10/31/2016 (2452)

Josephine Poitra Family
Posting from Vickie Metcalf (’70): Bottineau, ND

Gary, Dunseith blog friends and
To the family of Josephine  (Davis) Poitra,

A few short years ago,  I met Lesedo and her son at the Bottineau Family bakery.

On that first meeting with Josephine Poitra, I called her, Mrs. Mike.

With every opportunity  thereafter we filled with pleasant  chats.

With her, I recalled when I was a child many years ago my Dad bought a gentle little black milk cow from Mr. Mike Poitra  a farmer living SE of us.   He wore blue bib blue bib overalls in contrast to  my dad who wore striped.

And, Mrs. Mike shared she knew my sister  Nancy who worked with her  one summer in the kitchen at San Haven .

She also recalled many Metcalfe Kin; my Aunts and Uncles including Aunt Mary and Uncle’s Bill, Charlie, Lucky, Jim and Emil..

With Mrs. Mike’s phenomenal memory and bright positive personality, I  thoroughly enjoyed many warm visits while her son would be inside a  local grocery store doing the shopping or slipping in  to sit with them in a booth at a local cafe.

Lesedo was a lady of substance.

She was filled with quality and optimism.

Whenever around her I felt an aura of  a true elder filled with  calm grace  and peaceful  with her faith.

Sincere sympathy to her family.

Vickie Metcalfe


Blog (513) posted on July 16, 2009

Posted on July 16, 2009

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


I love all the pictures people are sending to you to include in your newsletter.

Thanks to Dave Slyter for asking about receiving your newsletters while you are on vacation. Now I know we won’t be. Have a wonderful trip.


Reply from Dick Johnson (68):Dunseith, ND

Gary and Friends,

That’s some good detective work, Paula! The concert was 1964. There
were at least a couple Community Choir Christmas concerts in those
years, but the pictures were from the ’64 concert. As far as my piano
days, I never got through the first book. I hated every minute of it!
You are right about Elsie Schneider being a good teacher and she had to
have extreme patience to continue giving lessons to me. I can’t remember
the song I had to play for the recital, but that is probably something
that I tried to forget! I do remember a piano song from the Fassett crew
and can still play it! The words were, “Once I had a violin, it’s
strings were made of twine—the only thing I could play on it was ‘The
Girl I Left Behind’. I think Crystal and Paula taught me that from their
dad’s songs. Maybe it has some verses that we shouldn’t repeat! I only
remember this one. We used to play piano with two people at a
time—this song and ‘Chop Sticks’, were the only two I could do! Sorry
Elsie! I’m sure Elsie thought I should be able to do much better because
of Dad’s abilities. It must have been disheartening for her to see my
lack of interest in the piano. In band I wanted to play the drums. Dad
said, “No way, you won’t learn music that way”. I ended up on the alto
saxophone and went to baritone sax and then the baritone horn, and
finally the valve trombone played in treble clef, for the last year of
school. He was right, I learned music and band was fun! Thanks Gary and


Dick Johnson’s reply to Neola’s question:

Gary and Neola,

Maryville and Shell Valley are two townships south and west of
Belcourt. Charlibois’ had a store along the road to Belcourt, six miles
east of Dunseith. I was at the store a few times with my dad when we
were over that way, many years ago. The paved road north out of Rolette
meets Highway 5. This is the corner where Betty’s Bar and the casino are
now located and is close to where Charlibois’ Store was. Maryville Twp.
is east of the Rolette road and Shell Valley is west of it, both on the
south side of HWY 5. My old buddy, Bob Roberge, is buried at St.
Marys-Maryville Cemetery which is about 5 miles straight south of
Belcourt. I hope this answers your question.


Reply from Ele Dietrich Slyter (69): Dunseith, ND.

I noticed the phone number on the Theel advertisement…479. Our number, if you can call it that, on the old farmers line was one long, two shorts and one long. Plus you had to check to be sure no one was using the line before you started ringing someone. Ahh, the good ol’ days.


1953 Dunseith & Belcourt news posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: neola@min.midco.netMinot & Bottineau, ND.


10/28/2016 (2451)

Josephine Poitra’s Family – 392 total Grandkids with all the Great Grandkids.
Postings from Ginger LaRocque Poitra (’65):
Belcourt, ND.

Josephine Poitra leaves behind quite the family.

At the age of 105, Josephine Poitra has quite the family tree she now leaves behind.

Fourteen children, 54 grandchildren, 152 great-grandchildren, 172 great-great-grandchildren and four great-great-great-grandchildren.

Josephine was known for her gardening and donut making, and sharp mind.

Remembering the names of 392 children, their kids, their kids, their kids and their kids.

And when Josephine turned 100, she got the attention of the President Obama. He sent her a birthday letter.

Gary’s comments
Ginger, How impressive. From Margaret Metcalfe Leonard Casavant’s posting with the last blog, she was a remarkable woman. You can be proud to be part of her family. Just think if you were to have a family reunion inclusive of all the spouses. You’d have 700 plus folks.

Today it was the funeral for my mother- in-law.

WDAY NEWS had a of tribute to her life today.

I thought that was pretty cool.  My granddaughter saw it and sent it to me. It was on FB

What do you do for a matriarch who lives to be only 2 months shy of being 106.

Also with all her 14 children grandchildren great grandchildren, etc, etc . she was amazing!


This was an earlier picture of Josephine.  This is how she looked the lighting wasn’t so great on the parade picture I sent with my info. This is how she looked so young, light complexion  no wrinkles hardly.

Poitra, Josephine 2451


Glenda Mae Bergan

September 03, 1943 – October 25, 2016

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Bergan, Glenda 2451
Glenda Mae Bergan, age 73 of Dunseith, died Tuesday, October 25, 2016 in a Rolla hospital. A Memorial service will be held on Friday, October 28, 2016 at 10:00 A.M. in the Nero Funeral Home in Bottineau. There will be no visitation, cremation has taken place. Burial will be at a later date.

Glenda Mae Bergan, a daughter of Arol and Norma (Handeland) Anderson, was born on September 3, 1943, at Bottineau, ND. She was reared and educated in the area. On May 24, 1962, she was married to David Bergan at Dunseith. Glenda began working at San Haven as a cook. Later she worked in the Sewing Department until San Haven closed. Glenda then worked at home with David helping on the farm. They have continued to make Dunseith their home.

Glenda loved taking care of her cattle, making hay, fixing fence, dancing, working her garden and canning and baking. In  her younger years she played softball with the Diamond Demons and practiced Taekwondo. She taught her girls to be independent and take the bull by the horns and get things done. She enjoyed her horses, her donkey and her dogs.

She is survived by her husband David at home, daughters, Vicky (Terry) Bergan-Dietz of Princeton, MN, Gale (Troy) Coleman and Melissa Peach both of Minot; 3 grandchildren; a brother, Lorenzo Anderson of Bottineau.

Glenda was preceded in death by her parents, a grandson, Troy James Coleman; two brothers, Gerald and Gene and one nephew, Gene Anderson, Jr.


Memorial Service

Friday, October 28, 2016
10:00 AM

Nero Funeral Home
402 Sinclair St
Bottineau, North Dakota 58318


Blog (512) posted on July 15, 2009

Posted on July 15, 2009

Request from Sharron Gottbreht Shen (59): Everett, WA.

Ernie Gottbreht and Cheryl Baily have email!

Please add them to your mailing list. Thanks Gary.


Reply from Sharon Zorn Gerdes (62): Windsor, CO

Gary, I just want to mention another heart of gold in Dorothy Pritchards case. Mary Knutson has gone into town at least once a week for years to get Dorothys groceries, run errands and visit with her when she was at Oak Manor. She will shoot me for mentioning this, but I think she is pretty special too. And Dorothy is loved by everyone at Oak Manor. thanks. Sharon Gerdes.

Folks, For everyone’s info to fill in the blanks, Mary Eurich Knutson’s mother was Winifred Pritchard Eurich, sister to Robert Pritchard, Deceased, Dorothy’s husband.

Reply from Bill Pritchard: Bottineau, ND.

Gary –

I really appreciate getting these messages from you. Although I don’t know most of these people, I print these out for my mother, Doris Pritchard (who just turned 80 by the way). She enjoys reading about the people she grew up with and remembers most of the names mentioned in your newsletter. Thanks for taking the time to do this.

