6/29/2016 (2403)

Dunseith Gamble Store
Gamble Store 2304
Basketball team 1934 2403


Blog (474) posted on May 30, 2009

Reply from Evon Lagerquist (77): Dunseith, ND
Ackworth Cemetery mowing
Hi Gary, My brother Carl and his son have had the mowing job for the last couple of years. Eric & I did it for a few years before Carl took over. It isn’t an easy job!
Reply From Bill Hosmer (48): Tucson, AZ & Lake Metigoshe, ND
Erling Landsverk Book
Gary and Friends, I recently finished Erling Landsverk’s book. It was a great experience to read of the people, the conditions of life, family, and work ethic which characterized this region in those bygone days. It really brought back images and experiences even beyond the wealth of material generated by this excellent Blog. I asked Sharon how to order copies. She said to use her brother, Dave as a point of contact. Sharon said that his email address was known herein, but I don’t know it. His mailing address, where Sharon also lives, is 1621 95th St.. NE Bottineau 58318. She said the price was $20.00. In my view it is worth it, and more. Thanks and Cheers, Bill Hosmer
Bill, I just happen to have Dave’s email address. Dave Landsverk
Rene Casavant and Phyllis McKay – July 15, 2007

6/27/2016 (2402)

Pictures from Ginger LaRocque Poitra (’65):  Belcourt, ND

DHS Class of 64
Shirley DeCoteau an Lana LaRocque
LaRocque, Lana
LaRocque, Ginger and Art Rude


Bernadette Stokes’ Birthday Celebration

Bernadette’s actual birthday is Tuesday the 28th (Tomorrow). We celebrated yesterday though, enabling her working relatives and school kids to attend.

We went to the Buffet 101 with her immediate family and several of our close Expat friends. 32 total. We rented a Jeepney, pictured below, to transport  22 of her family members from our house to the Restaurant.

Buffet 101 is a 5 star Buffet Restaurant with Japanese, Filipino and Western foods. They have a seating capacity of 600. It was pretty much a full house last night too. Their food and service is always superb. Bottomless everything inclusive of all the Beverages, San Miguel beer and wine.

Bernadette got an adrenaline charge last night and most certainly had a good birthday celebration.

Filipino Jeepney. Transportation for 22 family members to the dinner
Stokes 2402-1

Bernadette with two of her Nieces, Novie and Jackie
Stokes 2402-2

Excellent service
Stokes 2402-3

Japanese buffet selections located directly ahead behind the table.
Filipino buffet selections on the right
Western buffet selections, deserts and beverages are located behind the photographer.
Stokes 2402-4 

Bernadette’s immediate family. The kids are her Great Nieces and Nephews
Stokes 2402-5


Joke of the day

Posted by Trish Larson Clayburgh (’73):  Livingston, MT

Hi Gary,  It’s been awhile!  I posted this on Facebook, but thought I’d send it here too..

First of all, I’m fine – or I will be soon. I had nasty accident yesterday but I’m ok. I went horseback riding and let’s just say it didn’t end up quite as planned. I got on the horse ok and started out slowly but he started to speed up and we were going faster than I was comfortable with until we were going as fast as the horse could go! Have to admit I was terrified!! Then the worst thing ever happened – I fell off and caught my foot in the stirrup and the horse was dragging me around in a circle. It wouldn’t stop, it just kept going around and around.

Thank God the store manager at Walmart came out and unplugged the carousel.

Ha ha ha!



Blog (473) posted on May 29, 2009

Riverside Cemetery Records:
Folks, I have attached the Riverside Cemetery records that were recorded by Vance and Doreen Bailey and posted in January 2003. For those of you that do not have Excel or are unable to open this attachment, I have posted this file on the “Dunseith Alumni WEB Site” under “cemetery listings” for your viewing. I will be posting St. Lewis and some of the other cemeteries too, that Doreen sent to me. I would like to get the latest records of each of these cemeteries, from the time the Bailey’s recorded these, so they can be incorporated into their files. Once these cemetery records are brought up to date, they can easily be maintained and kept current. Gary
Dunseith Alumni WEB Site link
Question for Evon Lagerquist:
Who is currently doing the mowing for the Ackworth cemetery? When I was talking to Debby Stokes, Darrel (Bud’s) wife this morning, she mentioned that they saw someone all bundled up doing the mowing, but they were unable to distinguish who it was. Would that by chance be one of your family members? My brother Allen used to mow that cemetery once a week with a good old push rotary mower. He got paid $5.00 per mowing and he/we furnished the gas. Allen was fast. He could mow that Acre in a short afternoon. In later years my dad did the mowing with his riding lawn mower and then he pasted it onto Eleanor Fauske and she mowed it for a number of years with her riding Lawn mower.
I remember when I was a kid, the Ackworth cemetery was over grown with rose bushes and other large weeds. It was quite a mess. The community got together and requested for my dad to pasture his sheep in the cemetery to get rid of all this brush. He did that and the sheep did a darn good job of clearing the brush. To this day it has been immaculately maintained and mowed every summer. Gary
Reply from Diane Larson Sjol (79): Minot, ND
To Aggie Casavant,
Thank you for your kind words…there are some wonderful nurses and
teachers out there who really make a difference. I have had some very
wonderful experiences as a labor and delivery nurse….some that would
make you laugh and some that would make you cry and some that would
curl your hair. As nurses, we may make a difference in our patient’s
lives but they leave an everlasting impression on us too. Now I am
the nursing coordinator at MSU Bottineau and have been teaching
nursing students for the past two years. It is challenging but very
rewarding when we celebrate their graduation and passing of nursing
boards. By the time their training is over, you feel as if they are
your kids graduating. I told them that they better all make good
grades because I am a baby boomer and I don’t want any dumb nurses
taking care of me…haTake Care,

2009 Schedule of 125th Events for the Bottineau City & County Quasquicentennial
Thursday, June 18th
2:00 – 4:00 Open House, Pride Dairy
8:30 – 3:00 Bus Tour, West Bottineau County
School Gathering
Amateur Night, Fairgrounds
Friday, June 19th
8:00 – 10:00 Registration, Free Breakfast
10:00 – 4:00 Arts/Quilt Show @ MSU – Bottineau
10:00 Athletic Games, 3 mile walk/run for cancer (Wear a pink hat!)
Open House @ Courthouse, Hospital, MSU, BHS, Ambulance, Good Sam
8:30 – 2:30 Bus Tour, East Bottineau County
Kid’s Swim Events
School Gatherings & Bingo
Evening Williams & Ree @ Fairgrounds (This is 2 guys – an Indian and a White Man – and they are entertaining
and always making fun of each other.)
Saturday, June 20th
9:00 Welcome Ceremony, MSU – Bottineau
10:30 Parade
11:30 Free Picnic in the Park
10:00 – 4:00 Arts/Quilt Show @ MSU – Bottineau
Athletic Games, 3 on 3 Basketball
9:00 – 4:00 Bingo, Craft Show & Bake Sale @ Armory
1:00 – 4:00 Car Show, Registration for Car Show from 12:00 – 1:00
Open House, Courthouse, MSU, BHS, coffee at the Hospital and Good Sam
School Gatherings & Kids Games
1:00 – 5:00 Free Music Show – Hourly on Main Street
Evening Johnny Holmes @ Fairgrounds
Sunday, June 21st
10:00 Ecuminical Church Service
10:00 – 3:00 Best Ball Golf, School Gatherings
Evening Demolition Derby @ Fairgrounds

6/24/2016 (2401)

Reply from Art Rude (’71):  Bismarck, ND

Thanks for the picture with Dad, had to save that one.  He was still doing real well at that time, not so good these days, so it’s nice to see people saw him when he was doing better.

Thanks again.

Peace and Power,


Each day is a gift, that’s why they call it the present.

Thanks for checking out Art Rude Productions,

webpage address: www.artrude.com



Pictures from Ginger LaRocque Poitra (’65):  Belcourt, ND

1964 Lana LaRocque
Ginger LaRocque 2401-1

1964 Lana LaRocque
Ginger LaRocque 2401-2 Ginger LaRocque 2401-3

I know Betty Faine, Lana LaRocque and Doreen Houle. Maybe you know audience.  This this was taken in 1964 and I believe the class of ’64 was playing.  Ginger
Ginger LaRocque 2401-4


Joke of the Day

A man was dining alone in a fancy restaurant and there was a gorgeous redhead sitting at the next table..He had been checking her out since he sat down, but lacked the nerve to talk with her.

Suddenly she sneezed, and her glass eye came flying out of its socket towards the man. He reflexively reached out, grabbed it out of the air, and handed it back.

‘Oh my, I am so sorry,’ the woman said, as she popped her eye back in place. ‘Let me buy your dinner to make it up to you.’
They enjoyed a wonderful dinner together, and afterwards they went to the theatre followed by drinks… They talked, they laughed, she shared her deepest dreams and he shared his. She listened to him with interest.

After paying for everything, she asked him if he would like to come to her place for a nightcap and stay for breakfast. They had a wonderful, wonderful time..


The next morning, she cooked a gourmet meal with all the trimmings. The guy was amazed. Everything had been so incredible! 


‘You know,’ he said, ‘you are the perfect woman.. Are you this nice to every guy you meet?’

‘No,’ she replies. . ..

Wait for it … ….

It’s coming ….. ….

The suspense is killing you, isn’t it?

She said … …:

‘You just happened to catch my eye.’


Blog (472) posted on May 28, 2009


Posted on May 28, 2009

Dunseith High School Class Reunion for the classesof 52-53-54-55-56 (Posted Yesterday)

Additional info from Jerry (54) & KathyWilliam:


I failed to include the phone number for the Drake Motor Inn in Watertown for the Dunseith get together in Aug. It is 605-886-8411, and the Reunion – get together is not limited to the classes of 52-53-54-55-56

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

To Diane Larson Sjol, I just noticed that the first part of your e-mail is nrsnice, I take it your a nurse. I have always taken the opportunity when the occassion arises to tell nurses and school teachers,that I feel that teachers and nurses are the most honorable proffession there is.I would have to say,along with Don Johnson,Mrs.Aus, Dan Morgan, Mrs. Suko,and Mr.Mikkelson at Rolette High School were my shining stars.My respect for nurses began when Jimmy was in the burn center at St.Paul Ramsey Hospital in Minnesota,after he was burned at his graduation party.The Drs. were good, but the nursing team,Mary Ellen Irish, Anna Roberto,and Jenny Dupliesis were 3 of the most amazing nurses ever.They went so above and beyond for our family,that if they would of made a movie of that 1yr.and 3months,Anna, Mary Ellen& Jenny would of been the stars.I feel blest to say I have two sister-inlaws Brenda and Debbie,who are nurses,and one neice Pam whos an R.N. at Inovice in Fargo….So to all the Teachers and Nurses out there…Thank You,Your the Greatest!!!

Reply to Berg Picture from Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND

Hi Gary,

Thanks to Dick Johnson for the memories/pictures of Albert and Clara Berg. I’ll forward this email to Gary Berg, Alvin’s son. I’ll print the memories and pictures of Albert/Clara and give to my cousin, Carol Berg Hamel, Martin’s daughter.


Gary Berg’s Reply:

Thank you Neola. Like was said in the message about the Berg’s, we became related to half of the hills. I just wonder how many relatives we have in the Bottineau-Dunseith area.

Gary Berg

Message from Sybil Johnson: Cheyenne, Wy

Gary and all,
Well I made it to my granddaughter’s wedding in Wisconsin and it was beautiful, as all weddings are. It was cold at 53 with the wind, just like Cheyenne. The wedding was in the bandstand at the park. First time in my life, I wore dress slacks to a wedding, but most of the women did, so I guess I wont be lynched. Got home Saturday morning about 4:15 and believe it or not, its cold here for the end of May. Snow at the beginning and Fall weather at the end. Maybe, we are getting our seasons backwards, these days. As soon as I can, I will put a couple of the wedding pictures up. Have a peaceful and quiet day. Sybil Johnson (great_grandma2007@live.com)

Striker/Bergan pictures & Striker History provided by Ken Striker: Dayton OH

Wm. Striker & his children on his 81st Birthday, 1943

L to R: Georgia, Gladys Brill, Della Lockhart, Lee, Vernie, Erman, Mae Stickland,

Cora Lockhart & Ellen

Gary’s comments

I think this picture was taken of Oscar & Sylvia on their golden anniversary in 1979? I’m kind of thinking they had their celebration at the Christian Center at Lake Metigoshe. This is exactly the way I remember them. They were a great couple. They had no children. Oscar was a brother to Clayton Bergan’s father. Sylvia Lockhart Bergan’s mother was a Striker. Oscar & Sylvia lived a few miles east of Lake Metigoshe and several miles north of #43. They lived close to Bernard Kavlie and Lars Sivertson. John & Pat Frykman are currently living in that area too. Gary

Oscar & Sylvia Bergan

6/22/2016 (2400)

May 2010 – Gary Stokes and Art Rude


May 2010
Angela Berube Malgut (’65), Connie Halvorson Kester (’64) and Gary Stokes (’65)


Joke of the Day
Posted by Donald Malaterre (’71):   Sioux Falls, SD

This Duck walked into the Drug Store and asked the cashier “Can I get a tube of chap stick, and would you just put that on my bill, please”?

Donald Malaterre


Blog (471) posted on May 27, 2009

Reply From Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC
To Gary Metcalf, I’m happy to hear you enjoy these crazy stories,it’s like they lay dormant at the back of a persons mind,and it takes one person to bring it up like Dick did ,and every detail comes back to you like it happened yesterday. Dick started the story telling months back,it seemed to take awhile to catch on, but it’s fun that more and more people are participating.I’m not sure if I remember Bonnie Awalt Houle, but I read her story about Sister Agnes over and over again,and laughed harder everytime.Being raised Catholic,and around the nuns alot during the summer that whole story was just too funny.Whopee Goldberg in Sister Act ain’t got nothing on you Bonnie…Sorry Mrs. Foss once again with the “aint got” I don’t think I really talk like that it was just so fitting for the occasion…Well hope you all have a nice day,Its 7:30 A.M. here , I just got home from work so I have to get some sleep….ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ Good-Bye
Reply from Paula Fassett (71): North Branch, MN
Here’s my guess at Dick’s photo of the singers: it was part of the yearly Xmas concert put on by the community choir that Don Johnson organized yearly for several (I think) years…..my dad used to sing in it…… I remember one year when I was in grade school, someone (maybe Elsie Schneider? – she was the accompanist for the community choir, I believe – and my piano teacher) organized a group of girls to sing at that concert . I was the accompanist for this little group, and being the accompanist, I was the last one to be seated in the chairs or on the bleachers or wherever the heck we were seated after they performed. So, naturally, I was the one who was supposed to get up and lead us all back to the choir, on cue, for the final big finale. I missed the cue – maybe because I was very shy as a young kid, but most likely because I was daydreaming – so we didn’t get up to sing the last number!!! Oh, the shame!! Anyway, this may be that group…….
Reply from Diane Larson Sjol (79): Minot, ND
You are so right…it was Joe…your family has served their country
well. Bonnie, you cracked me up about your story of the sisters of
St. Joseph’s….I remember them well. Do you remember Sister Gabriel?
She taught me in catechism. I really liked her…what about Sister
Rose? Those nuns were the ones who lived in Dunseith….same order
right?Diane Larson Sjol

Message/Picture from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,This past winter we talked about another old family from the
Ackworth-Salem area, the Bergs. Albert and Clara were the parents of
Martin, Alvin, Amanda, and Arla. Clara was the oldest child in the Borre
Johnson family and was a sister to my grandmother, Myrtle Olson and ten
siblings. This large family blended into the community and eventually
made us related to half the hills! I just thought some of the readers
might like to see a picture of Albert and Clara, in their later years.
Clara died Dec. 31, 1958. I still remember getting the call at our house
in Dunseith. I had to then go and tell my grandmother that her sister
had died–unexpectedly. Being only 8 years old, I had never had to do
anything like that before. Looking back, I can’t imagine anyone telling
a little kid that kind of news and not asking for an adult, but that was
what they did. After Clara passed away, Albert used to come and visit my
folks and grandmother, who lived with us. He wore a long black coat and
hat and carried a cane. To me he looked just like Winston Churchill. He
drove a real nice black ’36 Ford Tudor that I really liked. He lived a
few more years but I’m not sure when or where he passed away. His
daughter Amanda, and son-in-law Clarence Schultz, got the old Ford. I do
remember that! They ran a grocery store in Donnybrooke, ND. Thanks Gary!

