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Gary Nelson, 85

Retired Otter Tail County Sheriff Gary Nelson, 85, of Clitherall died Friday, November 7, 2014, at the Battle Lake Good Samaritan Center.
Gary Arthur Nelson was born April 8, 1929, at Bismarck, N.D., the only child of Arthur and Ilah (Whiting) Nelson. Gary spent his childhood at the Nelson cottage on Clitherall Lake. For several years he attended a nearby country school, and in 1947 graduated from Battle Lake High School. He enlisted in the U.S. Army Infantry in Nov., 1949, and served 2+ years in the Joint Shore Patrol, Guam. Gary attended the University of Minnesota and shortly thereafter began a nearly 50-year career in Law Enforcement. During many of these same years, he served as an ordained minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Gary loved the sport of boxing and in his youth was a Golden Gloves champion. His boxing record included 69 total fights; 61 wins, 7 losses, 1 draw. Music was also a big part of Gary’s life. He especially enjoyed listening to and singing the authentic songs of the West, and he soloed many a sacred hymn and inspirational song at church services, weddings and funerals.
Gary’s extensive training and experience led to leadership positions in a long, active, and multi-faceted career in Law Enforcement, including 25 years with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, commencing December, 1959. While working for the BCA, he served as Field Supervisor, Crime Investigation, as Project Director for the MN Narcotics Information Network, and as supervisor/administrator of the State Narcotics Division. He retired from the Bureau in September 1984. After retirement from the Minnesota BCA and prior to his being elected Sheriff of Otter Tail County for the first time in 1987, Gary worked as a licensed private investigator. He subsequently served four terms as Otter Tail County Sheriff, retiring from that office in January, 2003.
For Gary’s complete eulogy see
Gary is survived by his wife of nearly 38 years, Melody (Beier) Nelson of Clitherall and their two sons, Billy Nelson (Dawn) of Fargo and Ottertail, and Bret Nelson of Alexandria, Minn., and Clitherall, and by sons Dean (Colleen) Nelson of Battle Lake; Brian (Sue) Nelson of Perham, and Tim Nelson of Aurora, Colo.; daughters Beth (Pat) Burgos of West Salem, Wis., and Rebecca (Alejandro) Absalon of LaCrosse, Wis.; seven grandsons, Ty, Seth (Chelsey), Mac, Cole, Jacob, Toren, and Gabriel, and one granddaughter, Maya Beth; several cousins and their families.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorials be sent to Love A Child, Inc., P.O. Box 60063, Fort Myers, FL 33906-6063. Love A Child is a non-profit Christian humanitarian organization serving the needs of children in Haiti. (
Funeral services were held Saturday, November 15, 2014 at the Battle Lake High School Gymnasium, with Pastor Richard Harding.
Honor Guard: Fellow Law Enforcement and Emergency Response Personnel.
Military Honors: Battle Lake Military Post 289.
Interment: Mount Pleasant Cemetery, Clitherall.
Funeral Home: Glende-Nilson of Battle Lake.

Robert Barker, Sr., 81

Robert L. Barker Sr., 81, a resident of Fergus Falls, Minn., died Wednesday, November 12, 2014 at the Broen Home in Fergus Falls.
He was born October 29, 1933 to Robert “Clayton” and Ethel Alvina (Speten) Barker in Almora, Minn. He attended Henning High School, graduating in 1951.
On February 2, 1955 he was united in marriage to Ethel Helen Turchin in Bertha, Minn.
Robert farmed as a young boy and also with two of his boys, Kevin and Bob Jr. He was an office manager at Bunny Bread Bakery for several years and also worked for Employers Mutual and Farm Bureau Insurance Companies. He had a partnership with Idor Hesbey and later to Barker Williams and lastly Barker Insurance Agency with his son, Randy.
He was a member of the Eagle’s, Coffee Club of Becida, Minnesota and Good O’le Boys Club.
Robert enjoyed bowling, restoring Minneapolis Molines and Studebakers, hunting, fishing and playing cards. Most of all, he loved spending time with his family and friends.
Preceding him in death were his parents, Robert and Ethel; sister, Violet; daughter-in-law, Pam Barker and many aunts and uncles.
He is survived by his wife, Ethel Barker of Fergus Falls, Minn.; children, Deanna (Dave) Kollar, Deb (Steve) Emery, Robert Jr. (Cathy) Barker, Roxanne (Steve) Kronemann, Randy (Dawn) Barker, Kevin (Lisa) Barker; grandchildren, Erin (Matt) Larson, Tracy Holdeman, Stephanie (Blake) Townsend, Darcy Kollar, John Emery, Karla (Darin) Blume, Kelli (TJ) Anderson, Abby (Chuck) Walker, Nikki (Tyler) Walls, Kyle (Maggie) Kronemann, Ryan (Vanessa) Field, Megan (Daryl Jr.) Kugler, Adam (Megan) Barker, Missy Barker, Devin Barker, Logan Barker; 29 great-grandchildren; aunt, Ruth Gunderson, brother and sister-in-law, Joyce and Shorty Revering.
Visitation: 4-6 p.m. Saturday, November 15, 2014 at Olson Funeral Home in Fergus Falls, Minn. Visitation resumed one hour prior to the service at the church.
Service: 2 p.m. Sunday, November 16, 2014 at Zion Lutheran Church in Fergus Falls
Clergy: Reverend Nancy Eldredge Hess
Interment: Inman Cemetery, Henning
Funeral Home: Olson Funeral Home, Fergus Falls, Minn.
Condolences may be sent online at

Levi Roggenkamp, 14

Funeral Mass will be held for Levi Cole Roggenkamp, age 14 of Wadena, on Thursday, November 20, 2014 at 2:30 p.m. at St. John The Baptist Catholic Church in Bluffton.
Visitation will be on Wednesday from 3-6 p.m. with Parish Prayers at 5:30 p.m. at the Bluffton Community Center in Bluffton.
Levi passed away on November 14, 2014 at North Memorial Hospital in Robbinsdale, Minn., due to injuries sustained in an accident at his home.
Arrangements are with the Karvonen Funeral Home of New York Mills.
Please visit to leave a message of comfort and support for Levi’s family.

Norman Koehler, 84

Funeral services were held for Norman Koehler, age 84, of New York Mills on Saturday, November 15, 2014 at 11 a.m. at St. Peter’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in New York Mills.
Visitation was held on Friday, November 14, 2014 from 4 to 7 p.m. with a prayer service at 6:30 p.m. at the Karvonen Funeral Home in New York Mills. Visitation resumed one hour prior to the funeral service at church on Saturday.
Norman passed away at Perham Living, in Perham, on November 13, 2014.
Arrangements are provided by Karvonen Funeral Home, New York Mills.
Please visit to send Norman’s family a message of comfort and support.