Bill Pritchard

Bill, Like I mentioned in a personal message, I have now added you to our daily distribution. It’s wonderful that you are able to share these daily messages with your mother. Many of our readers remember your mother and her family, the Winthrop Smith family, well

Folks, Bill’s Dad, Corbin Pritchard, deceased, was also a brother to Robert and Winifred Eurich. I know most of you remember Pritchard’s shoe store in Bottineau. That was Corbin & Doris’ store. Doris, Bill’s mother is Doris Smith Pritchard from the class of 1946. Bill’s sister, Cheryl, is an RN at the Good Samaritan home in Bottineau. Gary

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

Gary and Friends,

With Neola’s posting of the article on the Community Christmas
Program, I have to change the year from what I guessed–’65. It most
likely would have to have been 1964 because Alan Boguslawski and Bill
Grimme played a horn duet and they would have been out of school by
Christmas ’65. They were off at college but I suppose they could have
been home for Christmas. Bill, do you remember? I would like to write
the year on the pictures. It also said that a trio of Myra, Gail, and
Alan ‘Boguslawski’ sang a song. It should have been ‘Henning’. Thanks!


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

After seeing the newspaper clipping of the Dunseith Community Choir, I googled calendars and if the concert was December 20th and on a Sunday, that would make the 1964, I believe! Mrs. Elsie Schneider was the accompanist for the choir – and she also taught piano. I started lessons when I was in the 3rd grade, which would have been about 1962. Loraine and Loretta, Eleanor Dietrich, Diana Honsey must have been some of her piano students also. I’m sure she ‘encouraged’ us all to participate in the program! I was not usually a soloist – I only remember being the accompanist. Mrs. Schneider was a great lady and a talented pianist – and, I might add, a very patient teacher!!! She never scolded Crystal or I when we showed up Saturday morning for our piano lessons and had written in HOURS of practice time in our books when, in fact, we probably hadn’t even opened the books since the week before, and I’m sure the lack of practice showed! I think Dick Johnson was one of her piano student at one time, too – I remember a piano recital when Dick played something really lively….what was it, Dick?

Paula Fassett

Dick & Paula, I have reposted that article from yesterday for everyone’s reference. Gary

Pictures from Wayne (61) & Rosemary Smith: Bottineau, ND.


Wayne & I, plus Wayne’s cousins, have been looking at Audrey & Alfred Smith’s many pictures. The last blog/email had a clipping from Kelvin. Here are a couple of pictures of the Kelvin Homemakers. They were dressed in “funny clothes” for one of their meetings. We think we have identified all the ladies except one. Maybe someone out there can identify the unknown lady and confirm the identities of the others. We have lots of pictures of interest and will post them periodically on the blog. Have a good Alaskan trip!

Wayne (’61) & Rosemary Smith

(Gary: The dashes in the second attachment is for the middle unknown lady. Also, Eva & Clara’s last names are spelled correctly — differently)

Effie Espe, Eva Seim, Jessie Millang? (with big hat), Christine Carlson & Martha Handeland

Clara Sime, Pat Myer, ??, Hannah Kirkwold, Dorothy Lamb

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


10/26/2016 (2450)

Josephine Poitra’s Death.
Condolences from Margaret Leonard Casavant (’65): Rolette, ND

So sorry to hear of Josephine’s death. I have enjoyed knowing this beautiful lady for the past 6 years in the Rolette Care Center.  She had the sweetest spirit and
the warmest smile.  She raised a wonderful family!  Ginger, you were blessed to have her for your mother-in-law!

The Care Center won’t be the same without her gentle spirit!!  My deepest, heartfelt sympathy to your family, Margaret


Blog (511) posted on July 14, 2009

Posted on July 14, 2009

Dorothy Pritchard: Long Term at St. Andrews hospital, Bottineau, ND

Mary Eurich Knutson’s (62) reply to Gary: Dunseith, ND.

Hi Gary

Yes Dorothy is receiving your newsletters. She really appreciates them. As you know she didn’t grow up in Dunseith so the later pictures mean more to her than the older ones. She was a little under the weather for a couple of weeks. Thats the first time I had ever seen her not feeling well. She seemed more perky now on Saturday. I took her up to Mystic Horizons just a drive to get her out of the hospital for a little while. Take care!!

Mary Knutson

Mary, you are a lady with a heart of gold and a whole lot of patients. I know Dorothy will agree with me 100% on this one too.

Dorothy, We are so glad that you are getting these daily messages. If in the future you ever want to make any replies, I know the staff at St. Andrews will be glad to do so for you. All they have to do is hit the reply button to anyone of these messages and start typing and I will get the message.

Folks, For those of you wishing to send Dorothy a personal message, Just type “Attention Dorothy Pritchard” in the subject line and she will get it. Her email address is Gary

Reply from Cecile Carbonneau Marchand (51): Kenosha, WI & Clearwater, FL

Hi Gary: I have really enjoyed your blog. I can truthfully say that I do not remember a lot of the people but today when Florence Hiatt Dahl wrote, it brought back memories. We went to school together (I left before graduation as I thought at the time it was more important to get married than to graduate High School. I corrected that later, but now marrried for 58 years, it seems like yesterday. My husband Maurice Marchand are planning a trip to ND in August (God willing0. as I am looking forward to visiting with my brother Emery Carbonneau and family and a stop by Fargo to see my sister Rita Anderson. Keep up the good work and I sure wish we could have taken that trip to Alaska as it sounds like it will be great. Keep up the good work.

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

Hi Everyone,

As you can see, I’ve been looking at old newspapers again. I didn’t want to cut the Kelvin news from the Courant to scan it, so I included the “extra” material, too.

I learned something from this column. I have a difficult time remembering Thelma Johnson’s/Dorothy Halvorson’s/Mrs. Medrud’s maiden name. A short while ago, I read their name again. After reading this column, I see their parents are M/M Sigurd Christianson. Maybe I can remember that now–or not!


Not sure of the year

10/24/2016 (2449)

December 18, 1926 ~ September 22, 2016 (age 89)
Message from Vickie Metcalfe (’70):  Bottineau, ND

Dear Gary and  friends of Dunseith School Alumni,

T’was brought to my attention, the  recent passing of Erling Landsverk.

Erling’s family were  former residents from the Turtle Mountain  area.

Several of his  family were known to be gifted  area stone masons.

Erling and several  his siblings and cousins attended  Dunseith School.

Erling added much reading pleasure for those of us reading the  Dunseith  blog.

A few years ago, the summer of the  “All Country School Reunion”, it was my pleasure to meet Erling, his sister Borg, and several of their sons visiting at the Family Bakery.

A WWII veteran,  Erling  was of of the Greatest Generation.

For me, meeting Erling was like being introduced to  the epitome of  a  “Renaissance  man”.

He was  graciously  knowledgeable as a musician, a writer, and  knew  a whole lot about rocks!

My sincere sympathy to  Erling’s extended  family and friends who  dearly miss him.

Karen from the Spectrum was so kind,  as to scan and send on to you a  funeral program

Until Later,

Vickie L. Metcalfe


Landsverk, Erling 2449
December 18, 1926 ~ September 22, 2016 (age 89)

KING/PARDEEVILLE — Erling Gunder Landsverk passed away from complications of COPD on September 22. His very productive life was an inspiration for all who knew him.

He was born in Dunseith, North Dakota December 18, 1926 to Gunder & Olga (Grasvold) Landsverk.  He spent his youth growing up in the Turtle Mountains during the Great Depression until his family moved to Wisconsin in 1943.  He graduated from Rio high School in 1944 and immediately enlisted in the Army where he served his country in combat in the Philippines during WWII.  After returning from the war he studied music in St. Paul where he mastered the classical guitar, a gift he shared with family and friends for generations. In 1948, he began working in construction as a bricklayer and stonemason, eventually running work for Marshall Erdman, based  in Madison where he worked on several Frank Lloyd Wright projects, including the Unitarian Church in Madison.

1951 he married Louise Joan Larson at Redeemer Lutheran Church in Rio, Wisconsin. In 1954 he began a small general contracting business, which he operated  from the Pardeeville area for over 30 years, completing a wide range of projects in residential, commercial, industrial and public works.  During that time that he trained many young men in the building trades and guided them to grow and develop into master craftsmen.  His dedicated employees were like an extended family to him.  After retiring from his construction business, he worked part time as an expeditor and property manager in Plover until macular degeneration finally took most of his sight.  The epitome of perseverance, he continued to entertain with his music and published many thought provoking opinion articles in the local newspapers.  He was a member of the American Legion and Masonic Lodge and conducted Masonic rites for many members over the years.  He served on the Pardeeville School Board, church council and supported numerous community activities.

Erling was preceded in death by his parents, Gunder and Olga; brothers Rolf and Harold (Ozzie); and sisters Borghild Filas and Thelma Johnson; nephew Steve and grandson Justin.  He is survived by his wife, Joan; sons Owen, Eric, Gary and daughter Amy; grandchildren Jennifer, Christopher, Nicholas, Jacob, Jason and Jonathan; great-grandchildren Treyten, Kaleb, Kennedy, Riley, Lia, and Genevieve; nieces, nephews and many other dear friends.

