn out ok. ..Let me know if I have to redo this….. Richard






Marie Parlade Corral (62) originally from Cuba plans to visit Dunseith.
Marie Parlade’s message: Coral Gables, FL

Hi Gary : This summer at the beginning of June I am attending my 45 anniversary college reunion in Omaha , Nebraska, My husband , my sister and her husband and me are planning on driving to North Dakota and visiting Dunseith and the Peace Garden, We used to live in San Haven but I understand that the Hospital is not there any more. Any way , do you have any suggestions of places for us to visit in all of that surrounding area. We have no idea what to do . We are planning on driving to Mt Rushmore and spending a couple of days around in So,Dakota. and then driving to North Dakota. We would really appreciate any suggestions from any of of you . Also maybe a good hotel where we could stay around that area. We will certainly stop by the school and drive through Dunseith. I have promised the rest of my family that I will take pictures for them. Please some one tell me about No, Dakota and the wonderful things we are sure we can find around that area . We do not want to go too far toward the west because as we are driving back to Omaha. Any suggestions will be greatly appreciate it. Thank you. Maria Parlade Corral (Class of 1962)
Marie’s reply to her above message that I forwarded to the class of 62.
Thank you Gary. I really don’t want to inconvient anyone as I don’t really know the exact day I will be in the area. We are really playing it a little bit by ear. Please don’t plan ahead of time as I don’t know the exact dates of the trip yet.I did not see the pictures of San Haven. Is it possible for you to re send me that e mail ? Thank you for everything , Maria

Art Rude’s book is available at Spectrum:

Message from Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND


Hi Gary,


Art Rude’s book is also for sale at the Spectrum in Bottineau.




Reply from Erling Landsverk (44): Portage, WI

Hi Gary and Everyone:


Thank you for the kind words Gary. You simply gotta quit saying those words. Next thing you know I will start believing them, and I know better. Just the same, it is nice to hear. I was especially happy to hear from Connie Halvorson Kester. I want to answer her with some more comments, but I will try to do it on a direct E mail. I don’t mind saying that the Halvorson family were wonderful people and I did get to know them quite well. I have nothing but the highest regard for all of them. It seems to me that I did meet a young lady who said she was a Halvorson, at the one room school Reunion. I don’t know or rather I don’t remember if her name was Connie or not. Thats what happens when you get t be an elderly senior who can’t see. I am making excuses and I shouldn’t do that . Just be assured that I am pretty darned old. By the way, my sister Borg graduated with Charles Kester . Could he be related to your husband Connie? We can discuss it later. Connie’s note sure made me homesick for those old stamping grounds. I am glad that she and her husband decided to retire and enjoy that beautiful country. Thank you all again, its always great to get word from Dunseith and from the old neighbors.


Erling Landsverk

Erling, you are most definitely an inspiration to a whole lot of us. You have not let your being blind interfere with all of your accomplishments. It’s so amazing how you independently read (listen to) and answer all of your email and computer correspondence with very few errors. It requires a razor sharp mind with great memory skills to accomplish all that you do. It’s amazing beyond belief. We are so proud to say that Erling Landsverk is from Dunseith and for me to add to that saying you are from the hills of the Turtle Mountains. You are still a young buck at 84 years of age. Gary
Identification of the 1946 Prom picture posted yesterday
From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

Hopefully, I won’t ID the people in the picture before others do, but
the gal facing the camera is Theresa Cote Awalt (48). The guy dancing
facing the camera is my dad, Don Johnson (46). Behind them, seated and
also facing the camera, are ( I’m quite sure) Sal and Elsie Schneider.
I’ve seen dance cards from the old proms and all the attendees danced a
dance with all the other attendees, although they seemed to try to get
at least a couple dances with the date they brought. I don’t know who
Theresa is dancing with or the gal Dad is dancing this dance with. Maybe
some of the people who were there can answer that too. Thanks Gary!


A little fun for those with a little extra time on their hands.
Website update
From Art Rude (71): Bismarck, ND

I’m emailing everybody I have email addresses for, to tell you about recent developments, but also to find out how many of my email addresses work. So, I hope you read the attached email, and check out the changes in my website, and check out my book if you haven’t already.



I hope you will share some of my news with some of your friends that I may not know, but more than that I hope you will check it out. If you enjoy it, I hope you will pass the message along, as my promotional budget is pretty dry . . . worse than my humor.
I have made some dramatic improvements in my webpage!! It is finally close to what I had in mind from the start. I always wanted to do video, but always had difficulty making it work correctly. Well, that was one of the reasons behind my switch to Macintosh, and it worked! The video is finally functional, which allows me to essentially talk directly to people. I like that. I hope you do to.
So, now I have a video page which connects to my Youtube channel. That’s cool for a number of reasons. The nice part is, I hope you enjoy it, and you can look at it whenever you have the time and an internet connection.
I also have an “albums” page where I can put “old photographs”, and so did pictures from Brazil, Ireland, started a Rude family history album, and a family picture album from 2010. This is in addition to all the “regular” photos that I publish.
Here is my webpage: www.artrude.com
Also, I got a great article out of the Bismarck Tribune. Here is the link:
so if you cut and paste, that should bring you to the Tribune’s webpage and the article, as well as the video they shot of me and Sadie. If you go to their video section, and follow the arrow for more videos, it’s called “A biscuit and a dream”.
I’m including some attachments I hope you find interesting

Peace and Power,

Thanks for checking out Art Rude Productions,
webpage address: www.artrude.com
and Art Rude TV at: artrudetv on Utube!


I am running on Generator power this morning while our local power company is swapping out a main power pole. I’m going to get this out before I run out of gas in my Generator.
Shelley Hiatt Kenner Devils Lake, ND
Request from Rod Hiatt (69): Bottineau, ND


My little sister, Shelley Kenner, would like to be added to the Dunseith Blog. She didn’t go to school in Dunseith, but worked at the San for a short time and is related to a whole pile of them hillbillies up there. Her and husband Jeff, live right off of Devils Lake(they are almost an island right now), Shelley has worked at the Good Samaritan Home in Devils Lake for a long time as both nurse and now in the administration.

Thank you


Rod, It is my pleasure to add Shelley to our distribution. She, like you, is most certainly related to a whole slug of the hillbillies both thru the Hiatt’s and the Peterson’s, with your mother Vida being a Peterson. I might ad that you guys are related to a whole slug of other folks on this distribution too. Your family will always be Dunseith/Turtle Mountain folks at heart. Gary
Letter to Erling Landsverk
From Connie Halvorson Kester (64): Long Lake – Bottineau, ND

Dear Erling,


My name is Connie Halvorson Kester. I am the daughter of Albert Halvorson and Emma Christianson Halvorson and Floyd Dion is my uncle married to my dad’s sister Luella Halvorson Dion. I just wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed your book. I noticed that my dad and the Christianson girls were mentioned more than once. My husband is a retired beekeeper and we built our retirement home at Long Lake which was also mentioned in your book. Our home is within 5 miles of where 2 sets of my great grandparents settled so I really feel I have come back to my roots. My parents have both passed away and I am so sorry that they never knew that we moved back to the Turtle Mts. My Uncle Lester Halvorson, Luella Halvorson Dion and Doris Halvorson Kittelson are the only Halvorsons left. Bernice Christianson Carlson and Florence Christianson Struck are the only Christiansons left. I bought an extra book of yours to send to Bernice. Of course I got it from Sharon B. I only know Sharon, Barb L. andI know who Bruce L. is but I really don’t know him.


We still have lots of snow but when the sun is shining it is so beautiful here in the Turtle Mts. and of course the summers are even more beautiful. I watched someone put up a temporary fishing house yesterday. They brought it in with a snowmobile so the ice is still very safe.

I am hoping that you are working on another book as I would definately be in line to buy it.


Thanks for all the good memories, Connie

Connie, I too have Erling’s Book “My Dakota Years”. I have both the book and the CD that he had made of his book narrated by his son-in-law. I so enjoyed the whole book from cover to cover. I knew or had heard of most all the folks mentioned in his book. That is what made it so interesting for me and also the fact that the hub of his book is focused around my neck of the woods up in the Turtle Mountains. As we all know, Erling most certainly is a gifted writer.
Folks, For those of you that are interested, Please get in contact with Sharon Landsverk Beckman in Bottineau. She is a checker at Jerry’s Jack & Jill. You can also get in touch with Erling at joannanderling@charter.net Erling also has music available too. I have one of his CD’s. You can google Erling Landsverk too. Gary





Angela Berube, Art Rude & Connie Halvorson




Dunseith High School Prom – 1946


Message/Picture from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND


Gary and Friends,

I found this old picture in my mom’s collection. I’m assuming it’s
the DHS prom of ’46 but it might be another year close to that. While I
know who most of the people are, I’m going to let others send in their
identifications for the blog tomorrow. Lloyd Awalt might have some idea
who someone is. I think they can ID at least four people in this
picture. I have no idea why the little picture was cut down to this
shape. It’s very small but a neat piece if DHS history. Thanks Gary!





Thank You
From Erling Landsverk (44): Portage, WI

Hi Gary and Everyone:


I am a little late with this, but I wish to thank Floyd Dion and Tim Martinson for responding to my question concerning the big oil discovery and also about wind energy. It sounds like North Dakota is on the way to being noticed a lot more for their contribution to the energy crisis than to the cold winters. No matter how it goes, I suspect that the Dakotans simply accept things as they are. Why not, thats the way those high plains folks are. Must be something in the North Dakota air that makes them so self reliant. Thanks again to Floyd and Tim. I appreciate your help. Its been a long winter in Wisconsin as well, but much easier than in North Dakota.


Erling Landsverk

Anthony family Story – Part Ten

From Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND
The Anthony’s #10
My Very Favorite Annie Story
My dad and Uncle Bill (William II) both said, they recalled, being told by their father, “Annie Olson in her youth, was a most beautiful young woman__.”
Until she opened her mouth_______….”

Their father, (William II) told them, “Annie had the misfortune of a scratchy, high pitched, annoying voice. The voice, very much dimmed her attractiveness in the eyes of men looking to court her.”
Often,when the Anthony’s came to visit, I’d request a story from Annie.
I’d say,”Annie would you tell us about our grandpa ?” And her story was always the same.

She’d say, “Your Grandpa Billy once took me to a dance.” This was in the winter,months after his first wife, Bertha died. (Long, long ago, in the early part of the last century there were often local bush dances in various homes in the the Turtle Mountain communities including, reels, square dances and waltzes.)
Annie said,”Driving home, the Metcalfe cutter was pulled by a finely matched team. It was a very still, quiet, cold, winter night. The sleigh bells jingled and rang out clearly. The moon and stars shone on the sparkling snowy winter trail.

The sleigh was gliding along smoothly over the sleigh road. All was quiet in the cutter…..”

_____”ScrEEeeechh___!” Screech!!

She’d wait for a guess. We’d guess, “An Owl?” or another time, “A lynx?”

In telling, her bright eyes would twinkle and Annie said, “I said to your grandpa, “Billy, “What was that?” ” He threw back his head and laughingly replied,” “Oh Annie! I think it was,____ your father.”

Annie would chuckle and on her face, a moment of quiet, fond remembrance. As she said, “The cutter ran over a green poplar branch on the trail.”
Annie’s Story, Metcalfe Family Tales, Vickie Metcalfe Spring 2011
Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Bottineau & Bottineau, ND






Happy Birthday Betty Hackman Schmidt (68): Mesa, AZ
From her brother Larry Hackman (66): Bismarck, ND
Happy Birthday
God, you are getting OLD ?
Betty’s reply:
Thanks for the Birthday wishes-but you know I was trying to catch up with you.
Larry’s Reply
That’s not a good thing to do. Get old I mean.
We should be trying to reverse the process
Remember how much mom hated getting old?
It’s to bad Ponce Deleon didn’t find that damn fountain.
We probably wouldn’t be able to afford to drink from it anyway.
Have a Happy Birthday Betty

Joy Bashara
Message from Allen Richard (65): Midland, MI

Joy– You were a “joy” to work with!!! Best wishes!!!


Ms. Bashara
Message from Diane Fugere (75): Minot, ND




Wanted to pass along this message from Ms. Bashara to all who were students of hers.






Diane Fugere






Thanks for the lowdown on so many former students. I do remember a good number of students from that first year of teaching. We are in the midst of a blizzard today inGreen Bay. Please greet fellow students who may remember their senior English teacher those many years ago. Best to you and your family.



Joy Bashara



ND Video
From Bob Hosmer (56): Lynnwood, WA
Gary here are some reasons why those of us who don’t live in North Dakota have North Dakota living in them. Its a good video. I think you and everyone wlse will like it.

The Gauntlet – Car Memories

Reply from Allen Richard (65): Midland, MI
I enjoyed Dave Wurgler’s comments on car things. They gave me pause. There were some legendary cars back in our days. Some because of their speed, some because of their durability and some because they simply seemed to have hearts and souls.
And yes GM made some good ones. I’ve been associated with 4 great Buicks, 2 great Oldsmobiles and one phenomenal GMC. HOWEVER— I learned from the age of 12 or so that I shouldn’t get in a Chevy unless I was wearing great walking shoes.
My first legend was the old bronze ’59 Buick that Dad drove from Dunseith to Wallace, Idaho (1140 miles in 14 hours and 15 minutes–including gas stops) — in 1962. Do the math.
My second was my ’59 Ford. A 6 banger that had a better top end than a 283 Chevy — and I drove flat out from Munich ND to Bottineau. Depending on if i was going up hill or down I was running between 100 and 115–That was in ’66 and it won the ’70 demo derby after being owned by several people including Greg Hill. Gary Pigeon won the derby that year.
So car guys–do cars have a part of the souls of the people that built them? I think so.
Oh– and Dave Wurgler was with me in what became the only face to face encounter I ever had with Dick Bercier. After that he faced my tail lights– Fellow hellions– join in!!!!
We are all lucky to be alive!!!
Cebu Philippines
I thought I’d throw this map in again today. It’s a good representation of where we live in the world. The RED STAR in the middle is us. We are sitting on the 10 degree Latitude line. That puts us approximately 600 miles north of the equator. We only have about an hour variance (half hour on each end) of the length of days from December to June. We have no noticeable seasonal changes. Manila does but we do not. Our year around temps are in the 80’s with the daily highs near 90F and the lows near 80F. 75F is pretty cold for these parts. I truly enjoy never ever having to put on long sleeves to keep warm.


Dunseith Caribbean Cruise – 2/19/2012 – 2/26/2010
Updated info from Gina Ford our traval Agent
Hello Gary (Bill and Phyllis,


Yes, the check just cleared the bank today, for the last cabin that booked recently.


It is definitely my pleasure to have the opportunity to work for so many nice folks!


Here are names (see list below) for confirmed cabins in your 2.19.2012 NCL Pearlgroup cruise:



Important note: NCL has advised they will have a price increase on April 1st.


I do recommend that all who possibly can do so, consider booking this month.



Thank you and kind regards,




Cruise At Will, Inc.




Cruise and Travel Planners




1-866-870-6986 (toll free)




703-580-1190 (local)






Gina’s message previously posted on July 24, 2010:

Gary, I am now in receipt of your Group confirmation. We have 100 cabins on hold for you, at this time. 

A cabin deposit of $250 – per passenger is due by 7.19.2011with formal names and preferred cabin type.


Final payments are not due until: November 18th 2011


Inside cabins begin at $708.75 – total per passenger (depends on deck).


Ocean view with a port hole window – $848.75 – “ “ “ “ “ “ “


Ocean view with picture window – $918.75 – “ “ “ “ “ “ “


Balcony cabins begin at – 1058.75 – “ “ “ “ “ “ “


*Mini Suite – is first come/ first serve and will be quoted at time of passenger deposit for a Mini Suite.


*(with a current price of $1288.75 – total per passenger)



7- Day NCL Western Caribbean Round-trip Miami




Cruise Line: Norwegian Cruise Line
Ship Name: Norwegian Pearl
Sailing Date: 2/19/12


Embarkation: Feb 19, 2012 – Disembarkation: Feb 26, 2012


Ports of call: Miami; Great Stirrup Cay; Ocho Rios; Grand Cayman; Cozumel, Miami

Please contact Gina Ford at either of the below phone numbers to confirm your cabin.


Thank you,


Gina S. Ford


Cruise At Will, Inc.

Cruise and Travel Planners

1-866-870-6986 (toll free)

703-580-1190 (local)




Dunseith Caribbean Cruise – 2/19/2012

Cabin No.



1 5544 Gary Stokes Bernadette Stokes  
2   Bill Grimme Irina Protassevitch  
3   Gwen Grimme Eltz George Eltz  
4   Margaret Metcalfe Leonard    
5   Beverly Handeland Hamnes Mel Hamnes  
6   Deborah Knudson Busta William Busta Deborah is Bev Hamnes’ Daughter
7   David Shelver Linda Shelver  
8   Jon McGregor Bonnie McGregor Bonnie & Linda Shelver are sisters
9   Oliver Reing Marlene Reing Marlene is a sister to Debby Stokes
10   James Fulsebakke Marlee Ray Reing Fulsebakke Marlee Ray is daughter of Oliver and Marlene Reing
11   Shelly Fulsebakke Albertson Heather & Nathan Albertson  
12   John Bullinger Tina Pladson Bullinger  





Our cruise date is fast approaching. Please contact Gina for bookings. Remember, the best cabin choices are the first taken. Our hundred reserved cabins are not specific. Cabin choices are on a first come first choice selections.



Your group leaders,
Bill Grimme – Birmingham, AL
Phyllis McKay – Auburn, WA
Gary & Bernadette Stokes – Cebu Philippines






Reply from Joy Bashara (Teacher): Green Bay, Wisconsin



Are you living in the Philippines? I was born in Wisconsin. I worked most of my career in Superior, Wisconsin. Lived in Scotland, Czech Republic and Russia during my time teaching doing exchanges and special programs.

Joy Bashara

Joy, Yes we live in the Philippines. We retired here in 2003. My Wife, Bernadette is from here.



