Marlen James Berdahl, 85, of Bismarck, died Saturday, March 2, 2013, at Missouri Slope Nursing Home in Bismarck surrounded by loving family members.
He was born in Michigan, N.D., on Dec. 15, 1927, to Emil and Lydia (Fontaine) Berdahl. Marlen was raised on a farm near Michigan and attended rural school. He joined the National Guard and served for two years during the Korean War. He then worked for Skalicky Excavating of Michigan for several years.
Marlen married Janice Pepple in Michigan on June 16, 1959. They moved to Minot, where he worked for I. Keating Furniture for seven years. Marlen then worked as an electrician at the Minot Air Force Base until his retirement in 1988. While in Minot, they raised four children.
Marlen enjoyed fishing, hunting, gardening, and working in his shop. After retirement, Marlen and Janice enjoyed wintering in Arizona and spending their summers at Lake Metigoshe. They made lasting friendships in their travels. For health reasons, they moved to Bismarck in November 2010 to be close to their families.
Marlen is survived by: his wife, Janice; his four children, Marla (Kent) Orvik, Bismarck, Tracey (Keith) Thornby, Minot, Brenda (Gregg) Orvik, Minot, and Brad Berdahl, Minot; his nine grandchildren, Korissa (Jesse Jacobson) Orvik, Kendria (Nazib Chowdhury) Orvik, Brandon (Sommer) Mosser, Whitney (Michael Hammer) Mosser, McKenna Vaughan, Kayla, Cody, Zachary, and Olivia Orvik; his two great-grandchildren, Ty and Ella Burton; and many nieces and nephews.
Marlen was preceded in death by his parents; his brothers, Milton, Raymond, Newell, Donald, Vernon, Gordon, Robert, James, and Eugene; and two sisters, Betty and Ann.
The funeral service for Marlen: Will be held at the Aaker Funeral Home in Lakota on Thursday, March 7, 2013, at 2 p.m.
Burial: Will be in the spring at the Michigan Cemetery in Michigan.
Visitation: Will be held for one hour prior to the service Thursday.