Thief River Falls – Myrtle Sunsdahl of Thief River Falls, formerly of Goodridge, passed away on Monday, June 20, 2016 at Altru Hospital in Grand Forks, N.D., surrounded by her loving family, at the age of 77.
Funeral services were held Saturday, June 25 at Faith Lutheran Church in Goodridge, with Pastor Phillip Johnson officiating. Interment was held at Goodridge Cemetery, Goodridge.
Myrtle Ione Johnson was born on June 28, 1938 in Espelie Township, the daughter of Albert and Gladys (Tenold) Johnson. She was baptized and confirmed in the Lutheran faith.
Myrtle walked to school at the Espelie Country School (which is now the Espelie Town Hall) until fifth grade. She then attended the Goodridge School.
On Sept. 24, 1955 Myrtle was united in marriage to Orvin Sunsdahl at the Parsonage at Zion Lutheran Church in Thief River Falls, with Pastor Walter Peterson officiating. They were blessed with four children: Gwen, Gail, Geniel, and Gerald.
In 1964, Orvin and Myrtle purchased his parents’ farm, where they raised their family, hogs, and farmed for many years. After selling their farm in 2010, Orvin and Myrtle made their home at Greenleaf Senior Living in Thief River Falls.
Orvin passed away on April 23, 2012. Myrtle has since resided at the Thief River Care Center.
Myrtle worked alongside Orvin on the family farm. Her days were busy with farming, gardening, cooking, quilting and sewing. One of her favorite pastimes was picking blueberries with friends and family. Myrtle always had the coffee pot on for neighbors and family. Family get-together’s and spending time with her grandchildren were special to her.
Myrtle was an active member of Faith Lutheran Church – serving as the Sunday School Superintendent for several years, teaching Sunday School, Ladies Aid, and making mission quilts. In the Goodridge community, she was active in the Lions, receiving many awards including the Melvin Jones Award for dedicated humanitarian services.
While residing at the Care Center, Myrtle was able to continue quilting and rug making, and enjoyed bingo, napkin folding, puzzles, and visiting with her fellow residents. Myrtle’s family would like to thank the staff at the Thief River Care Center for all the care and kindness shown to her throughout the years.
In lieu of flowers, memorials suggested to Faith Lutheran Church of Goodridge.
Survivors include her children, Gwen (Roger) Blaine of Goodridge, Gail (Donald) Wilkens of Thief River Falls, Geniel (Michael) Schroeder of Ayr, N.D., and Gerald (Kathy) of Thief River Falls; grandchildren, Brandon Blaine (Brandi Stanley) of Grygla, Shane Wilkens (Mishawn Homme) of Goodridge, Amber (Jason) Homme of Goodridge, Kelsey Wilkens (Tommy Greelis) of Bovey, Jared (Cady) Sunsdahl of Richmond Hill, Ga., Heather (Shane) Peterson of Thief River Falls, Allison (Anthony) Cedeno of Camp Pendelton, Calif., Erick (Lindsay) Peterson of Thief River Falls, Michaela Peterson of Thief River Falls, and Kris (Wayne) Braun of Newberg, Ore.; great-grandchildren, Taylor Blaine, McKenna Blaine, Morgan Sundrud, Payton Homme, Braxton Homme, Preston Troumbly, Lennon Greelis, Nick Shaske, Madison Sunsdahl, Maegan Sunsdahl, Rebekah Sunsdahl, Blayke Sunsdahl, Rylee Manning, Camdyn Peterson, Kenzie Miller, Alex Braun, Nick Braun and Taylor Braun; sisters, Ruth (Ken) Sanders of Goodridge, Lila (Skip) Killoran of Morris, Marlys (Mick) Hudson of Bloomington, Lois (Ron) Philipp of Thief River Falls; brother, Gary (Norma) Johnson of Thief River Falls; many nieces, nephews, cousins, relatives, and friends.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Orvin; infant daughter; grandchildren, Bridget Blaine and baby girl Blaine; her parents; brother, Glenn Johnson; brother-in-law, Dick Sanders; and nephew, Chad Johnson.