Ralph Birdsall

Nov. 2, 1938-July 1, 2020

Ralph Birdsall, 81, Bert-

hold, died Wednesday,

July 1, 2020 in a Minot as-

sisted living facility.

Ralph Owen Birdsall

was born November 2,

1938 in Minot, ND to

Donald and Evelyn

(Moger) Birdsall. He was

raised and educated in

Passport Township until

the 7th grade and graduat

ed from Berthold High

School in 1956. He at-

tended NDSU in Fargo.

Ralph was united in

marriage to Phyllis Mann

on August 18, 1957 in

Lonetree. They called a

farm in Passport Town-

ship home for the next 51

years. Together they

operated a family farm

that raised cattle, pro-

duced small grains and

saw the blessing of four

children. They moved

from the farm into Bert-

hold in 2008. Phyllis died

November 6, 2018.

Ralph was a longtime

member of Berthold Bap-

tist Church and was active

in the church council and

board along with serving

as a Deacon, Trustee and

Sunday school teacher.

He was also a member of

Berthold Farmers Union

Board for 18 years, Ward

County Farmers Union

Board, Verendrye Rural

Electric Board for 39 years

as secretary, ND State-

wide Rural Electric Board

for 25 years as executive

secretary, Passport Town-

ship Board as secretary,

Berthold Development

Board for many years and

Berthold Lions Club for

45 years. He received the

FFA Honorary Chapter

Farmer Award and NDSU

Harvest Bowl Award.

Ralph enjoyed attend-

ing his children and

grandchildren’s many ac-

tivities. Ralph enjoyed his

membership to the Bert-

hold Senior Citizens

Center, traveled in the

US, farmed and playing

trumpet for the Berthold

Community Band.

Ralph and Phyllis took

much pride in their fami-

ly and community, always

doing their very best to at-

tend any or all events.

Ralph was always wil-

ling to try new and inno-

vative ideas and practices

on the farm. He was the

first in the area to start

custom spraying with his

father in law with a

“spray coupe”. He was

also one of the pioneers in

adapting to less tillage

and using a direct seeding

process that is now gen-

erally accepted through-

out the area. On the

farm, Ralph enjoyed har-

vest the most. He was the

happiest running a red

combine with Phyllis be-

side him in the cab.

Ralph did his best to

make sure knowledge was

passed along to the next

generation, always involv

ing young family

members, giving them the

opportunity to operate

equipment on the farm

and letting them make

their own decisions and

mistakes. This showed us

all how truly patient he


Ralph was always very

involved in his church

and local boards and or-

ganizations when needed.

He also had a strong com-

mitment and involvement

with Verendrye Electric

Cooperative. This board

required much time at

meetings and on the road,

but was an example to us

all of how important be-

ing involved and active

can be. Ralph also had a

strong Christian faith and

showed that daily in his

actions. He will be dee-

ply missed by all who

were blessed to share in

his life.

Ralph is survived by:

his children, Debbie (Jack)

Hansen, Berthold, Mark

(Colleen) Birdsall, Bert-

hold, Leanne (Jim) Peter-

son, Berthold and Craig

(DeAnn) Birdsall, Carpio;

grandchildren, Jory

(Missy) Hansen, Cody

(Brittany) Hansen, Whit-

ney (Sam) Landman,

Danae (Blake) Inman,

Kyle Peterson, Abbey

(Derek) Lee, Tyler Bird-

sall, Adam Birdsall, Ra-

chel (Adam) Knudsvig

and Sara Birdsall;

great-grandchildren, Mol-

ly, Cally, Brody, Brycen,

and Colten Hansen,

Owen, Emma and Au-

tumn Inman, and Charlie

Landman; sister-in-law,

Carole Luetzen, Sheridan,

WY; along with numerous

nieces, nephews and


Ralph was preceded in

death by his parents, wife

Phyllis, grandson,

Matthew Birdsall, great-

grandchildren, Hayden

and Kade Hansen, brother

Russell Birdsall and moth-

er and father-in-law,

Lewis and Wilma Mann.

Family Funeral service:

Due to COVID Restric-

tions, a family service will

take place on Wednesday,

July 8, 2020 at 11:00 a.m.

in the Berthold Baptist

Church, Berthold. Im-

mediate and extended

family are welcome to at-

tend. A livestream of the

service can be viewed by

accessing Ralph’s online

obituary at www.thomas


Public Graveside service:

Wednesday, July 8th at

Noon in Wildrose

Cemetery, Berthold.

Public Visitation, Pub-

lic Prayer Service & Pub-

lic Gathering with social

distancing guidelines ob-

served: Tuesday, July 7th

from Noon-2:00 p.m. in

Thomas Family Funeral

Home, Minot and from

4:00 -7:00 p.m. at the Bert-

hold Baptist Church with

a public prayer service to

follow on Tuesday at 7:00

p.m. in the Church.

Memorials are pre-

ferred to Berthold Baptist

Church or FFA Berthold


Memories and con-

dolences can be shared at