Carl Erling Olson, 92, died at the Falls Good Samaritan Society on Friday, December 27, 2013.
He was born Karl Erling Olson to Sem and Augusta Olson on May 26th, 1921 on the family farm in Manitou, now Birchdale where he lived for over 91 years. A graduate of Indus High School, he served his country as a Navy CB in WWII and participated in the invasion of Normandy Beach. After WWII, he returned to the family farm and attended trainings offered to servicemen in carpentry, plumbing, and electrical, which he put to use to build his family a home and become a member of the carpenters union. He worked on numerous homes, the hospital, college, Holiday Inn, Gray’s Amoco, Falls & Indus High Schools, and the Country Kitchen to mention a few. He was also a farmer, gardener, and logger, beginning his career before the power saw.
After meeting Iva, in the early 1950’s they settled into the family farm and had four children, all of who survive: Brenda (Scott) Crowe and Tim (Crystal) Olson of International Falls, Ted (Marlyn) Olson of Littlefork and Deedra (Dale) Erickson of Birchdale. His step-son Wayne (Kathy) Nugent of Barwick, Ontario also survives him as do 12 grandchildren, six great-grandchildren and many nieces, nephews, and friends.
He was preceded in death by his wife Iva (Westover-Nugent); his only sister, Helen and husband Carl; stepson Lynn Nugent, son-in-law Lee Hasbargen, great-granddaughter Rose Nugent Vaughn, and best buddy Bertrand Lavigne. Over the years he more than tripled the size of the farm and built numerous buildings with the help of family and friends. The homes of his children also bare evidence of his craftsmanship. He was a lifelong learner and teacher.
He enjoyed taking boat rides up the Rainy River to his stepson’s for coffee and was noted in later years for driving the loop, crossing at Baudette on the way to Barwick and at the Falls on the way home, finding homemade meals in Barwick and I Falls. The company of those who came to the farm to hunt and fish and enjoy a meal gave him a reason to break from his work day. He was always ready for a visit, and managed many of these at Super One. He began selling farm products to the Manitou store when he was just a young boy, carrying eggs several miles. He continued with his wife selling farm products to the grocery stores and schools and they were noted for sending vegetables home with visitors.
Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, December 31, 2013 at the Birchdale Congregational Church with full military rites. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service at the church. Interment will be at the Birchdale Cemetery.
In memoriam donations may be made to the Fairview North Star Hospice of International Falls, or the Birchdale Congregational Church in lieu of flowers.
Condolences may be left at www.greenlarsen.com. Arrangements are with Green-Larsen Mortuary, Inc.