|Harold J. Burrell, 85|
|Written by TRF Times|
Thief River Falls - Harold “HJ” J. Burrell, 85, of Thief River Falls, beloved husband, father, grandpa and great-grandpa, died on Friday, April 15, 2005 at his home in Thief River Falls, with his family at his side.
Funeral service were held on Tuesday, April 19, at United Methodist Church in Thief River Falls, with Rev. Philip J. Schmidt officiating. Casket bearers included Harold’s grandchildren, Paul Burrell, Rebecca Burrell and Emily Burell. Honorary casket bearers included Skip Litstrom, Jim Hulteen, Waldo Thompson, Joe Forberg, Jerry Johnson and Milton Reierson Interment will be held at Zion Cemetery in Oklee.
Harold James Burrell was born June 27, 1919 in Thief River Falls, the son of James A. and Fannie (Dostal) Burrell. He was baptized and confirmed at the Presbyterian-Methodist Church, Thief River Falls. He grew up and attended school in Thief River Falls, graduating from Lincoln High School in 1938. He worked for Dennis Wegge at the Standard Oil Bulk Station after completion of high school.
He entered the United States Army, May 1, 1942, serving in the European Theater of war, crossing the Atlantic Ocean in the largest convoy ever to do so. Ten days later his convoy landed in Glasgow, Scotland. Upon completion of training, he was among the 3rd wave to land on Omaha Beach, serving under General George Patton in three different armies. He fought in five major battles, one of which was the Battle of the Bulge. He went through France, Luxembourg, St. Lo, Rhineland, Ardennes and into Berlin, Germany.
After serving in World War II for three and one-half years, he returned to Thief River Falls and worked for Poppler’s Furniture Store. He then owned and operated the Luxury Ice Cream Store in Thief River Falls. Following that, he worked for the State of Minnesota as an auditor with the Petroleum Division for 32 years. Along with his brother, Mel, he co-owned Mel’s Appliance Store in Thief River Falls.
On October, 10, 1946, Harold was united in marriage to Donna O’Neill at the O’Neill farm.
Harold was a lifetime member of United Methodist Church, Thief River Falls, a member of American Legion, VFW, Thief River Falls Junior Chamber of Commerce, UCT of America and a 50 year member of the Elks. He loved his lake home, fishing and was an avid bird watcher in the backyard and could tell the names of each bird that was at his bird feeders. His biggest joy was being around his grandchildren and attending their many sporting events throughout the years. He could always be found in front of the TV anytime the Vikings played from the time the team was established. After retiring he could be found fixing or repairing most anything.
Survivors include his wife, Donna of Thief River Falls; a son, Dr. James (Mary) Burrell of Grand Forks, N.D., and a daughter, Peggy (Ken) Kristjanson; three grandchildren; two step-grandchildren, Jamie Parker of Bozeman, Mont., and Justin Kristjanson of Belgrade, Mont.; two step-great-grandchildren; a brother, Melford Burrell of Thief River Falls; and several cousins, nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, one brother and one sister.