Leland "Bud" Duane Ellingson Profile Photo
1933 Leland "Bud" 2024

Leland "Bud" Duane Ellingson

April 22, 1933 — March 23, 2024

Crookston

Leland “Bud” Duane Ellingson, 90, revered longtime Crookston, MN educator, passed away Saturday afternoon, March 23, 2024, in the Benedictine Living Community-Crookston with many of his family by his side.

 Bud, as he was affectionately known throughout his life, was born at Dahlen, ND on April 22, 1933, the youngest of eight children of the union of Tosten and Ella (Midtmoen) Ellingson. He was baptized and confirmed in the Lutheran faith, educated in Dahlen schools, and graduated as Valedictorian of the Dahlen High School Class of 1951. Bud went on to attend Concordia College in Moorhead, MN, earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Education in 1955. And as the saying goes ”Once a Cobber, always a Cobber” for which he was very proud. Bud accepted his first teaching position in the Climax, MN public school system. In 1959 he was asked to come back to his hometown to assist the School District with the closing of the Dahlen school. After successfully completing this sad task he moved to Lake Park, MN to teach for a year before coming to Crookston to teach in 1961, settling in the community that would ultimately become his forever home. Two important moments were about to occur in Bud’s life during these earliest years: the first, marriage to the love of his life, Eldred, MN-born Judith Ellen Dragseth on December 29, 1963, in the First English Lutheran Church in Eldred; the second, attaining his Master’s Degree in Education from the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks a year later. Bud and Judy settled into their first home to start their family which would grow to embrace daughter, Mary, and sons, Todd and Dan. As Bud’s career progressed, he became principal of Highland Middle School in 1972 and in 1982 began teaching junior high students at Central High. Throughout these years in education, Bud supplemented his income selling hail insurance and teaching behind-the-wheel driver’s education. In 1993 Bud retired after 38 years of the most rewarding career he could have ever imagined. 

 Bud’s interests away from the classroom were many and varied. He trained and showed horses for many years, while also raising cattle near their rural Crookston home and hobby farm. He also made many fishing trips to Canada with family and friends and went deer hunting every fall on family land back in North Dakota. Memories were constantly being made keeping up with the kids, as he and Judy never missed one of their concerts and sporting events. 

 Bud and Judy were longtime members of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church where Bud served on the Church Council and spent 2 terms as the congregation’s president. He also served as Superintendent of the Sunday School, led an adult Bible class, and sang in the Church’s choir. In later years he and Judy became members of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church.

 Bud was a kind, caring, honest man of integrity who showed great devotion to his Christian faith as well as a deep love and dedication to his family, friends, and neighbors. He was loved and respected by those he worked with, known as being strict, but fair and effective, and he had a well-developed sense of humor to balance out his personality. These unique traits made him a skillful leader and peacemaker which proved effective in both his personal life and in his career in education. Bud was also well-loved by his extended family, especially his many nephews and nieces. They, along with his children, grandchildren, and others close to him, often found themselves with a nickname given to them from their Uncle Bud/Dad/Papa. Outside of work, Bud’s form of recreation was staying busy on his hobby farm, taking care of his horses or his cattle, which allowed him to continue many of the activities and the work ethic he learned growing up on a farm, even while working in the field of education. In 2013, Bud was diagnosed with the beginning stages of dementia, but through medication was able to function quite well until the dementia began to take over in 2018. Bud was able to continue living at home under the care of his wife, Judy, until he entered the Benedictine Living Community Crookston, in March 2024, shortly before his death. Bud’s family would like to give special recognition and thanks to the staff of RiverView Health, Benedictine Living Community-Crookston, and Hospice of the Red River Valley, for their excellent care given to Bud in his final days.

 Very grateful to have shared a lifetime with Bud is Judy, his sweetheart and partner in everything for over 60 years; their 3 children and son-in-law and daughters-in-law: Mary and Scott Tolbert of Grand Forks, ND, Todd and Andria Ellingson of Glendale, AZ, and Dan and Kathy Ellingson of St. Louis Park, MN; 10 grandchildren and 2 great-grandchildren: Matthew Tolbert and his children, Hunter and Harper Tolbert, Sarah (Stephen) Bucher, and Michelle Tolbert; Ella, Zebadiah, Esther, and Eliza Ellingson; and Hannah, Aaron, and Abby Ellingson; a sister-in-law, June Ellingson of Park River, ND; and from Judy’s side of the family: brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Allan and Judy Dragseth of Crookston and sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Jane and Robert Sandberg of Crookston;  together with nieces, nephews, extended family, and many friends.

 The last surviving member of his immediate family, Bud is preceded in death by his parents, Tosten and Ella Ellingson; and 7 brothers and sisters and their spouses: Alpha (Gus) Lundmark, Irvin Ellingson, Omer Ellingson, Clarice (Norrin) Enerson, Trueman (Betty Jean) Ellingson, Clayton (Ione) Ellingson, and Dennis (Darlyn Joy) Ellingson; and from Judy’s family: parents-in-law, Andy Dragseth, Victoria “Vicki” Dragseth Irwin and step-father, George Irwin; nephew, Paul Dragseth; and great niece, Victoria Jo Dragseth.

 Treasured be the memory of Leland “Bud” Duane Ellingson.

 The funeral service honoring the life of Bud Ellingson will be held at 3:00 p.m., Tuesday, April 2, 2024, in Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, Crookston, with Rev. Steve Bohler officiating. Visitation will be from 1:30 p.m. until the time of the service. The funeral will be livestreamed by going to Bud’s obituary page at www.stenshoelhouske.com and clicking on the prompt to view. Burial will be in the Middle Forest River Cemetery at Dahlen, ND, later this spring. Messages of condolence may be offered to Judy and family on the funeral home website as well. Memorials may be given in Bud’s name to Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Crookston. 


           

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Tuesday, April 2, 2024

1:30 - 3:00 pm (Central time)

Our Savior's Lutheran Church

217 S Broadway, Crookston, MN 56716

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Funeral Service

Tuesday, April 2, 2024

Starts at 3:00 pm (Central time)

Our Savior's Lutheran Church

217 S Broadway, Crookston, MN 56716

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