Oscar Edward Erickson, 88, Minot, formerly of Palermo, died Sunday, March 24, 2013, in a Minot hospital.
Oscar was born Nov. 26, 1924, to Edward and Dena (Akers) Erickson, on the family homestead in Mountrail County, near Epworth. He was raised on the family farm, attended Nichols country school through the eighth grade, and farmed.
Oscar entered the U.S. Army in 1945, serving with the Headquarter Company 2nd Battalion 322nd Infantry. He re-enlisted while serving in Japan at the Aomori Prefecture and served as an infantry rifleman and a guard patrolman, earning both pistol and rifle marksman awards. He was presented with the Asiatic Pacific Theater Medal, World War II Victory Medal and the American Theater Medal. He also obtained a certificate, during his service, at the Law Enforcement Officers Training School in Salina, Kan.
Following his honorable discharge in 1946, he returned to North Dakota to continue farming on the family homestead. Oscar was a self-taught man who never stopped in his quest for knowledge. He earned certificates from the Department of Agriculture and the Hobart Arc Welding School. He was a very private person who had a dry sense of humor and strong work ethic. These things, along with his deep appreciation for learning and the sacrifices of previous homesteaders who maintained and nourished the land, earned him the respect and admiration of his family, friends and neighbors.
When Oscar was united in marriage to Esther Carlson Snyder on Dec. 26, 1973, he gained an instant family. They made their home on the family farm raising cattle and wheat until 1995, when they moved into Minot. They continued to farm until retiring in 1999.
Oscar was a member of Bethel Lutheran Church and the Beck Sherven American Legion in New Town. He also attended Bethel Free Lutheran Church and volunteered his time delivering Meals on Wheels while living in Minot. For several years he served as the sexton and caretaker of John's Cemetery near his farm.
Oscar is survived by: his wife, Esther of Minot; children, Linda Klimpel (Ron), of Michigan, N.D., Rachel Kinden (Dan), of Keene, Walter Snyder (Kim), of Minot, and Sandra Wollan (Glenn), of Bismarck; 13 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; sisters, Esther Bahl, of Minot, and Betty Davis, of Richfield, Utah; and 16 nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Leonard and Howard; sister, Margaret; and a daughter, Susan Heinrich.
Funeral: Friday, March 29, 2013, at 2 p.m. in Bethel Lutheran Church, New Town.
Visitation: Today, March 28, from noon to 7 p.m. in Langhans Funeral Home, Parshall.
Interment: Sanish Riverview Cemetery, New Town.
Online condolences may be shared at (www.langhansfuneralhome.com).