Joy Bashara

Reply from Bill Krause (74): Dickinson, ND


Gary and all (especially Joy Bashara),
The year of 1974, our senior class was quite infamous for having gone through a number of english teachers,for some reason unknown to me! But when Miss Bashara came and conquered our short attention span of english that year,she made the rest of the year rather enjoyable!! I am pleased to know she is alive and kicking in Greenbay, USA!! The mystery has been solved of what ever happened to Joy Bashara!!! I know I was one of many I am sure,that was wondering!! Thanks Joy Bashara for a wonderful time in English class!! Bill Krause



Joy Bashara

Question from Vickie Hiatt LaFontaine (73): Grafton, ND


Joy Basher are you related to Ken and Deloras from grafton ? She was my kids daycare when we moved here in 86




Vicksburg, Mississippi

Comments from Bill Grimme (65): Birmingham, AL


When I lived in Vicksburg, Mississippi, I worked at a power plant in Port Gibson, “the town to beautiful to burn” according to General U. S. Grant during the Civil War. Two or three times a week, I would come up behind or be passed by a fellow in a pickup truck as I traveled down Highway 61 (the same road Bob Dylan sang about). The guy’s license plate said “YANKEE”. I can’t remember the state he was from, but, I always thought, “This guy is really brave or really stupid.”

When I moved to Vicksburg, a real estate agent educated me on the local social order. It went like this. Highest on the list were local whites, second was local blacks, and third are the Yankees. And who is a Yankee? That’s anyone whose “people” came South after The War of Northern Aggression, as the Civil War is often called in the South. Black Folks often refer to the Civil War as the “Freedom War”. Northerners at the time of the war often called the war the “War of Rebellion”. Interesting perspectives. That being said, I can say that I really enjoyed my time in Vicksburg. It’s a great place to get a touch of the flavor of that war that ended on paper 150 years ago, but, still lives on in some places in the South.

When I moved to Vicksburg in 1988 from northern Illinois, it was like going back about 50 years in time. Except for the model years of the cars, it seemed like the place had lagged in time. I’m not speaking of modern conveniences, but, rather I’m thinking about the feel of the place. I went back a few years ago and that has changed quite a bit. What seems to have happened is that riverboat gambling came to town and brought a whole new brand of tourist. Before the casinos, the main visitors were there to learn about Civil War history – the Vicksburg battlefield park is a very interesting place to visit. The bright lights of the riverboats produces a real contrast to the experience.

I don’t disagree with bringing the boats in. Folks enjoy gambling, they pay a voluntary tax to do it, and the local folks do benefit from that revenue. Unemployment was kind of high in Vicksburg when I lived there, but the introduction of the casinos improved that a lot. And, I haven’t heard that the crime rate skyrocketed, as some who are opposed to the enterprise always predict (I think that high unemployment drives crime a lot more than gambling). And, in advance of the protests I will likely get from this opinion, I will give my opinion on the argument that the casino business is bad because it draws poor people in to gamble money they don’t have. My opinion is that you can’t protect people from themselves. If they want to gamble, they will gamble, either illegally or by driving to places where they can gamble. You might as well get some local tax revenue and save folks money on gasoline. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!


Weather Forcast (20 hours ago)

Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Bottineau & Minot, ND


Latest forcast/one minute ago. Says Bottineau (This is where I am.) might get 17 inches of snow in the next few days. WOW!! Minot is about the same–an earlier forecast gave Minot more snow than Bottineau.


I’m sure those of you who have left the state for warmer/better weather are either grateful/jealous you aren’t here for the “big snow/storm”. LOL!!



All rights reserved


Replyfrom Joy Bashara (Teacher): Green Bay, Wisconsin


I was a teacher in Dunseith for one year 1974-75. One of the people on the website asked about me, so I responded. I taught English and directed the plays that year.



Joy Bashara

Posted with message 789 on May 4, 2010

Joy Bashara (Teacher)

Question from Diane Fugere (75): Minot, ND.


I have a question for the class of ’75. Does anyone remember Ms. Bashara(sp?) or know where she is nowadays?

Diane Fugere

Reply from Diane Fugere (75): Minot, ND.


Miss Bashara was our English teacher for a few years. We really liked her. I tried to contact her once via FB using Joy Bashara.

Diane Fugere


Reply from Kathy Casavant Ellingson (74): Bismark, ND
I remember Joy Bashara, she was a teacher in high school. Very nice lady.

State Patrolman Bercier Story
From Dave Wurgler (64): Rugby, ND

Gary: Bercier was a fair and honest patrolman but at times could get a little honnery. My story was in the mid to late 80’s when I owened operated my service station and was on the Rugby Fire Dept. and Rescue Squad and one weekend a month for the Rugby Ambulance Squad. We always carrieed pagers clipped to our belts and that weekend I had the fire dept, plus the ambulance pager. At 4:00 p.m. the dispatch ran a test for the pagers so I knew I had both of them at that time. So that Saturday-nite when getting ready to sack out for the evening I was putting my pagers in the chargers and noticed I had lost my pager for the ambulance. I thought back to remember who’s vehicles I had worked on form 4:00 to closing time, which was five vehicles. I called each customer to see if they had found my pager inside their car. Four out of the five said no but the fifth one I could not get in contact until Sunday morn. They had found the pager in their car. They farmed ten miles south and one mile west on hwy #3. I told them I would be right out to get it and said I better hurry cause they were just going out the door to attend church at Balta and they would give me ten minutes to get there. I quickly headed south and a speed in the vicinity of 100 mph. and when I topped the hill Bercier was on the other side heading north. When we met the lights came on and he was pointing to his left for me to pull over. As I pulled over he made a quick flip-flop in the middle of the hwy and pulled in behind me beckoning me with his famous finger to come back to the patrol car. As I was walking back to the car he was pointing to the passenger seat. When I sat in Bercier said–Wurgler!! where on the hell are you going at 97 mph on a Sunday morn? I explained the situation and he started to write the ticket and I explained again and asked him to give me a brake, and he said their will be no break and continued writing and handed me the ticket to sign and be in municapil court Wed. at 1: 00 and have your check book ready cause it’s gonna cost $180.00 plus 10 points on my liscense and no BREAKS!!!! So on WED. I walked across the street to court which was across the street from my station and walked into the court room and it was completely dark and no one their. I flicked on the lights and sat down grabbed a magazine and waited until 2:00 and no one showed so I left backover to the station and called the Judge. I asked him if he was comming to court that day and he said no cause he has court on Tues. not on Wed. I told him I was suppose to appear before him today and he asked why. I explained the ticket Bercier had given me for speeding and be there on Wed. So I asked him what should I do and he told me to rip the ticket and don’t worry about it cause the wrong date on the ticket will not stand up in court. I begged Bercier for a break and he gave it to me knowing I was wrong but made me sweat it out for two weeks before I found out. Like I said Bercier was a fair and could be honnery patrolman, but that day he was doing his job and he did bend although he wouldn’t have had to. I was always thankful for what he did for me and he was a good customer of mine with his personel vehicles and Patrol car and nothing was ever mentioned by him or myself about the incident and he knew what he did and he wanted to teach me a lesson. Dave Wurgler(64) P.S. Allen Richard, lets hear your stories. By the way Allen, G.M. is still top dog!!!! LOL.
Anthony Story #9
Posted by Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

Gary and Friends.

Anthony Story #9


As a child, I looked at Annie A. Anthony as a fascinating woman!

Other women put on smartly starched and finely pressed dresses to go visiting. Annie a tall woman, cut a trim, lithe figure with long sleeved cotton shirts tucked into manly suit trousers with the cuffs turned up. Sometimes the trousers were pinstriped, other times plain. Even though she had the Anthony smell, she always looked “neat as a pin.”

Annie’s porcelain skin was make-up free. T’was not at all, like those equally fascinating “Sunday -Go- to -Church” _ladies who smelled all powdery, wore blots of red rouge on their cheek bones, purplish tinted hair and furry, quite dead animals with beady eyes thrown around the neck collar of their coats.

No , her thick, dark, shiny, chestnut, brown hair was worn in two beautiful braids plaited around her head. The rich chestnut colour never dulled or got white. I know she didn’t dye it! Cause_, as a kid I’d get really close and unobtrusively have a long, long look while refilling her coffee cup. And I, continued sneak peeking, ever so often, as the years spiraled by. Sometimes I’d venture another look and see a stray silver strand peeking through, as her head began to tremble, shook she became more and more shaky and frail .

As I recall, Annie A. Anthony. I believe the actress that could have best portrayed her would have been Kate Hepburn. Do you all remember the movie “On Golden Pond”?

Annie and Ward were pretty much isolated in the winter. Ah! Whilst days grew longer, crows greeting caws, new born calves and lambs arriving, the rivlets running down the hills, Dad would say to Mom, “I’m going invite Annie and Ward for Easter dinner.” Mom would always reply, “You be sure to tell Ward to bathe before they come.”

If there was snow,Ward had a snow mobile or Dad would go get them on his ski-doo, or his four wheel drive if the Anthony road was too muddy for their car..

And we girls would whine , “AW, Da_-_ad_d! But our Dad did not relent, he always was firm with his wishes. So, that was the way Easter was at the Cliff and Lottie Metcalfe farm for many, many years. A feast was prepared and the table set with mom’s best tablecloth, and the honored guests were always Annie and Ward. And we girls would help mom serve and gather up dishes to do while the elders visited. And, in parting mom would send leftovers and Annie was always a most complimentary guest.

The repeating Easter lesson every year became a lesson in respect for the dignity of those less fortunate. And now, my brothers and I at Easter find one or another mentioning their names and how we are getting the lonesomes for them, especially during Easter dinner.

Anna A Anthony: B. 01/31/1888 D. 10/27/1972 Age 84

from, Metcalfe Family Tales, Vickie Metcalfe SPRING!! 2011
Texas Story
From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

Don Aird’s comments about Yankees in Texas brought to mind a story
about my brother-in-law Greg Knutson. He taught school and coached in
Maddock, ND for a few years and the kids really like him and nicknamed
him ‘Mr. K.’ He was OK with the nickname and when he bought a new red
Corvette, he also got personalized license plates the read ‘Mr. K’. He
left teaching and ND and took a job in Dallas, TX with an industrial
firm. He really liked Texas and his job, but he told me that the Civil
War is actually not over yet. He was driving down the interstate
traveling at the same speed as all the traffic and a HP came up along
side him and pulled him out of the pack. He said the patrolman came up
to the car and said, “You might be somebody where you come from, Mr. K,
but down here you ain’t s–t. Do you understand me, Mr. K?” He wrote
Greg up for speeding, with a smirk on his face. Greg eventually sold the
car as it happened again and he said a red Corvette with personalized
plates from ND is a absolute target for the Texas cops. He bought a
white Ford pickup and had Texas plates and no more problems. Thanks Gary!


Postings from Neola Kofoid Garbe: Bottineau & Minot, ND




All rights reserved


No Blog Yesterday:
Folks, I did not have much to post yesterday so I decided to forgo yesterday’s posting.
I have requested an update from Gina for those signed up for our cruise. I will be posting that info when she gets back to me.
Proud to be from North Dakota
Message from Don Aird (Carroll Carlson’s Nephew): St Louis, MO

I’ve always been proud to have been born, raised and educated in North Dakota. In 1974 I had to leave ND to find work. I got a job in Dallas, TX. Texans were not fond of Yankees. I had to explain to them at the time of the Civil War ND was still part of the Louisiana Purchase. We were still Southerners!

Posted on our Website:

From: Joy Bashara-Ingram
E-mail: joybaing@new.rr.com
I live in Green Bay, Wisconsin now. I retired from regular teaching a few years ago. In Green Bay I do some ESL teaching, work at a museum on weekends, teach swimming at the YMCA, and am doing a little freelance work with the Oneida Tribe of Wisconsin. I remember my time in Dunseith fondly. I married an Englishman I met while teaching in Scotland 14 years ago.

Joy, you have us really curious now. Did you ever attend Dunseith and if you did what school year would you have been? Gary
Dick Bercier (Highway Partolman)
Memories from Allen Richard (65): Midland, MI

Don’t get me started on Dick Bercier stories — Well today I don’t have time — Lets just say that the 390 Fords he loved as patrol cars we light lunches for 383 Plymouths– more later———





North Dakota economy booms, population soars – USATODAY.com

Posted by Brenda Hoffman (68): Greenville, SC


Isn’t this great!! We’re the turtle and the rest of the country is the hare!


Little Prairie Lutheran Church
Message/Picture posted by Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

Here is a picture of the congregation of Little Prairie Lutheran Church,
probably taken after a church service many years ago. There are a few
names on the back but it is a partial listing as there are more in the
picture than names listed. There are several of the folks that many
people will know so I will point them out individually. The man on the
extreme left is John Seim. Next is Martin Foss, Mr. and Mrs. Ed Halstad,
the man in front is Earl Myer, lady with the black hat is Christine
Carlson (Carroll’s mom), the tall lady next with the white hat is Ingrid
Seim, the short gal beside her is Bertha Myer, it lists Pete Carlson on
the right but I don’t know if he was that tall. Don Aird can maybe tell
us if that is him. As I said, some are unknown to the person who
identified the people. My best guess would be late 30s or early 40s and
with the ladies in hats, maybe Easter Sunday. Thanks Gary!


Joke of the day:
Posted by LeaRae Parrill Espe (67): Bottineau, ND

Proof that you can’t ever underestimate the creativeness of boys for mischief.

Withconsidering all the brilliant, devious minds we had in high school, I don’t know how we missed doing this.

At a high school in Montana, a group of students played a prankthey let three goats loose inside the school.

But before turning them loose, they painted numbers on the sides of the goats: 1, 2, and 4.

School Administrators spent most of the day looking for No. 3!



Federal Income tax

I filed our Federal Income Tax yesterday. I have been using Turbo tax on line for many years now. They roll everything from the previous year into the current year and all I have to do is fill in the blanks. The whole process took about 15 minutes. My refund check will be auto deposited into my bank on March 25th. Such a deal. We can never evade paying taxes. Washington State, our last state of residence, does not have a state income tax, so we don’t have to file any state taxes. Gary
SSGT Barry Sadler Songs
From Ele Dietrich Slyter (69): Dunseith, ND
A special thank you for including the you tube link to the SSGT Barry Sadler songs…they brought back so many, many memories. Besides the fact that they are great music to just enjoy, they also brought back memories of those who served during that time and those who serve today. Thank you.
I noticed those songs were included with the Red Skeleton U-Tube posting yesterday. I so very much agree with you.
Dick Bercier – Highway Patrolman
Memories from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

Gary Metcalfe remembers the ND Highway Patrolman, Dick Bercier, who
was assigned the area around Dunseith. He was a regular in the Crystal Cafe
for a ritual card game with Bertha Vanorny, Bertha Myer , and Father
Wolfe. He was also a no nonsense patrolman when it came time to do his
job. I only had one encounter with Dick but came to remember it. I had
gone to an auction sale south of Rugby and was on my way home with my
father-in-law and Carmen Myer as passengers when just north of Rugby
there was a safety check for all vehicles. Dick Bercier and two other
younger patrolmen were pulling over EVERY vehicle and checking lights,
signals, horn, etc. As I was sitting in line, I looked in my mirror and
my friend, Rolette County Sheriff Bryant Mueller pulled in behind me in
his personal car. He noticed me and walked up to shoot the breeze while
we were waiting. Dick Bercier didn’t look as though he was enjoying his
duty very much as he walked toward me. He gruffly said, “Where is your
license.” There is a one liner I had just heard and couldn’t resist. I
said, “Gee, I don’t know. When I left home it was hanging on my front
bumper.” Bryant chuckled and Dick Bercier yelled, “I mean your g—-
—–m drivers license!” OK, so much for the humor. He checked us out
and we went on our way.

The other Dick Bercier story I have is about an incident with him
and my old buddy Bob Roberge. Bob was coming home from his cousin’s
place near Rolette late one night and Dick whipped around and stopped
him by Yellow Corners. Bob had an old two ton ’51 Ford truck with poor
tail lights and who knows what else. It was after midnight and Dick must
have figured something was wrong with this deal so he stopped him. Bob
knew Bercier well from around Dunseith so he too was joking a bit.
Bercier said, “What are you doing out here this time of night Roberge?”
Bob told him he was just coming from visiting his cousin. He said
Bercier didn’t buy that so he climbed up and looked in the empty grain
box. He then told Bob to show him his drivers license. Bob didn’t have
an interior light so he told Dick to shine his flashlight in the cab
while he looked in his billfold. The first thing he found was his
‘commodity card’, which is for food assistance, so he pulled that out
and handed it to Bercier. He said Dick looked and looked at it in the
dark with his flashlight and then jerked the truck door open and grabbed
Bob and took him over to the patrol car and put him in the back seat and
drove off for Rugby. Bob said he didn’t say a word as Dick was hot. Just
north of Rugby Dick Bercier slammed on the brakes and jumped out and
took Bob out of the back seat and got back in to leave. Bob finally
asked him what he was supposed to do now and how was he supposed to get
back to his truck? Bercier just said, “Walk—you smart son— —-ch!”
and drove off. I asked Bob if he walked the 20 miles back to Yellow
Corners? He said he only walked a short way and some ‘drunks from
Dunseith’ pick him up and took him back to his truck. Thanks Gary!


Posted by Lois Lilleby Fielding (51): Prescott, AZ

WSJ On-Line

MARCH 15, 2011

Why North Dakota Is Booming

They’re drilling for oil, attracting high tech, and keeping the tax burden moderate. Result: 3.8% unemployment.


Living on the harsh, wind-swept northern Great Plains, North Dakotans lean towards the practical in economic development. Finding themselves sitting on prodigious pools of oil—estimated by the state’s Department of Mineral Resources at least 4.3 billion barrels—they are out drilling like mad. And the state is booming.

Unemployment is 3.8%, and according to a Gallup survey last month, North Dakota has the best job market in the country. Its economy “sticks out like a diamond in a bowl of cherry pits,” says Ron Wirtz, editor of the Minneapolis Fed’s newspaper, fedgazette. The state’s population, slightly more than 672,000, is up nearly 5% since 2000.

The biggest impetus for the good times lies with energy development. Around 650 wells were drilled last year in North Dakota, and the state Department of Mineral Resources envisions another 5,500 new wells over the next two decades. Between 2005 and 2009, oil industry revenues have tripled to $12.7 billion from $4.2 billion, creating more than 13,000 jobs.