Picture of Albert and Clara Berg.

Dunseith High School Class Reunion for the classesof 52-53-54-55-56
Posted by Jerry(54) & KathyWilliam:

6/20/2016 (2399)

My guess about 1969
Dean Lamb (70) and Joanne Millang Bernstein (70)

Stokes Family in about 1958
Bob and Elaine in the back
Gary, Darrel and Allen
Stokes 2399


Blog (470) posted on May 26, 2009


Reply From Sharron Gottbreht Shen (59): Everett, WA
So many dates rolling my aging pathways! Jack and Ines article about trip to Hudsons Bay was 18 June 1931. I believe Col. Clark Hosmer was son of Wm. Hosmer and brother of Jack Hosmer. Should have could have verified from Centennial book. Excuse, Sharron
Sharron, Like with the Hiatt family and others of those days, the Hosmer family named some of their siblings after uncles. That can be kind of confusing if one doesn’t realize that being the case. I noticed 3 generations of William Hosmer’s with one being Junior. (1) William/Eda had (2) William Jr. William Jr.’s brother had Jack/Ines had (3) William (Bill). According to the Dunseith book Clark Hosmer was the son of the first Generation William/Eda Hosmer. He retired form the Air force as a Lt. Colonel. His son Bradley was a Brig. General in the Air Force when the 1982 Centennial book was published. I think he retired at least as a 3 star or possibly a 4 star general. Bill and Colette, you guys will have to fill us in with the details on this one.Gary
Bev Morinville’s (72) reply to Bill Krause (74) Dunseith, ND
Bill, how do I say thank you for the kindness you have always shown to my whole family. For you people out there that think you know Bill and for those who don’t know him, you have not been as blessed as I have. This man has been not only been a friend to my sister Debbie and brother Duane but to myself he has been like another brother . Once you get to know the real Bill he is the kind of friend that is there to support you in the hard times and laugh with you in the good ones. There were many evenings he spent helping me make supper and doing the dishes cause Mom was so sick and he helped me though those long days Lyle Olson my other brother was also there to help. What a blessing you both have been. When Bill found out I had cancer he sent me a text message and a picture where he had cut all his hair off and I said to him WHY did you do that Bill? his response was If my friend is going to be bald so am I. What a wonderful way to show someone how much you care and love them,Only thing was I wasn’t going to lose my hair. It touched my heart like nothing else in the world . Bill is that kinda true friend. He is there not only in the good time to share your joys but stands by you when you are going though the hard ones also. Thank You Bill for being my friend always.
When we lived in KY Bill would get runs to come there and always stopped to see us this was another blessing to see someone and such a good friend from home after not seeing family or friends for years. This is where my kids learned to love him and has became Uncle Bill to them. We have all been blessed to have Bill in our lives and I want to thank him for being a true friend to me. Bev GOD BLESS YOU …………BEV

Reply from Diane Larson Sjol (70): Minot, ND
Thanks for including the photos of our parents…they were quite the
couple….I love the second picture of Mom and Dad in Seattle.
Reply from Aggie Casavant (69): Fort Mill, SC
Hi, Gary, It seems like your website is still going strong, I wanted to tell Mark Schemitz how nice it was to see his mothers wedding picture.Seeing Stella reminded me of all the stories our Mom would come home with about all the crazy stuff her and Stella would do throughout the day while working together in the kitchen at the school. I don’t know all the details about what they were up to,but I do remember her saying that they were both to short to move those big kettles off the stove by themselves,so they would both get on each handle and carry it together.She said,that one time they were laughing so hard they couldn’t lift it up to the sink to drain the macaroni, and almost dropped it…I know she loved working with your Mom ,and always looked forward going to work…Thanks for all the work you do Gary in keeping us all in touch…
To Diane Larson it’s nice knowing that you and Colette wrote to our brother while he was in Vietnam,That would of been Joe you wrote to.He’s the one that worked at Ydola Pigeons thru high school. Gerald never served in Vietnam,cuz by the time he was suppose to go over, Joe was still over there,and they couldn’t have two from the same family over there at once.Then Rene and Aime went over one after the other,and Gerald just lucked out and kept missing it.But Gerald made up for it in the Iraq war, both him and his son Micheal did a year,not at the same time,when Micheal was coming back,Gerald was going over ,so they spent a day in Kuwait together be fore Gerald went over. Ironically enough Gerald did a year in Iraq with his other son Matthews fiance’.They all three made it back safe,like the three made it back from Vietnam,so our family is eteranally grateful for that. Gary I’m pretty sure you graduated with Joe and Rene?….I think…??? Well thanks again Gary for all you do. Aggie
Reply from Gary Metcalfe (57): HOLLISTER, MO
To Aggie
You have the ability to tell a story like I have not heard since your old neighbors. When we were younger, Orville Grenier and Elmer Boucher could keep you in stitches with their stories of common happenings. But, I am almost sure you did it without a couple beers like we had! The trait that I admire most I think, is respect for the common man, like what you said about New Orleans.
The Prairie Past and Mountain Memories has 500 pages of great local history. Page 334 has some interest for me, two brothers Pete and Ben Lajimodiere and Axel Johnson lost their wives to the flu of 1918, also Cpl. Bennie C. Johnson was laid to rest in a cemetary 7 miles north of Dunseith. Dick maybe you can figure who Bennie C.. Johnson way.
Bill Krause, I guess I will just second what Gary Stokes replied to you.
Aga-nus, you surely have put to good use what someone like Don Johnson did for you at the right time of your life. Be prepared to live forever because anyone who can laugh at themself, not take yourself too seriously gains lots of years to your life. My mentor, Ole Bersinger said the worst trait you can have is too self important, I think they call it pride. Ole and Rhubarb , Ole’s name for Bob Rivard and I were building a cabin for Harold Artz at Lake Metigoshe, we were on the roof, we looked out on the lake to see a 14 ft. boat coming fast. It was Wayne Light coming to work. The next day Wayne pulls up with his pickup, jumps out and the plugs the leak in his tire with a wood screw. He was a hoot!
I knew Bud Miller from working with Dale Gottbrecht. Bud, who was blind, had a Native American driver who took Bud all around the reservation buying posts. I watched him deal with Dale, as you know Dale wasn’t easy, but Bud could hold his own. Against his better judgement, my uncle Cliff consented to go to a workshop for the blind in Bud’s hometown for a couple of weeks. Bud Miller lived about two blocks from the bar. One day Cliff asked Bud, “where were you yesterday?” because Bud had not gone to the workshop. Bud said, “You know I have lived in that house for 20 years and no one will ever know how many times I have walked to that same bar.” Cliff said…”yah”…. Bud said, “Somebody dug a basement and I was still sitting in it in the morning.” Of course they all laughed out loud.. I am sure that Bud Miller had a lot to do with Cliff being able to take those books on tape and sit down, after working two full time jobs all of his life. Gary Metcalfe
From Bonnie Awalt Houle (56): Becker, MN
Dear Gary,
How many of you remember the Sisters of St. Joseph that were living in Dunseith? I remember when I first received my drivers license and for the very first time was able to use the car to run up to the San Haven. I was instructed to drive up and directly back “No Side Trips”. On my way to the San I noticed two of the Sisters walking in that direction so I pulled over and offered them a lift. They crawled in, Sister Agnes sat in the front seat and immediately began giving me driving directions. She wanted to go to St. Mary’s Church. I said, “okay” because it was only a little further then I was headed. When we arrived at the Church she said, “Wait, we will be right out”. So I waited and true to her word she came right out, arms loaded with things. As soon as she was in the car she began giving directions again. This time she directed me down a dirt road in the foot hills to visit some Native Americans, and from one home to the next she just kept me going. I explained that I needed to get the car home; but she would hear none of that. She took me on roads that had grass growing down the center, and I was not a good driver, I told her I could not back up. Nothing swayed Sister Agnes from her path. She explained that “God had sent me to help her today so everything would be just fine”. Who was I to argue with God! I don’t know how long we drove through the foothills with Sister Agnes giving the directions, and me doing my best to stay on those dirt roads. I wanted Sister Agnes to come home with me to explain to my Dad why I was so late but she said he would understand, I was not as positive as she was, infact I figured I would never be allowed to use the car again. When I got home my Dad was furious! And when I started to explain he started to laugh, and told me he too had given Sister Agnes a lift one day that ended up in a tour of the foothills. Has anyone else ever taken such a tour?
The Sisters must have walked every inch of those hills ministering to anyone and everyone. What a wonderful dedicated group of Nuns.
Bonnie Awalt Houle 56
Request from Neola Kfoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND
Hi Gary,
Linda Dalbec Parks, daughter of Leonard/Charlene Dalbec, would like to be added to your newsletter list. :) As has been mentioned, Harold Hiatt was married to Gladys Dalbec; Alice Hiatt was married to Stanley Dalbec. Gladys/Stanley/Leonard/Elwood/Mary Louise were siblings, children of Herman/Edna Dalbec (Page 543 in Centennial Book). Leonard and Elwood are the two surviving siblings. Elwood is in St. Andrews Hospital (cancer). Leonard/his wife, Charlene/daughters, Linda and Glenda, are here from Central Point, Oregon for a few days. I visited with all but Elwood for an hour, or so, this evening.
Linda’s email address is She’s very interested in genealogy. The Dalbec’s are related to Crossitier’s (sp?)/Robillard’s/others.
Linda, Your family name was very common in my growing up days. I remember hearing the Dalbec name frequently with the association of all my Bottineau, Petterson, Kofoid relatives. Are you related to the Dunseith Robillard’s? Gloria and James are on our distribution list. Their brother Raphael Poitra was in my DHS class of 65. Raphael is the current owner of Kelvin.
Request from Tom Hagen (50): Mesa, AZ & Williston, ND
Hi all you good e-mail buddies:We are leaving for ND on May 28, this

Thursday so we will ask you to hold those

interesting forwards and inspiring

thoughts until this fall when we return to AZ as we will not have a land
line in ND to hook up our webtv. We plan to return on Sept. 10.
It has been a great season and we do appreciate all we have gotten and
especially being able to stay in contact with you. Have a great summer
and keep us in your address book for this fall!!!! Cell (Verizon)

We love E-mail letters, Love Tom and Dot

Picture from Dick Johnson (68):
Gary and Friends,This is a picture of a girls singing group from the mid 60s. The age of
the girls would tell me it was a junior high group and with the
Christmas tree behind them, probably about Christmas ’64-’65. The old
photo is a bit hard to see clearly but my guess of the singer’s names is
listed below. I know all of them but can’t tell for sure who the two are
because of the distance from the camera.OK gals, straighten me out!
Thanks Gary!

Back row L-R Peggy Wurgler, Stephanie Evans, Diana Honsey, Ele
Dietrich, Janice Metcalfe, unknown.
Front row L-R: Loraine Neameyer, Myra Henning, unknown , Loretta Neameyer

6/17/2016 (2398)

Glen Rude’s Auction This SundayRude


Main Street Dunseith, ND


Blog (469) posted on May 25, 2009

Posted on May 25, 2009

Reply from Bill Krause (74): Dickinson, ND

Gary and Everyone especially Bev….This past Mothers Day I made my usual call to my Mother there in Dunseith and chatted about the usual things we talk about when I call.(not as often as I should!)After the call ended I thought about the other Mom that used to be in my life so many years ago but still lives in my memory every day.When Bev posted that picture of her Mother the other day it brought back wonderful memories of her again.My second Mom as I use to call her.If ever anyone had a problem that they could not talk to anyone else about you could always count on Francis to be there and listen to you over a game of cards(Nerts if I remember right)and a cup of coffee..No matter how bad or how good she was feeling that day she ALWAYS had time..For that I will always love her!The best second Mom a troubled teenager could have asked for!! Oh ya and she was never afraid to tell you if you were messing up.
As we all get older and God knows we are,our goals and priorities in life change.Although for the select few,that old, very narrow road will always be the same!But thats ok too.. The ones that were once important in our lives get replaced with new ones and so forth.But once we reach that plateau that we have strived most of our life to reach, the one that every person reaches at some point in their lives ,we settle down with that one special someone we will spend the rest of lives with,start a family,be content with your choices and most of all be dedicated to those in your life that are closest to you.But everyonce in a while,we go back to our high school days and relive,if for only a very short while, all those memories that will always be in the back of our mind.That Gary, is why, this that you do for us all, is so very important and meaningful!! Thanks, Bill Krause

Bill, You sure hit the nail on the head with what you said. Very well written. Gary

Reply from Bill Hosmer (48): Tucson, AZ & Lake Metigoshe, ND

Gary and Erling Landsverk, This posting by Erling was poignant to me because Don and Bernice were special friends of mine. Also, I’ve had some one on one with Erling on other matters. Since I just returned to Lake Metigoshe and shopped at Bottineau for groceries, I mentioned to Sharon Landsverk who works in our grocery store that Erling and I had been in contact. She mentioned a book he has written. Today, I purchased it, and when I get through sorting out our stuff I’ll read it. It is titled “My Dakota Years”. I look forward to it because I think it will add to the knowledge we are interested in regarding our wonderful place of growing up. Hopefully,Erling, you will get a marketing plan underway and gain some fans. I suggested to Sharon that it go on sale at the Log House in Dunseith, and anywhere else that will bring some profit and further understanding of our land. I’m enjoying catching up on three weeks of mail. Cheers, Bill Hosmer

Bill, Where were you able to purchase Erling’s book? Erling is such a remarkable guy. He doesn’t let being blind stand in his way. Yes, Sharon Landsverk has been a checker, for decades, at the Jack & Jill store there in Bottineau. I always try to wait for a lull in her line so I can shoot the breeze a bit with her on my way out whether I’ve purchased anything or not. She’s a good old Willow Lake/Dunseith gal. She and Erling are first cousins. Gary

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

Wow Dick, the pictures of that Chevy coup you shared are exactly like the car we wrecked that night.I’ll never forget that night. It was Bobby driving that night, with me in the middle in the front next to Bobby with Maryann by the door, Eddie and Jimmy were in the back. We were on our way back from our Uncle Lucien’s place after visiting our cousins Ricky & DuWayne Casavant. Bobby was driving too fast for night driving and I had just told him to slow down, cuz Shaney Vrems cows some times got loose. I never sooner said it, and we came over the hill and saw these two shinny eyes in the road, Maryann said, mmm there they are. Bobby hit the brakes hard, and when he did the car pulled to one side kinda side way, and the cow kept getting closer. We were driving south and when we hit the cow it spun us around going north and down this steep ditch. I could feel I was sliding into Maryann, so I grabbed onto the rear view mirror. Well by the time the car stopped, the door had flew opened and Maryann and I flew out of the car with me landing on top of Maryann, with the rear view mirror in my hand. (That poor little rear view mirror was no match to keep chubby “Aga-nus” in place, super glue wasn’t invented yet…LOL) Anyway, Maryann was crying and said she hurt her knee, and in the moonlight we could see the car leaning like it was ready to tip over on us. As we made our way up the ditch totally stunned and dazed, poor Maryann was in front of me trying to get up the ditch. All of a sudden she trips over something and falls, and me right behind her falls on top of her again…I bet by this time she was thinking she would of been better off being the cow we just hit. Well by the time we got up the ditch, Shaney had heard us hit, and drove out to us. When his truck lights shined on us, he looked at us like speechless cuz we were covered in blood….Not our blood, but when Maryann had fell over something in the ditch it was the cow we had hit and needless to say it was injured pretty bad…So Shaney gave us all a ride home, and told Maryann and I to stay outside while he went in to give our Mom & Dad a heads up before they saw Maryann and I. If I remember correctly, our Dad and Shaney went back out there that night and kinda like finished butchering the cow, saved the meat, and everyone lived happily ever after.

