Bernice K. ?Bebe? Mertens, 83, a lifelong resident of the Lake Region passed away early Wednesday morning, May 1, 2013 at the Good Samaritan Center, Devils Lake.

Bernice K. ?Bebe?Mertens, 83, a lifelong resident of the Lake Region passed away early Wednesday morning, May 1, 2013 at the Good Samaritan Center, Devils Lake.

Mass of the Resurrection will be held on Monday, May 6 at 10 a.m. at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Devils Lake with Fr. C.F. Wilhelm celebrating the Mass. Bernice made the decision to donate her body to UND School of Medicine for research purposes so burial will take place at a later date. Visitation will be held at the Gilbertson Funeral Home, Devils Lake on Sunday from 3 p.m. until 5 p.m. and on Monday at the church one hour prior to the funeral Mass.
Serving as casket bearers for Bernice will be her grandchildren and great grandchildren.  Lectors will be Marcee Mertens and Diane Mertens, gift bearers will be Jenny Mertens, Terra Eriksson, Ashley Mertens and Katie Mertens and a special tribute by Terri Mertens.  Music will be provided by Tom Burckhard and JoDee Lagein.

Bernice Katrina, daughter of Milton and Irene (Adsem) Belling was born on May 24, 1929 at Devils Lake.  She was reared and educated in the Derrick area, attending an elementary country school and graduating from Webster High School in 1947. She continued her education at Valley City State Teacher?s College and received her teaching certificate.  She taught at the Noonan Township school until she met and married her beloved John Albert Mertens on October 16, 1950.

After marriage, they lived for six years east of Devils Lake then moved to their longtime farm home north of Devils Lake.  They would make this their home, live, work and raise their family here for many years.   John passed away on August 12, 2003 and Bernice eventually moved to Devils Lake.
Bernice worked for over 12 years as a salesperson at Glickson’s Mens Store. Her most important job however was that of a devoted wife, mother and grandmother.

She worked very hard caring for her family and she was an excellent seamstress, cook and baker and sharing all of her creations with family and friends.   She enjoyed gardening, especially tending her flower gardens. She was a lifetime bowler and enjoyed many years on several bowling leagues.  She also was a member of the VFW Auxiliary.  She made a point of keeping up to date on all of her grandchildren?s activities and never missed a chance to watch them participate in their individual sporting events.  She loved any activity that involved family getting together for food, fun and fellowship. As much as she loved her family, canine companions. Alley Bear and Sammie, provided her with great joy and love for many years.

Bernice is survived by her loving family. Her daughter, Avis Winnegge, Devils Lake; sons, Jim (Marcee) Mertens, John (Faye) Mertens, Joe (Terri) Mertens and Roger (Robin) Mertens all of Devils Lake, Rusty (Anna) Mertens of East Grand Forks, Minn. and Patrick (Diane) Mertens also of Devils Lake; 15 grandchildren, Marcee (Curt) Logie; Karsi (Duane) Grego, Cody Mertens, KelSie Mertens; Kay Cee Mertens, Jenny Mertens; Travis Mertens, Terra (Adam) Eriksson, Tyler Mertens; Danny (Robyn) Mertens, Jordan (fiancé, Brooke) Mertens; Nick (fiancé, Lauren) Mertens, Ashley Mertens; Tyler (Sarah)  Van DeVelde, Katie Mertens; six great grandchildren, Lance Logie, Griffin and Athena Grego, Landon, Ashtyn Mertens, Peyton Mertens; sister, Vange (Dave) LaBarre of Alabama; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Charlie and Janet Mertens and Jerry and Shirley Mertens all of Devils Lake, Phyllis Lang, Merced, Calif., Glenn E. Weirick, Devils Lake,  Dutch Mertens of Fargo, N.D., Betty Mertens of California and Dick Evenson of Wisconsin; special friend, Lois Reardon; many nieces, nephews and cousins.

She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, John; step-father, Hart Peterson; grandson Jacob Mertens; half-brother Richard Peterson.

Friends may sign the online register book for Bernice at

Gilbertson Funeral Home, Devils Lake, is in charge of arrangements.