Funeral services with full military honors will be held 11 AM Monday September 26 at Bonnet Prairie Lutheran Church in Rio with Pastor Joan Wittrock officiating. Burial will follow at Bonnet Prairie Cemetery.   Visitation will be held Sunday, September 25 from 3 to 6 PM at Grasse Funeral Home, 119 Industrial Drive, Pardeeville and from 9:30 AM until time of service Monday at the church.

The family would like to give special thanks to ThedaCare Hospice and the wonderful staff of the King Veterans Home for their kindness and wonderful care during his final weeks.

landsverk, Erling 2449-1

Gary’s remarks,
I am so so sadden to hear of Erling’s passing. I have been thinking of him lately too, because we had not heard from him for quite some time.

As most of us know, Erling was totally blind, but he didn’t let his being blind be a hindrance to his daily living at all. He received and replied to all his own email independently without any assistance from anyone else at all. He had the system master very well. We received many postings from Erling. He cherished his childhood days and the life he lived in the Turtle Mountains and the Dunseith area. He had unbelievable detaiedl memories of the people and for most everything else of those years too.

Erling was such an inspiration to each and every one of us. The  last thing in the world that he wanted was pity. In fact it was weeks  into our conversations before he even let us know he was blind. I was shocked beyond belief as were so many others.

This world needs a whole lot more Erling Landsverk’s.

We will miss him dearly.    


Cora Walette Vivier (’65) Passed away
Message from Margaret Metcalfe Leonard Casavant (’65):  Rolette, ND

Hi Gary, Just to let you know that Cora Walette Vivier died this morning in the Rolette Care Center.

On Fridays we have Mass at the RCC and I have visited with her often over the past few years.

She was in our class for a short period of time and then went to Belcourt, but I remember a birthday party at Pam Fassett’s out in the country when they lived by Willow Creek.  We were in about the 5th grade and she was there.

She also worked at the Elementary School in Belcourt when I worked at the High School.  We will all miss her at the Care Center; she was a gentle soul.  My fondest memory of Cora  was the morning when one of the resident’s blankets slipped down and Cora came and gently covered her up and gave her a kiss.

That act of lkindness brought tears to my eyes.

Margaret Leonard Casavant


Message from Florence Hiatt Dahl (’50):  Anchorage, AK

Hi Gary.  This growing old is the pits…..so sorry about Bernadette.  Bless you both.  Thank you for all your news.. Will have to admit that I have been gone so long I don’t remember a lot of the people on your blog.  But I never miss reading them…..    Had a wonderful summer in Alaska, and it appears  we are going to have another mild winter.  Not complaining—I like it.  Take care and God bless you both….


Gary’s comments

Florence, so great hearing from you. I bet you know many of the families of those mentioned though.

For a few memories I pasted the Ackworth news, below, from 2/15/1940. That is nearly 77 years ago too. You were probably about 8 years old then. I think you will recognize a few names there.


Reply to the Dunseith pictures posted with the last blog
From Kay Hosmer (’77):   Crown Point, Ind

Dunseith the way I remember it!  Hosmer’s store! – Kay Hosmer


From Colette Hosmer (’64):    Santa Fe, NM

Hi Gary,

Loved the snow on main street photos.  Do you know what year that was?


Gary’s reply
Colette, I don’t know what year those pictures were taken. With some research I can find out, however I think some of our readers know the year. I am not sure who shard those with us either. I think maybe Dick Johnson or possibly Susan Fassett Martin.


Josephine Mary (LeSedo) (Davis) poitra, 106 years old, passed away
Posting from Ginger LaRocque Poitra (’65): Belcourt, ND.

Poitra, Josephine 2449

Hi Gary,

Last evening at about 10 we lost Anthony’s mother

12/25/1910—10/21/2016 , she was almost 106 yrs old. 2 months shy of that age.

Josephine Mary (LeSedo) (Davis) poitra. LeSedo is the name most people  knew her by.

She joined her husband Michael, a son Dale, and another son Anthony, my husband, out of her family there are 12 left.

With this size family (14) she undoubtedly was a very hard worker, she also worked out of the home , at San Haven. They had a farm, cattle and pigs, working the fields, she would make meals for the workers, along with the large family.  There were no twins in their family.

She made her own bread, loaves, buns as well as gullet, she canned pickles, berries, made a garden, I am sure she did much more than I can even think of.

We will miss her with all our hearts she joined the Lord our God in heaven with her husband and her children.

God Bless her and keep her and the rest of her family she has joined.

Love you LeSedo, I  will  miss you forever, thank you for being a great mother-in-law  to me.


Thank you all for listening

I sent along this picture of her it was taken when she was in the Dunseith Parade this summer

10/19/2016 (2448)


I don’t have any new postings today.  I am including several familiar pictures along with a the next in line older posting.

Bernadette is not doing well this morning either. She is going into another spell. She is like a zombie this morning not really with reality. She has had her shower and has eaten breakfast, so she is comfortable.

Until Monday, this is it for now.


1 2 3



Blog (510) posted on July 13, 2009

Posted on July 13, 2009

Question from David Slyter (70): Fargo, ND

Hi Gary:

Great picture of your dad this morning in the blog. Just have a quick question. While you are on the cruise will the daily blog seize during that time or are you going to work thru your vacation trip to Alaska. Those of us that are not going to be able to take the cruise should probably prepare ourselves for withdrawal systems while you are on vacation. Just wondering as I am sure many are.

Dave Slyter (70)

David (Dave), From my school days I remember you as David and your brothers as Bobby and Richard. I believe Richard is still Richard today though. We have a few other folks too that folks remember well with their names of the time. Kenny Nerpel, Billy Grimme, Leland Stickland and a few others. For many folks, this is who you guys will always be and that’s great! Early on with the class of 65 correspondence, Ken and Bill did not escape being Kenny and Billy that had escaped them for 40 plus years too.

To answer your question. I will not be able to post the daily blog while I am in the states. I have my computer all set up to send these, so it would be chore sending them from another computer. Believe it or not, I use multiple programs to put these messages together each day that I wouldn’t have available on a public computer. I don’t have or use a laptop. If I had a laptop, it would just be another tool that I’d have to keep updated and I don’t really have a need for one. I will make up for lost time with these daily messages when I get back home to the PI. I hope to have some pictures too.

Bernadette and I will be leaving Cebu going to Manila on July 22nd. We’ll be catching an early flight out of Manila on North West to Seattle on the morning of July 23rd. We depart Manila at 8:10 AM on the 23rd and we arrive in Seattle, 45 minutes later on the same day, at 8:55 AM. The total flight time, with a stop in Japan, is 15 hours and 45 minutes. Coming back, bucking the trade winds, our total flight time is 17 hours and 40 minutes. Headed east with the jet stream, the air speed is about 700 MPH. On the way back, going west, the air speed is about 540 MPH. Bill Hosmer and LaVerne Rude, I know you guys have flown many aircraft over the Pacific in your days. Bernadette and I will be leaving Seattle on August 12th, returning to the Philippines. We’ll be back home the morning of the 14th our time, the evening of the 13th back in the states. Gary

Pictures posted by Sharron Gottbreth Shen (59): Everett, WA

Dale & Alma Gottbreht’s sons – June 2009:
L to R: Bill, George (61), Marc & Ernie (65)

Picture taken June 2009:
L to R: Ernie Gottbreht, Cheryl Bailey, Victor & Sharron Gottbreht Shen

Reply to the Kelvin news pasted below from Florence Hiatt Dahl (50): Anchorage, AK.

Folks, I forwarded Florence an advance copy of the 1952 Kelvin news posted below. This news mentions Florence visiting Dorothy Christianson. Dorothy is married to Lester Halvorson. They live on the county line 1 1/2 miles west of the former Willow lake school site. Lester and Dorothy’s daughter, Lynn Halvorson Otto (75), who is currently living in Seoul, Korea, forwards each of these daily messages to her folks. Gary

Florence’s reply:

I remember that visit vividly..Dorothy and I changed all the sheets–bedding. We took off Trinity sheets and put on Trinity sheets. Her sister had graduated from Trinity the year before I started. As you can tell it shocked me———-thought I had forgot it and seeing that blurb brought it all back…and so many years ago. Dorothy and I remained friends for years, and try to see her when I go back to N.D. Going back for a nurses reunion August 17 th. and will stay for a week after the reunion. So of course I’ll give her a call and probably have lunch with her. Thanks Gary. And God bless you. Florence

1952 Kelvin News provided by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND

Folks, Fern Cote Berube is the widow of Lawrence Berube. They owned the big round barn that was located across the road and a little bit to the east of Dale’s. That big round barn was quite famous for dances in it’s day. Fern and Lawrence are the parents of Robert (62), Rachael (62), Angela (65) & Muzette (74). Fern is currently living in an assisted living home in Minneapolis near her daughter Angela.

