By Bill Anderson
The brisk southeast breeze was heavy with humidity from the thunderstorm that had rolled over Rutland and surrounding area at about 4:30 a.m., giving the countryside a 1 inch drenching in the early morning hours, on top of the .4” and .6” that had been received on Friday & Saturday mornings. The American Flag, at half staff on the Nordland Cemetery flagpole, snapped in the breeze. The ceremonial detail from Bergman-Evenson Post #215 of the American Legion formed up just east of the Main Gate a little before 10:15 a.m. and prepared to march to its pre-designated position at the east end of the cemetery. This year, members of the detail were: Color Bearers Rob Wyum & Andy Hoflen; Post Chaplain Ted Lee; Sergeant At Arms Calvin Jacobson; and, squad members: Roger McLaen; Tom Manley; Andy Harris; Larry Christensen; Bill Anderson; and, Roger Pearson. Calvin, a veteran of the Vietnam War, has been serving as Sergeant At Arms since 2009. Before then, Clayton McLaen, a Korean War veteran, had been Sergeant At Arms. No one remains who remembers the name of the Sergeant At Arms prior to Clayton. High water had deterred spectators so the crowd was sparse. The ceremony was to honor those who sleep beneath the grass, though, not those who are on top of it, so the number of attendees was irrelevant. The detail was arrayed at the east end of the cemetery, and Chaplain Ted Lee delivered a prayer before the firing detail fired off 3 volleys in salute of their departed comrades. The command to “Present arms!”was then given. Roger Pearson played “Taps,” and the detail marched back to the Main Gate to head for the Rutland Cemetery, where the process was repeated 3 more times. At the Rutland Cemetery the volleys echoed off the Woytassek Farm’s grain bins, providing double the effect. The ladies of The American Legion Auxiliary placed floral tokens of remembrance on the graves of veterans prior to the volleys being fired. The ceremonies out at the cemeteries were followed by a brief program at the Rutland Town Hall, and by the traditional community pot-luck dinner, to which everyone was invited. During the Program, Auxiliary President Carolyn Christensen recognized those who had earned years of service pins during the 2 years that covid-19 prevented the program from being held, and presented pins to those entitled to them this year, among those honored were: Pam (Jacobson) Maloney, 10 years; Brianne (Maloney) Nelson, 10 years; Taryn (Maloney) Jensen, 10 years; Ione (Bensen) Pherson, 10 years; Susan (Orth) Fust, 20 years; Sarah (McLaen) Pavek, 25 years; Carolyn (Jacobson) Christensen, 25 years; Allison Hoflen, 40 years; Joan (Jacobson) Lee, 45 years; and, Rita Preble, 45 years. Ted Lee; Bill Anderson; and, Roger Nelson; received 50 Year membership certificates and pins from The American Legion. Auxiliary member Sonja Christensen read an article from the Sargent County News of January 9, 1943 that reported on a community gathering at the Baptist Church honoring some of the local servicemen who were home on leave at that time. Woodrow Olson had served aboard the USS San Francisco in the big naval battle near Guadalcanal in mid-November of 1942 in which the American cruiser had slugged it out toe to toe with Japanese battleships. The Americans won the battle, but the San Francisco had to return to the shipyard at Bremerton WA for repair of battle damage, and Woodrow had been granted leave to return home for a few weeks while his ship was being made fit to return to duty. The newspaper report, written by the late Lou Sanderson, included the information that a poem written by Mrs. Seaquist, the wife of the Baptist Minister, which contained the names of the young men & women from Rutland then in the military service, had been read. A collection of $153.35 had been received at the gathering, and that sum was used to purchase a War Bond that would be used for the benefit of Rutland’s returning veterans when the war was over. Following this year’s program the traditional Memorial Day pot-luck dinner was enjoyed by all. The Rutland Community Club had supplied a couple of roasters of scalloped potatoes with ham that had been prepared by Mrs. Lyndsee Pherson, and were judged to be as good as those prepared by the Lutheran Ladies Aid back in the good old days. Some who had come from a distance had to cut their conversation time short due to severe weather warnings being issued by the U.S. Weather Bureau. They all plan to be back next year.
Some of those from out of town who were in Rutland for Memorial Day were: Pat Prindiville of Horace; Clarence “Stub” & Sharon Sundlie of Fargo; Becky Hicks & daughter, Ashley, of Fargo; Brenda Gibbon of Milnor; Kathy Stout of West Branch IA; Allison Hoflen of Fargo; Ann Hoflen of St. Paul MN; and, many others.