Dick I was surprised how accurately you remember our Mom riding the school bus, and no she didn’t drive. Us kids tried to teach her but that’s a whole other story. She rode the bus and worked at the school till Jimmy got hurt at the graduation party, then she pretty much retired to take care of Jimmy. Thanks for all the nice compliments about our Mom, and our family Dick, I know it will mean allot to my family when they read it. God Bless you and take care. Aggie

Reply to Dick Johnson from Diane Larson Sjol (70): Minot, ND

I know Gerald Casavant was in the service….Colette Schimetz and I
used to write to him…he was in Vietnam too I believe. I used to
have a big crush on Joe many years ago from afar….Gerald and Joe
were always fun to be around

Lucy & Joe Casavant (65) 7-12-07

Reply from Gary Metcalfe (57): Forsyth, MO

To Dick Johnson

The picture of your barn Dick motivated me to talk about the barn I moved to the Lee Striker place in the 60’s. It was Joe Borgan’s barn from near Souris. Col. Richard Rocheleau had a young man with enough nerve to start his barn moving business. Well, Vern, from Rugby thought my dad was holding him back coming up through the hills on 43 highway. It was January–cold and lots of snow. So Vern run the hill east of Ike Hagen’s and I am sure he was proud of the time he made. I missed out on most of this adventure as I was working in Belcourt building houses, a good winter job, so I hired my dad and Mike Brennan to help. When they got to that notorious hill east of Arnold Zieler’s, before they could get George Gregory’s maintainer hooked on behind the barn to hold it back, Vern took off, had to kick it out of gear to save the motor from blowing a rod, so he coasted up the hill aways on the uphill side, then rolled back into a deep ditch. It sat over night like a ship on the ocean in a bad hurricane. Next day was Saturday, we worked all day with come alongs, braces and planks. LeRoy Strong was on the front with a D8 cat and we got it up on the road about an hour before dark. I watched the chain break, the motor on the truck screamed and ran backwards and the barn stopped rolling back. Mike Brennan had thrown a railroad tie under the duals at the back of the barn, we replaced the chain with a large cable and I walked ahead of the barn to insure that Vern did not put it in the ditch again.

That little doll house that Lee Striker raised his family was where I learned I did not like living alone. I bought that quarter of land from Henry Miller from Cando, who was related to Lee someway. Maybe Janice could talk some about her dad. Lee was certainly one of my dad’s colorful pals. I bet she remembers his little mare, Patsy and his unique stock saddle. I wouldn’t doubt that Patsy brought him back from Kelvin that night when he pulled Herman House’s tooth with a pair of farm pliers. Every self respecting farmer carried a pair of pliers in his overall special pocket. The farm in those days was not the best place to be if you had asthma as bad as Lee did, but I think it added to his personality….hands on his knees whenever he was sitting. Those were the days when Lee and Emma were probably snowed in for weeks at a time in the winter. Roads came up there in the 50’s, could be off a couple years. Gary Metcalfe

Reply from Cheryl Larson Dakin (71): BEDFORD, TX

To Mark Schimetz…I love the wedding photo of your parents. Thanks for sending. In the spirit of 1950 weddings I wanted to include a photo of my Mom and Dad – Mensvil Norman Larson, Jr. and Verdellis L. Richard married August 21, 1950. Another of them is taken at the locks in Seattle not too much later than that.

Cheryl Larson Dakin

Mensvil Norman Larson, Jr. and Verdellis L. Richard – August 21, 1959

Mensvil Norman, Jr & Verdellis (Richard) Larson

Replies from Sharron Gottbreht Shen (59): Everett, WA


I spent some time today trying to send various Footnote items to you. No Luck! It seems that Footnote has blocked further mail to you? I thought they encouarged sharing but it seems they only want subscribers.

I searched for mention of Harman Hiatt today – no mention anywhere that I have found. Three Hiatt’s were registered for Selective Service in Rolette County: Albert Hazen Hiatt; Amos Albert Hiatt; Willie Edwin Hiatt, all of Dunseith postal service.

In the 1930 Census the Henry A and Charlotte Hiatt family are listed in Bottineau County. Henry A, age 47 born Iowa, parents b Iowa; Charlotte O, age 42 b Sweden, parents b Sweden. Harold R 19; Amos A 16; Alice M 14; Marie M 10; Ethel E 8; Gladys L 6; Lillie O 4 3/12; Betty J 1 9/12. All b ND. Both Henry and Harold were listed as laborers/general farming.

Bill Hosmer might have some interesting memories to share of the trip to Hudsons Bay mentioned June 1931 in the TMS Dunseith News? I would love such an adventure.

There is mention of the Stokes family; before your time Gary.

The Borland family made a permanent move to Idaho shortly after this the trip west mentioned here.

Miss Elsie Lafrance was the adopted daughter of Joe and Mary Louise La France. She was blind from birth. Elsie studied Braille in Philadelphia. Alice Tennancour Berube said that Elsie would often read to her and her sisters from her books in Braille.

The over 1500 young men called by the Selective Service Act are all listed in early 1940. Men were then called in smaller groups from this list by lottery for induction. These items might interest with Memorial Day around the corner.



From Sharron:

Billie Jack Hosmer’s birthday was celebrated 9 months after the Hudson holiday of Jack and Ines Hosmer! His mom held a party 17 Oct 1938 and entertained 12 guests. Bill might share their story of the trip to Hudsons Bay.

I have so many wonderful memories of Jack and Ines Hosmer, Bob and Lee Hosmer, Martinson’s Bakery and the beautiful Morinville couple that it is hard to know where to start. For a retired person, I have many distractions, all of my own making! Having left home in 1958, I see most folks of Dunseith as they were then – forever young.

At the time of the centennial celebration, Jack Hosmer sent word that I should come by and visit. He had a copy of the photo of George Gottbreht and himself on the streets of St Louis, MO, as I recall. They had traveled further south with invite for black baseball players to come to Dunseith. Certainly board and room must have been part of the package. Snips of the Dunseith Colored Giants keep appearing in old issues of Turtle Mountain Star. You could see that Jack relished the memory of the trip and later result. At that visit Jack also reminded me of the many occasions their Metigoshe cabin was open for young visitors. Foremost is the recollection of Lee, having taken a crew of girls their for some fishing from shore – she patiently spent about an hour unsnarling the mother of all knots from my reel! Wonderful, wonderful people.

Speaking of fishing, Marc and I had two days on the Spokane River near his home last year, end of March. I would phone our fish report and ETA to Kathy. The final day of that outing, Kathy said to hurry, the Blue Angels were exercising right above Marc’s home. We arrived for the last 5 minutes. Unbelievable events happen to heart rate and respiration when face to face with the pilot. I have bad knees now, but I was jumping, shouting and waving at the marvel. Marc and I were the sole observers standing in his wide open ten acres. Wow! I’ve so enjoyed every item of the Dunseith fly over and Bill Hosmers comments/commendations. I am attaching a Star item about his big brother Clark Hosmer, lest we forget a single hero.

Keep well, Sharron

Sharren, this is the item attached. I’ll post the Clark Hosmer Article with a later message. Gary

Turtle Mountain Star – October 1938

6/15/2016 (2397)

Good day folks,

Today is my bowling day, so I am putting this together kind of fast. I leave here normally about 11:30 AM.  It is 10:45 AM now.



Reply to the Fontaine picture in the last blog
From Neola Kofoid Garbe:  Bottineau & Minot, ND

Hi Gary,

Another VERY INTERESTING newsletter, including the information Mark Schimetz provided for Arsaine/Melinda Toupin Fontaine, one of the Wondrasek pictures I sent to you. Thanks, Mark. :)


Don Lauchner, the Bottineau Family Bakery owner, passed away.
Message from Vickie Metcalfe (’70):  Bottineau, ND


Hey Gary,

I know you have enjoyed a few cups of coffee at the Family Bakery.

Patrons of Family Bakery were saddened  to hear the passing of Don Lauckner this past weekend.

Don and Karen own Family Bakery here in Bottineau.

(Don’s son is the baker of  yummy caramel rolls, rolls and Bismarcks).

This Hometown  bakery has cooked for  lots of folks including, Bottineau Senior Citizens and the county Jail.

Don and Karen also have been very generous community members.

Later. Vickie

Gary’s Comment.
Yes, the Bakery is the community meeting place. I have spent many hours in there with my visits back, meeting and seeing so many friends. Often times I’d go there for breakfast and not leave until well into the afternoon.

I didn’t see Don this past July, but I had several nice chats with Karen. She is such a nice person. Our condolences are with her and her family too with Don’s passing.


Blog (468) posted on May 24, 2009


Reply from Jean Nicholas Miller (66): GLENDALE, AZ
It was very nice seeing the picture of Herman Martinson. He was a very nice man and I remember those date filled cookies so well!!! I used to love going in the bakery with my mother and I always managed to get a cookie or two out of the visit. Terry was in my class and the year I went to music camp he delivered rolls and buns to the camp. I’ve never had one of those that was equaled in taste either. The picture brought back alot of memories.
Jean Nicholas Miller (66)
Replies from Diane Larson Sjol (70): Minot, ND
I just have to say one thing…well two things….first…Herman
Martinson made the best date bars I have ever eaten in my whole
life!!!!!!!!!Second, Bev, your mom is gorgeous in that
picture….brings lots of memories cuz…Diane
Diane’s reply to Mark Schimetz:
Thanks for supplying the photo of Arsain and Melinda Fontaine. I
can’t get over how much Margaret Fontaine Sebelius looks like her
grandmother! I have wonderful memories of playing at Joe and
Margaret’s house as a kid in the second grade…the convent used to be
right next door….we lived across the street from the convent in a
green and white house shaped like a barn. The Grossman’s lived kind
of behind us if I remember correctly. We had alot of fun times
playing over at their house too, climbing trees with Patty, Paul,
Peter and Parrell…..long time ago.Diane Larson Sjol

Bobby Slyter’s (70) reply to Mark Schimetz (70): Wichita, Kansas


Reply to Aggie Casavant from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,Aggie Casavant wrote a real nice letter about my parents. I appreciate
it. There are a few things I can remember about her family that are of
equal esteem. I remember her mother, Marie ( I believe that’s her name
but we always called her Mrs. Casavant), always was smiling and friendly
as we picked up our noon lunches at school. If I remember correctly, she
didn’t drive and for quite a while she rode to work on the school bus.
That is dedication. One thing I remember about Rene, Gerald and Joe
(twins), and Aime was when they saved up their money and bought a really
nice little black ’47 Chevy coupe. It was like a ‘little old ladies
car’, in that it was immaculate. They drove it to school for a while and
then on one fateful trip home they crested a hill and hit someone’s cow
that was on the road. The beautiful little car was totaled. I remember
how disgusted we all felt about the boys wrecking their car. They just
smiled and said, “Oh well.” One time in choir practice, Joe was holding
his music with both hands and suddenly sneezed. Gerald said, in his slow
‘Frenchy’ brogue, “Mister Johnson, I think you’ll have to keep that
music for Joe, for next year!” The entire choir roared with
laughter—including the Casavant boys! They were a fun bunch to be
around! Tim Hill and I made a ‘road trip’ to Wahpeton in 1970, to visit
John Bogus and the other guys from home. John lived in a basement
apartment with some other local guys. Gerald or Joe (sorry but I don’t
remember which) was living with them. He had just returned from a tour
in Viet Nam, where because of his small size was assigned the duties of
a ‘tunnel rat’. After all that, he still was the same fun guy he was in
high school. To me this was amazing, as many of the vets at Bottineau
School of Forestry were carrying visible emotional scars from their
experiences. The entire Casavant family is one of the nicest bunch of
folks you could ever hope to meet! Thanks Gary!

Attached is a picture of a car very similar to the one the Casavant boys
had. It’s not the same one, just one from my wheeling and dealing, that
may bring back some memories of their car.


Dick, I remember seeing Mrs. Casavant riding the school bus too. I remember her well working in the school cafeteria. She was always so pleasant and so nice and so chearful. She raised a very fine family of 16 wonderful children too. I just happen to have all of the the Casavant siblings in my records, all of whom are still living. I have listed their names and info below. Gary
Casavant family siblings
City / State / ZIP
1 Casavant Bernadette Rolette, ND 58366
2 Casavant Paul West Fargo, ND
3 Casvant Yvonne Bismarck, ND 58504
4 Casavant Boucher Annette Rolette, ND 58366

5 Casavant Aamodt Lorette Rugby, ND 58368

6 Casavant Joseph Lester Prairie, MN 55354

7 Casavant Rene Bismarck ND 58504

8 Casavant Aime Jamestown, ND 58401

9 Casavant Gerald Jamestown, ND 58402

10 Casavant-Boucher Mary Ann Rolette, ND 58366

11 Casavant Aggie Fort Mill, SC 29715

12 Casavant Eddie Bismarck, ND 58504

13 Casavant Robert Bismarck, ND 58504

14 Casavant James Jamestown, ND 58401

15 Casavant Ellingson Kathy Bismarck, ND 58504

16 Casavant Halvorson Carolee Bismarck, ND 58501


6/13/2016 (2396)

Gail Halvorson (’72)
Message from Rod Hiatt (’69):  Bottineau, ND.


I did an auction sale on Saturday in the Turtle Moutains just west of the Bottineau/Rolette County line and it was like having a Dunseith Reunion. I think that there was every Hillbilly fron Souris to St. John and a large number of Dunseith people there, with close to 400 people attending. A whole lot of visiting and BS’n going on for them while I was selling. I had the pleasure of seeing Gale Halvorson Shuler for the first time in many years. Gail is still as good looking as always and has the sweetest personality of any gal that came out of Dunseith. Just wish I would have had more time to visit with her.



