Gene Pelton, 99 and one-half proud years old, Dickinson, N.D. died Aug. 12, 2013 at the St. Luke’s Home, Dickinson.Published August 15, 2013
Gene Pelton, 99 and one-half proud years old, Dickinson, N.D. died Aug. 12, 2013 at the St. Luke’s Home, Dickinson.
A celebration of his life will be held at the United Methodist Church, Dickinson at 1 p.m., Saturday, August 17, 2013 with Rev. Dan Freed officiating. Inurnment will follow at Dickinson Cemetery. Visitation will be from 8 a.m. until 11 a.m., Saturday at Ladbury Funeral Service, Dickinson and will continue one hour prior to service time at the church.
Gene had been in the St. Luke’s Home less than a week after spending a few days in St. Joseph’s Hospital and Health Center. He told us last week he was looking for an exit strategy. He remained alert to the very end spending his last day with his beloved Kent who took such good care of him. We will all miss him, but know he is in a better place and out of pain.
Gene was born in Dickinson Jan. 2, 1914, the offspring of pioneers to the Dakota Territory, Fenn and Ella Louise (Lawrence) Pelton. Although he was an only child he counted his many cousins as brothers and sisters. After he graduated from Versippi High School he attended Dickinson State Teachers College. Gene grew up and lived his whole life on the original family homestead in the Versippi area near Dickinson. He did not move into Dickinson until he was well into his 90’s when he moved to Evergreen Assisted Living where he received great care and made wonderful friends; we will be forever grateful to them. Hopefully his large cribbage board will be used by many more residents in the years to come.
Gene and Florence McQuay were married on the farm March 2, 1937. Shady Bend Farm on the Green River holds many dear memories for all who ever spent time there. Gene was a dairy farmer and worked tirelessly trying to improve and promote the industry with the North Dakota Dairy Commission after he sold his herd. He and Florence spent many years as 4-H leaders in the community. He loved fishing, picking berries, traveling (he and Florence made it to all 50 states), playing cribbage, watching the Twins, and above all his family. His family is large and each member was a treasured part of his legacy.
In his long life he saw many changes and embraced them all. Gene was a member of the United Methodist Church, Dickinson for over 70 years and enjoyed reading the “Upper Room” to which he had recently renewed his subscription. The cell phone kept him connected to his large family and he felt it his duty to stay in touch. He thought and expressed what a blessing it was that he could talk to us often. We were blessed by his calls, prayers, and positive attitude. Gene was a member of the Odd Fellow Lodge, Elks, and served on many election boards to name a few.
Education was important to him and he saw to it that all of his children were given the opportunity to pursue a higher education. He was a good neighbor and friend; an outstanding father to his brood and loved his wife beyond measure. He was a good and caring man and his life is a testament to that.
Being an only child, he made up for it with six children: Raymond (Mary Helen), Deer River, Minn., Roger (Arlene), McKinney, Texas, Jeri Senger, Kent, Wash., Ginger (Keith) Trzynka, Grand Forks, N.D. and Kent (JoLynn), Watford City, N.D,; one daughter-in-law, Kathy Pelton, Dickinson, N.D.; one sister-in-law, Donna Kadrmas, St. Croix, Wis.; 19 grandchildren, Dawn Malene, Jill Glover, Geno Pelton, Roger Pelton,Jr., Lance Pelton, Marnee Janitza, Shana Perrina, Angie Cosma, Thomas Trzynka, Ted Trzynka, Tiffany Berry, Micah Pelton, Sam Pelton, Javan Pelton, Ana Pelton, Bettina Pelton, Aaron Pelton, and Marco Pelton, and 32 great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Florence; his parents; one son, Lowell and one grandson, Lowie.