Robert, Rachael, Angela & Muzette; This is a beautiful picture of your mother. This is one of the many pictures Neola Kofoid Garbe has provided.

Fern Cote Berube

Fern (Cote) Berube Family 02-10-07 on Fern’s 90th Birthday
L to R (Back) Angela, Rachael, Muzette & Robert. Fern in front

Previously posted with message 157 on 1/7/08

Picture/message from Sharon Peterson Harmsen (63): Bismarck, ND


Hello Gary and All from Bismarck, ND


On May 5, 2008, Email # 94, Shirley Brennan said —– My dad, Ray Brennan, was supposed to fight in WWI along with Max Peterson and three other men. The war ended while they were riding the train to Churches Ferry. She wanted to know who the other men were. I share all the emails with my mother, Joy Peterson who still lives in Dunseith, and she thought she had a picture of the four men who left that day to fight in the war. She has located a picture and isn’t it a great one…………Two of the gentlemen are my grandfathers, one on my dad’s side and the other on my mom’s side of the family. Standing in the back is Ray Brennan, Max Peterson at his right arm, Nels Landsverk in the center and Lee Stickland.


Enjoy the photo as we have.


Sharon Peterson Harmsen (class of 63)


Sharon, I hope you realize the many relatives these gentleman have that are on our distribution list. These guys are parents, grandparents & great grandparents to a whole host of you folks out there. This is a great picture and will bring back a lot of memories for a lot of folks. For group emailing, the file size of this picture has been greatly reduced. For those of you that would a full size copy, for printing, I’m sure Sharon would be glad to send you the full size scanned copy.

Shirley Brennan, It has taken a while, but your question got answered.

Thank you Joy & Sharon for sharing this with us. Gary


Front L to R: Lee Stickland, Nels Landsverk & Max Peterson
Standing in back: Ray Brennan


10/17/2016 (2447)

DHS class (’75, ’76 & ’77) reunion
Posting from Alan Poitra (’76):    Bloomington, MN

Hello, I wonder if you could post this in the blog for me.

I would like to get a feel from the classes of 75, 76, & 77′ if there would be any interest in a joint class reunion next spring/summer…our class was small but I would love to get together with my old high school classmates…if anyone from any of the 3 classes be interested in getting something together I would love to hear from them…they can email me at sporttrac_6@msn.com and put in the subject line reunion…

Thank you!!

Alan Poitra


Murl (Watkins) Hill (50) at Girls State at Jamestown College.
Photo posted by Bruce Hill:
Murl Watkins Hill 2547-1

           Murl (Watkins) Hill (50)
Murl Watkins Hill 2547-2


Blog (518) posted on July 12, 2009

Posted on July 12, 2009

Email address change for Marshall Awalt (51): Newport, NC

Our new e-mail address after this weekend will be the

Reply from Sybil Johnson:Cheyenne, WY

Gary and all,
I have enjoyed the stories about “Pa” Johnson. It broke my heart, when we lost him, so many years ago. He had a gentle soul, until he got angry. But, otherwise, he was always outside working in his gardens. I remember when we use to bring the kids up from Minot and how he spoiled them.
I would lay them down for a nap and the next thing, there was “Pa” sitting on the bed in the pump room, feeding them coffee and cookies. He loved his grandkids and he would literally get down on his hands and knees, playing with them.
He came from Little Hamar, Norway, when he was 14 years old. They had found his father hanging from a tree, where he had been lynched and his belongings had been stolen.
He came over to the United States, with his mother, stepfather, and his brother and sister–Uncle Hans and Aunt Cynthia. I also remember, how he hated wearing his hearing aids, because they buzzed to much in his ears and his false teeth, because he couldnt chew with them. They were always up on top of the cabinet in the kitchen.
Take care everyone. Sybil Johnson

From Sharron Gottbreht Shen (59): Everett, WA

Just a footnote to Fishing News, Mobridge, SD. It was necessary for our host at the Wrangler Inn to shift us about somewhat; Victor and I switched up the hall a bit, Ernie and Cheryl moved to a ground level room with chairs outside the door for coffee and a morning smoke. We might have used those chairs once, thereafter for the remainder of our stay they were occupied by prairie dog hunters who had reservations dating from March! Vic and Ivan had laughed about the courtesy request posted in each room [big city boys], but all was clear once they saw the booted and fully armed huntsmen with their dogs arrive and park themselves in their and Ernie’s chairs at any and all hours!

It reminded me of the prairie dog village in the field adjoining our new home, occupied in 1954. I often hid in a nearby buffalo wallow and whistled the numerous creatures from their tunnels. A favorite time of year would be May when the blue-grey prairie “crocus” blooms were everywhere in that field. Much later I learned that it was also called the Pasque Flower, Anemone pulsatilla. I have planted such “crocuses” in both NY and WA just for the joy they give each early spring and the memory of home.

We passed a prairie dog village on our return to Bismarck along scenic route 1806. Their community was in a fenced pasture and I am sure pose an injury problem for the many cattle herds we saw. Sad to think the little fellows were hunted with such enthusiasm and we did not stop the car to record their peaceful existence, ignorant of any threat.

Floyd (59) & Ann Pritchard’s Wedding in Tucson, AZ

Prevously posted with message 151 on 7/4/08

From Bonnie Awalt Houle (56):

Good Morning Gary,

Today is the 4 of July and we are celebrating the Birthday of our Country and also the men and women that have fought for our country. I would like to say how proud we are of our family members that have fought for the freedom we all enjoy. Attached are pictures of Marshall and Lloyd Awalt . Lloyd served in the Navy and Marshall served in the Marines for 30 years.

Bonnie Awalt Houle 1956

Marshall Awalt aboard ship

Marshall and Lloyd Awalt – Military

Marshall Awalt – Military

Leonard Kavlie family:
L to R: Leonard, Curtis, Dot, Duane, Jerry(adopted) & Hampton Kavlie

I think this this picture must have been taken in 1977

when Dad was the Bottineau Legion Commander? Gary

Bob Stokes in his legion uniform

10/14/2016 (2446)

Good day folks,

I don’t have any new postings for today, so I will just continue with the continuation of the posting of prior postings.

It is an over cast cloudy day, 85F, here in Cebu, Philippines this morning.  It is night time for most of you though. We are 13 hours ahead of CDT.  New York and Cebu have the same time. One is PM and the other AM.

Take care and have a good day,


Blog (517) posted on July 11, 2009

Posted on July 11, 2009

Reply from Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

Thanks for clarifying that you don’t put e -addresses over the Dunseith blog.
I have many kith and kin in my address book, scattered throughout the
US and Canada, not all Dunseith alumni. However, many continue to
keep connections with their Dunseith Kith/Kin, so I like to share
your blog with them.
I truly appreciate and continue to marvel at all you do, Gary and
that you do it so respectfully.
I wish you Happy Trails……./Flight/Sails…. as you journey to the
Pacific North West to embark on the much anticipated Alaska Cruise.
May you all have a wonderful time and continue to maintain the
Dunseith…bridges as you experience this new adventure together.
Bless you! As ever Vickie

Vickie L. Metcalfe

Vickie, Thank you so much for these nice words. I know you well enough to know that you are not one to say a bunch of words just to make someone feel good if you don’t truly believe what you are saying, so these words coming from you are very special to me. Gary.

Reply from Mary Eurich Knutson (62): Dunseith, Nd

Gary I can’t tell you how much I enjoy the pictures and comments on the older residents of the community. I especially liked the picture of Axel Johnson with his horse and buggy. Some of the older folks really lived thru some rough times. I think this is where we’ve all more or less inherited the instinct (if you will) to help those in need. Story has it that Axel’s first wife and baby died in the flu epidemic in the early 1900’s. Axel also had the flu and he was too sick to help his wife and baby and he layed in bed for 3 days after they died before anybody found them. Had to be a terrible experience. Maybe somebody else remembers more detail than I do. The picture of Billy Lawrence kind of tickled me too. A couple of days before that was posted I was wondering if anybody would remember him. I had been with my Dad different time when he took irons in to have shaped or bent. I still remember Dad tellling me to stay away from the red hot coals. Not much danger, you didn’t have to be close to feel the heat. Todays letter was great! Dave Kraft was my Dad’s uncle and that picture of their family really made my day.