St. Mary’s Indian Mission
Correction from Ron Peltier (’70):  Dunseith, ND

The picture of the church posted by Bev back in 2009 was not St. Anns, it was St. Mary’s Indian Mission, just east of the Dunseith Day School.  It was called an Indian Mission and later changed to just St. Mary’s.


Posting of the day “The Platters”
From Wally Garbe (Neola’s Husband): Minot, ND

The Platters

Little did the Platters know in 1955 that this song would be so popular and appropriate in 2014, 59 years later.

1955 Song

June 12th – Ching Palace Chinese Restaurant, Cebu City, Philippines

We had a wonderful dinner last night with Bernadette’s Great Niece and Nephew, Jasmine 11 and Tyler 9. They are Novie’s kids. Good kids. Lately we have been taking Jasmine with us a lot when we go out so she can assist Bernadette, especially going to the bathroom. That is one task I can’t do. Often times Bernadette needs help dishing up her food too. If it is a buffet we are at Jasmine will go with Bernadette and dish up her plate for her. She likes going with us and we love having her along. Last night Tyler came along too.

Because Novie was unable to go, Jasmine went with us to our last Cebu Expat Monthly dinner. Following the dinner, Bernadette always makes her rounds visiting to all the tables, normally with Novie, but last month it was with Jasmine. She got a lot of attention and lot of hugs, so now she wants to attend all the dinners. I think we will let her.
Stokes 2396


Blog (467) posted on May 23, 2009


Posted on May 23, 2009

Reply from Diane Fugere (75): Minot, ND


I was in Bismarck a couple days at meetings and found it ironic to see all the memories posted about Don and Bernice when I got home.

The reason I found it ironic was that I too had thought about Don and Bernice both on the way to Bismarck and back to Minot.

Everyone who was ever in choir will know what stirred my memory. I was listening to the radio, (Bismarck has a great oldies station) and heard the song both on the way down and on the way back: Monday, Monday by the Mamas and the Papas!

Great song and great memories of a wonderful couple.

Diane Fugere

Reply from Erling Landsverk (44): Portage, WI




From Sharon Longie Dana (73): MIssoula MT

Reply to Martinson Picture:

He made the best birthday cakes in the world!! Lemon-filled…….And date-filled cookies….Tara got me hooked!!! He was the best!!!!!!

Sharon Longie Dana (73)

Reply from Evon Lagerquist (77): Dunseith, ND

Amos & Annie Hiatt lived where Norris & Arleen Knutson live.

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

Uncle Amos lived on a lake just east of Aunt Margie. I still remember an incident at their home. My parents were visiting and I was sitting on a chair waiting and waiting and fell asleep and falling off. The silly things one remembers…………..

Florence, This would be where Norris & Arleen Knutson are now living. They purchased their farm from Little Willie and Maxine Hiatt in 1955 when they moved to Bottineau. The name of the lake is the “Lagerquist Lake”. Gary

Reply from Eileen Brudwick: Fargo, ND

Hi Gary,

According to the 1910 & 1920 census, Amos & Annie lived in the Willow Lake township,Rolette County, North Dakota. Hope this helps.


Immaculate Heart of Mary Church Replies:

Correction from Bev Morninville (72): Dunseith, ND

Gary, I don’t know where my mind was when I sent you the picture of St Marys and I said it was St Ann’s St Ann’s is in Belcourt and St Marys was up north of Dunseith I am sure alot of people thought OH MY GOD Bev has really lost it. haha in any case It is St Marys.

Bev, I love it!!! Look at the activity this generated with the attention given to this church. We are all human and we all make our share of blunders. We all know you knew this was St. Mary’s, but what you knew and what got written didn’t quite match is all.

I have attached a Cemetery listing (Excel spread sheet) for this church that was compiled by Vance Bailey (Deceased) in 2002. I received this list from Vance’s wife Doreen. Gary

Reply from Floyd Dion (45):Dunseith, ND

Hi Gary

The picture of the church that Bev. Morninville Azure sent was not St. ann’s Church, it was Immaculate Heart of Mary Church. It was changed from St. Mary’s Church to Immaculate Heart of Mary,because it was confused with St. Mary’s Mission in Dunseith where the Sisters lived.


Reply from Richard Langer: Belcourt, ND

The picture of the church is not St Ann’s, but it was St. Mary’s church located a few miles east of the Dunseith Day School. It was burnt a few years ago. Richard Langer

Reply from Ron Peltier (70): Dunseith, ND

The church pictured is not St. Anns, it was the Immaculate Heart of Mary Church also once called St. Mary’s Indian Mission Church.

Reply from Allen Richard (65): Midland, MI

The picture is of St Mary’s Church–It was a mile or so east of Highway 3 — straight east of the Day School. St. Ann’s is the Catholic Church in Belcourt


Reply fron Ele Dietrich Slyter (69): Dunseith, ND

One of us is losing it!! That sure looks like St. Mary’s to me..it was located just east of the Round House corner north of Dunseith. Let me know if it’s me and not you losing it. Thank you again for the work you do Gary..can’t start my day without you anymore.


Immaculate Heart of Mary Church

Pictures provided by Mark Schimetz (70): Rolette, ND
Louis & Stella (Richard) Schimetz – October 10, 1950

 From Mark Schimetz:

Gary the Man is Arsaine Fontane. born in 1878 in Canada, The lady is his wife, Melinda (Toupin) Fontaine, born in February 1897, also from Canada. They are the parents of Joseph Fontaine Sr. Joseph was one of 16 Children Arsaine and Melinda had.

Joseph married Theresa Masse and had 8 children. Earnest, Alice, Janet, Lucille, Joe Jr. Margaret and (Victor and Mary) were killed in a small plane crash in the Dunseith area.

Hence, Arsaine and Melinda are the Grandparents of Joe Fontaine Jr. Class of 1969, Margaret Fontaine, class of 1971, and sibling listed above.

Arsaine and Melinda are mentioned in the Prairie Past and Mountain Memories, Page 39 and 40. No Photo however. Some of the older, Children may have attended school in Willow City’s Catholic school. I know that Joe Jr. did for a few years.


6/10/2016 (2395)

Dick & Brenda Johnson and Ron Hett perform at the Good Sam
Posting from Sharon Zorn Gerdes (’62):  Windsor, CO

I just returned from a trip to Bottineau where I moved my mom from Oak Manor ( following cervical laminectomy on five vertebrae) to long term care at the hospital.    While she was in rehab at Good Sam we had the pleasure of hearing Dick and Brenda Johnson and Ron Hett and his wife give a  performance.    Well it was just wonderful music – I had forgotten that Dick had such an excellent voice.  Their choice of music was perfect, their talent superb,  and it was so much appreciated by the patients there.  Their daily lives  can become so routine and slow- and when they are entertained by kind talented people like this, it makes their world brighter and better.  I just wanted to say thank you for taking your time and talent and sharing it with so many.   It gives them  a better day today and leaves great memories in their minds. Sharon Zorn Gerdes

Ron Hett                         Dick and Brenda Johnson


Aime Vandal’s obituary
Posted by Jeff Cote: Morehead, MN


some of your friends already know this but I’m forwarding this obit for Aime Vandal. He was one of my dads best friends.

Thanks Jeff.

Aime Vandal | 1939 – 2016 | Obituary

Send condolences 

Aime Vandal

Born: March 21, 1939
Died: May 30, 2016

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Aime Vandal, age 77 of Bottineau, died Monday, May 30, 2016 in the Bottineau hospital. Funeral services will be held on Friday, June 3, 2016 at 10:00 A.M. in St. Marks Catholic Church with the Burial following the service at the Oak Creek Cemetery in Bottineau. Visitation will be held on Thursday, June 2, 2016 from 1:00 P.M. until 9:00 P.M. at the Nero Funeral Home. Father Michael will be leading a Rosary service at 7:00 PM in the Funeral Home.

Aime Vandal, a son of Leonard and Estelle (Nordin) Vandal, was born on March 21, 1939 and lived in Lordsburg Township, Bottineau County. Graduating from Notre Dame School in Willow City. On April 16, 1963 he was married to Gladys Brown in Rolla. They began farming in Lordsburg Township, also working at the Bottineau Public School as a Bus mechanic, driver and a grounds keeper. In 1984 they moved into Bottineau. Aime retired in 2006 and they have continued to make Bottineau their home.

He was a member of St. Mark’s Catholic Church of Bottineau. Aime was active in the Bottineau Knights of Columbus and was on the Overly Elevator Board for many years. He enjoyed woodworking and helping his family and friends with projects.

He is survived by his wife, Gladys of Bottineau; sons, Daniel Vandal of Billings, MT and Bill (Melissa) Vandal of Champlin, MN; daughters, Stephanie (Ron) Mehrer of Bismarck, Kris (Todd) Handeland of Bottineau, Stacy (Brian) Wright of Bremerton, WA, Andrea (Pat) Fox of Palermo, ND and Mara (Jason) Wagner of Devils Lake; 17 grandchildren; one great-grandchild; sisters, Rose Marie Ormberg, Cecilia Vandal, Marguerite Ault, Helen Evans, Alice Leonard and Grace Woodford; brothers, Norman Vandal and Michael Vandal.

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Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe:  Bottineau & Minot, ND
Raymond Azure | 1931 – 2016 | Obituary

Born: December 03, 1931
Died: June 06, 2016


Raymond Azure, age 84 of Dunseith, died Monday, June 6, 2016 in a Belcourt hospital. Funeral services will be held on Monday, June 13, 2016 at 10:00 A.M. in St. Anthony’s Catholic Church of Belcourt. Burial will be in the church cemetery. A wake will be held on Sunday, beginning at 4:00 P.M. with a prayer service at 7:00 P.M. in the church.

Raymond, a son of Alphonse and Rose (LaFountain) Azure, was born on December 3, 1931 at Belcourt. He attended Greatwalker School during his first six years of school and then stayed at home to help his large family on their farmstead northeast of Dunseith. He remained at home until he entered the U.S. Army in 1953 and he received an honorable discharge in 1955. He returned home after the service and then married Marie Morin. From this marriage they had six children: Arlene (Leslie) Allery of Bismarck, Raymond Lee Azure, Dunseith, Rosie Henry, Dunseith, Connie (Dan) Eman, Dunseith, Randy (Rhonda) Azure, Dunseith and Michelle Azure (deceased) This marriage later ended in divorce.

He met Barbara Lafountain in 1977 and on September 21, 1979, they were united in marriage.  From this marriage, Raymond gained three other wonderful children: Bonita (Mike) Malaterre, Jackie (Ron) LaFountain, and Richard (Adele) LaFountain. He loved spending time with his family, especially his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He had 28 grandchildren and 32 great-grandchildren.

Ray began his business career as a cement finisher early in his life and he was good at it. He taught his 3 boys his way of life and that included Lee, Randy and Richard. He was very proud they all learned his line of work and they too went on to make a good living as cement finishers and one became a very successful businessman. After many years in this business, he decided to retire to stay home and enjoy his later years. He loved going to the Casino, playing cards and just spending time visiting his grandchildren. Family gatherings were his favorite time because he just loved to visit and tell stories of his younger years.

Raymond is survived by his wife of 36 years, Barbara Azure, his children, Arlene, Raymond, Rosie, Connie, Randy, Bonita, Jackie, and Richard, one sister, Dorothy Page, 2 brothers, Albert and Damian, and 1 sister-in-law, Delores Azure. Raymond was preceded in death by his parents, Alphonse and Rose Azure, his daughter, Michelle Azure, his sister Teresa, his brothers, Peter and Francis Azure of St. John, and sisters-in-law, Martha and Theresa Azure, and brother-in-law, Mike Page and granddaughter, Kayli Marie LaFountain.

Raymond’s family would like to thank everyone for their kind and comforting words, their generous donations of food and help they have given them during this last week. The many people who came to the hospital to visit Raymond especially during this last week. Father Dennis for being there for us and all of the hospital staff who were so kind and thoughtful, and who gave Raymond such good care while he was in the hospital. GOD BLESS EACH OF YOU.


Blog (466) posted on May 22, 2009


Question – Amos & Annie Hiatt:
Folks, When I was talking to Harvey Hiatt yesterday, he was telling me how his grandparents, Amos & Annie Hiatt, loaded up their belongings and headed west. He said his grandmother, much to his grandfathers disgust, loaded a whole bunch of home made canned goods for that trip too. He wasn’t sure of the year that they went west, but I think it was in the early 50’s. They moved to Medford, OR. My question is, where did Amos and Annie live when they were in ND? I know they lived in the Ackworth community, but I’m not sure where. Amos purchased the Stokes place from my Grandmother. Little Willie Hiatt, Harvey’s dad, owned the Stokes place in later years. He later sold it to the Fauske’s who currently own it.
Harvey also said that Amos Jr., son of Henry Hiatt, was known as Little Amos just like his dad was known as Little Willie. These guys were given these names so as not to be confused with their uncles with the same name living in the same community.
Harvey also mentioned that he checked the Rolette County courthouse records for land that Harmen Hiatt, his great grandfather, may have owned and discovered that he never owned any property. He raised his family in a two story log house that was located about 50′ east of our house across the road from the Ackworth cemetery. I’m not sure who owned the property at that time. In later years the Stokes’ owned it.
Reply from Claudette McLeod (80): Belcourt, ND
I love the picture of Herman, He was such a wonderful person to be around, I still wish for his delicious bread, I remember being really young and going into the Bakery with my Grandpa Roy Poitra and they would visit for hours. Again Thanks Gary for a all the good memories that you bring back to us.


Claudette, I do not have an address for you, but with the 58316 in your email address I’m assuming you are living in Belcourt? Gary
Reply from Cheryl Larson Dakin (71): BEDFORD, TX
Bev…what a beautiful picture of your mom!
Cheryl D.
Reply from Aggie Casavant (69) Fort Mill, SC
Hi Gary,Thank you so much for giving the people who’s lives were so touched by Don Johnson, to share thoughts and memories. Due to my busy schedule, and having the day off today, this morning was the first time that I really got to sit down with a good cup of coffee, and read all the messages that people wrote of their memories of Don &Bernice…What a joy and a blessing to sit and read all the different stories. I especially enjoyed Bill Hosmer’s, and Paulette LaCroix’s. I found Bill Hosmer’s so interesting, giving insight to Don and Bernice as high school kids like we were. You know how it was when you were young, and you never really gave much thought that your parents or teachers, were once kids too….Like they just dropped out of the sky as grown ups, sent here for the sole purpose to be our parents and teachers…Ain’t life crazy??? I know the word ain’t would not be acceptable to use if Ms Foss was reading it, but I guess I just lived in the south too long. Anyway Paulette, I loved the mixture of sentimental memories and humor ; and especially Mr. Johnson giving recognition, and appreciation, and would always leave you feeling, that you were the most important kid in the world…I would go as far as to say, that any of my success or accomplishments in life are directly as a result of the impact Don Johnson had on my life, and I would go as far as to say many of my brothers and sisters would agree. That’s why I remind teachers every chance I get, what an opportunity they have to change a kids life completely for the better. So Gary, I hope if there’s anymore stories out there of Don & Bernice that people send them in. Thanks Gary
From Allen Richard (65): Midland, MI
I just got a call form a guy that said that because of my good standing with a particular visa card, they wanted to give me a $125.00 gas card. They had the last four numbers of my card and called me at my office. They wanted to verify the other 12 numbers of the card.
Well I was born at night, but not last night.
They also called me at my office, a number that my card company does not have.
You might want to pass this on.
Picture from Bev Morinville Azure (72):
GARY, This is St Ann’s church ,,,,,,A fire destroyed it a few years ago. But I and I am sure alot of other readers have good memories of it. GOD BLESS YOU …………BEV

Bev, Where was St. Ann’s church located? Gary

6/8/2016 (2394)

Reply to Larry Nagel’s tribute to Dennis Espe
From Toni Morinville Gredesky (’68):  Farimount, ND


Thanks for writing such a beautiful tribute for Dennis Espe. You are right; he was a gifted teacher and always one of my favorites. I remember collecting leaves and insects for projects in his class. I also remember my friends and I correcting papers for him and Mr. Morgan in a little office they had at the end of the hall. When JFK was shot, an announcement came over the intercom. I remember 3 or 4 of us  being in their little office listening to the radio about the assassination and hearing that the president had died. As a teacher of 40+ years, I have to give credit to Mr. Espe for being such a wonderful role model as a teacher dedicated to his subject and engaging us as human beings. A true treasure.

