Thief River Falls - Rodney Burns of Thief River Falls, age 56, died on Tuesday, June 4, 2013 at Essentia Health Hospital in Fosston.
Funeral services were held Monday, June 10 at 10:30 a.m. at the Imperial Room at the Ralph Engelstad Arena in Thief River Falls, with Rev. Robert Dahlen officiating. Interment will be held at Ebenezer Church Cemetery, rural Oklee.
Rodney William Casper Burns was born March 21, 1957 in Moorhead, the son of Gerald and Fern (Grondahl) Burns. He was baptized at St. Henry’s Catholic Church in Alice, ND and confirmed at St. Thomas Catholic Church at Buffalo, N.D.
He attended school at Buffalo, ND graduating in 1975. He attended College at North Dakota School of Science studying Welding. He began working at Steiger Manufacturing in Fargo, N.D. Rodney moved to Plummer in 1977, where he was a grain farmer.
On June 3, 1978, he was united in marriage to Diane Marie Sletten at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Plummer. Rodney was working at Arctic Cat and grain farming. He left Arctic Cat in 1982 and continued farming and purchased dairy cows.
In 1984, the couple settled on the farm where they are currently living. He went back to Arctic Cat in 1992 where he worked his way up to leadman. He retired from Arctic Cat and opened Burns Welding and Repair in 2002 which he continued to own and operate.
Rodney raced the 101 stock car in Greenbush; he enjoyed watching NASCAR races and the Greenbay Packers. He spent hours visiting with people that stopped by the shop but he especially enjoyed the time spent with his family especially his grandkids. Rodney had his best friend and ride along companion which is his dog “Sarge.” He had a soft spot for animals but did not like to show it. He had a knack for fixing things and always had an idea on how to design and fabricate steel as well as teaching young people the trade. He also enjoyed traveling to South Dakota to help out on the farm.
He served many years on the Mayfield Township board and was the current Treasurer, past Ebenezer Church council and cemetery sexton.
Rodney is survived by his wife of 35 years Diane; children Nicole (Tony) Kiesow of Goodridge, Jeremy (Laurie) Burns of Huron, S.D., Jared Burns of Goodridge, and Allison (Scott) Weinmann of Thief River Falls; grandchildren Alexis, Kayla and Hunter Kiesow, Morgan, Paige, Brandon and Chase Burns; baby boy Weinmann due in August, and grandchildren of heart Makenzie, Breanna and Logan Wells; one sister, Mary (Roy) Westlake of Moorhead; and nieces and nephews, Wade Westlake, Michael Johnson, Lenny (Carolyn) Johnson, and Amber Grove; mother-in-law, Marilyn Sletten of Thief River Falls; brothers-in-law, Dean (Darlene) Sletten of Middle River, Jerry Sletten of Fargo, N.D., sister-in-law, Linda (Leonard) Johnson of Boise, Idaho; neighbor and best friend Leslie (Trudy) Wilde; and his shop son Cody Trontvedt and the rest of the welding shop crew.
He was preceded in death by his children, infant daughter Natalie and son Nicholas Burns in 2004; parents and grandparents, father-in-law Clarence Sletten and nephew Mitchell Johnson.
Condolences and notes of sympathy may be sent to the family at www.johnsonfuneralservice.com.