Folks, speaking of pictures, please send any that you may have both of the present and of the past that you think may be of interest to the group. We have come to realize that people like pictures. Can you imagine the fun future Dunseith genealogy folks will have with all the stuff we will leave behind for them to go through. Gary

Message from Bobby Slyter (70): Wichita, Kansas


Bobby, Ele/Richard & David; We’d love to see some pictures if you guys have any you’d like to share. Gary

Message/Stories from Larry Hackman (66): Bismarck, ND


How are you? I hope this letter finds you and your family well. We are all well here. North Dakota is finally nice and green after many dry years. With all the moisture the reservoirs are filling up and even the western part of the state looks great. The crops are nice and green and thick, The hay fields are lush. the pastures have grass up to the cows knees. I can tell you how great everything looks because I’m not a farmer. A farmer as you know can’t say how great everything is until the grain is in the bin, the hay has been stacked and moved into the farm yard, and the cows and calves are back home in the corral, because they don’t want to jinx anything by talking about it. I’m not a farmer so I can tell you that it is looking like a great year in North Dakota for everybody.

Have a good day Gary.

Your friend,


Larry, thank you so much for these wonderful stories. You truly are a great story writer. We love them. Gary

Art Siem and AxelJohnson stories from Larry Hackman:

The stories and pictures of Art Siem and Axel Johnson recently posted, reminded my brother and I of a couple of stories.

My brother, Henry (class of 65) related this story to me about Axel and our dad, Clarence, catching a thief.Henry said, that Axel had come over to visit with dad.This was after my dad had lost his ability to walk and we had moved from the farm in the hills, to Dunseith.Axel says to my brother Henry, ” that your dad could run like a deer in his younger days”.Then Axel told him a story about when he was a Game Warden and he had come up to Carpenter Lake to check on complaints that someone was stealing peoples traps and muskrats from the muskrat huts.

You trap muskrats by chopping or augering a hole into the side of their mud and grass huts, that they usually build in the water, near to the shore.

Some people say that the further out into the lake they build their huts, the drier the year will be, and vice versa, the closer to shore they build them, the wetter the year will be?After chopping the hole in the hut, you place the trap in the hut, with the chain from the trap anchored to the outside of the hut. Then you fill the hole you made into the hut with the material you removed to get into the hut.

Our farm in the Turtle Mountians was located about a half mile west of Carpenter Lake.Anyway, what Axel said was that dad and him had made their way from the farm through the snow down to the lake and had just cleared the tree line and was scoping out the snow covered icy surface of the lake. The lake surrounded with all the muskrat mounds and cat tails was quiet and casting long shadows, as the sun was just going down. Most trappers check their traps in the early morning hours when the sun is coming up. They saw movement and at about the same time the man, who was bent over removing a trap from a hut saw them.He threw the traps he had collected over his shoulder with the rats still in them and took off running across the lake.Axel said, with the head start the man had and with the way he was running, he thought there was no way they were going to catch him.He said, Clarence our dad, grabbed a scoop shovel and took out after him and before that guy got half way across the lake, Clarence, our dad had caught up to him and clobbered him along side the head with the scoop shovel, knocking him out, colder then a cucumber.

Art Siem Story

Damned if you do.Damned if you don’t.

I was at home in bed sleeping as I was scheduled to work the next day (Sunday) at Robert’s Service Station.It was about midnight when the phone rang.It was the A/C Bar.They asked if I could drive a farm truck.I said, Yes, that I had driven farm trucks before.They asked if I could come up and drive Art Siem home.He had apparently taken a load of grain to town and sold it, and on his way home he thought he would just stop off at the A/C Bar and just have one.Well, anyway, they explained that he was in no condition to drive, and they were wondering if I could come up and drive him home.I said that I would and that I would be right up.They asked if I needed somebody to follow me up into the hills to bring me back to town.I said no,that I would have my sister follow me up and bring me back to town.

I don’t know if I thought about it then, but thats all I would of needed is for someone, that was sitting in the bar all night, following me, and then trying to drive me home.

I got up to the bar and got Art into the truck and drove him up into the farm yard. There was no yard light or at least it wasn’t on.It was pitch dark. I mean it was as dark as dark could be.My sister following behind the truck pulled up along side of the truck with the car, shining the head lights so that we could see..Art got out and disappeared fast into the night. The last thing I remember about Art that night, was that, when he got out of the truck and started walking he kept going faster and faster as he was trying to keep a leg between his upper body and the ground.He must have been successful at that as I didn’t see him fall and he diappeared fast into the night.

The next day I went to work at Robert’s Gas Station. It was about mid-afternoon.It was busy.Quite-a-few people standing around inside the station.All at once the front door burst open and in came Art Siem with another gentleman.Art was looking mad and bad with all the after affects of the night before plainly visible in his eyes, on his face, and in the way he was dressed,He was plainly one hurting unit. He looked around the inside of the station letting his eyes adjust to the change of light.His eyes finally met mine and he exclaimed! You stole my truck!I looked at him and kind of laughed and asked him?What side of the road do you live on?The west side or the east side?He said, the east side!Because as soon as he accused me of stealing his truck, it hit me that I had driven it and parked it in the wrong farm yard. Carrol Carlson’s farm yard.Apparently at the time he or I didn’t know what farm yard we were in or he was unable to tell me which farm yard we were in. Anyway, I had parked the truck in the farm yard west of the road. That night,

Art just diappeared into the night and I jumped into the car with my sister and went back to town and back to bed. After telling Art that his truck was parked in Carrol’s farm yard.Art just turned around and left the staion without saying a word.I just wonder to this day, whose house did he sleep in that night? I know Carrol was a good shot with a rifle.I had hunted with him in my younger years.Everybody party hunts deer in the hills and always have the best shots post in the openings, because if you see a deer that was run out of the woods by the other members of the party, you only have a instant to aim and shoot before the deer is back into cover.Carrol was one them guys you wanted posting in the opening as he never missed.Its a wonder that he didn’t come out and streighten us all out that night.He must not of been home. Lucky us.

A couple of comments:

I watched a couple of Hee Haw reruns and I think Buck Owens sings through his mouth.

I like the hits; I’ve got a Tiger by the Tail, and Act Naturally.His son, Buddy Alan, once put a show on at the Althea Theatre in Dunseith.He sung through his mouth also.Might have had a bigger crowd if he had sung through his nose. lol.

Isn’t it also strange, on them old pictures of cities and towns, that there are no trees, and hardly a blade of grass.I suppose when they woke up in the morning and the drinking water in the pail had turned to ice and they wanted their morning coffee like we do now.

That tree out in the front yard didn’t stand a chance, as wood was the main source of heat for heating the house and for cooking?I’m sure that with the horse they kept in the yard for transportation and that cow for milk and them chickens for eggs and meat there was know grass to mow.Look how the refrigerator has changed us?

Just think if you wanted fast food in them days it was provided with a ax.A ax was used to cut the wood for the stove and to remove the chickens head. Didn’t the first pictures of Col. Sanders show him standing with a ax over his shoulder and with a long stick with a wire hook on the end for catching the chicken by the leg in the other hand or was that, that guy from Minnesota with the blue ox?

I thought for sure I would get a reply from my old buddy and classmate Jay Vanorny with that onion story about his Grandpa.Maybe he did signal me.I just couldn’t see his hand with all the trees between there and here?

Remember: Laugh and the whole world laughs with you!


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

Gary and Friends,

Paula Fassett brought up the Community Christmas Concerts we had back
in the mid 60s. I think Dad was encouraged to direct the choir made up
of all ages of folks from the area. I remember I was also ‘encouraged’
by Dad to be in it, although at the time I was one of the only kids my
age involved. The school choirs were also involved in the Christmas
programs, again under his direction. The pictures below are of one of
these concerts and were taken in the old city hall. The little girl by
Dad is Diane Hill. Next to her are Paula Fassett and Gail Henning. My
guess is Christmas 1965. Thanks Gary!


10/12/2016 (2445)

I don’t have any new posting for today, so I will go with what I have.
Have a good day.

Johnnie and Margaret Hiatt Family
Hiatt. Johnson



Blog (516) posted on July 10, 2009

Posted on July 10, 2009

Reply from Sandra Zeiler Vandal (62): Elk River, MN

Hi Gary, and new to the list Brent Vandal. Joe Vandal, married to Josephine Davis lived by Belcourt. Joe was a brother to Leonard Vandal, who was Mikes dad. So do you come from that branch? That would be interesting to find out if there is a connection. Looking forward to seeing even a small part of Alaska. Sandra

Reply from Brent Vandal: Anchorage, AK

My grandfathers name is Louis Vandal, he married Corrine Davis now Corrine vandal from Dunseith, I am related to the vandal’s from Belcourt and St.. john. I have lived in Alaska now for two months. I like it but it is tough to get on my feet I’m transferring my job from the lowes in Alaska to the lowes in Bismarck to stay with a friend there.