Toni Morinville Gredesky


Reply to Larry Nagel’s tribute to Dennis Espe
From Vickie Metcalfe (’70):  Bottineau, ND

To Mr. Nagel,

Thank You for sharing in depth  heartfelt  personal memories of Mr. Espe as a valued,trusted  friend and wise, respected educator.

Vickie Metcalfe


Happy Anniversary to Darrel and Dorothy Fassett
From Ginger LaRocque Poitra (’65):  Belcourt, ND

Darrell and Dorothy

Wow 69 years!

That is great!

Happy Anniversary to you two, and may you have many more.  Awesome!

Ginger Poitra


Blog (465) posted on May 21, 2009


Posted on May 21, 2009

Tribute to Don & Bernice Johnson from Aggie Casavant (69) Fort Mill, SC

Aggie, this is a very touching well written letter that you have written. You most certainly have a good way with words.

Folks, With the dynamic impact Don & Bernice left on our community, I have been thinking it would be proper to send all these wonderful tributes to the local papers for publication. Dick Johnson, we would for sure pass all this through you before doing this. Your folks have been gone 29 years now. They are so well remembered and will never be forgotten.

Please keep the memories coming. Gary

I was so very happy when I saw this website do a tribute to Don & Bernice Johnson,that is now giving me the opportunity to share my thoughts and memories of two beautiful people…two people who left a far greater impact on peoples lives than I believe they ever realized. Don Johnson set the standard for me what every man,in what ever capacity of my life,should measure up to…So far I haven’t found one. The things I remember the most about him is his warm and friendly smile,and chuckle,and when he would meet me in the hall he would always give me that smile and say,”Hi Ag-ga-nus”, he would pronounce my name like that ;and chuckle. I remember his earth science class and he would make it so interesting.I remember for a semester test in earth science,he gave us 50 definitions and we had to give the word that defined it.I know he had to be aware of the fact that I overall in school did not do well in any of my classes,and for me to pass a test was unheard of(all jokes aside) however I always did reasonably well in his class.When I was taking that semester test of completions,not multiple choice, I got every last one of them,except I was stumped on one.He told me to go onto the other questions and come back to it,that the answer would come to me.I finished up the test and came back to that one…and just drew a blank. All the other kids completed the test and had left the room,and Mr. Johnson stood by my desk and said,”Come on Aga-ness tink, tink,you can do it.I remember he pulled a desk into the aisle and put his foot up on the seat leaning in trying to help me as much as he could,but not giving me the answer.I can still see those brown pants and brown wingtip shoes with that design on them propped up on that desk seat,and all I could do was stare at those shoes wanting so badly to remember the definition of…”washing away of the soil”. He said,”Aga-nus,remember in class when I gave the example when the road flooded by our farm and it washed part of the road away,it is called……………..”He wanted so badly for me to get 100%,but I just couldn’t do it.After about 20 minutes I put my head on my desk and said,”I just can’t remember it…what is it??? There was a long pause,and he said,Your sure you can’t remember it? And I said no,”No I’m Done”…He said,”Agganus,the washing away of the soil is called….erosion….it seemed like the whole world stood still for a minute,and I fell face down over my test…Oh nooooo I said…When I looked up at him,he kinda had tears in his eyes,and he hugged my head and sai,”You did good Agganus, you did really good”. Then he went on to say,”in the years ahead,everytime you see a washed out road,or washing away of the soil you will remember the word “erosion” and this moment…and you were right Mr. Johnson…I never have forgot.As for Bernice, my Mom shared with me something so special that Bernice had done for her,everytime I think of it I just say,Wow! Due to the personal sensitivity of the subject on my Mothers part, I don’t feel at liberty to share it over the website.But I can say with certainty Dick, something you’ve known for years….that you were blest with the two most awesome parents that anyone could of been blest with…it saddens me everytime I think of how your time with them, and the worlds time with them was so short…When I’ve tried to describe Don and Bernice to people in my travels over the years. I would say,”they kinda reminded me of the show Green Acres,cuz Don Johnson would have on a suit when I saw him,and Bernice would always have on a coat with a fur collar and drove a big gold Cadillac,but they lived on a farm,and were much more genuine,warm,sincere and common,than Eddie Albert and Za Za Gabore…They were just the nicest people ever…..Thank you still after all these years Don & Bernice Johnson. You are still loved,you are still missed..But never forgotten…Sincerely, Aggie Casavant

Reply/message/picture from Dick Johnson (67): Dunseith, ND

Gary and Friends,

Thanks to all for the respectful comments about my folks. They seem to
have impacted many lives over the years. It would have been nice to have
had them with us for many more years. It doesn’t seem possible that they
have been gone for 29 years, this May 22. Time waits for no man. Thank
you all.

A while ago Gary Metcalfe mentioned Raymond Kelly. He was called ‘Red’
and ‘Bum’ and ‘Hobo’. He actually traveled around by hopping freight
trains like the real hobos. I think Sybil Johnson said old Grant Kelly
sent Red to get some potatoes and he came back 10 years later with a bag
of spuds on his shoulder! I remember one time he was standing in front
of Sy’s Pool Hall and when I went by he stuck his cane out and stopped
me. He said, “You’re Don’s kid, ain’t you?” I was about 10 years old at
the time. I said I was and he said, “I made your dad his first bow and
arrow.” He then proceeded to spin yarns and tell me all about his
escapades. I went home and told Dad about this neat old guy I met up in
front of the pool hall. As I was telling him what the guy said, Dad was
just staring at me in disbelief. He asked me who the guy was? I told him
he said his name was Red Kelly. Dad shook his head and said, “Don’t
believe a word he tells you, he’s the biggest story teller in the
country!” Hey, I thought I had really discovered something! Oh well, Dad
knew him forever and I just met him. Red stayed in a small log cabin out
past our barn, on the shore of Horseshoe Lake, next to Axel Johnson and
his family. They moved out in about the late 30s and the place was left
abandoned except for an odd wild animal now and then. When I was a kid,
I played in the cabin. By the mid 60s the roof had fallen in and later
the whole cabin collapsed. I took this picture in 1971 for a class in
photography at UND. In the mid 70s, I pushed the remnants of both houses
into a pile with the Cat and burned what was left to clean up the place.
One amazing thing happened when I was scraping up the last of the stones
the house had sat on! I looked down at the black dirt and saw a very
small curved gold wire. I jumped off the Cat and gently dug around until
I unearthed my great grandmother’s reading glasses—-unharmed! Can you
imagine the chances of driving a 17 ton Cat and dozer over a tiny pair
of old glasses and only exposing one bow and then not smashing them to
bits! It was pretty amazing! We still have them and even use them once
in a while for removing slivers or other intricate stuff. Quite the
heirloom! Thanks Gary!

Picture of Raymond ‘Red’ Kelly’s cabin on Horseshoe Lake

Questions/Message from Blanche Wicks Schley (42): Grand Forks, ND

I was reading through some very old obituaries the other day and it was interesting to see flower girls listed. Do know anything about this idea at a funeral? I have no idea as to the origin of this idea.

Can you enlighten me?

In your daily e-mails, a Dunseith book is mention…is this something that would still be available?

And, last but not least, I really enjoy the delightful stories about the residents of Dunseith….many of them I remember the last name but never met the people. What great story you could print if all the information was put into one great history of the town and its residents. Good job, Gary.

Blanche, the Dunseith book mentioned is the 1982 “Prairie Past & Mountain Memories” Centennial Book. Copies are available for purchase on the Dunseith WEB site. I have pasted that link below. This is a wonderful book with the histories of the Dunseith and surrounding area people. I strongly recommend the hard cover copy of this book. The soft cover copy is just glued together and the glue in mine came apart. It’s great for taking pages out of for scanning though. I now have a hard copy of this book too.

Dunseith WEB link


Yes Blanche, All these stories/pictures and email messages could be compiled into wonderful book. We are not finished yet though. This would be a great project for anyone interested in doing this. This would be a pretty good sized book. Gary

Dunseith Seattle Reunion dinner July 24, 2009 – Posted by Bill Grimme

Folks, This is the current list of folks signed up for our Dunseith Seattle reunion being held at the Best Western in Seattle on July 24th. If you plan to attend, please make your dinner selection and mail your payment to Bill Grimme. I have pasted the info for doing this below. Those of us going on the cruise are looking forward to seeing you Seattle folks at this reunion. This will be a fun get together. Gary


Chicken Breast

New York Steak

Chuck Munro



Robert Hosmer


Gary Stokes


Nancy Baldwin



Diane and Scott Sjol



Randy Flynn



Gary Metcalfe (child 1/2 price)


Ardis Steggal



Phyllis McKay


Lee Stickland


Lea Rae Espe


Bill Grimme


Bill Longie (TENTATIVE)


Mark VanDyne (TENTATIVE)


David Shelver



Sharron Shen



Evie Pilkington Shirley Larocque Laverne Rude


Connie Fauske Monte (Tentative)


Oliver/Marlene Reing



Darrel/Deborah Stokes


Sandra Vandal



Cheryl Haagenson


Marie Staub



The list (above) are the folks that have paid and/or indicated they will attend the reunion dinner. The names in RED have indicated attendance, but, I have not received payment yet. Please check this list and verify your dinners are correct and if your payment info is correct , i.e. if you are in RED and have sent a payment please let me know and I will go back and check my hard copies. I plan to close out the dinner list and hold the raffle drawing on or about May 31, so if you are sending in a late payment, please let me know.


To attend this dinner, just fill in the following selections for you or your party, send me a check, and I will return a receipt.

Note: the dinner costs listed are inclusive of all taxes and grautuities.

NumberEntréePriceExtended price

______Pan Seared Chicken Breast$24.90___________

______Angus Beef New York Steak$34.10___________


Send Check to Bill Grimme,

3117 Memory Brook Circle,Birmingham,AL35242

.Phone 205-991-6512.

Hope to see you all there. Thank you.

Bill Grimme Class of ‘65

Pictures posted by Bev Morniville Azure (72): Dunseith, ND

Found this and thought alot of the kids that used to hung out at my house would enjoy this picture of my mom…….. Lyle I know u will love it

Francis Morinville

Herman Martinson


Harvey Hiatt called me yesterday. He was actually returning my phone call. Harvey is currently living in Flagstaff, AZ. Harvey told me he had a tombstone made for his Dad, Willie E. Hiatt, inclusive of his mother’s (Maxine) and all of his siblings names engraved on it. Harvey will be placing this tombstone on their cemetery lot in Ackworth next month.

Speaking of Harvey, One of you folks sent me a picture of Harvey pictured with his Bottineau HS class of 61. I forgot who sent me that. This picture was taken in 2007. This is one of the photo’s that I lost with the reformatting of my hard drive. If any of you remember sending me that picture and still have it can you please forward it to me again?

Geraldine (Geri) LaFromboise Marcavage was our teacher at Ackworth in 1954/55. This would have been the first year of Winter school. Prior to this Ackworth was a summer school. I was in 2nd grade, Harvey Hiatt and Stan Salmonson were in 6th grade and Barbara Hiatt was in 8th grade. Geraldine lived with our family when she taught at Ackworth. I had not seen Miss LaFromboise since 2nd grade, 52 years prior to this photo being taken. Prior to our going back to Dunseith for the 2007 reunion, I decided to locate Geraldine. She was a hard one to track down, but I did find her. At the time she was living in SC, but was in the process of moving back to Belcourt. I arranged to meet her at Dale’s. When I told Harvey about this he said he and his sister Barbara would love to see her too. I then called Stan & Joan Salmonson and invited them too. We had a wonderful mini reunion with Miss LaFromboise. Geri sure has great recall of her year teaching at Ackworth. She is still the amazing wonderful beautiful lady that I remembered back in 2nd grade. As you can tell with her 1954 picture pasted below, the guys were all drawn to her beauty. She always had her pick of the litter with her dating. When I saw Geri in 2007 she did not have email. If any of you Belcourt folks know Geri, can you please pass this message on to her?


Picture taken at Dale’s in July 2007:

L to R: Stan & Joan Wurgler Salmonson, Harvey Hiatt, Geraldine LaFromboise Marcavage, Gary Stokes & Barbara Hiatt Cote.

Geraldine LaFromboise – 1954

6/6/2016 (2393)

Darrel (’47) and Dorothy Strietzel Fassett (’46) 69th Wedding Anniversary
Face Book Posting
Fassett, Darrel and Dorothy 2393
Congratulations Darrel and Dorothy. 69 years is a lot of years. You guys are looking great too. We have seen you guys frequently too, in the Bottineau area, with our trips back. Often times we meet in Wal-Mart like so many others too.  Gary

Don Corbin – 60’s DHS teacher/principle – Phoenix, AZ
Picture posted by his sister Pat Corbin Miller. Phoenix, AZ

Didn’t know of u got this picture of my brother, Don. He just turned 81 on the 2nd. Hope you and your wife are doing well. Thought you might like this pic

Pat Corbin Miller

Don Corbin – 60’s DHS Teacher –  81st Birthday
Corbin, Don 2393


Condolences to the Dennis Espe  Family by Larry Nagel larryn@westriv.com

May 25, 2016

Reverend: John D. Gondol, Family and Friends.

My name is:  Larry Nagel

My condolences are with the Dennis Espe family.  Foremost and first with his wife, Peggy, and his children, Cory, Sonia, and Robin and their families.  Also with his brother, Terry and his sister Claudia and their families.

Dennis and I go back a long, long ways.