Already fourth in oil production behind Texas, Alaska and California, the state is positioned to advance on its competitors. Drilling in both Alaska and the Gulf, for example, is currently being restrained by Washington-imposed regulations. And progressives in California—which sits on its own prodigious oil supplies—abhor drilling, promising green jobs while suffering double-digit unemployment, higher utility rates and the prospect of mind-numbing new regulations that are designed to combat global warming and are all but certain to depress future growth. In North Dakota, by contrast, even the state’s Democrats—such as Sen. Kent Conrad and former Sen. Byron Dorgan—tend to be pro-oil. The industry services the old-fashioned liberal goal of making middle-class constituents wealthier.

Oil also is the principal reason North Dakota enjoys arguably the best fiscal situation in all the states. With a severance tax on locally produced oil, there’s a growing state surplus. Recent estimates put an extra $1 billion in the state’s coffers this year, and that’s based on a now-low price of $70 a barrel.

North Dakota, however, is no one-note Prairie sheikdom. The state enjoys prodigious coal supplies and has—yes—even moved heavily into wind-generated electricity, now ranking ninth in the country. Thanks to global demand, North Dakota’s crop sales are strong, but they are no longer the dominant economic driver—agriculture employs only 7.2% of the state’s work force.

Perhaps more surprising, North Dakota is also attracting high-tech. For years many of the state’s talented graduates left home, but that brain drain is beginning to reverse. This has been critical to the success of many companies, such as Great Plains Software, which was founded in the 1980s and sold to Microsoft in 2001 for $1.1 billion. The firm has well over 1,000 employees.

The corridor between Grand Forks and Fargo along the Red River (the border between North Dakota and Minnesota) has grown rapidly in the past decade. It now boasts the headquarters of Microsoft Business Systems and firms such as PacketDigital, which makes microelectronics for portable electronic devices and systems. There are also biotech firms such as Aldevron, which manufactures proteins for biomedical research. Between 2002 and 2009, state employment in science, technology, engineering and math-related professions grew over 30%, according to EMSI, an economic modeling firm. This is five times the national average.

While the overall numbers are still small compared to those of bigger states, North Dakota now outperforms the nation in everything from the percentage of college graduates under the age of 45 to per-capita numbers of engineering and science graduates. Median household income in 2009 was $49,450, up from $42,235 in 2000. That 17% increase over the last decade was three times the rate of Massachussetts and more than 10 times that of California.

Some cities, notably Fargo (population 95,000), have emerged as magnets. “Our parking lot has 20 license plates in it,” notes Niles Hushka, co-founder of Kadrmas, Lee and Jackson, an engineering firm active in Great Plains energy development. Broadway Drive in Fargo’s downtown boasts art galleries, good restaurants and young urban professionals hanging out in an array of bars. This urban revival is a source of great pride in Fargo.

What accounts for the state’s success? Dakotans didn’t bet the farm, so to speak, on solar cells, high-density housing or high-speed rail. Taxes are moderate—the state ranks near the middle in terms of tax per capita, according to the Tax Foundation—and North Dakota is a right-to-work state, which makes it attractive to new employers, especially in manufacturing. But the state’s real key to success is doing the first things first—such as producing energy, food and specialized manufactured goods for which there is a growing, world-wide market. This is what creates the employment and wealth that can support environmental protection and higher education.

Thankfully, this kind of sensible thinking is making a comeback in some other states, such as Ohio and Pennsylvania. These hard-pressed states realize that attending to basic needs—in their case, shale natural gas—could be just the elixir to resuscitate their economies.

Mr. Kotkin is a teaches at Chapman University and is an adjunct fellow at the London-based Legatum Institute.



Condolences to the Berube Family
From Connie Fauske Monte (62): Santa Barbara, CA
My condolences to the Berube family on the passing of their Mother. Rachael and I went to school together for awhile until she went away to school and Robert and I went to school together all 12 years.
Neil Arnzen’s Obituary
Posted by Luella Boardman Bjornseth (49): Bottineau, ND

Hi Gary!

I’m attaching a copy of Neil Arntzen’s obituary. I thought many of your readers would be interested in it since he was a coach and instructor at the college here for so many years. I know lots of the Dunseith graduates came over here for the beginning of their college experience. One of the speakers at the funeral was Dennis Duboise (Dunseith Hi graduate of 1963). He was invited to come for the funeral and tell some of his experiences with Neil which was interesting and funny. I worked in the same building at the college with Neil for 18 years.


Thank you Luella for sending Neil’s Obituary. You mentioned Dennis Dubois (63) being a speaker. Dennis was an all time basket ball star at Dunseith and I’m assuming the Forestery too. Dennis lives in Minneapolis.
I never had Neil for an instructor, but I always knew who he was. I used to see him frequently, in later years, at the Bottineau Senior center when I’d go there with my visits back with my folks for their dinner meal. Neil was in the Legion with my dad too, so I knew him from there too. I also remember Neil working summers at the Peace Garden Port of Entry too, as a customs agent.


Neil Arntzen
(Died March 10, 2011)

Guest Book | Sign Guest Book | Send Flowers





Neil Arntzen, age 87 of Bottineau, died Thursday at a Bottineau hospital. Funeral will be held on Tuesday at 2:00 pm at the First Lutheran Church in Bottineau. Visitation will be on Monday from 10:00 am until 7:00 pm and again on Tuesday from 10:00 am until noon and the Nero Funeral Home in Bottineau. In lieu of flowers the family request that memorials be given to the future Veteran’s Memorial Building in Bottineau.

Neil Omar Arntzen, a youngest of eight children born to Olaf and Alma (Hansen) Arntzen, was born on June 2, 1923 at Havana, ND. Neil participated on numerous Havana “Red Arrows” sports teams. One of his many accomplishments was setting the North Dakota state record in the half mile. His time of 1 minute and 54.6 seconds stood for almost 40 years. During World War II, Neil saw action in Leyte and Mindanao, Philippines while serving in the US Army from 1943 to 1946. He attended the university of Nebraska and Valley City State College. At Valley City State, he continued his sports participation, lettering in football and track. He received his Master’s Degree in Economics from UND and did post-graduate work at the University of Missouri. Upon graduating from college, Mr. Arntzen taught at Sharron, Bowdon and New Rockford High Schools where he also coached football, basketball and track. On June 1, 1947 he married Helen Marie Aas at Valley City. They moved to Bottineau in 1956 where Neil began teaching history, economics and physical education at the North Dakota School of Forestry. At the college, he served as Dean of Students, Athletic Director and was head coach of the football, basketball, track and baseball teams. In 1966, he began working seasonally as a US Custom’s Service Inspector. He also officiated football, basketball, baseball and was a starter for swimming and track events. Neil retired from teaching in 1985.

Mr. Arntzen was instrumental in forming the junior college Mon-Dak Sports Conference. He was inducted into the Dakota College at Bottineau Hall of Fame and in 1979 he was inducted into the North Dakota Officials Hall of Fame. Even after more than twenty years of retirement, he was active in the Logrollers, raising scholarship funds for the college. He was also instrumental in returning football and establishing softball at Dakota College. He was active in the Bottineau community serving on the Bottineau County Ambulance Squad where he trained personnel in EMT. He was Commander of the American Legion and VFW posts. He served on the Bottineau City Council and the Bottineau park Board. He was a member of the Tri-County Meals program and the Bottineau Men’s Investment Club. He coached little league baseball. He was also president of the Seven County Transportation Board and the Bottineau Senior Citizens. For his commitment to the community, he was awarded the Bottineau Chamber of Commerce Distinguished Service Award.

Neil passed away Thursday, March 10, 2011 at a Bottineau hospital.

Neil is survived by his wife, Helen of Bottineau; his children, Rick (Janet) Arntzen of Warroad, MN, Marie (Dennis) Doran of Spicer, MN, Jan (Steve) Martin of Powell, WY, Susan (Randol) Cassellious of Chippewa, WI, Jane (Bob) Schumacher of Belgrade, MT and Scott (Kelly) Arntzen of Bottineau; 16 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

In addition to his parents and siblings, he was preceded in death by his son, Mark Douglas Arntzen.

Arrangements were with Nero Funeral Home in Bottineau. Friends may sign the online register book at www.nerofuneralhome.net.

Face book postings that I captured from Susan Fassett Martin and Bill Grimme both from the class of 65.

Susan Kay Martin

I loved the Red Skelton Show. We never had tv when I was growing up, but went to my grandparents to watch tv. I had seen this years ago and it is very touching.


Bill Grimme

I met Red Skelton backstage after his show at the Fox Theater in Atlanta in about 1994. I was with a friend who knew him quite well. Mr. Skelton had just finished a 90 minute show on his feet the whole time, no break and no props other than his mike and a couple of bottles of water. When we got to his dressing room, he sat in a wheelchair, smoking a cigar, drinking a Heinekin. He visited with us, my friend, my friend’s wife, my wife and me for about 30 minutes. No jokes – a lot of great political philosophy. He talked with first hand knowledge about all the Presidents starting with FDR. He was very patriotic and it was clear that he loved this country. I think he was around 80 at the time. That 30 minutes is one of the most memorable moments of my life. Great man.



Red Skelton’s Pledge of Allegiance to the United States of America



August Johnson Death
Reply from Rebecca Johnson Hanson: Wisconsin

Hi all,
I know that I have not said anything before but thought I would today concerning my dad’s death, August Johnson. Thanks to everyone who came to the funereal on Friday the 11th. It was great seeing people that I have not seen since I was little, Randy (Kelly), Dickie (Johnson). DJ and I both appreciate the outcome and support.
By the way it is still very cold up there and I think that I will stay in Wisconsin for awhile LOL.
Thanks again, Rebecca Hanson, Augie’s daughter

ND “Wall Street Jounal” Article Attached
From Diane Fugere (75): Minot, ND

Gary: Interesting article about ND in the Wall Street Journal. Diane


Cliff Dickson Memories
Reply from Gary Metcalfe (57): Forsyth, MO
Thanks Dick and Bill for your information about Cliff Dickinson. I appreciated your stories, I was surprised that anyone remembered him, it meant a lot to me. From what you said Bill it certainly was the same guy I was talking about. Gary Metcalfe


Japanese Earthquake
Reply from Florence Hiatt Dahl (50): Anchorage, AK

Mercy—the Japanese earthquake of 8.9 hit really brought memories back In 1964 the 9.3 earthquake hit Alaska and lasted for over 5 minutes and then numerous quakes for days…Our 3 year old was our barometer–he would yell “here comes onw” –spread his little legs and sure enough.. And we thought it was horrible, but compared to Japan————————
San Haven Picture
Reply from Dave Slyter (70): Sabin, Mn
Dear Gary and Dick:

I find the picture of the grounds of San Haven most interesting. Yes it is a very old picture and I agree with Dick that it could be a band playing by the sunken gardens. If you take notice to the two gentleman standing in the back of the crowd that are seated, that is a base drum. I could recognize a base drum anywhere. :)

I also am intrigued by the way the sunken garden looks. While I was the head groundskeeper there for 8 years I planted many flowers in the area to where the pool is in this picture. Along with my dad Freddie Hiatt and also David Striker.(different years)

I also notice the rocks that align the road all they way up the hill to the main entrance of the hospital. When we were working there it was hedges and trees. How times change.

It was a beautiful place in the heart of the Turtle Mountains and a great place to work. So many peoples lives were effected when they closed the doors to San Haven. But the memories are still embedded in our hearts.

Thanks Dick for sharing this great photo.

Dave Slyter : )


Philippine Immigration question

From Mark Schimetz (70): Rolette, ND

I can understand how you may need the immigration card, but isn’t Bernadette a native?

Bernadette gave up her Filipino citizenship when she became a naturalized US citizen. Since she is now living in the PI she has the option of becoming a Dual Citizen of both countries of which she chose not to do. She takes great pride in being a 100% American Citizen. Her Filipino Birth Certificate gives us and our children all the benefits for living in this country. Gary

Cliff Dickinson Memories

From Bill Grimme (65): Birmingham, AL
Gary Metcalfe’s note yesterday contained a mention of a man that I still think about a lot. I’m talking about Cliff Dickinson. Never saw a stronger man. He had a special relationship with Dennis Brennan – not sure what that was, but, Cliff was a very nice guy. He liked to have a few drinks, as many of us did, and I lost a couple of shirts to Cliff. When Cliff was in a happy mood, with a few drinks in him, he liked to trade shirts. I think I traded with him twice. When I would put his on, it fit me like a tent and then he would put mine on and rip out the sleeves when he flexed his muscles! On a couple of occasions, Cliff would get down on one knee, place this huge hand on the floor and direct me to stand on his hand. Then, still kneeling, he would lift me straight up off the floor to a height of about 2 feet and hold me there. Maybe others had this experience. Now, I’m not talking about him doing this when I was a young boy. No, this was when I was around 19 or 20. Pretty impressive, to me, at least. When Cliff wasn’t having a drink, he was a soft spoken and very kind man, from my memory. I don’t know where he came from or where he went, but, he certainly is a memorable character, in my memories, at least. Maybe someone else can fill in the blanks on Cliff.

Bill Grimme

Cliff Dickinson Memories
From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

Gary Metcalfe mentioned a few of the colorful people that made up the
diverse population of old Dunseith. One name he mentioned ran a bell
for me —- —Cliff Dickinson. I will tell a story that I heard and
I have NO way of knowing if this is true or fabricated, but it went
around town back in the 60s and it stuck in my mind for 40+ years now.
I believe Dennis Brennan hired Cliff Dickinson to work in his bar as a
bouncer because things were getting a bit rough. The story goes like
this. Big Cliff had hands like a grizzly bear and if you could put your
hand on the bar and he couldn’t cover it with his hand he bought you a
beer. He didn’t buy anyone a beer. The story is that he had a roudy
customer one Saturday evening and finally the guy had to go, so Cliff
was going to kick him out but the guy took a swing at Cliff—invitation
to an education. Cliff responded with a couple quick jabs and the guy
basically flew out the door onto the sidewalk. That part is OK, but on
the sidewalk he bumped into Emil Metcalfe who was carrying a bag of
groceries to his car. He knocked the bag out of Emil’s hands and broke
some of the stuff in the bag. Big Emil had no idea that the guy had
been tossed out so he grabbed him and threw him back through the open
door where Cliff again poked him a couple more which sent him back
through the open door so Emil popped him and sent back in again, kind of
like passing a basketball back and forth. Talk about being caught
between a rock and a hard place! As I said, this may or may not be true
but this is the story I heard back then. We ALL know the local guy who
was receiving the boxing lessons, but for this readership, I’m leaving
his name out. Thanks Gary!




No Blog yesterday


Folks, Yesterday Bernadette and I went down to the Immigration office to renew our Immigration Cards, so I did not get a Blog out. They have to be renewed every 5 years. Ours expire a year from now, so we decided to renew them now. They told us it would take two months to get our new cards, but it could very well take a whole lot longer than that. Can you believe we were charged an express fee too, for faster service. Had we given the processing folks a little extra money on the side, we could probably get our cards in just a few days. We are not leaving country any time soon, so we are in no hurry to get them back.






Donald Egbert’s Funeral

Message from Verena Gillis (Pete 65): Dunseith, ND


Just wanted to let everyone know Donald had a very beautiful funeral and
many of his friends and locals attended. Was just wonderful!
Thank you very much to Brenda, Dick and Ron for the beautiful music.
Dennis Dubois came from Minneapolis and shared a few stories last night
after the mass. Special thanks to Tom Berube for doing the reading and
Warren Anderson and Pete Gillis for carrying the gifts during communion.
The City of Dunseith TAKES CARE OF THEIR OWN!!!

Verena (**)

You are a god send to the whole community. You do so much for so many. You are always right there to help and when needed you take the bull by the horns. Every community needs a Verena Gillis, but unfortunately most do not have the luxury of having a Verena Gillis.
Thank you Verena for all that you did for Donald. He will forever eternally remember you and us too.




Reply from Tom Hagen (51): Mesa, AZ


Hi Gary, I don’t think I got your last two blogs as Leland mentioned the one was about the tsunami and I did not get that one.. I hope I haven’t miss anymore but look forward to them every day and enjoy reading about the old timers (many I knew) in Dunseith and Bottineau. I see a former classmate down here in AZ named Lorraine Nelson (Lori) and she is on the blog, too. She and I went to Beaver Dam School 71 years ago!!!!!! Then I met a former student of mine and I taught him 52 years ago in Heimdal!!! (He lives in Bismarck now). Thanks for all you do. Tom Hagen (5l)
Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND

Douglas Brent Brunelle



(April 27, 1943 – March 7, 2011)

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Douglas Brunelle, age 68 of Arizona City, AZ formerly Dunseith, died Monday in a Grand Forks hospital. Funeral services will be held on Tuesday at 10:00 A.M. in the St. Michael’s Church of Dunseith. Burial will be in the St. Mary’s Cemetery of rural Dunseith. A wake will be held on Monday beginning at 4:00 P.M. with a prayer services at 8:00 P.M. in the church.

Douglas Brunelle, a son of William and Edna (Morin) Brunelle, was born on April 27,1943 at Belcourt. He was raised in the Belcourt community where he attended school and graduated in 1961. He served in the US Army from 1966 to 1967. In June 1972 he was married to Shirley Peltier at Fargo. They have three sons.

Douglas had a wide range of experience, primarily working as Tribal Housing Director on several Indian reservations in South Dakota. Nebraska and Arizona. Working his way up the ladder, he retired from his last position as Project Manager for commercial development on the Gila River Indian Community at Sacaton, AZ.

Douglas gathered many friends along his life’s adventure encompassing most of the western United States, from California Redwoods to Nebraska and Montana to Arizona. Distance kept him from face-to-face visits, but the telephone kept his friends close.

Dunseith Memories from the past
From Gary Metcalfe (57): Forsyth, MO


I was watching my favorite tv show the other night, the old country music legends. They will all be gone in a few. I noticed Vince Gill, a youngster is always in the mix. He sincerely cares about the old pioneers and I am sure will carry on their great passion for what they do. It reminds me of the passion Ernie Pyle had for the Infantry Soldier in WWII. You can follow the 34th Inf. Div. almost on a daily basis on their 500 plus battle days, you can follow the men from the blood soaked leggings in the snow near Monti Casino. The 34th had 80% casualties on this sight. Both of these groups of people I call unique.

