Andrew Desjarlais, 88, of Harvey, formerly of Minot, passed away Sunday, March 30, 2014, at St. Aloisius Medical Center in Harvey.
Andrew A. Desjarlais was born Aug. 2, 1925, the son of Patrick and Roselie (St. Germain) Desjarlais, in Belcourt. He was raised and educated in St. John and was a proud member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians. Andrew met the love of his life, Emma S. Bercier, and they were united in marriage Nov. 26, 1946, in St. John. From this union, four daughters were born. They made their home in St. John until 1948, when they moved to Williston. Andrew began his career with the Great Northern Railroad, now known as the Burlington Northern Sante Fe Railroad, in 1955. He transferred with the railroad to Minot in 1958, and retired as a carman welder in 1985. During this time, he also worked at Minot Wrecking and Salvage and took great pride in welding the distinctive ornate fence surrounding that property now. Following his retirement, he and Emma continued to reside in Minot until the 2011 flood, when they moved to Harvey.
He was an avid hunter and fishermen. He loved tinkering in his garage and working around their home.
He was a faithful member of St. Leo's Catholic Church of Minot until the last flood forced them to move to Harvey. He always spoke of how he missed Minot and wanted to move back to the community he loved so much.
The family would like to thank St. Aloisius Medical Center in Harvey for all the love and care they provided, and for keeping us informed about his condition. We would also like to thank Lewellyn Tewksbury of Harvey for all the love, companionship, and care that he showed during our father's last months; Sister Merriam for her daily visits and prayers; and all the caregivers and providers who supported him.
Surviving family includes: wife of 67 years, Emma, Jamestown; daughters, Betty Lou (Everette) Waller, Torrington, Wyo., Sandy Onstad, Albany, Minn., and Donna (Kevin) Crump, Niceville, Fla.; grandchildren, Christopher and Brad Waller, and Wendy Pontarolo; Sherry and Angel Onstad; Michael and Josh Hanes; and Andrew Schumacher; 12 great-grandchildren; and his constant companion, his toy poodle Brandy, whom he loved dearly.
Andrew was preceded in death by his parents.
Funeral: Thursday, April 3, 2014, at 10:30 a.m., at St. Leo's Catholic Church, Minot.
Interment: Sunset Memorial Gardens, Minot.
Visitation: Today, April 2, from 4 to 7 p.m., at Thompson-Larson Funeral Home, Minot.
Vigil prayer service: Today at 7 p.m. at the funeral home. Memorials: In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to St. Aloisius Medical Center in Harvey in memory of Andrew.
Those wishing to sign the online register and share memories may access the online obituaries section at (www.thompsonlarson.com).