March 20, 1945-Aug. 21, 2014
Alfred Henry "Al" Steinke, the son of Henry and Lydia (Krueger) Steinke, was born March 20, 1945, in Grand Forks. He died suddenly at the age of 69 years on Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014, at the Heart of America Medical Center in Rugby.
Al was raised in the home of his parents near Niagara. He attended high school at the North West School of Agriculture in Crookston, Minn., and graduated in 1963. He attended Lake Region Junior College, Devils Lake, and received his surveyors certificate after which he enrolled at the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks in 1964. Al worked for the City of Grand Forks as a surveyor while attending college and was an Air Force ROTC cadet. In his senior year at UND, he earned his private pilot's license in the first class of the John D. Odegard School of Aerospace and Sciences. In 1969, Al graduated with a bachelor's degree in accounting. Al took a job in Grand Forks working for World Seeds Inc., an Art Greenberg Company. In the fall of 1970, he moved to Rugby where he was employed by Hartl and Orvik, Attorneys at Law as an accountant. On May 8, 1972, he established A H Steinke & Co., opening his own accounting practice in Rugby. In the years to follow he also opened accounting practices in Rolla, Minot, Leeds and Hazen, hiring and nurturing accountants that subsequently purchased each of those accounting practices. He managed the Rugby Credit Union for many years and introduced share drafts to its customers.
Al married Sharon Surface in 1964 and together they had two children, a daughter Lori and a son Brad. On July 11, 1981, he was united in marriage to Susan Anderson and they had a daughter, Stephanie. Al and Susan continued to make their home in Rugby and worked the accounting practice together. After his marriage to Susan, they also farmed for many years. Al loved all aspects of the farm, especially harvest. In the later years, in an effort to slow life down some, Al and Susan rented out the farmland. Al spent many hours at the farm, especially in the summer with his two-cylinder tractor collection, and mowing, gardening and caring for the farmstead. It was where he loved to be. He also enjoyed his interaction with his clients, helping them gave him a great sense of satisfaction and often he willingly dropped everything to help them. He was one of the founders in 1977 of the Rugby Chamber of Commerce and spent many years as their executive secretary. He was a member of St. Paul Lutheran Church, Rugby, and was treasurer there for several years.
Al is survived by: his wife, Susan; children, Lori (Travis) Hanson of Grand Forks, Brad (Kelly) Steinke of Albertville, Minn., and Stephanie Steinke (Brooks Houim) of Rugby; grandchildren, Alicia Hanson (Josh) McGoven, McKenzie Hanson, Hunter and Danielle Steinke; a great-grandchild, Easton McGoven; brothers, John (Susan) of Grand Forks and William of Mesa, Ariz.; nieces, nephews and other relatives and friends.
He was preceded in death by: a sister, Marie, at age 2; and his parents.
Memorials in his name may be directed to: UND Foundation Department of Aerospace or Accounting and mailed to UND Foundation, 3501 University Ave, Stop 8157, Grand Forks, ND 58202-8157.
Funeral services will be: Saturday, Aug. 30, at 10:30 a.m. at St. Paul Lutheran Church in Rugby. Rev. Dennis Neels, officiating.
Burial will be: in Persilla Watts Cemetery, Rugby.
Visitation will be: Today, Saturday, one hour prior to the time of services at the church.
Organist: Dianne Montonye
Vocalist: Kevin Lashman
Violinist: Arlene Johnson
Graveside Music: Mennonite Singers
Casket Bearers: Fred Lien Jr., Dave Kraft, Mark Anderson, Bruce Foss, Ben Anderson, Brooks Houim
Arrangements with the Anderson Funeral Home of Rugby. Online registry: (www.funeralsbyanderson.com).