Dunseith, if it was anything at all it was unique, diverse…I think we agreed on that…but much more unique. From the days when Jack Smith and one of the old Demery’s fought for three days and the Syrian wrestled the bear. The San had a taxi service and Ben Kupker running a large farm. Can you imagine the romance that flourished with the young CCC boys away from home and the young women also away from home working at the San. The lively barn dances as well as big bands at City Hall. So each surrounding community had their own “bull of the woods”….some more famous than others. Then there were the Smokers, Gary Morgan has already told us how that turned out. Four bars in a town of a 1,000 or so and we were never short of boot leggers. After the bars closed, the next move was to a house party that would assure you that you really did not need to go to bed before going to the hayfield. You would have thought that you may have needed more than one cop, but when we did get more cops it did not seem much improved.


Characters, I am guessing that Adrian Egbert was about the hardest act to follow, especially in Dunseith proper. Maybe someone will remember Jack Allen, highway patrolman. He back handed a few of his customers. Dick Johnson mentioned a colorful highway patrol, Dick Bercier. Dennis Brennen talked of Cliff Dickinson, a strong man, a stranger. I never checked him out as the bar was a little on the rough side, to say the least. I would like to hear more about Cliff Dickinson. I don’t think Dick Morgan thought Dunseith was boring either, I guess he has already said that. One of the most outstanding people that most readers should have known was Oscar Stadheim.

Thanks. Gary Metcalfe
Sendai, Japan
Report from Bob Hosmer (56): Lynnwood, WA

The following is a current update on our grandson’s situation in Sendai after the earthquake sent by our daughter, Leanna. Ayashi is a suburb of Sendai. This will give you what is happening in that part of the city. It is a place that Katrine and I also worked for several weeks in 2007 doing some stop-gap work until more permanent personnel arrived. It is truly a beautiful area of that city. Bob and Katrine Hosmer


Leanna Hosmer’s Report
Kristopher’s Update
Hi Everyone,
Just talked with Kristopher for an extended period of time and got a little more details from him besides, “I’m safe”. He had been able to recharge his computer & phone – They had been able to get some power for a couple of hours. Everyone is charging up their batteries. Tomorrow the water is being shut off, so they are filling up bathtubs, pots & pans, etc. He is feeling very blessed to be a part of an amazing community of people at the Ayashi Chuo church.
In terms of where Ayashi is in relation to Sendai and all the footage we see on the news – basically it’s divided by some high hills. Ayashi (where Kristopher is) is directly behind the hills that we are seeing on TV. The buildings in that town are standing fine. Today – people tried to go check in on their jobs – but things have not kicked back into “business as usual” by any means. Kristopher continues to stay with the Sasaki family on the seminary campus. It sounds like there are several of them sleeping in the sanctuary, cooking together, playing games, etc. Yesterday Kristopher was out playing “capture the flag” with some kids. He feels that his role now is to hang out and be available to talk with people, play with the kids, etc. He has also been trying to visit and make contact with his students. 1 of them he hadn’t heard from until today when she walked to the church after having been stuck behind a panel in her office in Sendai. Almost everyone he knows, works with, teaches has been or has a loved one affected by the tsunami.
A rescue organization from Tokyo has been in contact with the church in Ayashi – as a possible place for them to use their facility as a home base; sleeping, eating, etc, since Ayashi is the closest, safe town to the major disaster zone. So – they are making plans to accommodate this team of rescuers and will be available to assist them.
There is concern as there is another major quake expected to hit within the next 48 hours. Kristopher says that there are constant earthquakes and he never feels like he can relax. Sleeping at night is hard, as you can hear the earthquake coming in the quiet of the night. In the 45 minutes that we talked to him, he experienced 3 earthquakes. They’re always wondering if the quakes are going to be another big one or not…..a little unsettling, but he tries not to think too far ahead, and keeps his focus on the present circumstance.
He’s been back to his apartment several times to get his food, clothes, etc – but does not feel safe staying there or sleeping there. He is really thankful for the community of people that he can be with 24/7. They are gracious and readily available to help anyone in need. Victor & I are so thankful to hear that he is in a relatively “normal” situation. Kristopher does not feel in immediate danger, and feels that his job is to stay there. He also does not feel like he/they are in danger of radiation at this point. So – no, he will not be coming home. (not that he has the option @ present). Even if he could leave, he feels called to stay.
He hopes to start updating bits and pieces on his blog as he has service & power. So Victor & I will rest easy tonight and sleep peacefully, knowing that he is in a good place. Thanks again for your prayers.
Side Bar Story Line of Billy:
He’s finally been able to talk to his friend Billy who’s vacation plans to see Kristopher have been diverted, when the earthquake hit 35 minutes before his plane was to land. Billy is making the best of this situation and will stay in the Tokyo area to just hang out and see what he can see before he flies back to Seattle. Billy has been able to meet my brother – James living in Yokohama, and he will be connecting with another Japanese couple – Toru & Hiroko. Hiroko used to live with the Kraakmo’s back in the early 80’s when she was a student at Shoreline Community College. Esther Sunde has remained friends with her and her husband – and contacted them.
OK – I think that’s it for now.
p.s. – Kristopher just posted “un devastating pictures of earthquake” on his facebook to prove that he’s safe.
San Haven
Posting from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

This is an interesting picture from San Haven in the early days. The
cars in the background are from the late 20s or early 30s so my guess is
that is roughly the date of the picture. It appears they were having a
band concert on the grounds in front of the main hospital. The loop
driveway is in the upper right. The ‘nurses home’ is the large building
in the upper left. It has a small trail going up the hill to it. There
is no audience if it is a band concert but maybe the patients could hear
it through open windows. If it isn’t a concert, maybe it is a lecture
for nurses or something of that nature. Everyone appears to be wearing
white, but that also was very common in the 20s. Who knows? It is an
interesting picture from early days at the San. Thanks Gary!





Japan’s Earthquake
Reply from Bob Hosmer (56): Lrkhosmer@comcast.net ynnwood, WA

Hi everyone,

Our grandson, Kris, has been living and working with a church in Sendai. He was in his apartment eating lunch when the big earthquake hit. He said that it was the most terrifying 3minutes he had ever spent in his life. Though his apartment building is ok, there is a cement block wall right next door and being unsure how stable that was, he moved in with the pastor and his family where the seminary church (where he works) is located. This area is on higher ground and there is no threat of the tsunami reaching that height. We are concerned for a great number of our Japanese friends that live right on the track of the tsunami. Our son lives in Yokohama area, but is ok. However Tokyo and Sendai airports are closed. We’ve tried to reach family and others there by different means, but phone lines were down and we could not get through by cell phones. Electricity is off in Sendai and from what I’ve been able to discern, the whether is very cold. But for us it is great that both son and grandson are ok. I’m sure both will be involved in anyway they can to help relieve those who are suffering terribly. Can let you know more as we get information. Knowing my grandson, I’m sure he will be sending some video to us on the aftermath. We have been getting many calls from friends with assurance of prayer support. This is so devastating for Japan. I hope many of you will also be praying.

Bob Hosmer
Reply from Sybil Johnson: great_grandma2007@live.com Cheyenne, WY.
Glad to hear that Bernadette’s sister is safe and that the tsunami didnt hit where you are. Stay safe.
Sybil Johnson


Nora Sime Olson’s (59) Passing
Posted by Peggy Sime Espe (60): Dunseith, ND



Dunseith Nursing Home
From Mary Eurich Knutson (62): Dunseith, ND
Hi Gary
Will you add the Nursing Home Activity Department to your alumni list.
There are several people here that
will enjoy the articles. Korina Ciufinni heads up the Activities now
and she will be able to share in her group
sessions as well as certain individuals who may like a copy to read
during the day. Her e-mail is
Thanks Mary K
Mary, It is my pleasure to add Korina and the Nursing home to our distribution. Gary
Beware of Ides of March!
From Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

Gary and friends,

It isn’t yet the middle of the month to, “Beware of Ides of March!”


North Dakota woke this a.m. to forecasters on the radio saying “Be Aware” of a fast moving storm! And, news reports of the terrible earthquake in Japan and impending tsunami. I shan’t complain about this weather.


School got out just after Noon today due to weather reports. The highways are quite icy. “No place like home!”

No place like home to spend, a quiet afternoon, __until just now.


I just had to move my dogs into another room. There are a bunch of deer in my back yard looking quite bedraggled, the boys were having a good bark, and Sven (cockatiel) a frantic cackle!

The deer look to be trying to find shelter from this terrible wind and sleet storm. The boys are grounded from chasing them away.

Keep Safe everyone. Vickie

Folks, That was a horrible earth quake in Japan. Bernadette’s sister lives in the heart of Tokyo. She called an hour or so after the quake letting us know she was OK. She was not in her condo at the time, but saw her whole building swaying with the quake. Things were a mess in her Condo. She was not sure of the extent of the damage. We pretty much evaded the tsunami here in the PI. Gary


Replies to the Basketball photo provided by Jim Olson (former teacher)
From Paula Fassett (71): North Branch, MN




I think I can name the basketball players…….many of them were my classmates, so hope I didn’t make too many mistakes!!!




Top photo:

Back row: Dennis Dion, Bob Mongeon, Mark Schimetz, Ron Peltier, Lloyd Counts, Peter Danielson, Clark Parrill

Front row; Randy Flynn, Ron Houle, David Tooke, Johnny Allery, Paul Grossman and Allen Fugere




Bottom photo:

Back row: Tim Martinson, Mike Evans, David Tooke, Lloyd Counts, Fontaine, Ron Peltier, Gerald Cree???

Middle Row: Mark Schimetz, Dan McKay, Randy Flynn, Ron Houle, Bob Mongeon, Johnny Allery

Front Row: Dennis Dion, Allen Fugere, Clark Parrill, Paul Grossman, Peter Danielson




Paula FassettPfuhl

Fines, Penalties and Forfeitures Officer

Customs and Border Protection

Minneapolis, MN





From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND


Gary and Friends,

Boys BB pictures: My best shot.

Top Picture- Front row L-R Randy Flynn, Ron Houle, Dave Tooke, John
Allery, Paul Grossman, Allen Fugere

Back row- L-R Dennis Dion, Bob Mongeon, Mark
Schimetz, Ron Peltier, Lloyd Counts Jr., Peter Danielson, ______?, Jim

Bottom Picture- Front–Dennis Dion, Allen Fugere, Clark Parrill, Paul
Grossman, Peter Danielson

Middle-Mark Schimetz, Dan McKay, Randy Flynn,
Ron Houle, Bob Mongeon, John Allery

Back–Tim Martinson, Mike Evans, Dave Tooke,
Lloyd Counts Jr., Joe Fontaine, Ron Peltier, Ronnie or Gerald Cree? Jim


From Jim Olson (Teacher): Sheridan, WY
I’m missing one of names, but I think the rest of correct.


Back row:(l. to r.) = Dennis Dion, Bob Mongeon, Mark Schimetz, Ron Peltier, Lloyd Counts, Peter Danielson, _?___, Mr. Olson

Front row:(l. to r.) = Randy Flynn, Ron Houle, David Tooke, Johnny Allery, Paul Grossman, Allen Fugere




Back row: (l. to r.) = Tim Martinson, Mike Evans, David Tooke, Lloyd Counts, Joe Fontaine, Ron Peltier, Stephen Renault, Mr. Olson

Middle row:(l. to r.) = Mark Schimetz, Dan McKay, Randy Flynn, Ron Houle, Bob Mongeon, Johnny Allery

Front row:(l. to r.) = Dennis Dion, Allen Fugere, Clark Parrill, Paul Grossman, Peter Danielson

Back: Dennis Dion, Bob Mongeon, Mark Schimetz, Ron Peltier, Lloyd Counts, Peter Danielson, Clark Parrill, Mr. Olson
Front: Randy Flynn, Ron Houle, David Tooke, Johnny Allery, Paul Grossman, Allen Fugere





Back: Tim Martinson, Mike Evans, David Tooke, Lloyd Counts, Joe Fontaine, Ron Peltier, Stephen Renault, Mr.Olson
Middle: Mark Schimetz, Dan Mckay, Randy Flynn, Ron Houle, Bob Mongeon, Johnny Allery
Front Dennis Dion, Allen Fugere, Clark Parrill, Paul Grossman, Peter Danielson






Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Bottineau & Minot, ND

Douglas Brunelle, age 68 of Grand Forks formerly Dunseith, died Monday in a Grand Forks hospital. Funeral services will be held on Tuesday at 10:00 A.M. in the St. Michael’s Church of Dunseith. Burial will be in the St. Mary’s Cemetery of rural Dunseith. A wake will be held on Monday beginning at 4:00 P.M. with a prayer services at 8:00 P.M. in the church.

Saw Mill Lumber
Message/PictureFrom Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

The other day I told about my Grandpa Hans Johnson and his brother,
Axel, sawing lumber to build a barn. I found this old picture from 1926
and it shows the construction. Axel is standing on top of the wall and
Grandpa is standing on the upstairs floor. Somewhere I have a picture
of them operating the sawmill but in which album or box? Thanks Gary!




Happy Birthday Elvin Haagenson
From Murl Watkins Hill (50): Dunseith, ND
just wanted to wish my Uncle Elvin Haagenson a Happy 98th Birthday on Wed. March 9th. For folks far away, he is in Dunseith, living with

his daughter, Cheryl Haagenson. His other daughter, Janet, lives in Montana. Mickie is deceased. Their mother Dagny was my mother, Helen’s

sister. I had many great times at their farm in the Hills. I think he appreciates a “visit” and remembers a lot of the Good Old Days. He can

walk with a walker, but his eyesight is very bad, so needs some guidance. Amazing to think is 98 years old!!

From Murl Watkins Hill

Thanks Gary, I have enjoyed reading all of the messages, stories, contacts from people of long ago. We all appreciate it.

Wind engery question/comment
From Erling Landsverk (44): Portage, WI

Hi Gary and Everyone:


I write a column for our local newspaper, and I seem to have a problem as to the acceptance and feasibility of wind energy. When i was out in good old North Dakota last July for the one room school reunion, my two sons that drove me out commented on the great number of wind turbine towers, which of course were used to convert wind into electrical power. Since I get only slanted views from some of our Wisconsin officials, I am certain I can count on the great folks in North Dakota to provide me with an honest evaluation of this industry. My question is this, has wind power proved to be beneficial and cost effective, given the investment and maintenance costs. Question number two is this; has wind power in North Dakota replaced any coal burning or natural gas power plants, or is it too soon to tell.


My next question has to do with the enormous amount of oil drilling rigs that my sons commented at we headed south from Bottineau, past Minot and on towards the South Dakota line, and also in South dakota. I have heard rumors of a large deposit of oil affecting both dakotas, Wyoming, Montana and parts of Canada. If this is true, why hasn’t the rest of the country been informed, instead of being upset over the potential loss of oil if libya doesn’t come around. Unfortunately, the loss of life in the current dispute means little to the two bit dictator. that is something that does not enter into my question. If any of you North Dakotans would be so kind as to shed some light on my curiosity , I would be most grateful. As you all probably know, the wisconsin State government is going through a rocky period also I think our politicians need some of that North Dakota common sense!. Thanks for your help.


Erling landsverk.
Dunseith Jr. High BB Champs – 1967

Picture from Jim/Judy Olson (Teachers): Sheridan, WY



Rolette County Champs—1967. Fun times!!!!!
The only one I recognize out of these folks is Randy Flynn. I know many of you know all of these folks too. Gary






Dunseith news


Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND





Our Tuesday night dinner club. These big round tables are so nice for these gatherings.

Note: Normally we have more guys. Gary

Dinning at the Radisson in Cebu. Tuesday night buffet special – $10/head


Donald Egbert Pictures
Request from Verena Gillis: Verena.Gillis@sendit.nodak.edu Dunseith, ND
> Anyone, HELP!!!
I am looking for a clear picture taken at the reunion in 2010 of the class
of ’65. I printed out the picture I found on the BLOG and it’s pretty
blurry. I am working on Donald’s funeral program and would like to blow
up some pictures of him and his classmates. Please respond ASAP as the
funeral services are Sunday and Monday. See attached.








Ernest “Ernie” Victor Boucher
(September 2, 1910 – February 27, 2011)

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Ernie V. Boucher, 100, passed away Sunday, February 27, 2011 at theMissouri RiverMedicalCenter inFort Benton,MT.



Ernest Victor Boucher was born September 2, 1910 the son of Victor and Emma (Casavant) Boucher inThorne,ND. In 1927, Ernie graduated from The Notre Dame Academy High School inWillow City,ND. He later attended theUnionCommercialCollege inGrand Forks,ND, graduating in May of 1933. In March of 1934, the Dakota Sales Company, a beer distribution business inGrand Forks, was formed and Ernie was one of the first employees. After being called to serve in the US Army in 1942, Ernie was sent toEngland aboard the Queen Mary passenger ship. When the war ended, he was honorably discharged from the Army in September of 1945 and returned toGrand Forks. Ernie went back to Dakota Sales Company in October 1945, as a partner in the business. He became sole owner of Dakota Sales Company in 1956 and retired from the company in 1976.



On June 15, 1946, Ernie married Elizabeth Ditton, a widow, with three children; daughters, Madeline and Joan; son, William.Elizabethpreceded him in death on October 28, 1978.



On December 29, 1979, Ernie married Eva Casavant, a widow, with four children; daughters, Blanche and Simone; sons, Harv and Felix. Eva preceded him in death on September 24, 1984.



On September 29, 1986, Ernie married Mary Good, a widow, with three children; a daughter, Anna Mae; sons, Wyley and Kent.



Ernie was a long time member of Holy Family Catholic Church,Grand Forksand at one time serving as a trustee. For many years he was active in the Knights of Columbus and the American Legion.



