Irvin A. Nelson, 86, of Devils Lake, N.D., died on Friday, December 14, 2012 at the Heartland Care Center, Devils Lake.
Irvin A. Nelson, 86, of Devils Lake, N.D., died on Friday, December 14, 2012 at the Heartland Care Center, Devils Lake. Funeral services for Irvin will be held at St. Olaf Lutheran Church on Thursday, December 20 at 11 a.m. with Rev. Jeff Nicla officiating. Burial will be in the Devils Lake Cemetery with Military Honors accorded by the Neathery-Simensen Post 756 and the North Dakota Military Funeral Honors Team. Visitation on Thursday will be at the church one hour prior to the funeral service. Serving as casket bearers for Irvin will be members of the Neathery-Simensen Post 756. Irvin Ardell, ninth of eleven children born to Oscar and Louise (Sorenson) Nelson was born on May 25, 1926 on the family farm in Antelope Township, rural Maddock, N.D. He was a baptized and confirmed member of the South Viking Church. His father died when Irvin was only 15 years old, so the love and support of a large family sustained them through the hard times. He attended grade school in a small country school in Antelope Township and graduated from the Benson County Agricultural and Technical School in Maddock. Irvin was united in marriage to Dorothy Mae Haugen on March 16, 1946 in Glendive, Mont. Irvin entered the United States Army on April 9, 1946, serving his country during the Korean Conflict with Company B, 63rd Infantry Regiment. While he served in the military, Dorothy moved out to Washington and stayed with Irvin’s sister, Bergliot. Irvin was honorably discharged on July 26, 1947. Irvin and Dorothy returned to North Dakota and Irvin began his 38 year career with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service at Sully’s Hill. He received special law enforcement training in Georgia and became a Federal Game Warden. After his retirement he worked for the North Dakota Park and Recreation System at Graham’s Island and Shelver’s Grove for two years. Of course it was no surprise that Irvin loved the outdoors. He enjoyed hunting and fishing in all the seasons. Irvin was an active member of the Odd Fellows Lodge in Devils Lake for 59 years serving as Secretary, Noble Grand and twice as the Grand Marshal of the North Dakota Lodge. In retirement, Irvin also did volunteer work for organizations including the Ramsey County Meals on Wheels Program and the Juvenile Diabetes Association. Irvin lived a life of service to his beloved wife and family, his country, his church and to preserving the beauty of nature and the environment of the Lake Region. He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Dorothy; son Darryl Nelson and his wife Nancy of Chaska, Minn. and daughter, Luanne and her husband Duane Erickson of Minot, N.D.; four grandchildren, Nicole (Chris) Rasmussen of Chaska, Brady (Amanda) Nelson of Denver, Colo. and Nicholas (Stephanie) Erickson of New Prague, Minn., Adam (Amanda) Erickson of Fargo, N.D.; eight great grandchildren, Christopher, Anna, Lauren, Catherine and Jayden, Maura, Morgan and Devin; brother, Quintin (Ruth) Nelson of Harrisburg, Ore. and sister, Dorothy (Duane) Nelson of Bismarck, N.D.; sister-in-law, Lillian Hegland of New Rockford, N.D.; brother-in-law Vernon Ellingson of Minnewaukan, N.D.; many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Nelius, Bjarne, Einer and Vern Nelson; and sisters, Bergliot Patterson, Florence Hennig, Norma Haug and Irene Ellingson. Friends may sign the online register book and share memories of Irvin at www.gilbertsonfuneralhome.com Gilbertson Funeral Home, Devils Lake, is in charge of arrangements.