Kenneth George Brustad, 92, of Mayville, ND, passed away peacefully on Monday, February 22, 2021 at the Luther Memorial Home in Mayville, ND.
Born on August 1, 1928 to Halvor and Louisa (Solberg) Brustad, Ken grew up and attended school in Mayville.
Ken served our country in the army during the Korean War, was deployed to Germany, and quickly rose to the position of Sergeant within the short time he was in the service. Throughout his life he enjoyed sharing stories of his time in the service and the life-lessons he learned. One of his favorite stories of the time he spent in service occurred when his unit was chosen to march for General Dwight D. Eisenhower. As one of “greatest generation,” his patriotism was always at the forefront. He proudly served as a member of the May-Port CG Color Guard, was active in the Mayville VFW and had a deep respect for the flag and what it stands for.
When honorably discharged from the service, Ken met the love of his life, Jean Thompson, at the café in Portland. Many meals later he asked her out on a date and they eventually married on November 6, 1954. They immediately began building the house they eventually lived in for 64 years. There they raised their two sons, Michael and Danny. In September 2018, it was time for a change, and they moved to their Sun Center apartment.
As a young man, Ken learned the carpenter trade from his brother-in-law, Norman Strom, and continued working in that field his whole career. The home-building talents of he and his crew are displayed when driving the streets of Mayville, Portland, and surrounding rural communities. Brustad Construction was known for their fine work, reasonable rates and getting each job done before moving to the next.
In his younger years, Ken was a proud volunteer member of the Mayville Fire Department. When attending a parade this past summer, he commented about the updated equipment in use today compared to what the department had “way back when.”
Ken had many talents. Starting at the age of 15, he was one of the local ski jumpers to participate in ski jumping tournaments in various ND and MN locations. Ken helped build the Goose River Ski Slide and was a founder of the Goose River Ski Club. Over the years, kids, who are now 60 to 75 years old, have reminisced with him about how he taught them to ski jump.
Ken also enjoyed oil-painting, especially of landscapes. Many of his paintings are on display at Jesse’s Barber Shop and were outside the apartment at Sun Center. His creations can be seen on clocks and old saws, along with traditional framed artwork that many of his family proudly display in their homes.
Ken and Jean loved the outdoors and with their boys enjoyed many fishing trips and tent camping. The two of them also loved to travel. They once traveled Europe for a month with only two small suitcases and no agenda. Later they bought a motorhome and traveled the United States during the winter months, even joining and establishing friendships through the Crafty Travelers Club. Together they canned the vegetables grown in Ken’s beautiful garden, as well as from crates of purchased fruit. Having an annual membership at the Mayville Golf Club brought years of fun and lifelong friends. For many years, the weekends brought dance nights where you could find them at the Eagles and VFW. Ken said Jean patiently taught him to dance and they soon became a hit on the dance floor, even appearing on a polka show on TV.
He leaves behind his two sons: Michael Allan (Terri) Brustad from Mesa, AZ and Golden Lake, ND and Danny Scott (Melody) Brustad from Mayer, MN—all of whom he was extremely proud. His face would light up when recalling the time spent with his grandchildren: Tricia Pomering, Lindsey Flanagan, Emily Brustad, Nicholas Brustad and Jessica Gerwig. Those times were among the highlights of his life. Over the years, he was delighted as their spouses joined the family. Nine great-grandchildren only added to the stories he could tell and make his smile even bigger. Many special nieces and nephews round out his surviving family.
Ken was proceeded in death by his parents; wife: Jean; sisters: Lilly, Goodie and Arline, an infant brother, Harold; and brothers Ruben and George.
Heaven has gained one of the most kind, generous and interesting people. He will be greatly missed by his family and community.
Masks are required.
Visitation: Will be 2–4 PM on Sunday, February 28, 2021 at the Baker Funeral Home Chapel in Mayville, ND and will resume one hour prior to the service at the church.
Funeral Service: Will be held at 10:30 AM Monday, March 1, 2021 at the Mayville Lutheran Church in Mayville, ND. Due to Covid Restrictions, Kenneth Brustad's funeral will be broadcasted locally live on MIDCO Channel 3.
Military Honors: May~Port Honor Guard and the North Dakota Military Funeral Honors.
Burial: Will be in Mayville Cemetery in Mayville, ND.