Are Corrine and Josephine Davis related? How are Joe and Louis Vandal related? Gary

Message from Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

Kith and Kin,
If you are interested there is a photo of our dear family friend..(
Conrid’s uncle) Art Seim today on this Dunseith Alumni blog. If you
please, go to…

Also, a photo today and on previous Gary Stokes blogs of Dick
Johnson’s great-uncle Axel. One photo is in the early 1900’s. In
youth, after his real father was murdered in Norway, Axel came over
on a shIp, with his mother and 2 siblings. ( this according to his
daughter Mary Johnson (Seigrist), who told me her family story.)
Axel’s 1st wife died of the Spanish flu in 1918. His second wife,
Bernice Kelly was Mary’s mom. There is another photo of Axel, aged,
as folks would recall him the night watchman at Dales.

Axel Johnson had many fine character attributes and was very
respected and highly regarded by our Metcalfe Kith and Kin, and also
his many friends and neighbors in the Dunseith area.

My dad , Cliff and Uncle Bill Metcalfe, would visit and tell the
family story of, “Axel the Game Warden” In the 20’s or 30’s Axel
was attempting to solve a case, and find information on a
continuing mystery. Who was apparently illegally trapping muskrats
at area lakes and sloughs? Axel came in a buggy, to the Metcalfe farm
north of Rabbit City Lake. He stopped his horse in the barn area.
Getting out of the buggy, he stood and greeted various members of
the Metcalfe family, he stated his business. He said he was working
on his game warden job. Axel began to lecture the group assembled
before him about the seriousness of criminal activities such
as………out-of-season trapping. He led them to believe he was
suspicious of some local youth and was hot on their trail. He wasn’t
going to name any names..not quite….yet…. until he had real
proof. Maybe when he caught them in action. As he sternly lectured,
he walked back and forth over……the manure pile……under-which,
one or more of the boys had secured…a stash in a box…a big stash
buried just… a wee bit… under the surface of the Metcalfe manure
pile. Very nervous Metcalfe youth kept still, extremely quiet, as
they stood attentively, listening,….held their breath, and
wondered if Axel would start pitching manure or if he heard a
telltale clomping muffled sound while he paced over the
box….After giving them this fine lecture and the stern warning that
he was continuing his pursuit, Axel finally got in his buggy and
left the quiet lot…..in the barn yard.
Whoooeee, relieved… those boys exhaled. The “stash was never
uncovered by Axel”. He never caught his man?
Many years later at Dales, Axel told dad his side of the tale…..Dad
came to the conclusion that the whole time, as he paced….. Axel

Does else remember this Metcalfe tale?

Vickie, you referenced the Dunseith Alumni site.http://garystokes.net/default.aspx Since developing this site a few months back, we have had in excess of 3,000 visitors. We had over 900 visitors just in the month of June. After seeing these numbers I will be a bit more disciplined in posting the daily blog in a timely manor on this sight. For everyone’s info I don’t always post everything on the WEB site that is sent out in the email blog. I do not post email addresses and personal contact info on the WEB site either. Gary

Reply from Sybil Johnson: Cheyenne, WY

Gary, that was a fabulous picture of Pa Johnson. Thank you, so much. I hadn’t seen that one. Who was the person next to him?
That was the Pa I remember. He was the best! Sybil Johnson

Thurman & Marie Parrill Family:
Back row: Janet ’68, Clayton, 72 and Thurman
Seated: Lynda ’69, Rodney ’73, Myron ’76 and Marie

Previously posted with message 148 on 7/1/08

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

Gary and Friends,

I have quite a few pictures of my mom’s that were taken in the mid
forties. I think she was a ‘shutterbug’ as there are many pictures that
are not for any real occasion, that I can see. It would appear she just
liked to take pictures! Now, 60 years later I’m glad she did! These two
attached pictures are of Mom’s sister, Shirley Olson Warcup [black
skirt] and Shirley Sunderland and both were taken in 1946. A couple
cuties! [Sorry Snookie!] Thanks Gary!


Shirley Olson Warcup (49)

Mike & Josephine Poitra family:
Top row : Virginia, Dale, Ina, Antonio, Vita, Gene, Raymond
Second Row: Peter, Ester, Josephine(Mother), Mike(Dad)Mabel
Bottom row: Maryann, Linda and Gerladine

Dave Kraft Family:
Annie, Bertha, Dave, Lester (Bud), Bertha, Marlene, Dorothy Kraft – 1969

Rodney & Marlene Armentrout Family – 1969
Marlene , Rodney, Debbie, Brent & Bryan

I thought I throw this strange picture in for a filler. Gary

Elaine, Darrel (Bud), Allen, Gary & Bob Stokes – 1969

10/10/2016 (2444)

Evans, Joe & Joyce;   Johnson, Don & Bernice;  Dion, Floyd & Luella

Taken last week. On our way to this month’s Cebu Expat dinner.
Stokes 2444-1

Mirasol, Gary, Bernadette, Rona Wifladt (recently married to my cousin Jack), TataStokes 2444-2


Blog (515) posted on July 9, 2009

Posted on July 9, 2009

Reply from Rita Anderson, Mark’s (65) mother: Fargo, ND

Hi Gary Was reading the news about Dunseith past. Saw the picture of Mark Anderson. It was a good picture of him. Suppose you knew that he had passed away a few years ago, in Duluth, Minn. of cancer. Thanks Rita Anderson

Picture from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND


I was in Dunseith today and stopped in at the drive-in to eat. Amy
Hanson said she hasn’t gotten any messages since your computer crashed.
She said she really misses it. Her address is <
> although it may still be in your address
book. Thanks!


Dick, There was a period of about two months prior to my computer crash that I lost all those folks that were added during that time.

Amy, you were one of them. You are back in my address book now though.

Thank you Dick, Gary

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

Gary and Friends,

Several times the Fassett girls have mentioned being at my
Grandparents farm. It was quite often that the families got together at
one place or the other for meals and visiting. We had a couple pins and
a set of horseshoes and Bill was a great player—‘dead ringer’, I
remember that. The afternoon was usually finished off with horseshoes
and often fish stories! The old horseshoes and the pins are actually
grown into the bottom of an old boxelder tree in the old yard, right
where they were put close to 50 years ago, after one of the days of
playing a few friendly games. Thanks Gary!


The Bill and Irene Fassett Family–July 23, 1963

Class of 65 reunion 7-12-07
John Awalt

Class of 65 reunion 7-12-07
Susan Fassett Martin & Angela Berube Malget

Class of 65 reunion 7-12-07
Ernie Gottbreht, Cecile Berube Reynolds & Margaret Metcalfe Leonard

Axel Johnson in 1965


Art Sime


10/7/2016 (2443)

Neil Kester Passed away
Message from Jim & (Connie Halvorson (64) Kester:  Bottineau, ND

Gary ,

We wanted to pass along a copy of my brother Neil’s eulogy to share with the blog readers as  he  attended grade school in Dunseith for several years when our family lived in Dunseith and at San Haven .

Neil’s passing was especially sad for us because of his relatively young age but at the same time we celebrated his adventurous and productive life .

We also wanted to let you know that we are thinking of you and Bernadette with her health issues. We have always enjoyed our visits with you both

There’s a picture attached taken at the Bottineau bakery a few years ago of Sharon (Gottbreht) Shen , Connie (Halvorson) Kester ,Evie (Gottbreht) Pilkington ,Dwight Coleman and Patty (Boguslawski) Gottbreht .

Thanks Gary .

Jim and Connie ( Halvorson ) Kester

Gary’s comment

Thanks Jim for letting us know about your brother Neil’s passing. He was such a young guy too. Our condolences are with you and the rest of your family with his passing.

Thanks for Bernadette’s health concerns too. She is a fighter and is hanging in there.

I have pasted the Picture of Connie with Dunseith folks below. Thank you so much for this.

Sharon (Gottbreht) Shen , Connie (Halvorson) Kester ,
Evie (Gottbreht) Pilkington ,Dwight Coleman and
Patty (Boguslawski) Gottbreht .
Kester, Connie 2443


Reply from Jim Kofoid (Neola’s brother):  Bottineau, ND

Thx Gary!  You are always putting us folks first!  What a guy!

Jim K

Gary’s Comment
Thanks Jim for this reply and nice words.
Jim, you are indeed a true gentleman. One of the nicest guys I know. We are cousins too.


Salmonson Relationships
Reply from Marlys Hiatt (’71):  Dunseith, ND

This sure was news to me.  Very interesting.  Thanks Gary and Evon.

Marlys Hiatt
School Social Worker
Dunseith Public School


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


On October 1st 2015 I fell and hurt my hand.  It was left quite swallon and bruised.