When I graduated from college in March of 1967, the Viet Nam war was going at high speed and many, many of our young innocent soldiers ended up being shipped home in a box.  Three days after I graduated I was teaching at Upham, ND, NE of Minot, ND.   The business teacher there had been called to active duty in the Viet Nam war.  While I was finishing out the year at Upham which consisted of 9-weeks—I discovered a Business Teaching Position open at the newly built Dunseith High School. I drove to Dunseith one night after school and visited with

Lincoln Jerstad, a very popular Superintendent at that time at Dunseith High School about the vacancy in the Business Department.  Lincoln Jerstad offered me the position and I took it.  That fall started my working relationship with Dennis—we had joining classrooms—our classroom doors were so situated that they were only a few feet apart—whenever Dennis or I had to use the bathroom or do some errand during class period—the other would watch both classes.  I had a lot of respect for Dennis.  Dennis was a scholar—he was a true educator—I learned alot from Dennis.  Dennis always maintained that there must be discipline in the classroom before any learning can take place. Dennis had respect from his students and they received a great education in his classrooms—After his lecture was completed, it was time to look up the answers to his worksheets—Dennis would open his classroom door—and I can see him today—coming out into the hallway with a pencil behind his left ear.  You could walk pass his classroom—and you could hear a pin hit the floor–there wasn’t a single student talking, throwing things, or trying to get the attention of  another student—all students were working.

On the lighter side, Dennis, his other teaching co-workers, and myself we also had a lot of fun after school hours at the Garden Tap.  At that time the school board really backed the teachers like Gordie Neameyer, Curt Halvorson, and others like the bus contractors, Johnnie Hill and Duane Fugere.  Teachers at that time at Dunseith High School were very close.  I remember teachers, like Don Martel, Principal, Art Martel, English Teacher, Bill McKay, Math Teacher, Myself,  Business Education and Driver Education, his brother, Terry Espe, Librarian, Curt Knight, English, Pat Knight, English and helped in the Library, Dan Morgan, Jr. High School Principal, Bob Halstenson, 7th & 8th grade  teacher,  Gene Hepper, Coach, Don Johnson, Music, and there were others.  All of these educators were Dennis’s co-workers and friends.

Dennis, his brother, Terry and myself were all three very instrumental in getting the Dunseith Education Association started—which was and still is affiliated with the NDU—at that time it was called North Dakota Education Association.  Dennis was not only one of the founding fathers of the Dunseith Education Association, but during his career was also a member of the North Dakota Education Associ- ation  and the National Education Association.  Being a member of these Professional  Organizations  meant a great deal to Dennis

There were several years at Dunseith High School where Dennis, Terry and myself were the only returning teachers—we worked together—it was a tough place at that time to work at.

Dennis and I attended many Jaycee Conventions—at that time Dunseith Jaycees came in as Number 1 in the state for two or three consecutive years—with the help of John Morgan and George Gottebreth.

Dennis and I were always personal friends even after I left Dunseith Schools in 1983, for the better share of my life and to the present, I have filed Income Taxes with Strand Agency in Bottineau and every year I would try to visit three or four friends when I came back to the Bottineau-Dunseith Community.  Three years ago when I came back to file taxes in Bottineau, I knew I wouldn’t get back home due to a snow storm that was brewing—so luckily I made it to Dennis  and Peggy’s house. They invited me to stay overnight—but before we did that Dennis, Peggy and I went out to Dales and had supper.

Dennis will always remain one of my best, most trusted friend, that I have had on this earth.  Dennis loved his wife, Peggy, very much; he always spoke very highly of  her.  I will always remember, after the closing hours of a night’s fun out with the boys—Dennis would say, Larry stop by the house and we’ll have a beer, I would say what Peggy is going to say, He would say we will be quiet in the kitchen and Peggy is sleeping.  That is where Dennis and I solved all the world’s problems.

When I visited Dennis in the hospital on April 25th, after I told him it was Larry hear to see you, Dennis, he squeezed my hand so hard and a big Smile on his lips—so I knew—he knew—I had come to see him and say, Good Bye!

I most definitely know what it is like to lose a loved one.  I lost my only Brother,

On July 5, 2013, a grandson on March   4, 2014 and my Fiancée, Patty, on April 6, 2014.  You don’t forget—but time does wonders for the soul.

Dennis, my brother rest in peace.


Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: neola@min.midco.net Bottineau & Minot, ND
Dunseith News


Blog (464) posted on May 20, 2009


Posted on May 20, 2009

Request/message/picture from Ken Stiker:

Gary, pls put me on the list as a subscriber. I really enjoy your blog

I am attaching a scan of a June 2008 pic sent me of an alaskan cruise, Deane with wife Roberta, his sister deb Kubela w/husband Brad, and right Donna Robinson w/husband Dennis

Striker Deane RobertaHagen RR 1Box 201 Dunseith, ND 58329

Striker Kubela Deborah 8480 182nd Ave SE Wahpeton, ND 58075

Striker Robinson Donna Swift Current, SK

Couples L to R:
Deane (73) & Roberta Hagen (75) Striker; Brad & Deb Striker (74) Kubela;
Dennis & Donna Striker (76) Robinson

Don & BerniceJohnson:

Folks, A lot of you have been added to our list since the posting of these tributes of Don and Bernice Johnson.

Don and Bernice were shot to death in their home in the Turtle Mountains in 1980.

Don and Bernice were the parents of Dick Johnson (68). Dick and his wife Brenda live on the family farm north of Dunseith. Dick is a huge contributor to this daily blog. We hear from him often.

Being the Icon’s they were to the community, I feel this is well deserving of a re-run. Dick is following right along in his parents foot steps.


Tributes to Don & Bernice Johnson

Previously posted in February 2008


With all the tributes you folks have provided with memories of Don Johnson. The first 3 messages, ahead of the article, I’ve gotten today. The messages following the article have been published before. I wanted to combine all the messages into one for this distribution. I went back through and tried to capture all the memories you folks have provided of Don. Please let me know if I’ve missed any.

I will include future comments that you guys provide, with memories of Don, in the daily messages. I will also add them to this message for redistribution in the future.

Gary Stokes

From Paulette LaCroix Chisholm (68):


These daily comments, stories and memories are a much better read than the Turtle Mt. Star in my humble opinion. I see I missed the “Daddy” song.

A little story about Don Johnson. In high school I played clarinet beside Gwen Grimme on the same old honking clarinet my two older sisters played going back at least a decade. Years of abuse had practically disintegrated the case so my mom taped it from head to foot with some gawd awful putrid smelling tape. When Mr. Johnson opened the door to the little room of stored instruments and was hit by the stench, he came to the conclusion that one or more students had not cleaned some filthy reed or mouthpiece in ages. He was quite “put out” with this disgusting find and lectured us on proper hygiene so “it” would never happen again. I knew it was myfault since I couldn’t put the clarinet even close to my lips without a gag. Now, I was sure everyone “knew” my mouthpiece was the “filthy unhygienic culprit.” Too embarrassed and red faced to fess up during the lecture, I waited in painful guilt and anxious expectation until after class. To my relief, he threw his head back in laughter and told me in a playful way to “get it out of there.”

I remember his eye opening introductions to different styles of music and his tying the message of “Romeo and Juliet” with the more modern “West Side Story.” He gave many of us the recognition and appreciation our parents didn’t or couldn’t and we “felt” his pride in our accomplishments. If you wanted to participate, he provided every effort to support you. I will always remember his kindness when gently telling those, who had less than perfect pitch, to keep their voices low so they could still participate in the choir. His contribution to our community over the years was huge, heartfelt and lasting.

Paulette LaCroix Chisholm (68)

From Brenda Hoffman (68):

Thank you Gary. I love the “community” of our emails. I could send this info directly to Dick Johnson but wanted yet more accolades for Don Johnson. Don was wonderful about exposing all of us to a variety of music (first heard and fell in love with Westside Story via Don in a music class), but also made absolutely sure that any cultural event near Dunseith was available to any of us who were interested. I so remember taking the bus to A Mid Summers Night Dream and laughing hysterically — and being amazed that it was written by Shakespeare. Or the concerts in Bottineau. Or the circus in Minot. And I loved how anyone could join the choir…even me. I knew my voice wasn’t the greatest (I think that’s an overstatement!) so would pretty much just voice the words when we were practicing. Toni and Paulette told me that they couldn’t hear me so I should sing louder..which I did for one song. I was a freshman in High School so of course, was intimidated by older classmates in the choir…Don stopped our practice after that one song and just said, “Brenda, could you keep it down.” He also sang at my wedding to Terry Hegney in 1969 (Terry died in 1981)..Of course, tunes from Westside Story!

I also want to note that I worked with Dick’s grandmother Cynthia during my high school stint at the San Haven dining room. I loved her. She was so kind and gentle. I’m not sure if even Dick knows this but when I was in the hospital for TB between the ages of two and three, I swallowed a nickle that someone had given me (people used to give kids coins as treats in those days). My mom was also in the hospital at the same time. Dr. Loeb (who was a prisoner of war before becoming the director of the San…he was an absolutely wonderful Dr. by the way and we were so lucky he decided to stay in ND after the war) couldn’t remove the nickel so Dad (who was working at the San in the kitchens at the time) warmed up the car, asked Cynthia to accompany him, borrowed clothes from Jay Vanorny and we were on our way to Minot. Can you imagine every one’s terror that I wouldn’t make the long drive? At any rate, the eye, ear, nose specialist in Minot removed the coin and all was well. Thank you Dick for a loving and warm family who impacted my life in so many ways.

Brenda Hoffman (class of 68)

From Dave Slyter (70):

Hi Dick:

Just a quick comment about your dad. Just like a super star, or actor, or singer or writer or composer your dad left a legacy in so many hearts, not only in the Dunseith area, but to North Dakota and Canada. He was a man that had a lot of influence on a lot of peoples life’s. He will always be in my life. He was the best teacher I had ever had.

Just one more little story about your folks together. When we lived on the farm up in the hills my mom Margaret Hiatt would make the best cinnamon rolls in the hills of the turtle mountains. When she would get into the mood of making them there would be this strange thing that would always happen during that same day of the baking. Your mom with your dad or your mom with her mom or your mom with your dads mom would always drive up and visit. We always asked mom when she was baking if she thought Don and Bernice would show up. Sometimes we know more than said it, and they were driving up the hill to our house. It was funny and also always enjoyable as they would sit and talk about so many things and memories of the old Benny Johnson farm. Always look forward to their visits. And they loved the cinnamon rolls. We always told mom that Bernice could smell those cinnamon rolls a mile away. ha

Take care
Dave Slyter

Prairie Past and Mountain Memories (1982 centennial book) Page 213

Dick Johnson’s (68) reply to the memories of his dad, Don Johnson:

Gary and DHS Friends

I do truly appreciate all the good memories folks have about my
dad, Don Johnson. He had an ability to understand the needs of
those around him and then find a way to make their lives a
little better. The one thing that I believe he passed on to
most of the kids was that everyone is of similar value
regardless of his background or wealth or name! This I believe
is what allowed him to achieve things like Governor’s Choir
with something like sixty kids singing that well. The other
atribute that he had was to never give up no matter what the
odds were. This determination could be seen by his students and
I believe it also drove them to achieve. Thanks to all those of
you who have told your stories of your memories of my dad, it
means a lot!

Dick Johnson

Margaret Metcalfe’s (65) memories of Don Johnson:


Several people have written about memories of Don Johnson so I thought I
would add yet another:

I was a Daddy’s girl. Wherever my Dad went, I was riding on his shoulders
or hanging on to his hand. I remember my parents wondering how I was
going to handle starting school. However, my first grade teacher in
Hilltop school was Don Johnson and I thought he was the best teacher
ever.. I don’t know if this was his first teaching job, but he and
Bernice were so young and Dickie was only 2 or 3 years old. One day
Bernice came to pick him up from school and I thought she was such a
beautiful lady. Don fixed the swing in the school yard and I was the
first to get to swing on it. I backed up as far as I could and then sat
down to swing forward, just then Dickie ran in front of me and I crashed
into him knocking him down. I felt so bad, he got up Don dusted himself
off and he had a gash on his head…..but his glasses didn’t break. He
was such a little cutie.

The years went by and Don taught my husband Chuck in 8th grade in Rolette.
Then he came back to Dunseith and I remember the chorus and how we
harmonized and had concerts….so fun. I took Music Appreciation from him
and like so many others learned to appreciate so many different composers
and their music. Whenever I hear Classical music, I think of him. He
brought the Grand Canyon suite to school and we listed to the LP’s on the
stage in the new school. I thought it was the most beautiful music I had
ever heard. After that I started really listening and appreciating the
music in movies. He was my teacher in first grade and my senior years and
I have such fond memories of one terrific teacher and a wonderful, caring
person. We were so honored when he sang at our wedding! He was a

Margaret Leonard

Memories from Bill Hosmer (48):

Gary and all the rest. Just read the neat 180 degree turn by the
band described by Dick Johnson. It made me believe that Don Johnson
gave more positive stuff to more people than anyone I know. The last
time I saw him was when he was leading the band down Dunseith’s main
street at one of my visits home during Dunseith Days. His grin and
wink, when he recognized me, stays with me these many years later.

Don Lamoureux’s (75) Memories of Mr. Johnson:

I also have great memories of being in Mr. Jonson’s band. I started out playing clarinet, which didn’t seem too cool for me, I hadn’t heard of Benny Goodman. I later switched to the string bass, when that spot opened up, and was even happier when the school bought an electric bass guitar, so now I could play and be heard.

He also helped me out of a pickle during deer season one year. I was in big rush after school to get to a hunting spot, driving my dad’s 4 wheel drive jeep pickup, and was tearing up the hill past Sime’s to get to a spot before dark. I mean to get to a spot where I could hunt until dark. I rounded a curve to discover that an oncoming school bus and I were going to be occupying the same space shortly. I swerved to get out of the way, missed the bus, but put the truck into a spin, I did a 360 and then went backwards off the road and down the ditch.

I know I was closer to some other folks, but didn’t feel like confessing my crappy driving to anyone else, so I walked down to Mr. Johnson’s. He fired up a tractor and we went back to pull it out. The ditch was pretty steep, and the only thing that kept it from going farther down the ditch was the tree I managed to wedge the truck up against. I think Mr. Johnson had to go back home to get a chainsaw. It’s not real clear to me, because I was pretty much dreading having to go back home and face the music there, so to speak. Mr. Johnson tied the truck off to the tractor, buzzed the tree down, yanked the truck out, and sent me on my way. Mr. Johnson must have called ahead to smooth out the waters, because it really wasn’t that bad when I got home. Probably Dad could see nothing was going to make me feel worse than I already did. There still was the inevitable lecture of course, but then he told me of a time as a kid he was driving one of the brand new cars from the garage, and wrecked that.

I can also recall spending many fall days looking for grouse and pass-shooting ducks at Mr. Johnson’s.

Don Lamoureux (75)

Memories from Ele Dietrich (69):

After reading Deb M. memories of the Governor’s Choir in 1969, I felt that I just have to add this tickle of memory: Mr. Johnson (who would ever have called him anything else) probably had the highest impact of any teacher in Dunseith when I was in school. Through him we all learned to appreciate music. We also learned to give from our hearts when we sang and I think that has stayed with all of us to this very day. I personally can not thank him enough for that gift. I will always remember though that he absolutely dispised Buck Owens and the nasal tone of his music. Remember “let the sound come from the mouth not the nose”…those words will be with me always. He introduced me to so many kinds of music, music that I had never heard before and still love to this day. Thank you Mr. Johnson.

Ele (Dietrich) Slyter ’69 rules !!!

