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Morris Anderson, 94

Morris Anderson, 94, died on Thursday, February 2, 2012 at the Karlstad Healthcare Center in Karlstad, MN.

Funeral Services will be held at 11:00 AM on Monday, February 6, 2012 at the Karlstad Gospel Tabernacle in Karlstad, MN with Pastor Mark Hanson officiating.  Spring burial will be held at Karlstad Cemetery, Karlstad, MN.

Visitation will be held from 2:00 PM until 4:00 PM with a 4:00 PM prayer service on Sunday, February 5, 2012 at the Karlstad Gospel Tabernacle in Karlstad, MN.  Visitation will also be held from 10:00 AM until 11:00 AM on Monday at the church.

Morris Edward Anderson was born on June 27, 1917 at 5:45 AM in LeRoy Township of Mower County, Minnesota to Martin and Esther (Isaacson) Anderson.  Morris was baptized on July 29, 1917 by the Rev. H.J. Berg at Bethania Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Church in Mower County.  Sponsors were Mr. and Mrs. Aage Austby, Morris’s uncle – Elling Andersen (from Haugesund, Norway) and Miss Sadie Austby.  Morris moved with his parents and brothers, Earl and Arnold from LeRoy Township to Nelson Park Township in Marshall County where they lived on a farm 5 miles west of Strandquist.

Morris lived to see 17 presidents in office:  Woodrow Wilson, Warren Harding, Calvin Coolidge, Herbert Hoover, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barrack Obama.  When he turned 21 years of age, he voted for president and has voted for every president he could except for Franklin Roosevelt. 

Morris attended the Oakdale School District 160 which was a one-room school house and completed the eighth grade.  He had the same teacher for all 8 grades.  He studied arithmetic, reading, language and grammar, spelling, writing, history, drawing and geography.  Morris won second place in a spelling contest in 1928.  He and Ingeborg Torgerson represented their schools at Warren on February 3 for the county elimination contest.  Morris was confirmed at the Hegland Lutheran Church on Sunday, Octobr 5, 1931 at the age of 14.  Since 1933, Morris worked a variety of jobs with a starting wage of 10 cents per hour.  That year he also bought a driver’s license for 35 cents.  He clearly remembered that nobody was required to take a driver’s test to get a license.

Morris was inducted into the Army on July 16, 1942 and entered active duty on July 28, 1942 at Fort Snelling, Minnesota.  He was a truck driver with the 51st General Hospital at Fort Bliss, Texas and was also stationed in Camp Barkley, Texas.  Morris saw Joe Lewis perform for the troops when he was stationed at Ft. Bliss, Texas.  Morris left Ft. Bliss in El Paso, Texas on February 29, 1944 for California where the soldiers stayed a few days.  They left on a Mattson liner, the “Lurline” ship and arrived on Easter Sunday, April 9, 1944 in Port Moresby, New Guinea.  They went to Hollandia from there.  Morris also served in Luzon, the Philippines.  Morris was in the transportation system, and they followed the Air Force around.  They ran five or six two-and-a-half ton trucks (they called them deuce and a half), on jeep and one ambulance.  The troops had a saying:  “Golden Gate in ‘48” for their return home, but the war ended and the troops came back in 1945!  Morris served 1 year, 7 months and 18 days in the USA, and 1 year, 9 months and 23 days overseas for a total of 3 years, 5 months and 23 days of service.  Morris returned from Manila to San Francisco, California by ship in December of 1945 and it took 28 days.  He received the American Theater Service Ribbon, the Asiatic Pacific Theater Service Ribbon, the Philippine Liberation Service Ribbon, and the Good Conduct Metal.  He was a Private First Class.  He was honorably discharged January 8, 1946 from the Separation Center, Camp McCoy, Wisconsin.

Morris was united in marriage to Hazel Thompson on Wednesday, June 4, 1947 at the Pentecostal Church in Karlstad by the Rev. Abner Hedman.  Morris and Hazel celebrated their 25th anniversary in 1972, their 50th in 1997 and their 60th in 2007.  At the time of Morris’s death, they had been married 64 years.  Morris and Hazel Anderson bought a house in Strandquist where they lived for a few years.  They moved that house to the Ole and Kristina Thompson farm and in 1956 bought the farm in section 8 of Lincoln Township from Ole and Kristina Thompson.  They raised grain and had dairy cattle until the cattle were sold in 1988.  Morris drove school bus for the Strandquist School from 1954 to 1966. 

In 1950, Morris and Hazel Anderson moved to Longview, Washington where he worked in the paper mill for a year.  They moved back to Minnesota in 1951.  Morris and Leo Renstrom became the owners of the Tydol station and garage in Strandquist on November 15, 1951.  Morris and Leo opened the place up for business the day after the deal was made.

Morris was elected to the Township Board in 1954 and served for 10 straight 3-year terms.  Morris was a member of the Strandquist American Legion Post #466, Strandquist School Board, and the Kennedy VFW Post.  He also served as a director on the Thief River Falls Cooperative Creamery Association.  Morris and Hazel Anderson moved off of the farm and into Oakwood Apartments in Karlstad, MN on February 10, 2008 where they currently resided.

Morris is survived by his wife, Hazel; daughter, Dorothy (Buzz) Chaffee, son, Paul (Shirley) Anderson, daughter Cindy (Jim) Wetterlund and daughter, Kathy (Keith) Britten; grandchildren Chana (Dale) Christensen, Jenny (David) Janssen, Kristopher Anderson, Kenrick (Julia Rose) Anderson, Christy (Kyle) Scott, Joshua (Hollie) Britten, Jared (fiancée Shannon Grove) Britten and Allison Britten; great grandchildren, Bethany and Nathaniel Janssen; many nieces, nephews, and cousins.

He was preceded in death by his father, Martin Anderson in 1966, his brother, Warren Anderson in 1976, his mother, Esther (Isaacson) Anderson in 1979, his brother, Earl Anderson in 1997, his brother, Leonard Anderson in 1998 and his brother, Arnold Anderson in 2003.

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