I have been waiting for it to heal but it is still bruised and hurts when I use it.  Maybe it will never get back to its original color. I at least have a hand, so grateful for that.



This is my hand one year later,  still has a bruises.
It gets swollen and darker depends how much I use it.



Blog (514) posted on July 8, 2009

Posted on July 8, 2009

Reply from Dale Pritchard (63): Leesville, LA

Speaking of Herman Hagen, I think that first Ford that I remember was a
1950 model. He traded it for a 57 that I believe his/a brother got when
Herman died. He sold the 50 Ford to Darrel Landsverk who died in a
wreck with it on the Willow Lake road. My brother Darold had a 50 Ford
also and Norris Knutson had a 50 Mercury (maybe a 49) which shared many
of the same appearance characteristics. They were really “heavy”
looking cars. So you have a birthday coming up later this month. My
own is August 31st. I won’t say how old but I’ll be two ahead of you

Dale A. Pritchard

Dale, That was a 1950 ford that I remember Herman Hagen having too. That is the only car I ever remember him having.

Speaking of Herman Hagen and Albert Hiatt’s neighborhood (they lived side by side one mile south of #43), I remember hitting one of Albert’s cows in the middle of winter. Larry Millang and I think Joanne was with us too when we hit that cow. We were on our way to Bottineau for a night out of skating. Albert and Alice Hiatt were vacationing and Denny left the gate open and the cows got out. It was really icy and I was traveling a bit fast for the road conditions too when we saw these cows in the road. Needless to say I couldn’t stop and hit one of the cows. That ended our night on the town. I don’t remember if the cow lived, but I do remember the extensive damage to the car. I’m not sure why we were going that way to Bottineau in the first place. My guess is that we were probably passing by Orvin Hagen’s. Gary

Top: Margaret Metcalfe (65), Dana Henriksen (66), Cecile Berube (65), Angela Berube (65)

Bottom: Mark Anderson (65), Patty Boguslawski (65),Debra Mongeon (66)

Alan (65) & Rhonda Boguslawski – 2007

Alan Boguslawski (65)

Previously posted with message 134 on 6/16/08

Message/Pictures from Dick Johnson (68):


Gary and Friends,

Folks had fun 50 years ago too!! These pictures pretty well tell the story!

The two top pictures are in the Garden Tap–Margaret Hiatt, Joyce Evans,
Joe Evans, Freddie Hiatt.– Cliff Johnson, Joy Johnson, Bernice Johnson,
‘half’ of Don Johnson.


Bottom pictures–Cliff and Don with each others
hats[ Laurel and Hardy!]– Joyce Evans, Henry Olson, Myrtle Olson,
Loretta Johnson, Thelma Johnson, Darrel Fassett. I think this picture
was in the old Corner Bar, across the street from the Althea Theater.
The top photos are dated May 1960–The bottom left, 1962. The bottom
right had to be before Oct. 1959, as that is when Grandpa Henry Olson
died at 56 years of age. Thanks Gary!


May 1960 in the Garden Tap:

Margaret Hiatt, Joyce Evans,
Joe Evans, Freddie Hiatt.–


May 1960 in the Garden Tap:

Cliff Johnson, Joy Johnson, Bernice Johnson,
‘half’ of Don Johnson.


1962 in the Corner Bar:

Cliff and Don Johnson with each others
hats[ Laurel and Hardy!]–

October 1959

Joyce Evans, Henry Olson, Myrtle Olson, Loretta Johnson,

Thelma Johnson, Darrel Fassett

10/5/2016 (2442)


 I don’t have any new postings for today so I will only post the next previously posted posting that was posted on July 7, 2009.

 I am running short of time this morning too or I would find something somewhere to post.  I am having an early lunch with some of the guys in an hour so I have to run. I will get this poste first though.

 Take care and have a good day



Blog (513) posted on July 7, 2009

Posted on July 7, 2009

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

Hello from Alaska………This is a small world…………Last week I was in Lowe’s hardware to buy cement, sand, five gallon “pails” for my latest –my poor family–oh no, what is Mom creating now………….and the poor soul that got the honor to carry all this to my subaru was friendly. So of course I asked the usual questions–Are you an old time Alaskan? Where are you from? And shock of shock. His answer–North Dakota. Oh, I’m from N.D. allso. I’m from Dunseith. The poor kid allmost fainted. I’m from Belcourt, he allmost yelled. We were instant buddies. He would love to be on your list Gary..So here goes…….Brent VandalWere getting so many souls from the Dunseith area in Anchorage we’ll have to have a reunion or something.

Brent, It is a small world. It’s my pleasure to add you to our distribution list. I think you are probably related to Mike (Sandra Zeiler (62) Vandal too. Gary

From Marie Iverson Staub (60): Seattle, WA

Hi Gary,

This morning I received 2 E-Mails Number 501 time 6:24PM and 11:05PM. It has happened before and I just delete one but you may have double sent and someone will not be getting there morning fix.

Thanks again for all you do and looking forward to meeting you and Bernadette at the dinner in Seattle.

Marie (Iverson) Staub

Marie, Thank you so much for letting me know you got yesterday’s message twice. You were very correct with your thinking that I had sent it to your group twice and missed another group. I missed the group with a lot of the 50’s folks. They’ve got it now though, thanks to you.

Folks, if you get these messages twice, I’ve probably missed someone, so please let me know. Because of limitations imposed by email providers, I currently have you guys divided up into 8 different lists for distribution using multiple email address for sending. Each and everyone of my email addresses are good email addresses for sending messages to me too. The beauty of Outlook Express brings all messages from all my email accounts into one window. Gary

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

Hi Gary, What Picture??? If your lost as to what I’m referring to just the frame, and no picture came through….at least on mine . Even when I click on the little x in the box it does nothing….but maybe I’m not doing it right…Thanks for the kind words in ref to the photo…You were 1/2 way right about where I work. It’s a Level 5 lock down facility for teenagers. Level 5 means thier one mistake away from prison…(Like assaulting a staff member…which they do quite often…which thank God I only got smacked around 3 times in 30 yrs. and the worse injury I got,was a torn retina in my eye,which ended up to be a very long term injury…But God is good,and I love my job,and am so blest to have one…Take Care…Aggie

Aggie’s reply after I resent her the picture. Gary

Hey Gary, Yeah, now they both came thru…when I pulled it up 5 hours later there it was….Thanks Gary!

Folks, This appears to be a common server problem. Another solution that sometimes works too is to do a forward or a reply to the message, but don’t send it. Often times these pictures or other items that don’t appear in your message will be visible in the forwarded or reply copy on your screen. Gary

Correction to 1945 Basketball picture posted yesterday:

From Mona Dionne Johnson (48): Lake Metigoshe, ND

The player without a number next to Coach Shelver is “Raymond”
Haagenson – not Norman.
Mona Dionne Johnson ‘ ’48

Reply from Bill Grimme (65): Birmingham, AL


Glad you and Dick liked my fashion statement. My daughter-in-law snapped this picture on the 4th. I had the pleasure of 19 house guests–children and grandchildren. A few were missing – too old for such foolishness, I guess. We had a great day. Hope everyone had a safe and fun holiday weekend.


Memories from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND

Gary and Friends,

In a lame attempt to poke fun at our good friend Bill Grimme, I’d like
to tell another story about him. Somewhere probably around 1968-70 some
guys started an arcade for kids in the old K. C. Sine ‘Red and White’
store. They painted the windows over with psychedelic paisley designs
and had music going loud. The name of the place was ‘The Mod House’.
Bill was hired as the manager/’bouncer’. I think he was probably home
from college for the summer that year. OK, here’s the good part! Bill
got into the act and shaved his head! I was driving down Main with some
buddies in my car and we saw Bill standing outside with a white T-shirt
on and his arms folded. He was in great physical shape and with the bald
head, one of my buddies said, ” Hey look, it’s Mr. Clean”. We all
cracked up! Bill didn’t hear us, luckily, or we may not have survived!
Now you know, Bill! More history of old Dunseith! Thanks Gary!


Dick, I remember hearing about Bill’s bald head and I wasn’t even in the area. I heard it from several sources, but for the life of me I can not remember who I heard it from.