Ernie is survived by his third wife, Mary, Fort Benton, MT. Children from his first marriage, a daughter, Joan (Roger) Kieffer, Grand Forks, ND and a son, William (Virginia) Ditton, AZ; 17 grand children; 42 great grandchildren; 5 great great grandchildren. Children from his second marriage, daughters, Simone (Robert) Snell, and Blanche (Garry) Klimek; a son, Felix (Marlene) Casavant and daughter-in-law, Gloria (Mrs. Harv) Casavant, all of Prince Albert, SK, Canada; 8 grand children; 4 great grandchildren. Children from his third marriage, a daughter, Anna Mae McKeever, Fort Benton, MT; sons, Wyley (Gail) Good, Fort Benton, MT and Kent (Rolene) Good, Wilmot, SD; 9 grandchildren; 16 great grandchildren.



He was preceded in death by his first wife, Elizabeth; daughter and son-in-law, Madeline (Robert) Lukkason and their daughter, Jo Marie Blackmun. His second wife, Eva and son, Harv Casavant. A son-in-law from his third marriage, Gene McKeever.



Mass of Christian Burial: 11:00 a.m. Saturday, March 5, 2011 in Holy Family Catholic Church,Grand Forks,ND.


Visitation: 5 to 6:30 p.m. Friday with a 4:30 p.m. rosary service and a 6:30 p.m. vigil service in Holy Family Catholic Church. Visitation will continue for one hour before the mass in the church on Saturday.


Burial:CalvaryCemetery,Grand Forks,ND, in the spring.


Military Honors: Members of the American Legion Post 157, Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3817 and the North Dakota National Guard, in the spring.


Memorials:Memorials may be given to Holy Family “We Care”,

1018 18th Ave. S.,Grand Forks,ND

or the charity of your choice.


Posted by Sharron Gottbreth Shen (59): Everett, WA


Ernest Boucher


Dear Friends,



An era has closed among the descendants of Victor Boucher and Emma Casavant. Our Uncle Ernest Boucher died Sunday, February 27 2011 around 5:30 am, the last survivor of 7 brothers and sisters and 2 half-brothers. Sister-in-law, Emily Birkland Boucher, wife of Herman, survives. I have seen him interact with so many and be they family, friend, neighbor or stranger he gave them his considerate attention. Each cousin was special, unique, each great niece and nephew was equally special and he would inquire about these children by name, even in his 100th year. I think one felt more whole within themselves by every contact.



“What shall we talk about?” This was the opening of the last visit shared with EJ and I September 3, 2010. I asked for his service story so I shall now share that with all of you. Uncle did not know why his call to serve did not come till June 1942; he thought they might have considered him too “old” for real soldiering. After induction in MN, he was sent to Jefferson Barracks, MO for Boot Camp. What followed was the very worst experience of his life and all because of climate. He said the heat and humidity of that spot on the Mississippi boiled out any beer/alcohol blood level he may have had! When his commanding officer asked for volunteers to go to Fort Carson, CO for Armorer training, Ernie thought anywhere had to be better than MO and readily volunteered. He was there about 2 months and from Colorado, was shipped overseas to England from NY harbor on the Queen Mary. The September crossing took 51/2 days because of evasive zigzag, the Nov 1945 crossing less than 5 days. The deep plunging of the ship was a challenge for all the “green” travelers, but even so cards were played during all free time. Ernie was soon known as the Banker, not only because of his success at cards, but because he was a soft touch for loan or credit. He retained this title throughout his service. Ernie grinned and said that all his clients paid up except one pilot KIA and one Alabama mechanic.



There was a flush of pride when Ernie spoke of the 336th Fighter Squadron. It was made up of volunteer USA pilots that had been serving in England since the beginning of WWII, and all new pilots and support troops – 197 strong. Uncle said there were no Privates, in fact any service personnel less than Corporal. All had to take their turn at KP, Latrine and Guard duty. Ernie spoke of a number of pilots by name, especially Don Gentile who was one of 5 Aces in WWII. He spoke of the occasion when Gentile crashed his P51 Mustang during a buzz demonstration for a photographer review. Uncle said that had Don not crashed [pranged??] in a nearby field, the plane might have killed a large number of observers. The furrow in the field was deep and long, the propellers were wrapped back around the cowling. They could hardly believe that Gentile could walk away unscathed except for a reprimand by his commander and was sent home to sell bonds.



Debden and Steeple Morden, England were green and pleasant, but no pub offered a descent frothy beer. He never developed a taste for English Ale. Ernie visited Scotland on one leave and could not savor their Scotch. There was a book published about the 336th and Uncle said that his copy had been lost during one of his several moves. This book has been reprinted but my attempt to purchase failed. Suddenly, or in the fullness of time, Ernest Victor Boucher left us and has now no use for any meager memoir.



I do not think I understood Ernie’s devotion to St Joseph, husband of Mary, foster father of Jesus. The feast of St Joseph’s Fatherhood was celebrated this past week and I finally realized that Ernie, foster father to the three children of Elizabeth Dietz Ditton must have prayed often for guidance in the important role he assumed back in 1946. Mame, Bill and Joan were his treasure; Elizabeth his good fortune. “How did you meet Elizabeth, Uncle?” I met her in a local bar and when they closed, I asked Elizabeth to come along to the next one!





Bakery Memeries

From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND


Gary and Friends,

Good to hear from Tim Martinson yesterday. He mentioned how the
bakery got lively when the basketball players came over after practice.
The bakery was a great place to hang out. Many places don’t want kids
around and certainly not in the back where it’s often employees only. As
long as we stayed out of Herman’s way and behaved, he was OK with it. I
remember being fascinated watching some of the prep work Herman did. He
cut cookies with his right had and held a cookie sheet on his left arm
and would just ‘flick’ his hand and the cookies would literally snap
over onto the sheet in rows. Herman did this while talking about the
game the night before! Another thing he did that impressed me every time
was when he reached into a big wooden box where his bread dough was
rising and reached around what looked like a hundred pounds of bread
dough and then in one motion, would pick it up and throw it up onto the
big table where he made it into loaves. If he didn’t do that move
exactly right he would have had the biggest mess on the planet!

Herman was also a mentor to many town kids. He would let us talk and
goof around but when we got a bit off the mark, he would say something
to correct us and do it in such a way that we understood he was right
and that we should change that idea. Many parents could have said the
same thing and we wouldn’t have paid much attention but if Herman said
it, it was right. One cute story from the bakery was when I walked in
and Tom Evans was sitting watching Marvin Kalk putting the jelly in
‘bismarcks’. Marvin was operating a machine that resembles a power
greaser in a shop. It had a handle on it that you pushed down like a
pump handle and it had a small pipe on the side where you pushed the
bismarck on and filled them with jelly, with a pump of the handle.
Marvin was a sports nut and was closely listening to a baseball game on
the radio and not paying very good attention to his operation. When I
walked in, Tom just looked up at me with this funny look on his face and
then looked back down at Marvin’s feet, without saying a word. I looked
down and in his excitement over the ballgame, he was pushing the rolls
too far onto the pipe and going through the other side and the jelly was
going on his foot. We both just sat and watched the operation until he
noticed it and then we all had a good laugh. I remember eating Herman’s
special ‘three rolls for a dime’ many many times. Often we checked out
the lunch at school and if it wasn’t what we wanted that day, we headed
for the bakery! Great place! Thanks Gary!


Dick, I remember those “3 donuts for a dime” days well too. Only thing for me though it wasn’t one or the other when it came to eating lunch at the school cafeteria or eating 3 of Herman’s donuts. For me it was always both. I went to the Bakery nearly every day in all four of my HS days for my fill of 3 glazed donuts following my noon cafeteria dinner at the school. I’d put my dime on the counter and help myself to three doughnuts. It was the honor system. Gary

Humor of the day
Posted by Marlys Hiatt (71): Dunseith, ND
That’s for sure !!!

> A lot of folks can’t understand how we came to have an oil shortage
> here in our country.
> Well, there’s a very simple answer.
> Nobody bothered to check the oil.
> We just didn’t know we were getting low.
> The reason for that is purely geographical.
> ~~~
> Our OIL is located in:
> California
> Coastal Florida
> Coastal Louisiana
> Coastal Alabama
> Coastal Mississippi
> Coastal Texas
> North Dakota
> Wyoming
> Colorado
> Kansas
> Oklahoma
> Pennsylvania
> And
> Texas
> BUT–Our dipsticks are located in DC!



Grenier Family
Reply from Fred Jones: Bremerton, WA

I retired from the Naval Supply Center in 1996. I was born and raised here and have spent most of my life, with few exceptions, here. I worked in the mines in Arizona, Wyoming (where I met my wife) and Indiana. I live by the Rolling Hills Golf Course in East Bremerton. I am not very familiar with the Dunseith history as I just started researching my wife’s family. I do know her ancestors immigrated from St. John the Baptist, De Rouville, Quebec. They were the first pioneers into the Shell Valley area then onto Thorne. I have a pioneer certificate from the Mouse River Loop Genealogy Society for Francois and Albina (Robert) Grenier who settled in the Dakota Territory now know as North Dakota. I just found a death notice on the internet for Gordon Grenier who is my wife’s Uncle. Died in Salt Lake City Utah and is buried in Rock Springs, Wyoming. I do not have a copy of the Dunseith Centennial book.

Hope to continue talking to you.

Fred Jones, Husband of Berniece Grenier Jones

Folks, doing a reverse phone number find of Fred’s phone number when he posted a message on our Website several days ago, I discovered he and Berniece live in Bremerton. It’s a small small world. They live a short distance from where we lived for 25 plus years.


Greg Larson’s (70) son, Mathew, passed away
Posted by Trish Larson Wild (73): FORT COLLINS, CO

It is with great sadness that I write to you today. My nephew Mathew Larson passed away at home on March 4, 2011. He was 25 years old. He was my brother Greg’s son. His mother is Cindy Clairmont of Bismark. The funeral will be on Tuesday, and details are in the Bismark paper from Saturday. I thought some of your readers who know Greg Larson (70) would want to know. He was a great kid and will be missed by many.


Trish Larson 73
Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot and Bottineau, ND

August Johnson
(Died March 4, 2011)

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August Johnson, age 69 of Minot, died Friday at a Rochester, MN hospital. Funeral will be held on Friday at 1:00 pm at the Nero Funeral Home – Bottineau. Visitation will be Friday from 10:00 am until service time at the funeral home.

When Wally/I lived on 22 St. in Minot, the Johnson family lived about 4 houses south of us. D.J. was in my classroom. Neola

Frank Azure
Reply from Alva Azure Gladue (75): Dunseith, ND

Good Afternoon Gary,

My name is Alva Gladue, daughter of Frank Azure. I am sending a picture
of my Dad along with this e-mail, and wish to thank each and everyone for
your thoughts and prayers.

I believe the prior e-mails are not of my Dad.

Thanks and God Bless for all your hard work!



Frank Azure



Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot and Bottineau, ND



Donald Egbert, age 65 of Dunseith, died Thursday in a Minot hospital. Funeral services will be held on Monday at 10:00 A.M. at St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Dunseith. Burial will be in the St. Louis Cemetery also in Dunseith. A wake will be held on Sunday beginning at 4:00 P.M. with a prayer service at 8:00 P.M. in the Church.


Donald Egbert
Reply from Paula Fassett (71): North Branch, MN

I, too, was sorry to hear of Don Egbert’s death. He was quite the character and will be remembered, I’m sure, by very many. I chuckled when I read my cousin Pam Fassett’s story. I never knew Don all that well, but in the years I worked and lived in and around Dunseith, I would encounter him occasionally and after he said hello, the next words out of his mouth would be “how is Pam Fassett”…..so I guess that schoolboy crush lived on!!! He’d also then ask about my sister Susan, but he was most interested in Pam!!! (sorry Susan…). Donald lived a troubled life…..I’m sure now he is at peace.

Paula Fassett

Donald Egbert
Picture from Terry Martinson (69):Anchorage, AK





Looking back 48 years, this was one of my all time favorite team photos, which included Donald Egbert. Times were always lively at the Bakery when they got out of practice at the City Hall.


Take Care, Tim


(310) Dunseith Alumni


DHS 62/63 Basket ball team

Back Row: John Awalt, Terry Martinson, John Leonard, Jim Evans, Donald Egbert, Dennis Dubois, Lyle Lamoureux, Bill Henry, Clifford Henry, Coach Eugene Hepper



Front Row: Dan Danielson, Jerry Gunville, Pete Gillis, Terry Espe & Warren Anderson





Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot and Bottineau, ND

Mona Prellwitz
(September 10, 1981 – March 3, 2011)

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Mona Prellwitz, age 29 of Sawyer, died Thursday in a Belcourt hospital.

Service will be held Friday, March 11th at 10:00 am at St. Michael’s The Archangel Church; Dunseith, ND

Meal will follow at the City Hall

Visitation will be held Thursday, March 10th beginning at 4:00 pm, Rosary at 8:00 pm at St. Michael’s The Archangel Church; Dunseith, ND.

Surrounded by her family, Mona Jessica (LaRocque) Prellwitz passed away Thursday March 3rd, 2011 after a courageous battle with cancer. Mona was born to Gayle and Darrell LaRocque September 10th, 1981 in Belcourt, North Dakota. Mona attended school in Belcourt and Dunseith, graduating from Dunseith in 2000. Following graduation, Mona attended college in Lawrence, Kansas for two years, then returned to Minot, North Dakota where she met Skyler. Mona and Skyler were married on August 16, 2008 in Willow City. To further her education, Mona began taking online courses via UND working to obtain her realtors license, which she received in February 2009. Mona worked for various businesses in Minot, including Schatz Crossroads EconoStop, Signal Realty and Bens Tavern. Most currently Mona was enrolled in The Hair Academy.

Mona took her diagnosis with Lymphoma in April 2009 in stride. She faced each step of every treatment with courage, strength and optimism. When the fight was tough, Mona was tougher. When the fight was hard, Mona fought harder. She truly lived by her mantra “Never Give Up”.

Ever the adventurer, Mona was up for anything that came her way, and took on each new experience with gusto. She was fearless to try new things and was adept at talking others into joining her on her quests for excitement. But she was also very content to be at home just hanging out with Zane and Skyler. Some of her best times were spent just hanging out at home and watching Zane play.

Those who shared Mona’s life were her husband Skyler, son Zane, parents, Darrell and Gayle, her sister Kyra and niece Xylia.

Others cherishing Mona were her extended family, Ron and Betty Prellwitz, her brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, cousins and all of her dear friends.

She was preceded in eternal life by her grandmother Sylvia Baker, grandfather Alex J LaRocque, aunt Debra Jean Baker, uncle Pat LaRocque, aunt Mona LaRocque, cousin Brian LaRocque, great aunt June Bernard

All rights reserved


Fern Cote Berube Lagasse Passed away
Posted by Angela Berube Malget: New Hope, MN.
Fernande Cote Berube Lagasse
Berube Lagasse, Fernande Cote Age 94, died peacefully March 5, 2011, at North Memorial Medical Center Hospice Unit in Robbinsdale, MN. She is survived by her children, Rachael and husband John Franchuk of Bend, OR, Robert Berube and wife Jeanne of Valrico, FL, Angela and husband Greg Malget of New Hope, MN, Muzette Fiander of Melbourne, FL, and former son-in-law, Tom Fiander of Sarasota, FL; eight grandchildren and one great-granddaughter; sister-in-law, Vivian Cote; many nieces and nephews; four step-daughters, Mary Jo Eide, Yvonne Dolan, Eileen Hopkins, Phyllis Buechler, and one step-son, Michael Lagasse. She is preceded in death by her parents, Alfred and Rebecca Cote, sister Cecile, brothers Laureus, Urbain, and Robert, husbands Lawrence Berube and Zenon Lagasse, and daughter Blanche. Mass of Christian Burial Tuesday, 11 am with visitation one hour prior at the Church of St. Raphael, 7301 Bass Lake Rd., New Hope. A private family burial service will be held at St. Louis Catholic Cemetery in Dunseith, ND. Special thanks to North Memorial Medical Center Hospice Unit doctors, nurses, and staff for their wonderful care and support. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Fern’s memory to Minnesota Masonic Homes Northridge Activities Center; or North Memorial Medical Center Hospice Unit, Robbinsdale, MN. Gearty-Delmore 763-537-4511 Published in Star Tribune on March 6, 2011

Fern’s 90th Birthday celebration:

Standing: Angela, Rachael, Muzette & Robert


Sitting: Fern


Reply from Bill Hosmer (48): Tucson, AZ
Gary, As one of the older guys who reads your marvelous format of Dunseith folks I have to say that when I read of the marvelous folks who may not have been advantaged in certain ways that those who were with them and lived with them and were classmates of them and who were friends of them and telling us about their wonderful personalities, I have to say I am again impressed with those who lived in that place with the people who were neighbors, and classmates. This week showed me a value system of loyalty which reflects all the loyalty, friendship and supportive spirit that made Dunseith people special and inspirational. I am so glad to be part of this population of people of value and respect for one another whoever they were and are . Thanks Gary. Bill Hosmer

Donald Egbert memories

From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

First of all, my condolences to all the families who have lost
someone in the last few days. I would like to mention a few things about
my old friend Don Egbert. We had a lot of good times growing up next
door to each other. The first time I remember seeing Don was in 1954
when my folks bought the Lilleby house behind the lumberyard. Don came
over and talked to me even though I was only 4 and he was 8 at that
time. From that day to this we had a certain friendship that has always
existed. Even though he had a hard time in later life, whenever I saw
Don he tried to straighten up and be decent to me. He had a good memory
and had ‘mentally recorded’ many things that he could recall at a
moment’s notice and I might add, correctly. One day I visited with him
last spring and encouraged him to come to the reunion because lots of
his old friends would be there and would like to see him. I do believe
his classmates meant a lot to him and by the way they included him when
he did show up, he meant a lot to them. It was by far the best time he
had had for a long while. He showed me the class of ’65 composite
picture and knew where almost everyone on it was and what they did so I
know they meant a lot to him. Don’s passing will leave a lot of his
friends with an empty spot in their lives—— me included. Thanks Gary!


Donald Egbert Story
From Pam Fassett Faust (65): Lilburn, GA
Donald Egbert story – When we were in grade school, probably 4th and/or 5th grade, Donald would continually harass me. He sat behind me in school, stuck my ponytail through the “inkwell hole” in his desk, and pulled my hair. Once he came to our house while Mom wasn’t home, and when I opened the screen door he threw in a handfull of dirt. I was outraged, but Mom said it was just because he liked me. I couldn’t understand that – who throws dirt at a girl he likes? Mom said that was just what boys did to get attention. I guess it got my attention all right!



