Jerome Carl Birkeland Profile Photo
1935 Jerome 2024

Jerome Carl Birkeland

January 31, 1935 — March 22, 2024

Crookston

Jerome Carl Birkeland, 89, of Crookston, MN, passed away at the Benedictine Living Community, Crookston Friday evening, March 22, 2024, with his loving family by his side.

Jerome was a triplet, 2nd born in Crookston together with his sisters, Jean and Joan, to parents, Nels and Hazel (Aslakson) Birkeland. It was during a fierce winter storm on January 31, 1935; there was a power outage; and the 3 babies were born by candlelight. The doctors and nurses of Bethesda Hospital were fearful of their survival because they were all so little. They did, they thrived, and both sisters will be present for their brother’s funeral.

Jerome was baptized and confirmed in the Lutheran faith, educated in Crookston schools, and graduated from Central High School with his sisters as members of the Class of 1952. While growing up Jerome was very active in the Boy Scouts, an organization that was always near and dear to his heart. After graduation he was employed by Bridgeman Creamery delivering milk, followed later by doing installations and maintenance for Crane Plumbing and Sanders Plumbing. On September 16, 1956 Jerome was united in marriage to the love of his life, Gayle Augusta Nelson, in the United Lutheran Church in Grand Forks, ND. While making their first home in Crookston, their union would be blessed by the births of daughters, Sue and Nancy. In 1957 Jerome enlisted in the US Army National Guard, proudly serving until his honorable discharge 10 years later. During the mid-1960’s he began employment with American Crystal Sugar Company, rising through the ranks to become the Factory’s head mechanic. In 1989 he and Gayle moved to their Union Lake home, near Erskine, MN. In 1993 Jerome retired after almost 30-years with Crystal.

Being at the lake was what living your best life became for Jerome and Gayle. One of Jerome’s greatest joys was teasing his grandkids and great-grandkids and having them crawling all over him was like heaven on earth. Jerome also found time for an occasional round of golf with friends and doing woodworking projects in his shop. Cooking became one of his favorite passions, whether doing so for intimate family gatherings or full-blown parties. Jerome’s Sunday brunches were not to be missed, nor were his wild rice hotdish and ‘hobo potato’ meals. In 2005 the couple relocated to Grand Forks, ND and then in 2019 returned to Crookston where life together all started. In 2022 they became residents of The Summit, apart of the Villa St. Vincent complex, and a short time ago moved next door to the Benedictine Living Community Crookston.

Jerome and Gayle were devoted and faithful members wherever they live including Trinity Lutheran Church, Crookston, Rodnes Lutheran Church, Erskine, and United Lutheran Church, Grand Forks.

Jerome’s memory will be treasured by Gayle, his wife and best friend for over 67 years; their 2 daughters and sons-in-law, Sue and Dale Brown of Cottage Grove, MN and Nancy and Bernard Perreault of Crookston, MN; 7 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren: Jeremy (Tiffany) Birkeland and Kylie and Colton; Jon (Amanda) Perreault; Joshua (Jodi) Birkeland and Katelyn, Lillyan, Madyson, and Aurora; Jason (Dana) Perreault and Trinity and Lincoln; James (Katie) Perreault and Ally, Emma, and Odin; Jennifer Perreault; and Joseph (Jenni) Perreault and Mosley and Noah; 5 siblings: Jean Tweten of Appleton, MN, Joan (Malvern) Jacobson of Dilworth, MN, Ileen (Luther) Jacobson of Shelly, MN, Claudia (Jim) Gunderson of Buxton, ND, and Harris (June) Birkeland of Coon Rapids, MN; together with many nieces, nephews, extended family, and friends. Jerome was preceded in death by his parents, Nels and Hazel Birkeland; brother-in-law, Russ Tweten; and sisters and brothers-in-law, Ruth and Clarence Grote, Delphine and Howard Draxton; and Francis and Don Quiggly.

Blessed be the memory of Jerome Carl Birkeland.

The funeral service with memory sharing in honor of Jerome’s life will be held at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, March 30, 2024, in the Stenshoel-Houske Funeral Home, Crookston, with The Rev. Greg Isaacson, officiating. Visitation will for one hour prior to the service. There will not be livestreaming. Burial will take place in the Calvary Cemetery, Grand Forks, ND, later in the spring. Messages of condolence may be offered to the family by going to Jerome’s obituary page at www.stenshoelhouske.com

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Jerome Carl Birkeland, please visit our flower store.
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Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Saturday, March 30, 2024

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

Stenshoel-Houske Funeral & Cremation Service

615 South Minnesota Street, Crookston, MN 56716

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Saturday, March 30, 2024

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

Stenshoel-Houske Funeral & Cremation Service

615 South Minnesota Street, Crookston, MN 56716

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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