Grand Forks, N.D. - Myrtle Vagle passed away on Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013 at Valley Eldercare Center in Grand Forks, N.D. She was 96 years, 8 months and 1 day old.
Funeral services were held Saturday, Oct. 26 at the Karlstad Gospel Tabernacle Church in Karlstad. Myrtle will be laid to rest at the CE Conrad Memorial Cemetery in Kalispell, Mont.
Florence Myrtle Thompson was born on Thursday, Feb. 22, 1917, the seventh child of Ole and Kristina (Bolin) Thompson in Lincoln Township of Marshall County. She attended the Strandquist School and grew to womanhood in the Strandquist area.
She was an attendant for her cousin, Esther Thompson’s marriage to Edwin Madsen on December 12, 1934 in Karlstad.
Myrtle Thompson went to California and worked for Billy Wilder in the late 1930s.
She married Lawrence Eldor Arnold Sands on March 29, 1940 in Kalispell, Mont., at the Assembly of God church. Two children were born to this union: Lawrence “Sonny” Sands and Kristina Myrtle “Krissy” Sands.
Larry and Myrtle worked in the logging industry in Kalispell. They were married 22 years when Larry died of a brain tumor on June 26, 1962 at the age of 48 years.
Myrtle saw the marriages of both of her children, Sonny and Krissy Sands, the births of three grandchildren, Tal Sands in 1964, Rodney Sands in 1965 and Randy Birky in 1965, and the births of four great grandchildren, Levi Birky in 1995, Paige Birky in 1996, Zachary Sands in 1996 and Kasey Sands in 2000.
Myrtle operated Sands Realty in Kalispell, Montana and was a member of the East Valley Quick Response Unit there. She also worked in California for a number of years after Larry’s death.
Myrtle Sands was visiting family in Minnesota in 1988 when she met Roy Vagle. They were married Dec. 31, 1988 at the Assembly of God church in Karlstad, Minnesota. They made their home in Karlstad and were involved in Meals on Wheels for shut-in people in the Karlstad area. Roy Vagle died Jan. 25, 2002 and Myrtle continued to make her home in Karlstad.
Myrtle enjoyed the flowers that her sister, Hazel Anderson grew in her gardens at the farm. She would drive out to her farm on Saturday evenings and cut flowers and make flower arrangements for the Gospel Tabernacle church and the Assembly of God church for Sunday morning services. After church, she would take the flowers to the nursing home for the residents to enjoy.
Myrtle enjoyed playing marbles – aggravation –with Pearl Thompson and Elsie Lefrooth at Elsie’s house on Main Street.
She enjoyed writing local news for the North Star News, the Warren Sheaf and The Thief River Falls Times newspapers and participated in the county politics as a delegate. She was a member of the Gideons.
Myrtle was diagnosed with Lewy Body dementia in November 2009 and entered Valley Eldercare Center in Grand Forks, N.D.
She is survived by her son and daughter-in-law, Sonny and Janet Sands of Kalispell, Mont.; four grandchildren and their spouses: Tayvia Doran, Tal Doran, Rodney and Debbie Sands and Randy and Gaylene Birky, all of Kalispell, Montana; four great-grandchildren: Levi Birky, Paige Birky, Zachary Sands and Kasey Sands; sisters: Hazel Anderson, Gloria Renstrom and Geneva Nordin, all of Karlstad, as well as many nieces, nephews and cousins.
She is also survived by four stepsons and their spouses: Royle and Marie Vagle of Tulsa, Okla.; Neil and ReNae Vagle of Roseau; Mark and Patti Vagle of Prior Lake, and Tim and Dawn Vagle of Holland, Mich.; eight step-grandchildren and eight step-great grandchildren.
Myrtle was preceded in death by her husband Lawrence Sands in 1962; her daughter Krissy Birky in 1994; her second husband, Roy Vagle in 2002; her sister, Bertha Elizabeth Thompson in 1917; her sister, Dorothy Elaine Thompson in 1923; her brother, Ernest Thompson in 1939; her father, Ole Thompson in 1959, her mother, Kristina Thompson in 1974, her brother, Vernon “Red” Thompson in 1993; her brother, Peter Thompson in 2003; her sister, Mary Renstrom in 2007; her brother, George Walter Thompson in 2008; her sister, Elsie Lefrooth in 2010 and her brother, Isaac Thompson March 4, 2013.
May her memory be blessed.