Timothy Edwin Tveit passed away peacefully on Monday, January 11 at his home in St. Paul, MN after a lengthy battle with cancer. He was born November 8, 1966 in Warroad, MN, the youngest of five children born to Lawrence and Elsie Tveit. He grew up on the family farm north of Roosevelt near Rocky Point but spent the majority of his life in the St. Paul area. Tim was confirmed in the Lutheran faith at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Jamestown, ND and later became an active member of First Lutheran Church in St. Paul.
Tim was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy at a very young age. CP is a disorder that affects muscle tone, movement, and posture. This disorder presented huge challenges for Tim his entire life. Our family is so proud of the way he met these challenges each and every day. Every obstacle in his life was met with determination, a positive attitude, and a big infectious smile. Tim spent his entire life in a wheelchair. He received his first electric chair at age 14. This gave him a new life and freedom he had never before experienced. Tim eventually traded up three different times for new and improved models.
Tim began his education in the Head Start Program in Williams, MN before transferring to the Warroad school district in 1973. He thoroughly enjoyed his elementary and junior high years there and still maintained friendships with many former teachers, aides, and classmates who played a big part in his formative years. In the fall of 1981 he was accepted to the Anne Carlsen School in Jamestown, ND. The ACS served children with special needs from all over North America. Sending Tim away was a big decision for his parents which meant their young son would leave home and be totally dependent on perfect strangers for his daily needs and education. Students at the ACS were not allowed to see their parents for the first six weeks of the school term. This was a difficult but necessary step in conquering homesickness and gaining their independence. Tim had five wonderful years at the ACS, graduating in 1987. After graduation he was fortunate to be chosen as a candidate for Courage Center in Golden Valley, MN. This program focused on training and teaching young adults how to live independently. It was a great experience for Tim and helped him transition to living on his own. Tim finally secured his own apartment in St. Paul and began independent living in 1988.
Tim later joined a bowling league for handicapped young adults and it was there that he met the love of his life, Nicole. He and Nicole were later married on June 5, 2004. Tim volunteered for many years at the St. Paul Parks and Rec office. His main job there was to record scores and keep team standings for the bowling league. Over the years Tim developed a special bond with his coworkers at the Parks and Rec office.
Tim developed many friendships and acquaintances over the years. People young and old came to know and respect him as a wonderful person. In his younger years he thoroughly enjoyed playing the card game UNO with neighbors and friends at the farm. Tim was also a very good checker player and never backed down from a challenger. He loved fishing and especially looked forward to ice fishing escapades with his dad. A common sight on the Rocky Point Road was the high flying orange flag on the back of Tim’s wheelchair as he traveled from one farm to the other. In his later years he developed an interest in computers and created many photo slideshows for family graduations and celebrations. He especially enjoyed his visits with family, friends, and neighbors when he would return to the farm in Roosevelt. The Minnesota State Fair was the one big event in his neighborhood that he looked forward to every year. Tim loved attending the fair as many days as possible. He truly enjoyed fair food and would sample from one end of the fair to the other.
Tim taught us the true meaning of patience, perseverance, and courage. His life will continue to be an inspiration to us all.
Tim was preceded in death by his father, Lawrence Tveit; grandparents Edwin and Lila Tveit, and Samuel and Elsie Sutliff, as well as many aunts, uncles, and cousins. Tim is survived by the love of his life, Nicole Tveit; Mother, Elsie Tveit; Ron (Renae) Tveit of Warroad; Barb Tveit of Coon Rapids; Byron (Tammie) Tveit of Roosevelt; Renae (Kevin) House of Wrenshall; nieces and nephews Justin (Sara) Tveit, Whitney (Grant) Rasmussen, Rebecca, Elizabeth, and Brock House, his PCAs and many many friends.
Memorials for Tim will be directed to First Lutheran Church in St. Paul, Anne Carlsen School of Jamestown, or the American Cancer society.