Wardy Anthony Memories

From Gary Metcalfe (57): Forsyth, MO


Hello to all readers of the blog!!

There were a few unique people and happenings around Dunseith in the earlier days. I would hope someone would expound on the fact that Dunseith was as unique as it was diverse. I think Vance Bailey would have, but we lost him so I will try to let readers of the blog know of one blessing to the community of Rabbit City Lake. Just as Donald Egbert was really Donnerd, Ward Anthony was really Wardy Allen Anthony. Wardy was around when the chore of making a living for a large family such as the Metcalfe’s, fell on the shoulders of the older boys. Hauling wood to town during the week and hay for a large herd of cattle from up around Carpenter Lake on Sundays. Wardy was a couple years older than my dad, I could tell you a lot of stories about Wardy and his abilities as an axe sharpener, they did not have chain saws in those days. His music abilities, I only know about one song that he wrote. He sang it to Grandpa Evans…”Hey Mr. Evans can I have your daughter to carry my wood and carry my water?” He was referring to my mother. As a veterinarian, Wardy could castrate a full grown horse tied to a tree and standing. I never knew another man in the area to do that. Yes, I saw him do that on the old Abrahamson place AKA Jasper place. I surely agree with Vickie’s accounts of Wardy…


Wardy idolized my dad, and I think Archie and also Bing and Ole Evans, they lived on the south side of the lake. Old age gives one time to sit back and reflect back to realize they idolized him too and made those cold days a great big party of dancing, singing and boxing. Grandpa Metcalfe was a great trainer. About the time the government bought the land and the people left for various reasons, I think Wardy felt a big void. I am not sure he was always treated with dignity fit for an extra special human being after that. Even his Uncle Louis Bergan left .

Gary Metcalfe
Simeon Grenier Family relatives
Reply posted on our Website

From: Fred Jones
Phone: 360-307-0065
E-mail: bugler103@comcast.net
(Reply from Joe Johnson (77): Lindstrom, MN) I found this message on your Alumni site. We have been looking for descendants of this family for years. My wifes grandfather is the brother of Simeon Grenier whom you are talking about. My wife was Berniece Grenier, her father – Adrian Grenier, her grandfather – Henry Grenier brother to Simeon. We would like to communicate with anyone who has information on this family.

Thank you

Fred Jones, husband to Berniece Grenier of ND.



Azure Family

Reply from Neola Kofoid Garbe: Bottineau & Minot, ND


Please thank those who provided info about the Azure family. I’m headed to Minot as soon as I get ready, so I’ll work on the Azure picture when I get back to Bottineau.




Fabian & DeeDee Azure Family Photo

Reply from Richard Langer: Dunseith, ND


Hi Gary and all readers. The photo is of the Fabian and DeeDee Azure family and are both deceased. The oldest daughter in the flowered top is Carolyn who is also deceased. Agnes (Dolly) in the white top is approx 73 years old and I believe lives in South Dakota. Peter (Butch) approx 71 years old lives in Belcourt and last of all with the Glasses is Francis (Sammy) who resides in Bismarck I believe. Richard Langer



Standing: Peter (Butch), DeeDee, Fabian & Sammy

Sitting: Agnes (Dolly) & Carolyn





Reply from Marlene Lilleby Palmquist Larson (53): Ephrata, WA
I don’t know what to say and I feel bad that we were never part of Donald’s life. He was
a 1/2 brother of my Mom (Grandma Lilleby) and I am sure very much loved by his Mother Dorothy and
our Grandfather, Grandpa Egbert. These are kind words from friends that knew him and it is sad
that his life was so tragic. He sounds like a loveable interesting person- thanks to all who showed him
friendship and kindness, I am sure there are some good Donald Egbert stories.
Thanks also to you Gary for your great Blog on happenings of Dunseith folks. It’s a treasure
that I look forward to reading daily.
Marlene Lilleby Palmquist Larsen 53′
Augie Johnson Passed Away
Message from Sybil Johnson: Cheyenne, WY.

Just got a call from my daughter. She said Augie passed away last nite in Rochester, Mn at the hospital. Evidently, he went in for surgery. I talked to him, two weeks ago, when he told me, he had pancreatic cancer; so evidently, this was the reason for him being in the hospital. When I know more, I will put it on here.

Sybil, We are so sorry to hear of Augie’s passing. Our condolences are with you and his family. We will post his obituary when available. Gary
Condolences to the Frank Azure family
From Ginger LaRocque Poitra (65): Belcourt, ND
My condolences to Frank Azure family. It is such a sad time to lose a
father (or parent).

Happy birthday Brenda Hoffman.
Ginger (LaRocque) Poitra

Email address change
From Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND
Gary, I signed up for an e-mail account today through United Telephone.
My new home e-mail address is:
I am getting acquainted with this mailbox. I chose today so i could
figure this change out.
The guy to took me through the procedure was on the tele. with me an
hour, he had no experience with Mac apple computer applications. We
finally got set up, Then he turned me loose. I hope I can adapt.

Later. Vickie Metcalfe

Vickie, I have all the confidence in the world that you will adapt just fine. Gary


Bob & Supan Brennan Family

Picture posted by Mark Schimetz (70): Rolette, ND


Hey Gary, Shelia says we can post, this lovely Picture of Robert and Supan Brennan’s Family, for those friends, who would like a copy to hold in remembrance , and prayers for this very lovely and special family. Left to Right, is Shelia, Shannon, Shelby and Sonny. Up front is Supan and Robert (BOB) Brennan.

Note: To protect against computer viruses, e-mail programs may prevent sending or receiving certain types of file attachments. Check your e-mail security settings to determine how attachments are handled.


Back L to R: Shelia, Shannon, Shelby and Sonny.


Front: Supan and Robert (BOB) Brennan


BOOboo Story

Reply from Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

“Laughter the Good Medicine”

Gary, Floyd and all,

Thanks for bringing a smile to my face in relaying your story about. BOOboo Anthony RR Dunseith. That is the Ward I remember, “a character,” with a simple gift of humor which brought a grin to those that knew him. Ward and his mother kept dad entertained with their BOOboo stories. I don’t believe Ward ever learned how to read or write but he loved looking at pictures of guns and horses.


After Annie died, Ward moved from the Anthony farmstead. Ward’s canine companion then was called, Johnny Moke. Floyd, as you knew my dad, you know Dad began losing his sight in the mid 70’s. Ward was there, calling frequently on the telephone, providing Dad with crazy, stories about Johnny Moke.

Dad would just shake his head and have to laugh. Laughter was good medicine. Ward had self confidence to laugh at himself and along with others.

In early 1981, Ward took ill and went to Rolette Hospital. Mom drove Dad to “see” him. Dad with white cane tapping, walked down the hall escorted by mom and the nurse. Dad said to the male nurse.”How is Wardy Allen today.” The nurse cleared his throat, shook his head and replied, “Not good, ever since he got here he’s been talking out of his head.” Dad said to the nurse, “Oh,that’s normal for Ward, he’s always talked out of his head”. From inside the room Ward heard and said, “Is that you Metcalfe?” Mom left Dad with Ward for a time, to have their last visit. Ward smelling like medicinal antiseptics, was cheerful and found laughter in spite of being so very sick.

Dad told mom on the way home,” That nurse never had an experience with a person like Ward”. Rather than hospital smell, I think that time, Dad would have welcomed smelling “the Anthony smell.”

Ward Alleln Anthony: B. 10/23/1913 D. 04/16/81 Age 67

Replies to the Azure Picture
From Susan Brew Roussin (59) Rolla, ND
The photo of the # 23 on it are the Fabian and DeeDee Azure family. I don’t know the gals but the guys are “Butch” Azure, legal name (I’m not sure) and brother Sam. Others can probably tell you who the women are. Thanks much. Have a wonder filled day.
From Dick Johnson (68): djcars@hughes.net Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

I’m pretty sure that’s the Fabian Azure family who live/lived a couple miles southeast of Belcourt. The fellow with the glasses is Sammy Azure who was about my age. He was a drummer in the Belcourt high school band back when we were in school;. I imagine the rest are his brothers and sisters. I hauled some tractors from Fabian’s place and they had me in for coffee—-real nice folks. Thanks Gary!


One more Ward Anthony Story
From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

OK, maybe just one more story about Ward Anthony. This adventure was in ’68. Ward had several old cars down at his place and one caught my eye more than the others. There was a 1930 Dodge 3 window coupe that hadn’t run for several years. I had asked Ward about buying it several times but he always had a feeble reason or another that he didn’t want to sell it. He might need this or that off it he said, which was unlikely at best. Then he kept asking what we were going to do with Grandpa’s old saw mill. It had been used by Grandpa and Axel to cut dimension lumber for building the barn and some granaries but hadn’t been used since the early ’30s and was in kind of bad shape. It was mostly made of wood and much of that was shot. The iron parts were good but the rest needed rebuilding. Anyway, Ward asked several times and I in return asked him what he thought he was going to do with it. Finally he told me he wanted to set it up and have some guys help him cut lumber. Maybe Alcide and some others were in his deal too? I asked Dad what the plan was for the old sawmill and he said it was pretty much done and it probably could go for scrap. The next time I ran into Ward, the first thing out of his mouth was, “How much do you want for that old sawmill?” I said, “I tell you what. You really want the sawmill and I reallywant that ’30 Dodge coupe, so how about we trade and I will even do the hauling both ways?” He grinned and said, “Oh boy, we got us a deal!” I remember the day we were going to load the mill and go get the car. It had rained and I knew the old trail to Anthony’s would be a greasy mess so John Bogus and I hooked Dad’s old red and green boat trailer behind the tractor and loaded the sawmill and headed out. It was a muddy mess all the way down to Ward’s but we made it and unloaded and then got the old car on the boat trailer (flat bed type). We were hot and tired and Ward had us in for some coffee and cookies.

Now this is the good part. Big John had never been to Anthony’s and had no idea about what it was like. We were in the house and Ward was telling about his new .22 rifle he just got. We went from the dining room into the living room so he could show us. As I was standing in the middle of the old dark living room, I noticed a picture on the south wall that appeared to have a hole through the glass and the picture. It sure looked like a bullet hole to me so I said to Ward, “It looks like someone shot a hole through this picture.” He giggled and said. “I shot that picture and a bunch more holes over there under the TV.” I looked under the TV and the linoleum was all ripped up! When he said that, John just stiffened up like he had seen a ghost. I said, “What the hell did you do that for Ward?” He let go with that crazy laugh of his and said, “Sometimes I get carried away watching those cowboy shows.” John went into survival mode. I asked Ward, “What does your mother say when you do stuff like that?” She yells down from upstairs, “Turn that damn TV down!” Then Ward turned loose his crazy laugh again. John wanted to run for it about then. I thanked Ward and we went outside and got on the tractor and headed home. We hadn’t gone very far and I asked John what he thought? He finally regained his composure and said, —actually no, I won’t repeat what Big John said. I think he might have had somewhat of a religious experience that day at Anthony’s. I’ll attach a couple pictures I took of the car on the trailer after we got home that day in the summer of ’68. Thanks Gary!




I have quite a few more postings for today that I am going to put on hold until tomorrow. I’m running out of time today.

Donald Egbert (65) passed away




I am very sad to hear of Donald’s passing. Donald was a fellow 65 class mate of mine too. I remember him well from my HS days. Donald was a very popular basket ball player and Jock in his school days too. Donald hung in there for years. I so admired his brilliance and his recall to detail of events from years pasted. Donald was a unique guy. He will be missed in the City of Dunseith and by many of us too. Donald attend our reunion in May. It was so nice seeing him. I have pasted a several pictures below.
Donald Egbert
Posting from Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND
I thought you might be interested. In reading the Minot paper this
morning ( just now) at the bakery, I noted that Donald Egbert of
Dunseith was admitted between Wed. and Thursday.
I know he is a classmate in the class of ’65 and many of that class
of ’65 held him in high regard as a good athlete and have fond
memories of him. Vickie

Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Bottineau & Minot, ND
Donald Egbert
(Died March 3, 2011)

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Don Egbert, age 65 of Dunseith, died Thursday at a Minot hospital. (Nero Funeral Home – Bottineau)

Donald Egbert’s Passing
From Verena Gillis (Pete 65): Dunseith, ND
Just thought you might want to share this info. Donald passed away
yesterday at Minot hospital. As soon as we find anything out about
arrangements I will post it on the blog. Don’t know much about other
family members but kinda heard Vincent Azure was sorta his caretaker and
since they are busy with their father’s funeral, Pete and I will get in
touch with him and get further details.
I am looking for some pictures of Donald-you might have some from the
reunion. Could you please send these to me? I will probably be doing
funeral program and would be able to use these.

Thank you,






May 2010 Dunseith Alumni Reunion


DHS Class of 65: John Bedard, Donald Egbert & Bill Grimme





 May 2010 Dunseith Alumni Reunion


Class of 65:


Standing: Donald Egbert, Ernie Gottbreht, Warren Anderson, Susan Fassett, Henry Hackman, Angela Berube, Raphael Poitra, John Bedard, Rene Casavant, Kenny Nerpel & Bill Grimme.


Sitting: Margaret Metcalfe, Patty Boguslawski, Gary Stokes, Pete Gillis, Esther Murray & Ginger LaRocque.


Those that were present but missing in picture: Cecile Berube, Helen Rivard, Gladys Roussin, Joanne Smith



Request/Reply from Blanche Wick’s Schley (42): Grand Forks, ND
Is Art Rude Sr. Still living in the Bottineau – Dunseith area? If so, do you have an address for him?


Follow up reply from Blanche
I had a Christmas note from Margaret Ann Myhre and I did not jot down her address.
Would you please send it to me along with her e-mail.
Thanks, also. for the information on Art Sr. and Jr. I am still trying to visualize how they had 1 -12 in the days when I was in the grades. For a few years they just had the one big building and then later the addition was built which housed the offices, classrooms and the gym which included a stage. I don’t know why this setup interests me so much but I just can’t seem to fit all the classes into this one building.(Yes, I know this is all in the history of Dunseith and if I bought the book I would find a lot more interesting items!)
Margaret Ann Myhre Lary is living in Peoria, AZ. Margaret is a first cousin to Carl Myhre from Rolette. Gary
Reply to Blanche
From Art Rude (71): artrude@hotmail.com Bismarck, ND
I don’t talk to Dad everyday, but quite often, the nursing home schedule doesn’t match up well with my work schedule. When I have time to call, Dad is commonly busy.
We maintain Dad’s box office at the post office so his address is box 365 Dunseith.
I’ll have to ask him this weekend, but as I recall it, Dad and Con Carpenter had been skating around Willow Lake on December 7, 1941, and when they returned to the car, on the way home they heard about Pearl Harbor. Dad loved to skate, I never picked up on that. I did enjoy Dad’s eighth grade skating parties along with everyone else, but I got to start at an early age, even though skating was never a real favorite with me.Peace and Power,

Thanks for checking out Art Rude Productions,
webpage address: www.artrude.com
and Art Rude TV at: artrudetv on Utube!
Blanche Wicks Schley’s (42) message to Vickie Metcalfe (70) with Vickies Reply:
I was reading some of the daily columns that Gary Stokes’ writes and I was remembering names from my days at Dunseith . Are you related to Clifford Metcalfe?
He was in grade school with me. We are from the ‘thirties era.
Even though I have not visited in Dunseith for many years, I do recognize names from that region.
How do you like your super Walmart store? Have you lived in Bottineau for many years./ I had an uncle who lived on the east edge of town — Fred Bittner.. He had a well digging business. And in fact my Mom and Dad (Lillian and Albert Wicks) met in Bottineau. My Dad’s family had a livery stable in there in the early 1900’s.
It is such a small world when one things about places and names.
It is always nice to chat on the computer…what would we do without it!!! I don’t twitter or have my cell phone attached to my ear, so this is the next best thing.
Vickie’s reply:
Hello Blanche,
Yes, My dad was Clifford, the 7th son of Rose and William Metcalfe.
He first attended school at HillSide ( Bergan ) School. His father died in 1935 and he moved to Dunseith with is mother, and sisters, Leona and Jean. He attended and completed school in Dunseith through the 8th grade. Also in his class was Alan Campbell and Kenny Tooke.
Dad lived and worked for the Seim family for about 4 years before he went to Seattle. In WW II he joined the navy and was in the Pacific fleet. He learned his trade in plastering as did his brother Emil through the GI bill in Seattle.
Dad and mom were savers. They saved to buy the farm next to the Seim’s, where they lived and worked and raised their family. Their farm was south of the Carpenter/School Section Lake where mom grew up and north of Rabbit City Lake community where dad lived until 1935.
Dad died the end of March,1985. Mom died Dec . 2007. Dad and Mom rest at Little Prairie, (just a bit west of the Wicks brothers.)
I think most everyone enjoys having Wal Mart in Bottineau. It is in someways like an “old time” store of days gone by. A bit of every thing from “dry goods to groceries.

Yes, I recall Dad speaking of the Wicks brothers who lived further north in the Willow Lake Township. I think he or might have worked for them for a brief time or his brothers. Two of his brothers, Jim and Archie worked out and attended Lockhart scnool which was north of Little Prairie for a time. And all were familiar with the Wicks brothers. Dad spoke of two bachelors that lived together.
My mom’s grandmother was Sylvia (Wicks) Lamb who homesteaded east of highway of #3 on Highway #43. She was born in Iowa and came by covered wagon with her parents Sam and Elizabeth (Welch) WIcks. I know my grandparents were not related to the Wicks brothers , although they lived a few miles apart.
I just looked in The Bottineau Centennial book but didn’t find the Bitners or Wicks. Family history gets to be interesting, Where was the livery located? I have a couple school teacher friends with roots in Bottineau interested in local history. I will be keep in mind those names..
Thanks for the e-mail. I don’t use the telephone or text either. Vickie
Helen Rivard Christenson’s (65) Mother-in-law, Alida Christenson, Passed away
Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Bottineau & Minot, ND
Alida Christenson
(Died March 2, 2011)

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Alida Christenson

Alida Christenson, age 83 of Bottineau, died Wednesday at a Bottineau hospital. Funeral will be held on Monday at 10:00 am at the Lake Metigoshe Christian Center. Visitation will be Sunday from 1:00 pm until 9:00 pm at the Nero Funeral Home in Bottineau.

