Alma Helen Johnstad, 98, of Fertile, MN, passed away at the Fair Meadow Nursing Home in Fertile, MN on Thursday, October 24, 2019, with members of her family by her side.
Alma was born in Dresden Township near Wales, ND, on March 6, 1921, one of 11 children of the union of Carl and Wilhelminnie (Sperling) Domres. She grew up on the family farm, was baptized and confirmed at St. John’s Lutheran Church, and educated in a nearby country school. As a young woman, Alma moved to Grand Forks, ND to live and work. There she met a young man by the name of James Irving Johnstad. They were united in marriage on February 10, 1948, at St. John’s Lutheran Church and made their home on a farm in Scandia Township, near Beltrami, Minnesota, where they raised their family in a very loving home. While Jim farmed, Alma led the very busy life of a wife and mother. Midst the joy of those early years came sorrow with the loss of their daughter, Jewel Ann, who died at birth on December 7, 1948, and the death of daughter, Debbie Jane was taken from them on February 8, 1968, in a traffic accident. Before many more years passed Jim was killed in a traffic accident on April 27, 1971. At that time their 16-year old son, David, took over running the farm and has continued its operation, together with his sons, to the present time. Alma remained on the farm after Jim’s death until moving to Crookston in the fall of 1980. In early 2014 she became a resident of the Fair Meadow Assisted Living Center in Fertile, and 3 weeks ago entered the Fair Meadow Nursing Home.
Alma was a member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Beltrami since she and Jim were first married. She was also a longtime member of the Beltrami Garden Club and enjoyed quilting with the ladies of Beltrami and Trinity Lutheran Church in Crookston. For many years Alma looked forward to the tradition of Saturday morning coffee with her friends at the Beltrami Café. She loved her family dearly and celebrated their accomplishments with great pride. She loved to try new recipes and baked lots of cookies, bars, and food for her family.
Alma is survived by her children: Susan Johnstad of Hawley, MN, David Johnstad and wife, Marie, of Union Lake near Erskine, MN, and Robyn Lento and husband, Mark, of Palm Coast, FL; 6 grandchildren: Ryan Pederson of Hawley, Ashley (Joseph) Larsen of Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, Brady (Rebecca) Juelson of Monterey, CA, Andrew (Krista) Johnstad of Beltrami, Kristina (Cory) Sandberg of Lake Park, MN, and James (Jennifer) Johnstad of Beltrami; 8 great-grandchildren: Calen and Harper Juelson, Makenzie and Chase Larsen, Brock and Parker Johnstad, and Austin and Harper Sandberg; 2 sisters-in-law, Bernice Domres of Langdon, ND and Juanita Domres of Wales, ND; together with many nieces, nephews, other relatives, and friends.
In addition to Jim, Alma’s beloved husband of 23 years, and their daughters, Jewel and Debbie; she was preceded in death by her grandson, Jimmy Pederson who died on July 2, 1988; her parents, Carl and Wilhelminnie Domres; parents-in-law, Andrew and Mathilda Johnstad; and 10 siblings: Rudolph, Fred, Lena (Ed) Halzle, Herman (Helen), Hilda (Ralph) Parker, Emil, Edwin, Richard, Helen (Howard) Bittner, and Betty (Bob) Haiker. May God richly bless the memory of Alma Helen Johnstad.
The funeral service for Alma Johnstad will be held at 11:00 am, Tuesday, October 29, 2019, at the Trinity Lutheran Church in Beltrami, MN with The Rev. Dan Morton, officiating. Visitation will be at the church for one hour prior to the funeral. Interment will take place at the Oakdale Cemetery in Crookston.