Bill, at the time everyone, everywhere seemed to know about your bald head. Word traveled fast in those days too. I’ll glady trade you for your head of hair today though. Gary

Picture from Crystal Fassett Andersen (70): Walhalla, ND

Just so Bill didn’t feel bad, here’s a picture of Dale & I and most of our kids and grandkids at last fall’s Annual Pumpkinfest,here in Walhalla ND. It’s a 60’s thing,I think,Bill.!! Crystal Fassett Andersen Front row:Elijah Gunderson,Shawn Bartels, Erika Gunderson,Aliyah Bartels,Nicole Berg (“08 Pumpkin Princess)Sarah & Marta Gunderson Back: Ryan and Joni (Andersen) Bartels, Tyler Gunderson & fiancee’ Vanessa Belgarde,Jason,Caylee & Becky (Andersen) Berg, Noah & Aaron Gunderson, Crystal & Dale Andersen

Picture 1944:

Back: Coach W.Schultz, Charles (Pug Lund, Wayne Molgard, Freddie Hiatt, Bob Molgard,Leo Murray, student Mgr. Howard Landsverk.
Front: Roger Johnson, Don Johnson, Lyle Johnson ?, Bruce Cornell, Allison Fiske


Axel Johnson


10/3/2016 (2441)

Duane Peter Morin
May 09, 1952 – September 29, 2016

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Duane Peter Morin, age 64 of Dunseith, died Thursday at Pierre, SD. His funeral will be held on Thursday at 10:00 am at the Fiddler’s Hall in Belcourt. His wake will be on Wednesday beginning at 6:00 pm also at the hall. Burial will be at the St. Louis Cemetery in Dunseith.


Joke of the day
Posted by Don Malaterre (’72):  Sioux Falls, SD

A friend of mine has two tickets for the 2017 Super Bowl in Houston on February 5th. They are box seats that include airfare and hotel accommodations.

He didn’t realize when he bought them that this is the same day as his wedding – so he can’t go.

If you’re interested and want to go instead of him, it’s February 5, 2017 at St Peter’s Church in New York City at 5 p.m.

Her name is Kim. She will be the one in the white dress.


Blog (512) posted on July 6, 2009

Posted on July 6, 2009

Reply from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND

Gary and Friends,

In response to the picture of our friend Bill Grimme, Bill—being
conservative is good, but you could upgrade your wardrobe to something
with a little more color! Drab is out! Come on, get with it!


Dick, Bill’s outfit reminded me of the song “My clothes of many Colors”. I’ll have to say Bill looked pretty sharp in that outfit. Gary

Memories from Dick Johnson:


I too can remember an incident involving your brother, Allen. We were
all down at Rendahl sledding on a hill to the east of the church, on a
Luther League gathering. I had driven a bunch of kids up in my old ’47
Plymouth. I had grips on the back that I bought from George and Lela
Cota for $5.00. I told Allen that with those grips and the weight of
that car I could go damn near anywhere I wanted without getting stuck.
He said he didn’t think that car was so heavy after which he backed up
against it and grabbed the rear fender and then lifted the tire off the
ground. We were pretty impressed that he could lift that much for a big
skinny kid like that! That was in the winter of ’64-’65. I remember the
year because that was when I drove that car.


Dick, Allen was noted for having a lot of muscle power. Nobody wanted to mess with big Al. Allen in his day was pretty well known by the local police too, for his driving habits. I remember one time he had a pretty noisy car that he was cruising around Bottineau in. He was warned by the local police to get that thing out town. A week or so later he was back in town with that same noisy car. When they pulled him over again, the officer said to him, “I thought I told you to get this thing out of town” and Allen’s reply to the officer was, “I did get out of town, but I’m back”. With all of the traffic violations that Allen had he lost his licenses, but still continued to drive. It became quite a game for the local sheriff’s and highway patrol to try and catch him. They always had reports that he was on the road, but were never able see him. He always saw them first and was able to dodge them. Those were the days. Gary

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

Hey Gary, To some of the people who have e-mailed me and requested a picture cuz I didn’t make it to the class reunion…this would be me…taken last August,and getting older…LOL… Hope you all have a Blest Day!

Aggie, This is a mighty fine picture. You look great! I think I remember you telling me that you are a correctional officer for the state prison system. Did I remember that correctly? Gary

Reply from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND

Gary and Friends,

All the mentions of fireworks reminded me of the 4th of July in ’63. I
asked Ronnie ‘Big Chip’ Johnson to come along to Lake Metigoshe for the
weekend. We bought a few packs of firecrackers and some other stuff and
were ready for dark. Ronnie had a brand new sweatshirt with the pocket
across the front. He had it full of his firecrackers and some of the
lighters called ‘punks’. We were lighting a few firecrackers off the
punk and decided we would wait for a while to do some more. He snuffed
out his punk and stuck it in his big pocket with the firecrackers.
Well—it wasn’t out and for the next five minutes he jumped around the
yard screaming while the entire works went off in his new sweatshirt. I
remember him holding his sweatshirt out as far as he could and jumping
around like a wild man! I don’t remember him being burned but the
sweatshirt didn’t look to good when it was over! Thanks Gary!


Fishing trip to SD with pictures from Sharron Gottbreht Shen (59): Everett, WA

Dear Family and friends,

Victor and I just returned from lunch and I thought I would share news and a few pictures of the week in Mobridge, SD from June 13/19. Fishing could have been better, but the time and place and folks were splendid. We has the use of 2 fishing craft that had seen years of service and 2 owned by Bob and Jeff Gottbreht that are really on the cutting edge. Great food each night provided from fresh catch of the day prepared in Rick Gottbreht’s portable kitchen. Nora and Ivan were an excellent fit to the group; Nora has surely won the hearts of all the family.

Love, Vic and Sharron

Gottbreth fishing trip phote L to R:
Cheryl Bailey, Ernie G, Rick G, Ivan Shen, Ryan G, Sharron Shen, Jeff G, Bill G, George G, Will G [son of Bill], Marc G, Victor Shen, Nora Obringer Shen

Folks, with these pictures I would like to comment that Cheryl Bailey, Ernie’s friend, is a real sweatheart of a lady. We met her at our class of 65 reunion and then we saw her several times in Bottineau following the reunion. Cheryl is so friendly and nice. Gary

Cheryl Bailey, Ernie Gottbreht, Ivan Shen & Victor Shen

Sharron Gottbreht Shen’s letter:

Fishing News

Early plans for Gottbreht fishing derby kicked off by Bob Gottbreht late 2008. Bob’s wife Connie was the only female attendee at previous meets. This year, all comers were welcomed. Uncle and cousin Gottbrehts were eager to meet our daughter-in-law Nora and pressed Ivan to abandon Wall Street for some serious fishing and evening “fish” stories and other lies in Mobridge, SD. Nora said she would go if Victor and I would be there, and so it was.

Nora and Ivan, Victor and Sharron rendezvoused in Bismarck, ND. Food first happened at Dave’s Amazing Barbeque and was voted commensurate compared to the best in NYC’s Righteous Urban Bar-B-Queue or the Shack in Dallas, TX. The drive south on the west side of the Missouri was amazing. Rolling hills so green, studded with clusters of cattle and buffalos with their young. America, America. Digs at the Wrangler Inn were OK because of pool and hot tub; next time we opt for the park cabins; excellent rustic comfort.

We were four boats on the Missouri, 5 persons/boat; captains were Jeff, Bob, Ernest and Marc Gottbreht. Long hours and few fish that first day out for myself; Nora was first to catch in Jeff’s boat – a 22” Walleye! All boats did well, but Ernie’s. This changed on day two when we stayed on the water till limit maxed, four per person. I quote Blake Gottbreht ”Sharron had first and last catch today.” Day 3, good fishing interrupted by fierce rain – all parties drenched; returned to camp early. Plenty of fresh catch for Fish Tacos. Leisure day for me Day 4 – prepped for Asia Night: Moo Shoo Pork; Sweet and Salty Shrimp; Beef Noodles. Sous-chefs de cuisinewere Nora and Ivan who found the Mobridge golf course excellent and price unbelievable. Day 5, fish not biting, enough caught for fish/steak fry. My tartar sauce received high praise from all especially Rick and Sandy’s son Ryan who is big on homemade. Day 6 Marc and Dennis with derby mascot Jasper and the Shen party of four enjoyed grand brkfst served forth by George for our send off. We later learned the fishing was awesome that day; catch and release after the first 2 hours for love of the sport.

There were plenty of fireside stories in the evening.Of course, it goes without saying a lot of VO and Bud Light.The best story was probably about 10 years old Marc drove the family truck into the ditch and George was assessed a $ 20 fine by the Sheriff by giving his permission.

Special credit to Rick who brought the outdoor kitchen – two deep fryers and grill from the former Dale’s Drive Thru plus two big circular tables and lots of chairs.

I never did hear results of evening Texas Holdum games; sleep too sweet each night.

Picture L to R: 1945

Back Row: Glen Shelver, Coach, Norman Haagenson, Wayne Molgard, Bill Hosmer, Ralph Thiel, Derrald Dion
Front Row: Leo Murray, Allison Fiske, Darrel Fassett, Don Johnson, Bob Molgard.

Harvey Halvorson & Floyd Dion