Four “soul sisters” from the Sargent Central Class of 1970: Allison Hoflen of Fargo; Janet (Breker) Kiefer of Cayuga; Mary (Faye) Kerbaugh of Fargo; and, Rita (Grammond) Trygstad of Redfield SD; got together over the weekend of Saturday & Sunday, May 21 & 22, at the Cliff & Janet Kiefer home in Cayuga. The ladies have enjoyed their reunion on or near the Memorial Day weekend every year since they graduated from Sargent Central High School back in 1970. In addition to catching up on current happenings and reminiscing about old times, the 4 also decorate family graves in local cemeteries and enjoy each others company. Janet, Mary & Rita also greeted other old friends at the Rutland Seniors’ Center on the morning of Monday, May 23. Allison has a part-time job at a Fargo school, and had to pass on Monday morning coffee and conversation in order to get back to work for the final week of the school year.
Buskohl Construction had crews in Rutland on Monday thru Wednesday, May 23-25, last week, repairing the garage on the Calvin & Wendy Jacobson home at 101 Ross Street and replacing shingles on the Paul Anderson home at 309 Gay Street. From Rutland the Buskohl crew moved to Forman to put new siding on the clubhouse at the Forman Golf Course. They were back in Rutland on Tuesday, May 31, repairing the roof on the Jacobson Plumbing Building, formerly the First Baptist Church, on Main Street.
Rutland natives Sonja Christensen of Wahpeton and Judie Seavert of rural Rosholt SD were Rutland visitors on Thursday, May 26. The two sisters, daughters of the late Rudy & Edna Anderson of this community, had lunch with old friends at the Rutland Seniors Center and placed flowers on family graves out at the Rutland Cemetery during their time in the old home town. Joining them for lunch and an impromptu family reunion were cousins: Beverly (Bartunek) Schons of fargo; Roger Pearson of Rutland; Chuck Anderson of rural Havana; Joanne (Anderson) Harris of Rutland; and, Bill Anderson of Rutland.
Orvis Pearson was a patient at Sanford Hospital in Fargo from Thursday, May 12, to Thursday, May 26, where he received treatment and therapy for an apparent stroke. Orvis expected to be back home at Four Seasons Villas in Forman before Memorial Day, and he made it. On Tuesday, May 31, Orvis and his family celebrated his 97th birthday. Also home to call on Orvis were: Dan & Cindy (Pearson) Tobkin of Mesa AZ; and, Jim & Paula (Seavert) Pearson of Mesa AZ. The Arizona visitors expect to be in the area for several weeks.
Wedding bells rang for Miss Halley Hamilton, daughter of Kenny & Tanya Hamilton of this community, and Mr. Evan Wyum, son of Lowell & Karlene Wyum of Fargo, on the evening of Friday, May 27. The bride & groom have known each other since school days at Sargent Central. The venue for the wedding was the Fargo Zoo. According to those who attended the wedding, the location was an excellent choice. Even the wolves at the zoo congratulated the newlyweds with a chorus of their own. Both Hailley and Evan are professional medical personnel who are employed in Fargo. Their many friends in Rutland extend best wishes to them for a long & happy life together.
CORRECTION: In The Rooster Crows for last week Chase Silseth, pitcher for the Los Angeles Angels and the grandson of Bob & Linda (Marlowe) Silseth was incorrectly identified as Chris Silseth. Apologies are extended for the error. On the evening of Friday, May 27, Chase Silseth was the starting pitcher for the Angels in a game against the Toronto Blue Jays. Chase did not win that game, but you can’t win ‘em all.
At 9:15 a.m. on Monday, May 30, a caravan of railway motor cars, the kind that section crews used to use back in the days when trains ran on schedules and railroading was really railroading, arrived in Rutland, heading east on what used to be the track of the Great Northern Railway, now owned by the South Dakota Rail Authority. There were 15 different motor cars that once served various railroads around the country in the group, all running like tops. Their operators & passengers were: Mary & Dave Voeltz, Pierre SD; Steve & Stuart Remmers, York NE; Steve & Barbara Paluso, San Jose CA; Ed Smith, Mount Pleasant IA; Grant Sorensen, Littleton CO; Roland Pauk, Bracken, Sask.; Mr. Hopper, San Antonio TX; Matthew Pappas, Brooklyn Park MN; Steve J. Pappas, Crystal MN; Carl & Wally Schneider, Altoona IA; and, Darrell Arndt, Englewood CO. The caravan stopped in Rutland for coffee & lunch at the Rutland Seniors’ Center, courtesy of Chuck & Mary Beth Anderson. This group of motor car enthusiasts has been stopping in Rutland every year for the past 2 decades. They used to get their lunch at the Rutland Café, then at The Lariat Bar, and now, like the rest of us, at the Seniors Center. It is like watching a parade of history as they travel through town. We hope to welcome them back next year.
Well, that’s the news from Rutland for this week. For additional information about what’s going on in the little city that can, check out the community’s internet web site at http://www.rutlandnd.com and take a look at the Rutland Facebook page while you’re at it, too. Don’t forget to patronize your local Post Office, and remember to keep the pressure on the U.S. Postal Service and the North Dakota Congressional delegation to SAVE OUR POST OFFICE! Later.