Cover photo for Josephine Ann "Jo" Erdman's Obituary
1931 Josephine 2022

Josephine Ann "Jo" Erdman

June 5, 1931 — December 15, 2022




Josephine Ann “Jo” Erdman, 91, of Crookston, MN, passed away Thursday afternoon, December 15, 2022, in the Benedictine Living Community Crookston with family at her side.  Jo had been a resident there since 2020.


Jo was born on June 5, 1931, in Winger, MN, the daughter of Jens and Alpha (Vraa) Bolstad.  In 1936 she and her family moved to Crookston where she grew up with her five siblings and attended Crookston schools including Central High School.  As a teenager she also worked as a waitress at the Crookston Grill Café.  On October 22, 1949, Jo was united in marriage to Harold Edward Erdman, in a ceremony held at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church.  Jo and Harold settled into married life on their farm south of town.  In the coming years they would be blessed by the births of their four children: Susan, Kathryn, Douglas, and Candace, who they raised in a very busy and very loving home.  As many farm wives did, Jo would bring full noon meals to the men in the fields during harvest and start cooking all over again to put an evening meal on the table for her family.  She was famous for her apple pies and cakes with homemade 7-minute frosting. 


Throughout her life, Jo enjoyed a very social lifestyle.  While living on the farm, she attended and hosted birthday celebrations with neighboring farm wives, a birthday club and ritual that lasted many years.  Jo and Harold belonged to the Night Owl bowling league at Corral Lanes where they met many lifelong friends.  They also enjoyed wintertime traveling with their friends and neighbors from the Crookston area.  Highlights included a 25th anniversary trip to Hawaii with Paul and Lois Proulx and many winter months spent with Ted and Kay Burdenie in Naples, FL.  Jo was a devoted member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, WELCA, and several committees of the Church.  She also held memberships in the VFW and American Legion Auxiliaries and served for several years on the Parent Liaison Committee at Central High School.  In their younger years, she and Harold followed all the activities of their kids, and as the years passed, proudly welcomed the beautiful families they brought to the Harold and Jo Erdman family.  Sadly, Harold passed away on December 3, 1994. 


The year following Harold’s passing, Jo moved to town into her son’s home, and Doug and his family moved out to the farm.  In 2011 she moved to the Summerfield Apartments where she loved the daily coffee times that were customary of Summerfield living.  Jo enjoyed playing games including Yahtzee, cards, Bingo, and shaking dice.  She was a very competitive Scrabble player, always up for a rousing chance to trounce the competition.  Jo had a quick wit and wicked sense of humor.  Her terrific sense of style from her clothing and sparkling jewelry to her interior design was often noted as ahead of the time.  Jo was a loyal friend, a fierce defender of her loved ones, a gracious hostess, and even a cancer survivor.  She was a loving wife, mother, and grandmother who will be missed by everyone she knew.


Jo is very lovingly survived by her four children: Susan and Bruce Nelson of Billings, MT, Kathryn and Dale Klein of St. Joseph, MN, Candace Erdman of Benbrook, TX, and Douglas and Barbara Erdman of Crookston; eight grandchildren: Chris (Theonetta) Herreid, Cory (Krista) Nelson, Lindsey Nelson, Collin Nelson, Daniel (Kaitlin) Klein, Curtis (Cara) Klein, Meghan (Kevin) Casaus, and Eric (Lindsey) Erdman; 14 great-grandchildren; two great-great grandchildren; brother-in-law, Nam Sabir of Valley City, ND; sister-in-law Patty Bolstad of Great Falls, MT; sister-in-law, Ilene Erdman of Las Vegas, NV; several nieces and nephews; and many friends.


Jo has now been reunited with Harold, her husband of 45 years; her parents, Jens and Alpha Bolstad; five siblings: Ole Bolstad, Kay (Leo) Stroot, Gloria Sorenson, Judy Sabir, and Jens Bolstad II; and from Harold’s family: his parents, Emil and Louise Erdman; and siblings: Edna (Ernest) Newhouse, Martha Kesler, Walter (Eva) Erdman, and Loren Erdman.  May God richly bless the memory of Josephine Ann Erdman.


The funeral service honoring Jo Erdman’s life will be held at 2:00 p.m., Thursday, December 29, 2022, in St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, Crookston, MN, with The Rev. Greg Isaacson, officiating.  Visitation will be for one hour prior to the service.  Burial will take place in Oakdale Cemetery, Crookston, in the spring.  Messages of condolence may be offered to the family by going to the Stenshoel-Houske website.  Memorials may be made to the Villa St. Vincent, St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, or the charity of your choice.



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Service Schedule

Past Services

Funeral Service

Thursday, December 29, 2022

Starts at 2:00 pm (Central time)

Funeral At 2:00 p.m.
Thursday, December 29, 2022
St. Paul's Lutheran Church-Crookston, MN
Visitation will from 1-2:00 p.m.
Burial at Oakdale Cemetery, Crookston, in the spring

The funeral service will be livestreamed by going to Jo’s obituary page at and clicking on the prompt to view.

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Graveside Service

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)


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