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Donald Fjelstad

Posted 2/08/12 (Wed)

Donald Raymond “Bud” Fjelstad, 92, of Alexander, N.D., died on Saturday, Jan. 28, 2012.
Funeral services for Donald were held Feb. 1, 2012, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Alexander. Interment was at the Alexander Cemetery, Alexander, N.D. under the care of Fulkerson Funeral Home of Watford City.
Donald “Bud” was born, one of 14 children, on March 12, 1919, in his childhood home in Rawson, N.D., to Martin and Gunda (Rud) Fjelstad. He was educated in the Rawson Elementary School, and attended both Alexander and Arnegard high schools.
Don served in the Civil Conservation Corps stationed at Medicine Lake, McKenzie and Dunn counties. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy in Jan. of 1941 where he served on the battleship U.S.S. Arkansas as Machinist Mate First Class. He also served on the U.S.S. Rhind, and the U.S.S. Vammen. He was in five theaters of World War II, including Normandy, Iwo Jima and Hiroshima, and was honorably discharged in January of 1947.  
He returned to McKenzie County and joined his parents farming in the Rawson area. He spent his life building much of the infrastructure of western N.D. As a young man, he worked with crews to develop springs and fence most of the Federal Grasslands. He was part of the crew that blasted sandstone blocks for the picnic shelters and signs in the north and south units of Theodore Roosevelt National Park. He worked for National Tank in the oil industry and Industrial Builders as they finished bridges and dams across McKenzie County. Besides building homes and barns in the area, he worked to finish the Red Wing Gas Plant and helped run underground phone lines from Montana to Highway 83.
On Aug.13, 1965, he was united in marriage to Joyce Crook in Mobridge, S.D. They spent their years residing in Alexander, repairing lawnmowers, gardening, and chasing grandchildren.
He is survived by his wife, Joyce; daughters, Lisa (Tim) Nelson of Alexander, Lana (Mike) Escamilla of Wells, Nev., Sara (Galen) Meier of Carson, N.D.; brothers, Aveard of Williston, and Dennis of Madison, Wis.; sisters, Jeanne Brunsvold of Sun Lakes, Ariz., Marilyn Miller of Billings, Mont., Donna Mae Winden of Minot, N.D. and Bobbi Lou Lalim of Tioga, N.D.; grandchildren, August, Joseph, Laurel and Grace Nelson of Alexander, N.D., Hunter, Luke, and Alaina Escamilla of  Wells, Nev., and Elizabeth and Emily Meier of Carson, N.D.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Marvin, Leland, and Lyle; sisters, Evelyn Melby, Margaret Farnum, Arlene Nygard, and baby sister Verdell.