New York Mills – Eugene Bennie Nesland, 95, of New York Mills, formerly of Thief River Falls, passed away Sunday, November 13, 2016. He was born on January 21, 1921 in Pierre, S.D. His father came from Norway in 1908 at the age of 18. His mother came from LaBroquerie, Manitoba, Canada. They met in Montana where he had homesteaded. Eugene was baptized in Pierre, confirmed in Thief River Falls and graduated from Mentor High School, where he met Doris Boyum. They were married in 1941. They lived in Mentor, and Grand Forks, ND until a move in 1943 to Thief River Falls. In their retirement they lived in Tucson, AZ and Ada, Brooklyn Park and New York Mills.
Gene was a hard-working man who cut and hauled wood, worked in a potato warehouse, was a parts man and bookkeeper at an Allis Chalmers dealership and more. In February 1956, he opened Nesland Accounting Service in Thief River Falls, retiring in 1986. He served as church treasurer, on various committees including the Jaycees, Chamber of Commerce and Lions Club, taught Sunday School, served on boards of the Association Free Lutheran Congregations, rode horses for pleasure, at county fairs and with a posse in the AZ, mountains. He taught his family good work ethics and to not spend what they didn't have. Giving a rose a month to Doris was a habit they enjoyed the latter years of their 71-year marriage. Grandchildren have good memories of fishing with Grandpa, his good popcorn, sharing Canadian bacon and pineapple pizza and singing his special bedtime song to the little ones. He appreciated church services and Bible studies wherever he lived, including the Elders' Home.
Gene was preceded in death by father Halvor B. Nesland, step-father Lloyd Cochran, sister Lea Wickham, brother-in-law Hjalmer Aaseby, mother Clementine Cochran, step-mother Elsie Nesland, brother Vern Nesland and wife Doris Nesland. He is survived by sisters Anne Aaseby, Lakeville, Karen Sue Poe (Phil), Leesburg, VA; children Carol (Francis) Rogers, Bemidji, Jerry (Geraldine) Nesland of New York Mills, Cindy (John) Schlenk of Brooklyn Park; nine grandchildren, 19 great-grandchildren and a host of other relatives and friends.
In his will he expressed the following: Realizing “it is the lot of men once to die and then comes the judgment,” trusting that God has made me His own child and has kept me in personal fellowship with Himself so that, purely by His grace I can say, “…the course that (God) set I have finished, and I have kept the faith. The future holds for me the crown of righteousness which God, the righteous judge, will give to me in that day .. and not, of course, only to me, but to all those who have loved what they have seen of Him" II Timothy 4:7-8.
My deepest wish is that all who read this will, have or will come to have, the same trust in Jesus, so that we might all be united in heaven forever.
The family thanks the staff of Elders' Home of New York Mills and Hospice of Red River Valley for their care.
Please visit www.karvonenfuneralhome.com to send Eugene’s family a message of comfort and support.
Arrangements were provided by Karvonen Funeral Home, New York Mills, Minnesota.