Jerry Wayne Hoiseth, age 65, of Crookston, MN, died late Friday afternoon, August 9, 2013, at the Altru Hospital in Grand Forks, with his loving family at his side. He had been battling ill health for several months. Jerry was born at Crookston on September 30, 1947, the son of Lloyd and Hazel (Steinbrink) Hoiseth. He grew up on the family’s farm northwest of town, attended Crookston schools, and graduated from Central High School in 1965. Jerry spent that first summer after high school working for the Bridgeman Creamery, followed by employment at American Crystal Sugar Company during the fall harvest campaign. The spring of 1966 found him working at Elk River Concrete, where he described the pay as good, the work hard. He returned to Crystal Sugar as the fall campaign started once again, but a month later, on October 18, 1966, was drafted into the US Army. He spent a one-year year tour of duty in Viet Nam with the 1st Division during the Viet Nam War, and in recognition of his service to his country was awarded the Viet Nam Service Medal, the Viet Nam Campaign Medal, the Marksman Badge, and the National Defense Service Medal. While on leave after his return to the States, Jerry was united in marriage to Diane Sirek, his high school sweetheart, on April 20, 1968 at St. Dorothy’s Catholic Church in Dorothy, MN. The last 6 months of his military service was spent at Ft. Knox, KY, and Diane was able to join him there. Following his honorable discharge, Jerry and Diane returned to Crookston where he again went to work at Crystal. In the spring of 1969 the couple moved to Billings, MT where Jerry was employed in the landscaping business. After a few months they returned to Crookston and Jerry was offered permanent employment at American Crystal. Over the years he worked as a pulp foreman, and spent his last 6 years as a member of the Ag Department. Jerry took his well-earned retirement in 2009, after faithfully serving American Crystal for over 39 years. He had been very active with his fellow employees in the Bakery, Confectionary, Tobacco and Grain Millers International Union, and held the position of sergeant-at-arms, also serving as financial secretary-treasurer for 22 years. He was a member of the Bible Baptist Church, Crookston’s American Legion Post #20, and was a lifetime member of VFW Post #1902.
Retirement meant more time for Jerry to spend with family and friends. He was a devoted husband to Diane, a loving father to his three children, and the best grandpa and great-grandpa imaginable. Jerry was a very caring friend and neighbor, frequently known to mow lawns and shovel snow for those living nearby, and willing to lend a hand wherever and whenever needed. He thought the 4th of July was a great holiday and fireworks were just the best! He enjoyed tending his vegetable and flower gardens, keeping their yard immaculate, and going out to the “gravel pit”, a spot near his boyhood home. He and Diane looked forward to traveling, near or far, and he tried to never travel the same road twice. Always the optimist, Jerry was planning their next trip just a few weeks before his passing. He loved to read, mostly newspapers and magazines, but would spend countless hours with his Bible. Jerry was a man of strong conviction, steadfast in his faith, and proud to have been able to serve the country he loved so much. Blessed be his memory.
Page 2 of 2 - Grateful to have shared in Jerry’s life is his wife of 45 years, Diane; their three children: Traci Burns and husband, Todd, of Auburn, ND, Travis Hoiseth and wife, Beth, of Gold River, CA, and Jenifer Huffman and husband, Mark, of Crookston, MN; 7 grandchildren: Zach, Shane and Savannah Burns, Christopher, Caitlyn and Coltan Huffman, and Logan Hoiseth; and great-grandson, Caleb Burns. Jerry also leaves 3 siblings: Marian Bakken, Robert Hoiseth and wife, Carol, of Crookston, MN and Kay Goosen and husband, Boyd, of Thompson, ND; an uncle, Gilbert Weber of Crookston; and many nieces, nephews, cousins, and other relatives. Jerry was preceded in death by his parents, Lloyd and Hazel; a sister, Linda, who died at the age of 5; a granddaughter, Allison Burns, who died on October 13, 1992; a brother-in-law, George Bakken; and his parents-in-law, Robert and Dorothy Sirek.
The funeral service and celebration of Jerry’s life will be held at 3:00 p.m., Tuesday, August 13, 2013, at the Bible Baptist Church, 23928 265th Street SW, Crookston, MN, with Pastor Clayton Doss, officiating. Visitation will be at the church that day from 1:00p.m. until the time of the service. Interment will be in the Oakdale Cemetery, Crookston, with Military Honors provided by the Crookston Veterans Council and the National Guard Honors Unit from Moorhead, MN. The Stenshoel-Houske Funeral Home is assisting with funeral arrangements.