Harold Swenson, 88, of Dickinson, N.D., died Tuesday June 18, 2013 at the Maplewood Care Center in Minnesota

Harold Swenson, 88, of Dickinson, N.D., died Tuesday June 18, 2013 at the Maplewood Care Center in Minnesota. Funeral services for Harold will be held on Friday, June 21 at 11 a.m. at the Ruger Park Recreation Center, Devils Lake with Mr. Martin Wilson and Ms. Marge Major officiating. Burial will be in the All Nations Lutheran Cemetery, Rock Lake, N.D. following services with Military Honors accorded by the Neathery-Simensen Post #756, Devils Lake Veterans of Foreign Wars and the North Dakota Military Funeral Honors Team. Visitation will be held at the Recreation Center one hour prior to the funeral service.

Serving as casket bearers will be Matthew Swenson, Nathan Swenson, Shane Swenson, Derek Swenson, Tyler Swenson and Chris Swenson with Honorary Bearers as Kjirsten Swenson, Aunika Swenson and CaraLee Swenson.

Harold Swen August Swenson was born on a farm near Warwick, N.D. to Carl and Clara Swenson on March 11, 1925. He left home at age 15 with an 8th grade education and obtained his GED high school diploma when he was 35 years old.  Harold worked on various farms in the Kindred and Valley City areas as a young man and proudly joined the United States Army in May, 1945. He served as a Demolition Specialist in Germany until his discharge in December, 1946. Harold met Laila Martin during his brief stay at Fort Snelling, St. Paul, Minn.  They exchanged letters during his deployment and were married August 30, 1947 at Devils Lake, N.D.

Harold and Laila farmed for three years in Warwick, N.D., before moving to Rock Lake in June of 1950 where they farmed until 1987. They moved to Dickinson in 1989 where they spent their retirement years with family and friends until Laila's death in 2011. In July 2012 Harold moved to the Maplewood Care Center to live near his youngest son's family.

Harold loved to farm and always enjoyed a hot sauna at the end of the day. Eating pancakes, playing board games, and telling jokes to his grandchildren were a few of his favorite things to do. During his retirement years in Dickinson he delivered mail for American State Bank, volunteered at St. Joseph’s Hospital, and worked as a bailiff at the Stark County Court House. He leaves behind a testimony of love and service for God, family, and friends.

Harold is survived by his three sons, Darold (Joanne) of Minot, N.D.; Sheldon (Mitzi) of Dickinson, N.D.; and Jeff (Evelyn) of White Bear Lake, Minn.; Nine grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; one sister, Olga Kaeding, Roseau, Minn; two sisters-in-law, Kay (John) Swenson and Marion (Charles) Swenson; one brother-in-law, Jim (Dorothy) Lillemon; along with numerous nieces and nephews.  

He was preceded in death by his parents, Carl and Clara Swenson; wife, Laila (Martin); an infant daughter, Susan Marie; an infant granddaughter, Andrea; two brothers, Charles and John Swenson; six sisters, Alice Crommet, Gladys Erickson, Evelyn Forde, Esther Trevilion, Hilma Sahl, and Dorothy Lillemon.

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