Thief River Falls – Ole G. Waale, 99 of Thief River Falls, died peacefully on Wednesday, March 9, 2016 at his residence with his loving family at his side.
Funeral services were held Tuesday, March 15, 2016 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Thief River Falls, with Rev. John Voelker officiating. Interment was held at Greenwood Cemetery in Thief River Falls. Military honors were provided by the Ecklund-Holmstrom American Legion Post 117, Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2793, and Minnesota Army National Guard Honor Guard.
Ole Gunerius Waale was born Jan. 6, 1917 in Kratka Township (rural Goodridge, to Thom and Signe (Skretvedt) Waale. He was raised in rural Nielsville area, baptised in the Lutheran faith, went to school, completed eighth grade – and entered ninth grade but decided to work as a farmhand for area farmers – jobs which were few and far between during the “dust bowl” era. When he was 24 he was called up in the selective service in 1941 as the US was on the brink of WWII. He was assigned to Fort Worden, Wash., as a crew member in the Coast Artillery.
He was re-trained for Field Artillery and re-assigned to the European Theater (England-France-Belgium-Germany). His unit was assigned to the 4th Infantry Division in direct support of offensives in France, Belgium and Germany. At war's end, he mustered out in Camp Butner, N.C. He had pretty much lost the better part of his hearing due to the war.
While he was on furlough during his transfer to the European Theater, he met the love of his life at a dance. Joyce Irene Jackson from Lockhart, would become his wife in 1946, after he returned from the war.
They made a home in rural Nielsville working for a local farmer, and raising three of their four children. Patricia JoAnn, Cynthia Kay, and Douglas Keith were born and raised in that area until 1959 when Ole moved his family to Thief River Falls, and started work for Hartz Foods Warehouse.
Three years later the final addition to the family was born, Brent Thomas. Ole worked at Hartz for 22 years and retired in 1979. The last few years while working, Ole bought a 160 acre farm near Grygla, from his aunt Hilda Nesseth when his uncle Hjalmer passed away. It was his pride and joy as a hobby farm and even turned a small profit once or twice. He later sold it as it became a bit of a burden to travel back and forth.
Around this time, Joyce had contracted her first cancer. In August 1989, son Douglas was killed in a motorcycle accident. In October 2002, Ole's lifelong love passed away from her third form of cancer. In December 2004, his daughter Patricia passed away from COPD. In May 2009, his daughter Cynthia passed away from cancer.
Ole loved to fish in earlier years, and went out of his way to take his family on numerous vacations and camping trips from West Coast to East Coast. He loved to play whist and rummy, was a real keen eye when shooting pool, and was a voracious reader of western novels and newspapers. He was also a Minnesota Twins fan but lost interest the last two years due to his poor hearing.
He is survived by his son, Brent Waale, TRF, sister Stella Gast, Ada, sister Lorraine (Earl) Knutson , Glenwood, brother-in-law Sidney (Emily) Jackson, Ada; sister-in-law, Betty Jackson, Fruita, Colo.; four granddaughters, six great-grandchildren; numerous nieces and nephews and grandnieces and grandnephews.
He was preceded in death by both sets of parents, wife, Joyce, children Patricia, Cynthia, Douglas, one granddaughter, four sisters, Alice, Gladys, Ina, Doris and one brother, Hans and their spouses; brothers-in-law, Jim, Jon, Eugene; four sisters-in-law, Marjorie, June, Helen, Laurel, and their spouses.
Ole had a battle in January-February this year with double pneumonia and survived it to come out of Altru hospital, Grand Forks, after 20 days and then come home to Oakland Park Home in Thief River Falls for respiratory/physical rehab. He was at home for a week where he passed peacefully without pain on Wednesday March 9th at age of 99 years, 2 months and 3 days. His son Brent was by his side along with Brent's caregiver/family friend Betty Sjostrand. Nephews Steven and Brian Waale, and great-nephew Chans Waale were present.
Condolences may be shared by visiting www.johnsonfuneralservice.com.