Happy May Day! For many this date may bring back memories of May Day baskets and dancing around the maypole at school. May Day marks the official half-way point to summer so that is a good sign of things to come.
April was the first full month of social distancing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Thankfully, people in and around Rutland are enjoying the change of weather and getting outdoors while social distancing continues. Parades of decorated cars, with honking horns, have gone through Rutland and area towns to help celebrate birthdays. Within the past week or so, farmers have begun spring planting which helped them get out of the house. The threat of rain is looming, so this planting window has been cut short. Many local gardeners were able to get their vegetables in the ground too if they had their seed in hand. The recent pandemic has brought a shortage of many things and some vegetable seeds have been in short supply. Area greenhouses are open, with restrictions, so there are still options for getting plants for several garden favorites. There will be some farmers markets in Rutland over the summer and fall so watch for the dates when they are announced.
In April, Rutland lost two longtime residents: Sharon Pearson passed away Tuesday, April 14, 2020 and Ronnie Narum passed away on Friday, April 24, 2020, both at home.
Sharon Lee Pearson was born September 27, 1942 in Britton, SD, to Vernal and Marcella (Johnson) McNeil of Rutland. She attended school in Rutland, graduating from Rutland High School in 1960. On September 23, 1961 she married Roger Pearson. They lived in Hankinson, Fargo and Forman before settling in Rutland in 1965. Sharon was a stay-at-home mom and worked for a while at the Dakotah factory in Veblen and maintained the books for Roger’s plumbing business. Sharon was a member of Nordland Lutheran Church, where she was active in the ladies’ organization. She served as secretary and treasurer of the Rutland American Legion Auxiliary and the Rutland School Alumni Association. Sharon was an avid bowler. Grateful for having shared her life are her husband of 58 years, Roger Pearson of Rutland; her three daughters: Debra (Jake) Reuter of Fargo, ND; Brenda (Roger) Gibbon of Milnor, ND; Bekey (David) Hicks of Fargo, ND; eight grandchildren: Megan (Eric) Stroh, Caitlin (Brady) Gabel, Andrea Hardina (Tyler Meyer), Mitchell (Alicia) Ennis, Sarah (Trevor) Seelig, Nicole Ennis (Rahk Hansen), Heather Hicks (Hadi Alhamadah), Ashley Hicks (Max Cossette); 22 great-grandchildren; a sister, Beverly (Harlan) Arneson of Wahpeton, ND; a sister-in-law, Maxine McNeil of Edmond, OK; and two brothers-in-law: Joe Malstrom and Lary Arneson, both of Rutland. Preceding her in death were her parents; three sisters: Marcine (Maurice) Olson, Janet Malstrom and Lolly Arneson; and her brother William McNeil. Due to restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic, there will be no public service at this time; however, the family is considering a memorial service later. The Price Funeral Chapel of Forman is assisting the family with arrangements. Condolences may be directed to the family in care of Roger Pearson – Box 71 – Rutland, ND 58067.
Ronald Dean Narum was born in rural Forman, ND on June 4, 1934 to Leonard and Myrtle (Lind) Narum. He attended Rutland Consolidated grade school and graduated from Rutland High School in 1952. After graduation he began farming and working at Melroe in Gwinner, ND. On May 19, 1957 he married Doris Ann Pederson and they made their home in Rutland. Ronnie served as a City Council member from November 1970 to June 1972. He served as Mayor of the City of Rutland from 1972 until his death. Ron served on many boards in the county and locally including the ND League of Cities, North Dakota State Softball Association, and Lake Agassiz Regional Council. For many years he served as president of the Sargent County Museum and was active in the improvement of the museum. He and his wife established the Rutland Depot Museum. In 2008 he was selected by the ND League of Cities as the Outstanding Elected City Official. He was fire chief, secretary and treasurer of the Rutland Cayuga Fire District. His dedication earned him an induction into the ND Fireman’s Hall of Fame in 2015. He was a member of Nordland Lutheran Church and served on the church council. For 13 years, Ronnie volunteered for the Sargent County Ambulance. He was always ready to give a helping hand on any community project or to help anyone who needed help. Ronnie is survived by his cousins, many nieces and nephews, great-nieces and nephews, and one great-great niece. He is preceded in death by his wife, his parents, and one brother Dennis Narum. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, there will be a celebration of life later. The Price Funeral Chapel in Forman is assisting the family with arrangements. Condolences may be directed to the family in care of Trent Nelson – 304 Antelope Ave SW – Forman, ND 58032.
On Wednesday, April 22, Kyla and Morgan Temple, Pam Gulleson, and Hilary Mehrer collected donations for the Sargent County Food Shelf. Many donations were dropped off at Pam’s house and more canned goods and other items were picked up on that evening. Thanks to the generosity of Rutland residents they ended up with a car full of items.
The City of Rutland Clean-Up Day is Saturday, May 2, 2020, and the City municipal waste site/landfill will be open from 1 to 4 p.m. Be sure to bring your branches and items out to the landfill. White goods (refrigerators, washers, etc.) will be accepted and large furniture can be disposed of for a fee. No tires or electronics will be accepted at the landfill. Electronics may be delivered to the City Shop.
That’s it for the news from Rutland for this week. Be sure to keep up to date on what’s happening through the Rutland Facebook page and on the Rutland website.
Don’t forget to get your 2020 Census form completed and submitted. If you need assistance in submitting the information, please contact Rutland City Hall at 701-724-3280 and leave a message. The City Auditor will call you back so that everyone in Rutland is counted. It makes a difference in the funding that comes to the City during the next ten years!