Memories from Deb Morinville (70):

David Slyter jogged memories from our Governor Choir days. I learned how to play “Whist” because we had down time sometimes. I also remember Governor Guy coming to Dunseith for a banquet. The town really spiffed up and it never looked so good! I also remember many long hours on busses and getting up at 5 AM to travel to many different places to sing.

Like in the legislative chambers at the Capitol in Bismarck

Yeah we had the blue blazers and the girls wore white skirts and the boys black pants. We stopped in Harvey one time to eat and filled the restaurant. On cue from Mr. Johnson we all stood up and sang our “Grace” It was very impressive. We were scattered all over but still managed four part harmony. I never realized important reading music would be. Now I singon a worship team and the ability to read music helps me to learn it quickly. Mr. Johnson had a huge impact on my

life in the way he taught me to appreciate so many different kinds of music. He never really liked country music though! What a legacy he left. It was such a great joy and privilege it was to sing with some of those former members at the Sunday service last summer at the reunion. Gary Fulsbakke directed us and we dedicated the songs to Mr. Johnson.

Keep the memories coming everyone!

Deb Morinville Marmon 70

Memories from Dave Slyter (70):

How many remember the good ole band and choir days of good ole DHS. Of course who could forget the best music director of all of DHS’s history, Don Johnson. He done so many things for so many students. One of the most memorable was when Dunseith received the Governors Choir award. I think I remember then the choir had over 60 members in it. The high school band always had big numbers in it. He ran a very high standard music department.

Alan Poitra, I remember those funny looking hats also but they were always locked up in the little practice room and we were all hoping that no one would mention to Mr. Johnson that we should wear them while we march. ha I always remember the home coming parades in Dunseith and also the day that we would travel to Minot for the Minot State College home coming parade. It was a long march, (especially when I had to carry that big ole bass drum) but was the best of times. Always went downtown Minot and hung out at all the stores. Always went to the five and dime store.

When we were in the music program in the late 60’s and into 1970(by the way that is the best year ever) we had the really nice blue blazer that we wore for high school concerts. I think we wore them for marching also. I also remember going to Devils Lake for the high school music contest or festivals. Dunseith always came home with high marks.

I think that was the best part of jr. high and high school was being in the famous Don Johnson music program. Well that and passing my grade each year. ha

One more memory I have to mention about the DHS music department. It has to do with years after I graduated but was a memory I will never forget. I was once a custodian at DHS after the good ole years of San Haven employment. My daughter Stacey was in high school band then and was under the direction of one of Don Johnson’s former students and everybody knows her, Cheryl Haagenson. She too did a great job in the music department. During the year that Stacey I think was a Junior in high school they decided they wanted to take in a contest down in Orlando Florida. So the money raising was put into place and the plans and dates of the trip were decided. I was fortunate enough to be a chaperone of this big event and what a memory it was. It will be with me for a very long time. The kids were so well behaved and they should have been so proud as they brought home this big huge trophy that I hope still is in the show case at the school. “Way to go Cheryl” You have done the school proud.

Thanks for the memories

Feb 4, 2008

Memories of Don & Bernice Johnson from Bill Hosmer (48):

Gary, and Dunseith Friends. One rather unlikely story, but one that
had some predictive qualities took place during my freshman year at
DHS. Don and Bernice were both Juniors. There was an operetta
directed by Miss Nesting. The characters in the play were Native
Americans. The title of the play was “Star Flower”. That character
was Bernice. Then there was a young brave I think named “Lone Buck”,
played by Don Johnson who was courting Star Flower. Her father was a
grizzled Chief named ‘Lost Eagle” or something like that, played by
yours truly. One line I remember well from Bernice was, “Father, you
bid me come to you”. I was supposed to be a grouch, so I had my arms
crossed across my bare chest which had been slathered with leg make up
to make me look more tribal-like. I had on a full headdress loaned by
the Chippewa tribe, and there were several of them in the audience of
this production. Bernice was so beautiful I wanted to hug her, but
that would have ended my stage career, and I’d probably have left that
leg make up on her Indian Princess dress. By the way for you young
folks, leg make up was a substitute for silk stockings which were not
available. It was a fluid in a bottle. World War II was still ongoing,
and then nylon etc became available later. There was alot of music
and the two of them sang love songs in duet, and they lived happily
everafter. Fortunately, the chief in the play did not have any singing

This was just a brief interval in a long friendship with those two
great Americans, but when there is such a wealth of personal
admiration, and deep sense of loss, every little whisp of memory comes
back to reinforce the importance of having known and indeed loved Don
and Bernice Johnson. Cheers, Bill Hosmer

Message (Don Johnson) from Glen Williams (52):

Gary…Great that you put that collection of “memories” of Don Johnson together…I was quite a bit younger than Don…so did not know him personally, but did know he was….and was to old to be in his classes…but would appear that he made a difference in a lot of students lives….I did know that he had been killed and was saddened by that event… His life just should not have ended that way…!!!

Glen Williams…

Susan Fassett’s (65) memories of the the Don Johnson family:

I have thoroughly enjoyed all the nice memories of Dick’s parents. We had many good times at the Johnson farm, as Cynthia (Dick’s Grandma) is a sister to my Aunt Dorothy Fassett. We had picnics at the farm and chased the fireflies at the edge of the lake where the farm sat, Johnson’s were included in many a family picnic and Dick was always a favorite “cousin”. My sisters, along with the “other” Fassett girls spent some nights at the farm and relate stories of the bats that inhabited the old buildings. Isn’t it great to be from a community that shares so many great memories.!!! Hugs and prayers to all—-Susan

Feb 5, 2008

Memories from Lola Metcalfe Vanorny (68):

lola vanorny, ew
Oh yes, I remember so many good memories of the Johnsons– I remember
going to a contest somewhere in his big black shiny cadillac – probably
about a 1961– and he drove really fast– (we thought) — that was cool!!_
ha– that was back in Dad’s 50 mph days– ha —!

Bill’s story about the play was really cute!!_- i can just imagine them
doing that– Yes- Bernice was very beautiful!

Sometimes when I see a group of school kids performing somewhere —
how sad it is that the dress code has gotten so lax– when we played for
an occasion somewhere – we looked sharp!!– The blue blazers – black or
white pants or skirts etc. and we’d better stand up straight– !!– He
was a stickler for that!– and I believe that too made an impression on us.
He had high standards.

6/3/2016 (2392)

Glen Rude
Born: October 04, 1936
Died: May 27, 2016

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Glen Rude, age 79 of Bottineau, died Friday, May 27, 2016 in a Bottineau nursing home. Funeral services will be held on Monday, June 6, 2016 at 10:00 A.M. in the Metigoshe Lutheran Church of rural Bottineau. Burial will be in the Salem Cemetery also of rural Bottineau. Visitation will be held on Sunday beginning at noon until 5:00 P.M. in the Nero funeral Home of Bottineau.

Glen Ar1en Rude was born October 4, 1936, at Bottineau, ND. to Albert and Gladys (Bjornseth) Rude of Homen Twp. Glen graduated from Bottineau High School in 1956, from the North Dakota School of forestry ( summa cum laude) in 1959 and from Valley City State College (with honors) in 1964. Glen was Asst. Bus. Mgr.-Registrar at the School of Forestry from 1959 – 1963. He taught Bus. Ed. at Woodworth HS from 1964-1966. From 1966-1996 he was the Bus. Ed. and Social Study teacher for the next 30 years at Newburg HS. Throughout the years he maintained an interest in the farm where he continued to raise beef cattle. Glen grew up beside the Salem Lutheran Church where he was baptized, confirmed and taught Sunday School. He was a member until it’s merger with Metigoshe Lutheran Church. He was the charter Sec.-Treasurer of the Metigoshe Lutheran Cemetery Association and a long time sexton of Salem Cemetery. He was a member of Nordlyset Lodge #488, and the local Sons of Norway where he held various offices. He also served on the boards of the Scandinavian Fire Insurance and later Hartland Mutual Insurance when the two merged.

Glen had many hobbies: He grew flowers since he was six years old, exhibited floral entries at many flower shows, and in more recent years has judged flower shows. He also collected many beautiful glassware and pottery items, as well as many antigues. He had a large collection of rooster figurines. He enjoyed embroidering, quilting, photography, oil painting and Rosemaling. He enjoyed trapping muskrats and mink, bird watching, and researching and writing local history. He firmly believed in attending church every Sunday.

He is survived by one sister, Arliss (Leonard) Hagen of Yuma, AZ, one brother, Laverne (Carrole) Rude of Vancouver, WA; four nieces, Laurie (Dan) Hagen-Hord of North Bend, WA; Sandra Hagen of Tukwilla. WA; Melissa (Mike ) Dixon of Greenacres, WA; Erin ( Scott ) Bauer of Portland, OR; and one nephew, Brant (Becky) Rude of Portland, OR. and 11 grandnieces and grandnephews.

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Basic Training Graduation Picture

Folks , with Monday being Memorial day, I posted this picture on my FB page.

 The following is Kenny Nerpel’s (’65) Face Book reply to this photo followed with my comments to Kenny and my Face Book posting.

Kenneth Nerpel: I remember all the faces, but have trouble with names. Always have. There were two guys from Rugby; A Blessum and a guy named Drege. I remember the leader’s name was Bluet and there was a Larry Ford from Grand Forks. I think we were named the outstanding platoon, largely due to the efforts of the two Dunseith kids(just kidding) I attended the memorial day parade here in Chaska; first one in a long time. It gets you thinking of days gone by. Thanks for posting Gary.

Gary’s comment to Kenny’s posting.
Kenny, You and I were center  in the 4th squad, in the back. You were to my right so I followed you with most all of our marches. We had some long ones too. I remember coming back from Night firing one night, when at about midnight and hour after we had been in bed, they got us all up for a formation outside. They told us one of the M-16 rifles was missing. Of course we knew that wasn’t true. It was just part of what we had to go through with our training. I told myself many times during Basic “I didn’t volunteer for all this”. That training made us fit and mentally able to face the enemy in Vietnam.    

Yes Kenny, we were named the most outstanding Platoon. That is not what they were telling us during training though.  What they said and what they believed were two different things. I remember many speeches and lectures of them telling us we were the worst Platoon they had ever seen. Of course that is what they told all the troops. We got our recognition in the end. We got drafted in June. The majority of those in our Platoon had just graduated from UND and got drafted. No more student deferments.


US Army – Basic Training Graduation – August 1968
I am in the top row, 2nd in from the right.
Kenneth Nerpel (Dunseith, ND) is in the 3rd row down, 3rd in from the right.

Larry Lawrence (Bottineau, ND) is in the 4th row down, 1st on the right.
We were the 4th platoon of company “C”, of the 5th Battalion, of the 2nd Brigade (C 5 2)

We are all Draftees with the majority being from North Dakota. We all got a letter from President Nixon with the message “Congratulations you have been selected to serve in the Armed Forces of the United States of America”.

Following Basic Training and Advanced Individual Training (AIT), the majority of us went to Vietnam.
Stokes Basic


Blog (463) posted on May 19, 2009

Posted on May 19, 2009

Message to Gary Stokes from Ken Stiker in Dayton OH:

Gary Stokes-

A Striker cousin forwarded the information from the Minor Daily News regarding the passing of Sylvia Bergan today. Sylvia is a Striker cousin.

I appreciate this information. I have compiled a Striker Genealogy/History and would be delighted to hear from Striker cousins. Sylvia Bergan sent me W.E. Striker History, which she wrote on the occasion of the Deunseith Centennial of 1983.

As a matter of information, We are having a Striker Reunion at Berne IN on June 13th, 2009. This is the 175th year of the immigration of Christian and Anna M Striker to America. All cousins are welcome. For information on the Striker Reunion or a Striker CD, you can email

Ken Striker in Dayton OH

Gary’s reply to Ken Stiker:

Thank you so much for this message. Where do you fit into the Striker family? I have about 650 Dunseith Alumni folks on my distribution list. I don’t believe I have you listed. I send a message out each day to the alumni folks and the Stiker’s have been a lot of the topic conversation the past several days. I have attached the message I sent out yesterday. I have also pasted the Striker write up from the 1982 Dunseith Centennial book. Did Sylvia write this? Oscar and Sylvia were very dear friends to my family in my growing up days. Please read the attached.

I am from the Ackworth community up in the Turtle Mountains, so I am familiar with most of the hills folks.

It is such a pleasure hearing from you. Please let me know a little more about you so I can get a grasp of where you fit into the Striker family.

Ken Stiker’s reply to Gary:


Thanks for your response. I have worked on Christian & Anna M Striker genealogy/history for some thirty years. I have lived in Ohio my whole life. The family came to Ohio in 1834 from Emmendingen Germany. Two sons Andrew and Mathias moved on to Adams Co/Berne IN in the 1860’s, then several children of Mathias Striker homesteaded around 1900 in places like Mason Co Michigan, Bucyrus ND, and Dunseith ND area. Wm Elmer Striker settled in Dunseith area. Below is a little bio on W.E. Striker:

We are having a reunion on June 13th 2009 in Berne IN. Perhaps you know Deane Striker of Dunseith. He and his sisters Donna Robinson (of Swift Current Sask) and Donna Kebela (of Wahpeton ND) are making the trip to Berne. I look forward to meeting them. I would like to establish contact with others in the family.

Ken Striker 4769 Arcadia Blvd Dayton OH 45432

Marion Stickland’s Obituary posted by Bonnie Awalt Houle (56): Becker, MN

Dear Gary,

I thought friends of Marion Sticklands would like to read her obit. It is a wonderful tribute to Marion.

Bonnie Awalt Houle 56

Messages/Pictures from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND

Gary and Friends,

Mona has the names right. It’s Ralph Thiel and Raymond Haagenson. I
found Mom’s annuals for ’45 and ’46. The team picture sent in by Jeff
Skjelver is of the ’45 team. The one I’m attaching now is of the ’46
team. Many of the same guys with just a few new faces. Thanks Gary!



Gary and Friends,

The elusive pictures are found. Gary Metcalfe mentioned Bob Lamb’s barn
being moved to Hans Johnson’s farm. I looked through hundreds of
pictures tonight and finally found the ones of the moving of the barn.
The dates on back of the pictures are January 19-20, 1965. The hills
were too icy for the mover’s truck so Dad hooked on to the front with
our old Caterpillar and pulled the whole works down the road. If you
look closely at the picture with the Cat, you will see how small that
big army truck looks in comparison to the barn. I remodeled the barn
about twenty years ago to a much larger and more useful type building,
but the heart of the new building is still Lamb’s barn. Thanks Gary!




6/1/2016 (2391)

Glen Rude | 1936 – 2016 | Obituary

Glen Rude

Born: October 04, 1936
Died: May 27, 2016

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Glen Rude, age 79 of Bottineau, died Friday, May 27, 2016 in a Bottineau nursing home. Funeral services will be held on Monday, June 6, 2016 at 10:00 A.M. in the Metigoshe Lutheran Church of rural Bottineau. Burial will be in the Salem Cemetery also of rural Bottineau. Visitation will be held on Sunday beginning at 1:00 P.M. until 9:00 P.M. in the Nero Funeral Home of Bottineau.

