Thief River Falls - Gordon Bjerken, 80, Thief River Falls, died on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014 at Sanford Medical Center in Thief River Falls, with his loving family at his side.
Funeral services were held Saturday, Feb. 1 at Johnson Funeral Service in Thief River Falls, with reverends Mark Helgeland and Ben Carlson officiating. Casket bearers included grandchildren Jennifer Tanner, Nicholas Bjerken, Melissa Wastlake, Michael Westlake, Cambell Thompson, Andrew Sourdif and Jade Sourdif. Military honors were provided by Ecklund-Holmstrom American Legion Post 117 and Veterans Of Foreign Wars Post 2793. Interment was held at Greenwood Cemetery, Thief River Falls.
Gordon Joseph Bjerken was born June 18, 1933 in Thief River Falls, the son of James O. and Alice (Grendahl) Bjerken. He was baptized and confirmed at Zion Lutheran Church, Thief River Falls. He attended Lincoln High School and graduated in 1952. Gordon played hockey for the Prowlers winning the state championship in 1951. Four days after his graduation, he entered into service with the United States Navy.
On April 23, 1955, Gordon was united in marriage to Margaret Haider at Zion Lutheran Church. At the start of his trade, Gordon worked for Lee Plumbing in Thief River Falls. He then went on to achieve his apprenticeship as a steamfitter and retired in 1995.
He was a member of Redeemer Lutheran Church, Ekelund-Holmstrom American Legion Post 117, Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2793 and a member of the Plumbers and Steamfitters Local 11. Gordon enjoyed spending time at the grandchildren’s sporting events, he was an avid sports fan, but most of all he loved the time spent with his family. He would spend hours tinkering in the yard and woodworking. He was well known for his whistling.
Gordon is survived by his children: Steven (Kathy), Thief River Falls, Debra (John) Westlake, Warba, Denise (Scott) Balsiger, Oro Valley, Ariz., and Susan (Wayne) Sourdif, Ada; seven grandchildren, Jennifer (Jay) Tanner, Nicholas (Sara) Bjerken, Melissa (Fiancé Lonnie) Westlake, Michael (Fiancé Corie) Westlake, Cambell Thompson, Andrew Sourdif, Jade Sourdif; great-grandchildren Brooke Danielson, Noah Danielson, Mason Tanner, Benjamin Westlake; sisters: Elaine Ramstad, Spokane, Wash., and Marlene Nathe, Minneapolis; brothers: Alden Bjerken, Tacoma, Wash.; and many nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Margaret on Nov. 7, 2002; parents; and brothers, Vernon and Russell; sisters, Jeanette Doyea and Shirley Bjerken.
Condolences may be sent at www.johnsonfuneralservice.com.