Cover photo for Wendell Maurice Torgeson's Obituary
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1926 Wendell 2008

Wendell Maurice Torgeson

November 23, 1926 — December 28, 2008

Wendell Maurice (Torge) Torgeson, age 82, of Portland, ND died peacefully and unexpectedly December 28, 2008 in Bismarck, ND surrounded by his wife, children, grandchildren and great grandchildren after celebrating a grandson's wedding. Wendell was born November 23, 1926 in Grand Forks, ND the son of Myrtle Torgeson and Walter Peterson. He was baptized and attended school in Emerado, ND. He entered the United States Army in 1945 and served two years in the Philippines during WWII. After the service, he worked in auto body repair for Chief Pontiac in Grand Forks, ND. In 1954 he started his own business in Hillsboro, ND before moving to Portland in 1959. He owned and operated Torgeson (Torge’s) Body Shop, working side by side with his son until his retirement in 2006, at which time his son took over the business. He married Lorraine Driscoll on June 12, 1948 in Crookston, MN. Together they raised 4 children. He served on the Portland City Council and Aurdal Lutheran Church Council. He enjoyed hunting, attending the sporting events of his grandchildren and was an avid Sioux Hockey fan. Wendell enjoyed living a full life that centered around his family and friends. His ability to make others laugh and his tender generous heart will be missed by many. A celebration of Wendell’s life and his return home to the Lord will be held Thursday evening at Baker’s Funeral Home, Mayville, ND and Aurdal Lutheran Church, Portland, ND on Friday morning. Wendell is survived by his loving wife of 60 years, Lorraine of Portland, ND, one son, Rick and Renee Torgeson of Mayville, ND; three daughters, Patty and Kent Gronlie of Northwood, ND, Diane and Paul Bakkum of Bismarck, ND and Sandy Torgeson, of Grand Forks, ND. Grandchildren Dan Gronlie, Tim and Rachel Gronlie, Wendi and Scott Wilmes, David and Hunter Torgeson, Jennifer and Rick Neumann, Matt and Jane Bakkum, Mark Bakkum, Mindy and Tom Blackmore and Sadie Olson. Great-grandchildren Corbin, Blake, Caiden and Tristan Gronlie, Abby and Alyssa Wilmes, Colton Blackmore and Reece Olson and another great-grandchild expected in April. He is also survived by a sister Vernis and Karter Krogh of Portland, ND and his aunt Muriel Craft of Crosby, MN. He was preceded in death by his parents, a brother Ron and granddaughter Katie Bakkum. To honor Wendell’s generous spirit of compassion and giving to others, the family requests that a donation be made to your favorite charity in lieu of flowers. Visitation will be held at Baker Funeral Home, Mayville, ND on Thursday, January 1 from 5:00 to 7:00 pm, with a 6:30 prayer service. The funeral will be held at Aurdal Lutheran Church, Portland, ND on Friday January 2 at 10:30 am with visitation one hour prior. Burial will take place at the Aurdal Cemetery, Portland, ND.
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