Thief River Falls – Willia Mrytle Prestegaard, a life-long resident of the Thief River Falls area, passed away Thursday, January 5, 2017, at Oakland Park Communities at age 97.
Funeral services were held Monday, January 9, at Trinity Lutheran Church, Thief River Falls, with Rev. John Wollenzien Officiating. Interment was held at Greenwood Cemetery, Thief River Falls.
Willia Myrtle (Race) Prestegaard was born on October 28, 1919 on the family farm to Frank and Betsy (Tharaldson) Race. She was baptized and confirmed in the Lutheran faith at Ekelund Lutheran Church. Willia attended the rural country school in Reiner Township, Goodridge, through the eighth grade (and walked two miles to school). Prior to her marriage, she worked the potato fields in North Dakota.
On August 27, 1938 she was united in marriage to Donald Siebert. To this union, two daughters, Marvel, and Wavell, were born. The couple farmed in Goodridge Township until Donald's death on July 4, 1947, in International Falls. Willia then began working at the Erie Grocery Store, rural Goodridge. Willia was united in marriage in Thief River Falls, to Alvin Fjeld on January 12, 1949.
To this union, two children were born, Delaine and Renae. The couple farmed small grains and raised sheep in Star Township until Alvin's death on November 27, 1975. Willia worked at the Thief River Turkey Processing Plant (now Northern Pride, Inc) for 28 years in various positions.
At the stroke of midnight on January 1, 1978, Willia was united in marriage to Eugene Prestegaard at Trinity Lutheran Church, Thief River Falls, where the couple made their home. Following Eugene's death on January 29, 2001, Willia continued to work until age 89 at various positions at the VFW Post 2793.
Willia loved to dance, play cards, attend local and state fairs attending the World’s Fair in Seattle, 1964, earning many ribbons (flower arrangements, baked goods and jam), gardening, socializing, attending auctions and travel. She loved spending time with family, especially the grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great-great grandchildren. She was an officer of the VFW Woman's Auxiliary, a lifetime member of the Deer Park Gardening Club and a member of the Trinity Lutheran Church.
She is survived by daughters, Wavell Sorenson of Plummer, Delaine (John) Hammer of Thief River Falls and Renae Fjeld Accardo (John Accardo) of Weyerhaeuser, WI; five grandchildren, Russell Sorenson (Marty), Rebecca Willett (Tom), Karl Sorenson (Rita), Sheila Gerardy (Tony), Maren Molskness (Rob); 11 great-grandchildren Tricia, Todd, Karl, Kassandra, John, Jeffery, Karleigh, Mallory, Brett, Abigail, and Bradley; 17 great-great-grandchildren Nathan, Eli, Leah, Nolan, Briar, Asia, Brenden, Haley, Nathan, Alexis, Tiana, Taylyn, Logan, Makynlee, Chole, Aubrey, Lilly; step children Molly, Valerie, Laura, Dean, and Nita, sister Angie Marquis, sister-in-law Esther Fjeld, and many nieces and nephews.
Willia was preceded in death by her husbands Donald Siebert, Alvin Fjeld and Eugene Prestegaard; Brother, Lester Race; son-in-law, Lloyd Sorenson; Parents, Frank and Betsy Race; step son’s Stuart Prestegaard, Duane Dickman, infant daughter Marvel Siebert.
In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to Hospice of the Red River Valley, and VFW Auxiliary.