Alida Dorothy Christenson, a daughter of Irene (Rude) and Hjalmer Pederson, was Born on May 9, 1927 at home in Homen Township near Bottineau. She attended grade school at Loon Lake County School and later Bottineau High School. On November 26, 1944 she married Marvin Christenson at the Lake Metigoshe Parsonage. They lived and farmed in the Turtle Mountains until their retirement in 1988, when they moved into Bottineau. Marvin passed away on October 13, 2003. Since then, she has been a resident of the Bottineau Good Samaritan Center.

Alida was a member of the Nordland Lutheran Church and later the Metigoshe Lutheran Church in Bottineau. Alida was a member of the Metigoshe Lutheran WELCA, the Bottineau Senior Citizens and volunteered with the St. Andrew’s Health Center Auxiliary.

Alida enjoyed the outdoors and working along side Marvin in all phases of farming. She enjoyed gardening and working in her raspberry and strawberry patches. She especially loved her flower garden and her house plants. She often said she missed her true calling in life of being a florist. She also enjoyed quilting, sewing, crocheting and making Christmas ornaments from plastic canvas.

She is survived by hr son, Duane (Helen) Christenson of Bottineau; son-in-law, Ronald (Barb) Peterson of Jacksonville, FL; grandchildren, Brent (Jennifer) Christenson of Bottineau, Shadell (Douglas) Faircloth of Powell, OH, Doug (Laurie) Peterson of Highlands Ranch, CO, Lisa (David) Martinelli and Brian (Leah) Peterson all of Jacksonville, FL; great-grandchildren, Katherine and Christopher Faircloth, Noelle and Trigg Peterson, Brook, Lauren and Gianna Martenelli and Brittany and Reina Paulus; brother, Lloyd Peterson of Bottineau; sisters-in-law, Sharon Langehaug of Grand Forks and Alma Christenson of Minot; brothers-in-law, Glenn Hilleg of Detroit Lakes, MN and Gordon (Barbara) Christenson of Minot and numerous nieces and nephews.

In addition to her parents and husband she was preceded in death by her daughter, Marlys Peterson.

Arrangements are with Nero Funeral Home in Bottineau. Friends may sign the online register book at www.nerofuneralhome.net .


Our condolences are with Alida’s family with her passing. Marvin and Alida were very close friends of my folks. They were great folks. Gary



Kotschevar Family (Deer Heart Lodge)
Reply from Fay Priest: Twisp, WA

Thanks for your response. Who has the interest in the Kotschevar family? I have never visited a site like yours before. Not sure what I am doing. I have less info on Lucille Tilton than Russell Kotchevar. I have photos of some of his art and Pend O’reille Pete, some photos of his war memorabilia and family photos. As I said, he was married to my mother and her sister-in-law Lucille Kotschevar Tilton was married to Mom’s brother Loren Tilton. They all lived in Sandpoint Idaho when they passed away. Fay
BOOboo Anthony
Reply from Floyd Dion (45): Dunseith, ND


This is for Vickie, as you konw Ward was gun happy, he subscribed to The Shotgun News, but he didn’t put the paper in his name, he put it inBOOboo’s name, BOOboo Anthony R.R. Dunseith, ND

I guess he thought I didn’t beleive him, so he pulled it out of his back pocket and showed me it was BOOboo’s name on it. He really was a character.






Reply from Brenda Hoffman (68): Greenville, SC


Thanks Gary. I think of all of us aging like a fine wine. Don’t feel 61, heck sometimes I feel like 20 (only my hairdresser knows for sure!)
Pictures & Obituary
Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND

Ervin J Beston
(March 4, 1964 – February 26, 2011)

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Funeral services for Ervin J. Beston, age 46 of Dunseith, were held on Thursday at 1:00 P.M. at the Church of God in Dunseith. Burial was at the St. Sylvan’s Cemetery, with the ashes of his grandson Jaden Cole (June 28, 2005) with him. Officiating at the service was the Reverend Bean and Reverend David Hayes. Special music was provided by Sadie Frederick, Monique Belgarde and the Drum Group Anishinabe. Casket bearers were Clarence Beston, Jason Norquay, Jerod Peltier, Clay Beston Ryan LaFountian and Randall Davis. Honorary bearers were all of his family and friends.

Ervin J. Beston, a son of Robert and Irene (St. Claire) Beston, was born on March 4, 1964 at Belcourt. He was reared in the Dunseith area and attended the Dunseith Day School. Ervin completed his education at the University of Baraboo Saulk County, Wisconsin where he received his GED. Later received certificates in Carpentry and Botany. After his education he returned to the Dunseith area and worked various jobs doing carpentry and roofing. He married Shelley Greatwalker on December 10, 2002. they continue to make Dunseith their home.

He enjoyed Pinochle, dominoes, cards, cribbage, basketball, attending pow-wows, listening to KEYA Radio, spending time with Shelley and sitting around with the boys laughing and joking.

Ervin passed away on Saturday, February, 26, 2011 at a Minot hospital.

He is survived by his wife Shelley at home; children, Heather of Miles City, MT Ervin Jr. of Billings, MT Whitney of Grand Forks, Shelby, Dakota and Summer all of Belcourt, Sylvan, Clint Adrienne, Shantelle, Kaytlyn and Shelleyah all of Dunseith; 7 grandchildren; god father Louis Beston; brothers, Marlin (Rachel) Earl, Dale, Kevin, Terrance (Clara) and Dale; his sisters, Marla, Faye (Jeff) Maurice, Tammy (Carson) and Edie (Ronnie); and also loved Bobbie Jo, Mckenzie, Kevin and Braylee; godchildren, Clifton St. Claire, Dakota Gunville, Dallas Counts, Tammy Faine, Derek Faine, Shaylee Beston and Shelleyah Greatwalker.

Ervin is preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Sylvan, Robert Jr., Arnold and Gordon Beston; a sister, Pamela Beston and a grandson Jaden.

Do any of you recognize this family?
Bottineau HS class of 32, Fifty year reunion
Folks, I know there are many familiar faces to a lot of you in this photo.


Happy Birthday Brenda Hoffman (68):
Today, March 3rd is your birthday. Man, has a whole year gone by already? These years are clicking by like weeks. Anyway, “Happy Birthday Brenda” and we wish you many more to come.
Condolence to the Frank (Lum) Azure family
From Alan Poitra (76): Bloomington, MN
Hi Gary, I want to extend my condolences to the ‘Lum’ Azure Family. You are all in my thoughts and prayers.

Mr. Poitra


Condolence to the Frank (Lum) Azure family

From Sharon Longie Dana (73): MIssoula MT

My condolences to the Frank Azure Family, went to school with their children and knew a lot of them before I left Dunseith. My cousin Gladys is married to Sylvester and of course Leslie was in my class and Lester the class before us.


Sharon Longie Dana (73)
Posted on our Website
Message from Brandi Stirker

From: Brandi Striker

I came across my husbands name and a picture of him on your site and the people on the blog were wondering if anyone knew more about him. I think these folks may be relatives as they mentioned a family reunion I know my husbands mother and sister went too. I could not find a place to add a comment to let them know who I was or that I knew who the little boy in the picture was. Anyway, do you think you can help me?
Brandi Striker

Brandi, Is your husband Dustin Striker? I’m not quite sure what picture you are referring too. I know that Dick Johnson questioned whether or not the little boy on the horse with John Awalt Sr. was Dustin. It was later determined that this little boy was a grandson of the Awalt’s.
Brandi, Thank you so much for this posting. We love hearing from everyone. Please share any info, pictures, stories, etc that you have. In what part of the country are you living now?
PS – Posting comments on our Website as you have done works just fine. They all come to me and I distribute/post accordingly.

Baking Story – Dick’s daughter Jennifer

Memories from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

I have to tell a cute one on my daughter. Vickie’s story of the salty cake brought it to mind. First, my daughter Jennifer is as close to a perfectionist as anyone I know. She was always good in school and didn’t like to make any mistakes in anything she did. She is now a toxicologist and DNA profiler for the State Crime Lab in Bismarck. This job fits her well. Anyway, when she was about 10, she and I were home alone one night and she came into the kitchen where I was reading the paper at the table. She asked if she could bake a cake? It kind of took me by surprise and I asked her if she knew how? She said, “I watched Mom and besides, it tells you how right on the box.” What the heck is a cake mix worth. I told her to go ahead then. She got out a cake mix and the mixer and a bowl etc. I was looking up now and then to make sure what she was doing at the counter. She put the mix in the bowl and then cracked an egg and put it in the bowl. As I was watching, she let the last of the raw egg drip and then dropped the egg shell in the bowl. Now I’m curious. She cracked the next one and did the same thing. I asked her why she put the shells in the bowl. She rolled her eyes and said, “Dad—it says right here, two WHOLE eggs.” She did what it said. Exactly what it said! I told the guys at coffee the next day and Gordy Neameyer laughed his head off. He never let her live that down either! Thanks Gary!


Memories from Wes Schnieder
Posted by Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

Gary and Friends,

“Hot Water”

It was -1 F at 4:00 at the 1st Natl Bank on my way home today. Arriving at my house, the boys who currently seem to have cabin fever got the idea we should go across the street to see Wes and Ovidia, where they are perfectly at home. I think Buie really misses seeing them. Or he knows Ovidia is his main supplier of “treats” He now knows where she keeps em and today he was in luck because Wes spoiled the dogs by treating them coming and going.


While there, enjoying the comfort of Wes’ gentle strokes and patting, Buie sat right next to Wes. He always lays claim to Wes. Thor then curls up at my feet and we all chatted about the current snow removal on our end of town, and the brown Bottineau water .


This led Wes to recalling. The crusty, heavy snow banks reminded Wes of the “olden days” when his job in the winter was to fill the reservoir on the kitchen stove. He enjoyed going to a coulee to get crusty slabs of snow. He would haul it in and fill the reservoir where it would melt and his mother would have hot water for dishes or for others to wash up.


One day, he hauled the snow in and distributed it in the stove. When he came with more, he discovered the snow was melting. Hot Water? Brown stuff? Then, looking closer he saw something floating. Pellets. Jack Rabbit Pellets. He had to scoop and dip out the melting snow, melting pellets and water then do some major cleaning. He decided it wasn’t a job he wanted to do again.


This past Sunday, Ovidia mentioned that they read the Dunseith blog articles I print and bring over to them, which she keeps in a folder.

Thanks Gary. Vickie M.
Skating Parties
Memories from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

In reply to Paula’s question about who remembers the skating parties that Art Rude, Sr. organized, I certainly do. Those were some fun events. He did this for kids for several years and I tried to go every time. I remember how some of the ‘macho’ kids thought you were a sissy if you wore figure skates and not a big pair of clunky hockey skates. The best male skaters at those skating parties were wearing figure skates. I still remember the two best older guys who I tried to take my cue from. Laurel Hiatt and Russell Fauske could turn easily at very high speed by putting one foot over the other on a corner. Even though I had skated for years, I hadn’t tried that until I saw them do it at the rink in Bottineau. They also could stop on a dime by reversing direction and digging their toes into the ice. Another trick I learned from them. Those were good clean fun events, thanks to ‘Mr. Rude.’

Can anyone else remember what Mr. Rude was doing on Dec. 7, 1941? He told us in 8th grade history class and I never forgot. He said he was skating on Willow Creek near his farm and when he came home he heard that the Japanese had attacked Pearl Harhor.

OK–Joke. Did you hear about the guy who was half Japanese and half Norwegian? On December 7, 1941 he went out and attacked Pearl Olson. Thanks Gary!


Dick, now that you mention it, I remember the talk of Russell Fauske being a champion skater. I don’t ever remember skating with either Russell or Laurel though or going to any of the skating parties in Bottineau. Once we got home from school and milked the cows and did the chores, that pretty much ended our extra curricular school activities. Gary



Anthony family Story – Part Nine

From Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

Ward and Annie”

Every winter Sunday afternoon of my childhood and youth, after Jim Anthony died, our Dad continued his vigil south to see Ward and Annie . In the later years, he went on the yellow bomb-a-dere ski-doo.

He always came home in good humor, telling us of his adventures on the “magical trail” and visits with Ward and Annie. “He had had some of Annie’s special Vinegar Pie ” or, “Her, Mrs. Templeman cake was delicious.” (I always wondered about Vinegar Pie.)

In the early years, Dad had to get around her little house dog, BOOboo snapping and barking. BOOboo was pretty special, Annie’s darling dog, he always enjoyed the last bites of cake keeping the plates. Clean?? Dad started to wonder about the dog hair in the vinegar pie, or the aging Boo-boo, being increasingly growly._ Then wondered? “Was BOOboo really the one who washed aging Annie’s dishes?” They never did have running water or central heat. Just the very basics, which they probably had from Annie’s beginning married life in the little house in the woods somewhere East of Rabbit City Lake..


One Sunday, Annie said to Dad, she made his favorite, vinegar pie.She happily gave him a dish. Dad told mom, “He found dog hairs so he gagged the remaining piece down, managed to quell his distaste., and very politely started to say, “No more for me, it was delicious ” just as as he said it, she, slid another piece on his plate.” He said ,”Thank you and ate it.”

That Christmas, our family got an electric popcorn popper, and dad decided to began to treat Annie and Ward to lunch. He would take the popper, popcorn and butter and off on the ski-doo, he’d go to the Anthony’s. Sometime’s he’d take eggs, or a package of some thing mom made, or fish he’d caught and “happened to have too many”.

Upon arriving home, one Sunday evening, my exasperated mom said, “Why do you like to spend your Sundays’ with those people?” He said simply, “They have so little but are always happy. And,I? I am always so happy to come home where I have so much.” After that, mom was content that he needed to see the Anthony’s because they were so full cheerfully happy when he went there, and he needed to be sure they were ok.

Whenever springtime broke, and dad couldn’t sleigh or skidoo down to the Anthony farm, usually, sooner than later, Ward would appear. My mother would put on the coffee while Ward and dad visited. The summer of ’61 our family finally got indoor plumbing. Then my parents would tell Ward he was welcome to bathe any time. But he said he would continue bathing in the lake. If he didn’t bath, dad would say, “Ward Go shake yourself. and Ward would giggle.”

After a long winter of being “home bound”, Ward’s hair would be quite long. And smell! Coming home from school through the 60’s, we kids always knew the “Anthony smell”, faintly odorous, accompanied by the strong smell of hi-lex and the open windows. Spring time had really come to the Anthony’s! And, we knew on Easter Sunday they’d be our annual dinner guests..

Ward and Annie would arrive in his automobile, but only when the Turtle Mountain Clay dried up and roads were passable. Usually stopping at our farm. As Annie grew older she gave up gardening and relied on the generosity of neighbors. To give the neighbor a clue, She’d say, “I heard, you’ve got a beautiful garden this year”. The neighbor would dutifully fill up a bag of garden vegetables.

There were a few summer nights when dad and mom would wake up in the middle of the night, startled to find Ward in their bedroom. YES, The good old days, when no one locked their doors, or pulled keys from vehicles. Ward was forever going too far over the edge of the road, usually after they’d stopped for a few “swigs somewhere in the neighborhood’.

I think, they finally chose to go to the Smiths, when after one night of too many swigs’ Ward ran their car down a deep, deep incline into the brush N. of our house. Dad who was getting up at 5:00 and on the road working out on construction, pulled them out using the farm hand. Well, finally! Dad who usually was so very tolerant of them, after a few times of pulling them out in one summer, finally had it! He said, “Ward, I got to get up in an hour and go to work.” Then gave them a ride with the loader end of the farmhand, pulling them out of the ravine, which sobered them up considerably when they both ended up in the back seat! After that incident, they never woke dad to pull them out again.

Oh, they got stuck many more times but Ward was respectful of Dad needing his sleep. He, just walked further east down the road to the Smiths or back west to Art and Eva’s, or Carroll’s. and woke someone else up.


Metcalfe Family Tales, Vickie Metcalfe , Winter 2011


Posted by Neoloa Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND

Frank (Lum) Azure

(August 12, 1925 – February 27, 2011)

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Frank Azure, age 85 of Dunseith, died Sunday in a Rolette nursing home. Funeral services will be held on Friday at 10:00 A.M. in the St. Anthony’s Church of rural Dunseith. Burial will be in the spring in the church cemetery. A wake will be held on Thursday beginning at 4:00 P.M. with a prayer service at 8:00 P.M. in the church.

Frank (Lum) Azure, a son of George and Clarice (LaFontaine) Azure, was born on August 12, 1925 at Duck Mountain, Manitoba. In 1954 he was married to Agnes Azure at Dunseith. She died on August 19, 1996.

He is survived by daughters, Donna (Clayton) Belgarde, Alva (Larry) Gladue, Beverly LaVallie, and Rose Davis all of Dunseith; sons, Leslie (Sandra) Azure, Lester (Elaine) Azure, Vincent (Janice) Azure, Duane (Karen) Azure and George (Gladys) Azure all of Dunseith, Dennis (Darlene) Azure and Kenneth (Deloris) Azure both of Seattle, WA; 37 grandchildren; 101 great-grandchildren; 76 great-great-grandchildren; a brother, Ralph Brazeau of Melville, Saskatchewan; sisters Rose Bishop of Lethbridge, Alberta and Dorothy Johnson of Calgary, Alberta, and many nieces and nephews.

Condolences to the Frank (Lum) Azure Family
From Paula Fassett (71): North Branch, MN

I’m sorry to hear of the death of Frank (Lum) Azure. The Azure family is a wonderful bunch of people – my thoughts and prayers go out to you all.