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The Day My Brother Learned the Heimlich Maneuver
Posting from Vickie Metcalfe (’70):  Bottineau, ND

 Gary and Dunseith Friends,

 Has anyone out there in Gary Stokes Land ever experienced the Heimlich maneuver?

 I just read with surprise  about Dr. Heimlich’s first effort at using his own technique which he developed in the 1970’s was last week!  


Hmm…That reminds me of;

Way back in the  late 70’s. I was teaching  at Dunseith School

 I made my home and stayed  at the farm because our Dad was losing his vision and our mom had health concerns.

My brothers who were both students at Dunseith School, had alot to deal with growing up, attending school while trying to hold onto the family farm.

The elder brother, was in high school.

One evening at supper time, Dad was in his easy chair in the living room listening to books on tape for the blind,

I stood  with my back to the door at the kitchen counter preparing lettuce for a salad.

Without warning, stealthily, quietly from behind, two strong arms wrapped around my belly from behind.

                    A bear hug.

My  body was  lifted up off the floor, then quick succession to my  tummy two stomach thrusts.

          WHEEZING, I  was dropped  down, back on  my own two feet. 

 I turned, spitting mad to  see my brother.

In a  demanding teacher voice I said,  “Just what  the heck are you doing”?

With a satisfied grin, he said without apology, “Well Vickie, if you were choking to death ……I just saved you life.”

“I learned that in school today,  it’s called  the Heimlich maneuver.”

I hollered, ” WELL I wasn’t CHOKING!!!

Don’t be  practicing stuff on me without warning!

 I quickly forgave him completely because I knew If anything happened to Dad  or Mom,  my brother wanted and needed to  knowledgeable and confident  in what to do. 

I never asked my brother which teacher taught the Heimlich maneuver to the students of D.H.S.

From reading the tribune article I discovered Dr. Heimlich had never used his  own method until  last week when he was 96.

To think; my brother  demonstrated and tried it  years ago as a teen, and I his unwilling participant….

Until later,  Vickie L. Metcalfe


Blog (462) posted on May 18, 2009

Sylvia Bergan Passed Away:Minot Daily News

BOTTINEAU Sylvia May Bergan, 98, Bottineau, died Friday, May 15, 2009, in a Bottineau hospital.

She was born Oct. 24, 1910, to Grover and Cora Lockhart in Tabor, Alb. She married Oscar Bergan July 23, 1929, at Cando.

She is survived by four nieces.

Funeral: Monday, 10 a.m., Metigoshe Lutheran Church, Bottineau.

Burial: Salem Cemetery, rural Bottineau.

Visitation: Today, 1 to 9 p.m., Nero Funeral Home, Bottineau.

I was sadden to hear of Sylvia’s passing. Jan Bergan Evans mentioned that she visited Sylvia several weeks ago. She said Sylvia was sleeping so she did not wake her. Sylvia was living in long term care at Saint Andrews hospital in Bottineau. Oscar and Sylvia were very close and dear friends of our family. We visited them often. We were all very active members of Salem church. Oscar and Sylvia were wonderful folks. Oscar was a carpenter. He had way more work than he could handle building and remodeling cabins at Lake Metigoshe. Sylvia was a great crafts person, baker and cook. She was well known throughout the area for her baking abilities, especially for her pies. I last saw Sylvia at my mothers funeral in July 2004. She was helping serve lunch following her funeral at the Metigoshe Christian center. Sylvia was a very beautiful and stylish lady always being well groomed and well dressed. She never ever looked her age. When I saw her at the bowling alley cafe shortly after she had celebrated her 90th birthday, she didn’t look a day over 60. Oscar and Sylvia did not have any children.

Reading the Striker family history, I noticed that Sylvia’s mother was a Striker. That makes her related to a lot of you folks. I always knew her maiden name was Lockhart, but was surprised to see she is part of the Striker family too. Gary

Posted form message 348 on 1/23/09
Reply from Mona Dionne Johnson (48):
Gar;y: Our cottage was not very far from the Metigoshe Store (Hobbs),
perhaps a mile, and we went there often. If we were working on the
boathouse or something and took a break, Chuck, Ross (our son) and I
would go for a snack, and this is where we met Sylvia Bergan, as she
worked for them and she baked the BEST frosted ginger cookies that I
have ever tasted.
Ross just loved them, and was raring to go when we
said we were going to the store. Harvey & Arvilla were so well liked at
the Lake and ran a good business, and would help you in any way they
could. We missed them when they moved away.
Mona Dionne Johnson, ’48


Reply from Gary Metcalfe (57): Forsyth, MO

Hey Gary, Thanks for all the work you put into this blog for all of us. Gary there is no mention of Janice’s brother, Roy Striker or her daughter Winnie and I can’t get through to her phone. Gary Metcalfe
Gary, first off I want to correct a very careless error of mine from yesterday’s message. I had Janice’s mother, Emma, on my mind when I wrote that little article about her. I want to thank those of you that pointed that out to me. I am reposting that comment with the corrections with today’s message.
Kay Nelson, can you answer Gary Metcalfe’s question about Winnie and Roy? Thanks, Gary
Reposted with Corrections from Yesterday:
Janice Stiker Nelson Fagan(47): Lincoln, CA
Daughter Kay Nelson’s email address
Follow up from yesterdays blog. I was able to contact Janice Striker Nelson today. She is convalescing in a nursing home from a fall that resulted in a broken hip or pelvis, I forgot which. She thinks she will be able to go home in several weeks.
Gary Metcalfe was able to provide enough info about Janice that enabled Eileen Brudwick to locate her with her searches. I was pleasantly surprised when I had a voice mail message from Janice’s daughter, Kay Nelson, letting me know we had found the right Janice.
I had a very nice chat today with Janice. I was very surprised when she told me her mother was a Lagerquist, sister to John and also Edna, Mrs. Harold Woodford. I had totally forgotten that. Janice is related to the Pearson’s too. When I mentioned Charlene, she said “that cute little red head.” She told me they lived where Arnold Zeiler used to live and she said that is where Lyle Zeiler (61) presently lives. She told me she is related to Lyle’s wife Sharon Pearson Zeiler (62). Sandra Zeiler Vandal, she remembers you too. She also mentioned Rodney Lagerquist. She said her daughter used to pretend he was her doll. That would have been Kay. She was born in 1947 and Rodney in 1949. Gary Metcalfe, she remembers you well too. She also knew the Hagen’s really well and also most of the Hiatt’s and Radley’s. Janice and her family moved to Californian in 1957. When I talked to Kay, Janice’s daughter, this evening, she told me she see’s her mother often and will share all this interesting Dunseith stuff with her. I told her I would add her to our daily distribution and for her to let me know if she ever wants to be discontinued in the future. She and her mother seemed pretty interested in all this Dunseith stuff though. They are super friendly folks. Looking at the Striker’s history in the Dunseith book, I noticed that Sylvia Lockhart Bergan and Emma Striker are first cousins too. Mrs. Lockhart was a Striker.

5/30/2016 (2390)

Condolences to Janet Hosmer Cobb’s (’60) family
From Duane Trusty (’61):  Laramie, WY.


I recently read Janet (Hosmer) Cobb’s Obituary.

I offer my condolences to her sisters,  Nancy and Colette, as well her family and friends.

May She Be In Peace

Duane Trusty (61)
Laramie, WY

Gary’s Comment to Duane:

Thanks for this message Duane. So nice hearing from you. I know that lots of folks know you too, but I don’t have you in my files. I will add you now though.

 Please give us a little history about your connections to Dunseith and your life in general. Our readers that remember you will be excited to hear from you too. It is very possible that many have not heard from or seen you for 55 plus years.


Glen Rude | 1936 – 2016
Rude, Glen 2390|

Glen Rude

Born: October 04, 1936
Died: May 27, 2016

Send Flowers


Glen Rude, age 79 of Bottineau, died Friday, May 27, 2016 in a Bottineau nursing home.

Gary’s comments

 I was so saddened to receive this news of Glen’s passing. Carrole Fauske Rude messaged me and I got a phone call from Virgil Rude letting me know of Glen’s passing. From my infant days the Rude’s have been very close family friends. In my growing up days they were like family. Weekly we were together many times. When I saw Glen last July he looked wonderful. So hard to believe he is no longer with us.

 We extend our condolences to LaVerne, Arliss and all of Glen’s family with his passing.
Rude 2390


Blog (461) posted on May 17, 2009

Emma Stiker Nelson Fagan (47): Lincoln, CA
Daughter Kay Nelson’s email address
Follow up from yesterdays blog. I was able to contact Emma Striker Nelson today. She is convalescing in a nursing home from a fall that resulted in a broken hip or pelvis, I forgot which. She thinks she will be able to go home in several weeks.
Gary Metcalfe was able to provide enough info about Emma that enabled Eileen Brudwick to locate her with her searches. I was pleasantly surprised when I had a voice mail message from Emma’s daughter, Kay Nelson, letting me know we had found the right Emma.
I had a very nice chat today with Emma. I was very surprised when she told me her mother was a Lagerquist, sister to John and also Edna, Mrs. Harold Woodford. I had totally forgotten that. Emma is related to the Pearson’s too. When I mentioned Charlene, she said “that cute little red head.” She told me they lived where Arnold Zeiler used to live and she said that is where Lyle Zeiler (61) presently lives. She told me she is related to Lyle’s wife Sharon Pearson Zeiler (62). Sandra Zeiler Vandal, she remembers you too. She also mentioned Rodney Lagerquist. She said her daughter used to pretend he was her doll. That would have been Kay. She was born in 1947 and Rodney in 1949. Gary Metcalfe, she remembers you well too. She also knew the Hagen’s really well and also most of the Hiatt’s and Radley’s. Emma and her family moved to Californian in 1957. When I talked to Kay, Emma’s daughter, this evening, she told me she see’s her mother often and will share all this interesting Dunseith stuff with her. I told her I would add her to our daily distribution and for her to let me know if she ever wants to be discontinued in the future. She and her mother seemed pretty interested in all this Dunseith stuff though. They are super friendly folks. Looking at the Striker’s history in the Dunseith book, I noticed that Sylvia Lockhart Bergan and Emma Striker are first cousins too. Mrs. Lockhart was a Striker.
Striker Nelson Fagan Janice 1655 Third St, Apt 20 Lincoln, CA 95648 (916) 434-1189
Nursing home. 916-681-1954Daughter Kay Nelson 916-645-7429
Work 916-663-1103
Reply (Striker’s) from Lee Stickland (64): Dickinson, ND
Thanks, again for all YOUR efforts to keep things rollin’ about Dunseith folks.
Janice Striker c/would be the daughter of Lee and Emma Striker. The last place I can recall Lee and Emma living was on a farm west of Arnold Zeilers’.
Lee was a brother to my Grandmother, May Strike Stickland Hughes. May was Dad’s Mom. She lived at the nursing home in Dunseith. She benefited from the careful attentions and real care of my aunt, Joy Peterson. Both Grandmother May and Joy’s husband, Bill Peterson, lived at and died while at the nursing home in Dunseith.
I was the administrator of that home from September 25, 1975 to February 10, 1977. That expericnce was the impetus for me to foster the charter of an association of nursing homes in ND.
This assoc provides a voice for the pioneers of America and for North Dakota. We started with 6 charter member homes on April 22, 1977. That assoc now includes all the nursing homes in ND. The last state convention had over 1000 attendees.
(((Old age is not so bad when YOU consider the alternative.
We will all die from or of something if and when we live long enough.)))
I beleive that Emma was a Lockhart?
Janice was married to a Nelson when they lived in Dunseith. I was aware that she once lived in or near Redondo Beach, CA. Some years ago, I made an effort to contact her there but was not successful. I sure wish her well in the recovery efforts from that hip fracture.
When I operated nursing homes, we had a greater than 17% discharge rate for persons that used our services. This number was for those who were able to leave to home; not just to another level or source of care.
Operating a nursing home is easy, just
Lee, Leland, Stick, Sticky—whatever ! (“Integrity has no price.”)
Lee, Mrs. Lee (Emma) Striker was a Lagerquist. I have pasted the William Striker history from the Dunseith book below. Reading who all the Striker siblings married, they/you are related to a whole lot of folks. Gary
Reply from Eileen & Mike Brudwick: Fargo, ND
Thank you for the condolences, Bill & Betty Schneider Lamb. We seen your niece, Randy & Connie Brudwick Mikkelson, however, we didn’t get a chance to visit with her very long. There just isn’t enough time to mingle much at times like this.
Eileen & Mike Brudwick
Reply from Neola, Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND
Thanks to Betty Lamb for the condolences. Her cousin and husband (Connie/Randy Mikkelson, Garrison) attended Uncle Gerald’s funeral. It was fun to see them again. As people usually say, “It’s too bad the only time family members seem to get together is at a funeral.” The positive side is that we DO see each other then.
Reply from Neola, Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND
WOW! After reading Eileen’s message, my head is so swelled, it won’t fit in the room! LOL!Mike/Eileen/Wally/I enjoy each other’s company tremendously. :)
Reply From Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,Just a quick reply to Gary Metcalfe–The people are right, you just had
the barn going the wrong direction. Grandpa Has bought the barn from
Mrs. Lamb and Willard and moved it to our place. Your brother-in-law,
Duane ‘Babe” Coleman later built a new house on the place and used the
concrete barn floor as a driveway. Thanks for the info on the connection
between the Lambs and Wicks. Somewhere in my pictures I have a photo of
the barn coming down the road from the north, being pulled by our old
Caterpillar. They moved it in January and had trouble getting up the
hills with a truck so Dad hooked on with the old Cat and pulled them
along. I think it was moved in ’63. John and Dan Boguslawski and I
jacked the barn up and dug footings by hand and then poured concrete in
about ’66 or ’67. Before that it sat on railroad ties. It was a big
barn–30′ x 50′. I’ll find the picture one day and post it. Thanks Gary!


Reply from Brenda Hoffman (68): Greenville, SC
Dear Gary,

Floyd Dion asked a question about my step-great uncle, John Schick, a few days ago. I was going to send this info to him personally but misplaced his email address. My grandfather died when my mom was four and her sister two. They lived on a farm during the depression. Grandpa Schick’s wife had also died and he had a seven year old daughter, Violet. Grandma and Grandpa Schick met and married within three months (friends introduced them). It was not until I noted the dates at Grandma Schick’s funeral that I realized that she married Grandpa Schick on the anniversary date of her marriage to my biological grandfather. Times were tough and she did what she needed to do. I’m happy to report that Grandpa and Grandma Schick were happily married for more than 50 years. And we all loved Grandpa Schick – a warm, kind loving man. I really didn’t know John Schick, or Uncle John as he was called, that well but your description fits Grandpa Schick to a “t”.
Brenda Hoffman class of 68
Message from Cheryl Larson Dakin (71): BEDFORD, TX
I just got the Bottineau Courant and see that Lloyd and Teresa Awalt will soon be celebrating 60 years of marriage. Congratulations and best wishes to you for many more!
Cheryl Larson Dakin
Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND
Lloyd (44) & Theresa Cote (47) Awalt:
Pictures posted by Eileen Brudwick: Fargo, ND
Eileen, these are great pictures of all of you!! You guys are looking good! Gary
Here are two pictures of two fabulous women!! These are taken at the funeral home when we were viewing uncle Gerald. We had a most enjoyable time visiting our sweet cousin!! :-)