On Dec. 22, 2019, three days before his 87th birthday, our dad, father-in-law, grandfather and great-grandfather, Ernest Victor Gilbertson, passed away, solid in his Christian faith and secure in the knowledge that he was well-loved by his family.
Compassionate, Curious, Gracious and Wise. On Dec. 22, 2019, three days before his 87th birthday, our dad, father-in-law, grandfather and great-grandfather, Ernest Victor Gilbertson, passed away, solid in his Christian faith and secure in the knowledge that he was well-loved by his family. Memorial Service/Celebration of Life will be Saturday, April 18, 2020, at Atonement Lutheran Church, Fargo. The April date is set but time will be announced closer to service. After years of living with an ailing heart condition, he spent his final two months at Bethany on University in the expert care of the nursing staff, aids, and Ethos Hospice staff. In the end, when asked if he was ready to go ‘home’, he answered all who asked - with a strong “yes”. He had lived a full life of service and love and was ready to take the outstretched hand of his Lord and go home. Ernest (Ernie) was a Christmas baby, born in Williston, ND, in 1932 to Reverend Victor and Wilma Gilbertson. Wilma was able to get word to Victor that they were the proud parents of a new baby boy, just as he was preparing to start the evening Christmas Service. The oldest of five children, Ernie was a lively start to their growing family. As the son of a pastor, Ernie moved with his family to a number of communities in the Midwest. Ernie attended public school in each of the towns in turn, and in his senior year attended Augustana Academy. He graduated with a BA from Augustana College and started his first two of four years at the University of North Dakota medical school in Grand Forks, ND. His final two years were spent in Kansas City, KS, at the University of Kansas School of Medicine. It was in Kansas City that Ernie joined the Air Force and was deployed to Oxnard, Cali., where he was a USAF Flight Surgeon, Medical Commander at Geigen AFB. During those years at medical school, Ernie would travel back to Reynolds to visit his parents. It was on one of those breaks from medical school that Ernie met and fell in love with local spelling bee champion and beauty, Beryl Tweten. They were married on June 15, 1957, in Reynolds and began their life together in Kansas City. Over the next years, they lived in St. Paul, MN, Camarillo, CA, Spokane, WA and finally Devils Lake, ND, where Ernie worked as an Internal Medicine physician at the Lake Region Clinic for thirty-two years. In 1995, Ernie and Beryl retired to Fargo, ND, where they enjoyed hosting family and friends at their home, were active members at Atonement Lutheran Church and enjoyed the closer proximity to grandchildren. Ernie and Beryl were the loving and supportive parents of four children; daughters, Kristen (Dave) Olesen of Hoarfrost River NWT, Canada, Maren (Peder) Nees of Portland, OR, Stephanie (Gregg) Hammerly of St. Paul, MN, and David Gilbertson of Fargo, ND. Ernie was not a man to shout out his achievements; rather he was a quiet and gentle man with unwavering faith in God, community, service and his family. Over the years, Ernie served on the ND Medical Association: State Board of Medical Examiners, the Lake Region State College Foundation, Rotary, and was a board member at Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church. He was a board member at Mercy Hospital and Medical Director at several Nursing Homes. During the ND summers, Ernie enjoyed being at the lake cabin with his family to relax, fish, and tow his waterski-loving children behind his boat. He enjoyed an annual fishing trip to Canada with like-minded friends each June and he enjoyed his time on the golf course. In the winter Ernie loved nothing more than tinkering in his workshop building the latest Heathkit stereo or television kit, reading medical journals while watching Johnny Carson, or having a quiet conversation around the table. It was Ernie’s dedicated care and love for Beryl, especially during her years of chronic serious illness, which were the greatest lessons he shared by example. His patience and love for Beryl no doubt extended the quality of her life until her end in 2010. Ernie is survived by his four children; Kristen, Maren, Stephanie, David; six grandchildren, Jessica (Matthew) Peterson of Corbett, OR, Allison (Matt) MacNabb, Boston, MA, Christopher (Esra) Hammerly of Baltimore, MD, Aaron (Zoe) Hammerly, Minneapolis, MN, Annika Olesen, Hoarfrost River, NWT, Liv Olesen, Volda Norway; two great-grandchildren, Rowen and Julian Peterson, Corbett, OR; and his siblings, Esther Johnson of Colo.; Paul Gilbertson, CO, Ruth Matson of Minneapolis, MN. Ernie is preceded in death by; his wife, Beryl; parents, Wilma and Victor Gilbertson; and sister, Lois Olsen. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the American Heart Association or to a charity of your choice. Memories and condolences may be shared by visiting www.hansonrunsvold.com. Arrangements by Hanson-Runsvold Funeral Home - Fargo.