Dean Klegstad age 74 of Middle River, MN passed away after an arduous, two-plus year battle with Pancreatic Cancer on Tuesday, November 20th 2018 at his home, surrounded by his loving family. 

Mass of Christian burial will be held at 11:00 AM on Friday, November 30th 2018 at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Middle River, MN with Father Bob Schreiner presiding. Interment will take place at 11:00 AM on Saturday, December 1st 2018 at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church Cemetery in Middle River.

Visitation will be held from 5:00 PM until 7:00 PM, with a 7:00 PM Prayer Service on Thursday, November 29th 2018 at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Middle River. Visitation will also take place one hour prior to the funeral service on Friday at the church.

Dean Ellsworth Klegstad was born October 17th 1944, in Milwaukee, WI and was the eldest son of Leonard and Helen (Rue) Klegstad. In 1946 the family moved to a farm east of Karlstad, MN. Dean was confirmed at First Lutheran Church in Karlstad and in 1962 graduated from Karlstad High School.

He joined the United States Army in June of 1962. Dean served in Guam and was stationed in Korea in 1963 where he served as a heavy equipment operator in a combat engineer battalion. He was later stationed at Fort Dix, NJ until his honorable discharge in June of 1965.

After his service, Dean worked at American Crystal Sugar in Drayton, ND during the winter of 1965-66. In the spring of 1966 he worked on a farm east of Kennedy, MN owned by Raymond and Arlen Erickson, where the owners had a 1946 Ford pickup which was not running well.  Dean completely overhauled the engine and it ran like new again. This pickup is now in the museum at Lake Bronson, MN. It was the beginning of a long career in heavy diesel engine mechanics. In 1968, he worked as a truck driver for Fillipi Truck Lines in Warren, MN.

On December 14th 1968, Dean was united in marriage to Susan Anderson of Middle River. A daughter, Jana, was born; a week later on Thanksgiving Day, November 22nd 1973, Susan passed away and Jana came to Middle River to be raised by her grandparents.

Dean left Fillipi Truck Lines in 1973. He was then employed by Mindak Trucks in Crookston, MN until 1978 and started in 1979 at Falls Diesel in Thief River Falls, MN

On May 5th 1979, Dean married Beverly Nelson of Middle River. A daughter, Trudy, was born.

Dean opened a shop on the Klegstad family farm in August of 1982 and later moved the shop into Karlstad.  In the late 1980’s and through the 1990’s he worked at Interstate Detroit Diesel in Fargo, ND & Grand Forks, ND. Most recently he was employed for the last 12 years at Valley Truck in East Grand Forks, MN only reluctantly retiring due to illness in April of 2018.

He was a member of the Middle River American Legion in Middle River, MN. He was a lifetime member of the Western Minnesota Steam Threshers Reunion in Rollag, MN. He was also actively involved with the Northland Threshing Bee in Strathcona, MN and had served for several years as President and Vice President. He loved collecting and restoring old tractors but his most important love, however, was his family.

Survivors include his Wife Beverly, Middle River, MN; Daughters: Jana (Jason) Wagner, Moorhead, MN & Trudy (Timothy) Schunck, Grand Forks, ND; Grandchildren: Kolton Wagner & Karlie Wagner; Brother: Marvin Klegstad; Sisters: Alois (Lloyd) Lehse & Karen Christenson; Brother-in-laws: Dale (Lois) Anderson, Robert (Jani) Nelson, Kenneth (Celka) Nelson, Ronald (Lynn) Nelson & Jerry (Terri) Nelson; Sister-in-laws: Shirley (Frank) Shockley & Renae Nelson; and several nephews & nieces, cousins and many other relatives and friends.

Preceded in death by first wife Susan; parents Leonard & Helen Klegstad; brothers Owen & Ronald Klegstad.


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