Paula Fassett

Deer Heart Lodge (Kotschevar Family)
Posted on our Website
From the Fay Priest

From: Fay Priest
Phone: E-mail: Message:
My mother, Dorothy Shipton was married to Russell Kotschevar (by common-law). Her sister-in-law Lucille passed away some time ago. Her name was Lucille Kotschevar Tilton, deceased husband Loren Tilton. I have a lot of history and photos. Fay

Thank you so much for this reply Fay. Yes, we would Love any history and photo’s you would like to share Gary

Hilarious Ward Anthony Story – a must read – Brought tears to my eyes with laughter
From Dicky Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

This is probably my last story about Ward Anthony. I remember one time I was at the Drive In in Dunseith on a Sunday afternoon and was waiting in line with others to make an order. Two couples were out having a good time together and probably doing a bit of partying that day. They pulled up in front of the Drive In in a station wagon and the driver got out and went to the back and opened the tail gate. I watched as Ward Anthony climbed out. I nearly went into shock! They got him a bit drunk and then talked him into putting on a short pink prom dress with a can-can and he was wearing a long blond wig. He had lipstick on and a pair of big sunglasses. He was still wearing his lace up work boots and tall black socks. He also hadn’t shaved for several days so he was a sight. I hoped he wouldn’t see me but he did and came straight over to me and said in his loud voice, “I bet you didn’t recognize me, did you Dicky?” I looked around and the people in line weren’t looking at Ward —they were all staring at me! I looked over at the two couples that brought him up town and they were about dying laughing at me! For obvious reasons I won’t mention who the couples were, but I have to admit I suppose it was pretty funny. Thanks Gary!



Anthony family Story – Part eight

From Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

Gary and friends, Thank you Patti for correcting me on Wards song, “BIMBO”. And, sending me the words! I thought of the name was B-i-n-g-o-it The Jim Metcalfe cousins were always teaching, sharing neat stuff!

Anthony Family Story # 8

“Farm Cookin for Ward & Annie”

My sisters and I learned how to cook from “scratch”. Nothing came from a box. I thought, “cakes from a box were made by other people”. Our mother allowed us to experiment in the kitchen, from whatever was in the cellar or cupboards. We tried everything, from main dishes to pies, cookies and candies. Our maternal aunt, Aunt Priscilla introduced us to the first boxed food we ate, Chef Boy-R-Dee. Pizza. We made and ate that as a special meal sometimes before Gun Smoke on Saturday nights.


My parents taught me how to savor “good food” and the love of sharing a meal with special people. Like many neighbors, the unspoken rule was, If any one came at any meal time, another setting was placed at the table and they were invited to share a meal with the family.

Nancy was the first to try her hand at cooking. Prior to that, we were mostly meat, potatoes, and a vegetable with a dessert family. Nancy introduced our family to spaghetti and tossed salads and was free to try all sorts of cooking. She even baked the family bread one summer, 14 loaves every Monday for her home ec project, taught by ?Mrs. Suko. My parents were quite content to let her experiment. And she became an excellent baker.


Then, I came along. I the out door kid, I was not a natural baker. The spring of 1962, I, proudly baked my first cake, all by myself! After I dried the dinner dishes, I went the garden and pulled the rhubarb. Then washed and cut up it up, setting it aside. Creamed the home churned butter with the sugar, added farm eggs. Carefully, mixed in the dry ingredients;the flour, salt, baking powder. Then, folded that ruby red rhubarb in. I had pre-heated the combination electric-wood stove as advised, greased and floured my pan, gently scraped the bowl, put it in the oven and baked it for the allotted time.

So perfect! I stuck to the No licken rule! I know I did not taste my fingers, spoon or a bowl. I was going to make this cake to perfection. I was careful not to peek so it did not fall. Watching the clock I timed it right. Oh, it was a beauty to behold! And. it sat cooling where I could look at it now and then, while I helped mom with the rest of the meal.

In came the men, Ward and Dad from fencing. We sat down and ate supper. And, I proudly said, “I made Rhubarb Cake for dessert. Ward said, “That’s my favorite!” I had cut the pieces and put on serving plates. Dad took one bite, pushed the plate aside, then said, ahem” It’s good but, I don’t believe I can eat any more. I ate too much for supper.”

My sisters took bites and said “YUCK”. My spirits sagged. Mom tasted and said, “How much salt did you put in?” I replied, “I followed the recipe and put in what was on the card, 2 teaspoons.” Mom said, “The recipe say’s 1/2 teaspoon”. Of course, the sister began to laugh. My face fell. The only person with a straight face and silent was Ward. He didn’t’ say a word but continued to eat that cake. When he finished that piece, he said, ” This is the best rhubarb cake! Could I have more?” I proudly served him another. But later, even the dogs, cats, chickens and pigs refused to eat the rest of the cake.

I learned 2 things from this lesson of baking . I was no longer afraid of Ward. He had saved my dignity, was so very kind, seeing my hurt my feelings. And the secret to a good cake: Always test taste the scraper, spoon and bowl, as much as possible! If it’s not of good flavour, throw it out! Of course, unlike my sisters I never did excel in Home Ec.


I did not give up baking or honing my skills. Years later, I baked Mrs. Anthony a perfect, homemade angel food from scratch, for her January birthday . Dad delivered the cake on the Ski-doo. Returning, Dad brought me home a gift from Annie, a pink depression glass cake plate!

No I’m not a collector of antiques.

I am a collector of stories about people I am fond of, and every now and again, I happen to receive a surprise, a treasure, that belonged to a person whose story I never wish to forget. I look into my treasure cupboard and see that plate and I remember with fondness, Annie Anthony.


Metcalfe Family Tales, Vickie Winter 2011


Skating Party Memories
From Paula Fassett (71): North Branch, MN


Dick’s skating story made me think of when Art Rude, Sr. would organize the 8th grade skating party. Does anyone remember those parties? We’d go by school bus to the rink in Bottineau. I was quite a bit younger than 8th grade when I got to go to my first one because my mother volunteered to be a chaperone….so I’m guessing it was the year that Susan was in 8th grade. I remember skating with one of the high school girls and I thought I was pretty cool!! I’m not sure how many years these went on, but I do remember having one when I was in 8th grade…..and there WAS a game of crack-the-whip. I was on the very end and managed to make it through the first couple turns – before it really got up momentum – then I chickened out and dropped off before I ended up smashed to the wall!!

My sisters & I started skating when we were pretty young down in what was then the city park on the “crick”…(we never said “creek”). The best was when the ‘channel’ would be full when it froze – then more water would come down and flood the entire park. Then it would freeze over and become a HUGE skating rink. We’d skate around the picnic tables and the brick fireplace. Occasionally, my Dad would skate with us. He played hockey once upon a time and was a pretty good skater. Laurie Evans (Hill) was pretty little then and just learning to skate. She would hold on to my Dad’s long coat and he would skate around the park with Laurie holding on. Every once in awhile he’d turn a little too sharp and away she’d go….kind like the end person playing crack the whip….. He’d help her up and away they’d go again. I’m sure Dad’s ankles wore out long before Laurie’s did!!!

Paula Fassett

Reply from Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

Gary and Friends,

Dick, Glad to hear I wasn’t the only kid paralyzed by fear put into the mind by a teaser.


Thank-you Floyd for the affirming tale of Dad and his teasing. And, telling another piece of local history. I love oral history and don’t want stories or fond memories lost. I knew Louis Bergan was in Seattle, as I’ve seen photos. I didn’t know about Mr. Anthony. Mr. Bergan was Jim Anthony’s brother-in-law and Dads guardian after Grandpa died.


Dad always told “us kids” that the ” south place” was haunted. Now, I know why he said that, because there were at least 3 old abandoned wells and he didn’t want us wandering around and falling in. So he told scarey stories. Worked on me!


Many times when looking for strayed cows I’d be riding down south i.e.south of Oakes/Seim school. (On our farm you didn’t go home until all milch cows were found and accounted for) ND in June, it never gets dark until after 10:00 at night. Of course I did my best to never give up. Dad always told me “You got to be smarter than the animal”. Since I found I couldn’t be smarter than every horse I rode, darn it, I vowed I’d be smarter than a cow!


Me and my painted pony Scout, who I rode bareback, would look and look through that brush. It would get darker and darker, then, a “moan” then ” scarey hollering”. I’d shudder, give Scout a kick and ride home spooked.


I’d never tell Dad I’d been spooked, but I never gave up until I couldn’t see. He always knew. But dad wouldn’t identify himself and he’d be the one to always locate the cow and her baby.


When dad fenced with Alcide and Ward they’d all tell spook stories about that place.

Now, I own that spooky piece of land, And, I just think of those stories and grin.

I hope your not tired of my Anthony story, there’s a little more.





More Ward Anthony stories




From Dick Johnson: Dunseith, ND


Gary and Friends,

I have to throw in a couple Ward Anthony stories. One thing I remember is that on many a Christmas Day or New Years Day, my Grandma Cynthia Johnson would have a big meal for us at the farm. She would watch across the frozen lake and say, “I bet Ward will be coming across the lake pretty soon. He knows we are having a big meal here today.” True to her words, a small dark speck would show up on the south end of the lake and here would come Ward, walking across the ice. She would just set another a place at the table. He was similar to a kid in some ways and he liked to visit and even play with kids sometimes. I remember once when I was quite young, he and his mother, Annie, came over to visit and we were just outside the door and he asked me, “Can you say ____?” I asked him what that meant and about the same time his mother yelled from inside the house, “WARD, don’t you teach him how to swear in Norwegian!” Ward just giggled. One time in the later 60s, I had Dan Boguslawski along at the farm with me one day when Ward came to visit. I stopped what I was doing and told them to come in and have some lemonade. Dan never took his eyes of Ward. He didn’t know him and hadn’t seen anyone like that in his life. Ward sat on the couch and Dan sat on a chair not far away. It was extremely hot that day and Ward hadn’t had a bath for a while either so Dan was not too impressed. When I handed Ward a glass of cold lemonade, he leaned forward and spit a mouthful of snuff into the cuff of his bib overalls. Dan’s eyes about popped out! He never said a word but I was having a good time watching his reactions as he watched every move Ward made. A wood tick crawled out of Ward’s shirt and crawled over the lump he had on the back of his neck and then disappeared into his hair. Dan watched it go and just looked at me and shook his head and went back outside. It was hilarious!

One summer in the mid ’70s I drove bus for summer school kids and I picked up some kids near Bergan’s. At that time Ward was living in a small house behind Clayton Bergan’s along the Jackrabbit Road. I stopped to talk to Ward one day and he asked if he could ride along to town. I suppose it would have been against the rules, but I took Ward to town and told him to be on Main Street at a certain time so I could give him a ride home again. It got to be nearly a daily routine, but at least he got to visit with folks and enjoy life a bit. He was always ready on time at both ends of the route. Mom said Ward would have to come in the bank at least once a day to shake hands with Alan Campbell. He didn’t have any bank business really but liked to shake Alan’s hand. Alan went along with it and everything went fine. Even though ‘Wardy Allen’ could be a pest sometimes, I still enjoyed having him around. He was certainly part of the local color. Thanks Gary!



Anthony family Story – Part Seven
From Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

Anthony Family Story #7

“Ward’s Talents”

I know, our family table, was not the only place in the hills where the Anthony’s visited. They were welcomed into many area homes, including The Seim’s, The Carlsons, The Peterson’s, The Smith’s, The Morin’s, The Poitra’s and etc, in the radius around the Anthony Home Farm.

Although Ward smelled bad, smoked, chewed and did imbibe in alcohol at local establishments, when in our home, as well as other homes around the community, he, his mother Annie, and our friend, Alcide’s manners were impeccable. I never heard any of them cussing, telling slimey dirty, inappropriate jokes, stories, speak ill or gossip about anyone or put down any one!

They received respect and fair treatment, and treated others with the same defference, where ever they went. We’d find them always optimistic and delighting in the “small things. A meal, a cup of coffee, homemade cake and a visit.

Ward would come to our house, most likely chewing snuice unless he had Prince Albert and papers to roll. Most every visit, in the days before we had Central heat, he’d catch Mom unaware, going to the wood box to put another piece of wood in the wood stove. The wood wood drop. HUMPH! an exasperated sigh_! She’d quickly pull out her hand and scold, “Ward! Stop spitting in the wood box! Ward would giggle and say, Yes, Lottie. She’d then find him a can.

Sometimes, Dad would say, “Nancy, get your violin, and looking at Ward say, ” Ward could you play a tune on the fiddle,” Ward would rosin up the bow, then draw the bow over the strings. _

Scratch, scratchity _scratch until it would be finely tuned. Ward always started with, Pop Goes the Weasel. He enjoyed the delight of others at his fiddle skills, “Round, round the monkey went! (TWANG) (Ward plucked the string) “Pop” Goes the Weasel!” Once, the fiddle was warmed up, Ward would play many, many tunes. Another favorite of his and, mine was, “Bingo, Bingo, where you going to go yea O?, Goin down town to see a little girly O.”

Ward was self taught. He knew how to tune an instrument and knew the various keys.(Reflecting back, I believe provided opportunities, he could have been a gifted musician.)

Ward also was skilled at sharpening axes, knives and such. What was it he’d say ? “Something about his knives being so sharp he could trim the hair off a louse or a flea.” Giggle.

Ward had a knack for all types of veterinarian work. there were various times of the year when his skills were in demand. He’d take the tools of his trade and go from neighbor to neighbor working cattle. Years later, Hank S.,one of our friends, said, “Each spring. Ward would come and borrow a __de-horning tool, keep it for about 3 weeks making his rounds, and always return it with a “Thank You.” He was also skilled__ (ahem) those of polite society might prefer the saying, “harvesting mountain oysters”. Then, mom supplied the lysol. And that smell permeated the room when they came in and ate.

In the spring of the year War would come sometimes with Alcide and help with fencing.
With an ax, they’d sharpen fence posts, and help dad fence, dragging posts and fixing wires. They’d come in for a full meat and potatos, bread and vegetable, and dessert farm noon dinner, Mom then would pack a thermos of hot coffee and lunch for later. Their manners toward our mother and us girls were immpecable.

In the midst of eating, We’d be fascinated as, “Ward had his own way killing a wood tick. We girls would be wide eyed once again watching him pull out ticks and give them a little snap with his teeth. Yuck.

Ward liked guns and they ate alot of wild meat.
Ward and his mother, Annie also kept cattle. But, they really had a love for horses. The Olson sisters: Annie and her sister Clara (Bergan) at one time were proficient horsewomen and teamsters. Although, Ward was not a natural horseman, he’ would rather just to look at them, he was kind of scared of them oft times he’d have a whole herd of “wild” unbroken “Purty” horses.

My father always kept a good dog and a good horse, and both had to earn their keep. He’d shake his head at Ward and say, “There are too many good dogs out there to keep a bad one. ” And with horses, own just what you need, a horse needs to earn their keep.” The Anthony’s heeded advice on the dog, but just couldn’t part with any horse.

Dad never really understood that passion for horses. Ward never owned a horse who earned their keep. Oh, he “fixed” plenty of horses as one of his little occupations i.e. veterinary skills. But, Ward just wasn’t much of a horseman. He just liked pretty horses, kept them, running wild and free. In the winter,fed them in the barn, often neglecting feeding the cows which provided the “little farm income”. Ward would rather forget the cows and look at many horses.

Wards’s mother Annie indulged this and said not a word while “buying hay”. Once she asked dad to bring her a load of straw from, “______ ,”a neighbors straw pile to supplement feed for the livestock. Dad complied, hand pitched and hauled a load most every Sunday. One day, the neighbor asked him if he knew what happened to his straw pile? Dad was surprised and disappointed with Annie. He was very embarrassed as the straw had not been purchased. Then said he found he was never to old to learn a lesson. He had learned his in “Assuming”

Mom would complain to Ward telling him to go wash up. But then she’d put the coffee on and a little lunch. Again, just as he was walking out the door, before he left for his home, she’d hand him some eggs or loaf of bread and say, “Ward, take a bath before you come next time.” He always replied with his little giggle_ “O;Kay Lottie.” The door would shut, and she’d sigh, get out the big brown bottle of Hilex and begin to open windows.

Metcalfe Family Tales, retold by Vickie Metcalfe 2011


Scared Kid

From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND



In about 1959 my Grandpa Hans Johnson put a bid in on the purchase of the Strand Schoolhouse that was located a mile and a half east of the farm. It had been closed for a few years and not any longer needed. His bid was the highest and he was the owner of the building and planned to move it to the farm for a shop. He and Dad waited until winter came so they could put the one room school on big logs and skid it home with the old Caterpillar. They got two huge poplar trees cut down for skids and with them in tow, headed over east with the Cat to jack up the building and get it ready. I wanted to go along but they said it was too cold. I pleaded with them, and finally they agreed. They made a road through the deep snow with the dozer blade. Getting the building jacked up and the logs under it took hours and I got colder and colder just watching them work. I said I was really getting cold and Dad told me to head home on foot and not to go off the trail or I might get lost and freeze to death. To this I agreed and headed out down the Cat track west. I walked about a mile and when I was rounding the bend on the south end of Sucker Lake, I was looking down at the track and keeping my face out of the wind and suddenly someone said, “Hey kid, what are you doing out here?” I looked up and there were two big guys on horses right in front of me. They were bundled up against the cold and had scarves covering there faces except for their eyes. They scared me to death! I didn’t know what to do so I just kept walking and went around the horses. They again said, in a gruff voice, “I asked you where are you going kid?” I said, “Home” and just kept going. In retrospect, I’m sure they were just concerned for my safety but they even moved the horse over in front of me to stop me. Here is a 9 year old kid walking out in the middle of nowhere alone. I heard them mumble to each other as I walked away. They headed the other way and I made it home OK but they scared the devil out of me. We never did find out who the riders were. They did ride past where Dad and Grandpa were working but didn’t stop to talk. A mystery. Thanks Gary!


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

Frank (Lum) Azure
(August 12, 1925 – February 27, 2011)

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Frank Azure, age 85 of Dunseith, died Sunday in a Rolette nursing home. Funeral services will be held on Friday at 10:00 A.M. in the St. Anthony’s Church of rural Dunseith. Burial will be in the spring in the church cemetery. A wake will be held on Thursday beginning at 4:00 P.M. with a prayer service at 8:00 P.M. in the church.

Lorraine Miller
(January 21, 1927 – February 23, 2011)

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Lorraine Miller, age 84 of Dunseith, died Wednesday in a Minot hospital. Funeral services will be held on Tuesday at 10:00 A.M. in the St. Michael Catholic Church in Dunseith. Burial will be in the spring at the Sunrise view Cemetery of rural Dunseith. A wake will be held on Monday beginning at 4:00 P.M. with a prayer service at 8:00 P.M. in the Church.