Posted 3/18/14 (Tue)
Albert I. Sandsmark, COL. US Army retired, passed away peacefully at the age of 95 on March 4, 2014, in San Diego, Calif.
Albert was born on May 6, 1918, in Watford City, N.D., to Axel Sandsmark and Inga Nybakken. He was one of five children who grew up on his parents’ farm outside of Watford City, N.D.
Albert graduated high school in 1936 where he was class president his senior year. Upon graduation he joined the CCC’s (Civil Conservation Corps) spending time in both Zion and Yellowstone National Parks. He graduated from North Dakota Agricultural College (now NDSU) in 1943 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture and was a member of Alpha Tau Omega fraternity and the ROTC’s. Albert was commissioned 2nd Lieutenant July 1943, and retired as a Colonel after 26 years of service in November 1969. During WWII he was part of the invasion of Normandy, along with conflicts in Germany and Belgium. Among his many tour of duty stops, his most memorable were in Japan (1950-53), Germany (7th Army 1957-59), and Liberia (Police Advisor AID 1963-67). He served his country proudly and with honor.
Upon military retirement, he worked for the State of Colorado Department of Highways involved with safety and training programs for nine years. Fully retired, he enjoyed his hobby of fixing up homes for resale and honing his love of carpentry and wood working. He loved to make saw dust was a favorite saying of his.
Albert married Anne (Gerzanich) in June 1948, six months after being set up on a blind date in San Francisco. They had a loving marriage for 51 years until Anne’s passing in May 1999 in Florida.
For one year after Anne’s passing, Albert moved back to North Dakota to be with his sister, Alfhild in Bismarck. He enjoyed North Dakota, and was always excited to hear about the growth of his once small hometown of Watford City.
In 2007, Albert moved to San Diego, Calif., to be near his son, David. He lived in an independent living facility for a year until his eyesight deteriorated. He then moved to an assisted living facility which provided him the increased support that he needed. Albert was so very appreciative of his caregivers for helping him with his day-to-day activities, and could not say thankyou enough to the staff.
Albert is preceded in death by his wife, Anne, daughter, Suzanne Sandsmark, brother, Garvin Sandsmark, and sisters, Ella White, Alfhild Smaltz and Thelma Bottman.
Albert is survived by son, David and wife, Sonya, and grandchildren, Nicole Sandsmark, Ryan Perea, and Kyle Sandsmark, along with three great-grandchildren.
A small memorial service will be held in June in Florida to place his ashes with Anne’s at the Florida National Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, you may send your memorials to the Retired Military Police Officers Association.
Albert was one of the most kind-hearted, gentle, caring, supportive and loving husband, father, and friend anyone could ask for. We will miss you very much, and will keep your memory alive in our daily thoughts.