Wanda Melgaard, 65, of Bemidji, Minnesota, loving daughter, mother and grandmother passed away peacefully with family at her side on Saturday, March 23, 2013 at Sanford Medical Center in Fargo following a massive stroke.
Funeral services will be 11:00 a.m., Saturday, March 30, 2013 at First Lutheran Church in Bemidji, Minnesota with Pastor Linnea Papke-Larson officiating. Visitation will be 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Friday, March 29, 2013 with a sharing time at 7:00 p.m. at Olson-Schwartz Funeral Home. Visitation will also be for one hour prior to the service at the church. Interment will be in Greenwood Cemetery, Bemidji.
Wanda Marie Axvig was born June 18, 1947 in Langdon, North Dakota to Willard and Mildred Millie (Thrugstad) Axvig. She lived with her parents in Carrington, Devils Lake, and Rugby, North Dakota before moving with her family to Bemidji, Minnesota in 1959. Wanda was a 1965 graduate of Bemidji High School. On August 17, 1968 she and Duane Bartsch were married in Bemidji. Wanda earned a B. S. degree in Spanish from Bemidji State University in 1969 and taught Spanish for 2 years in Blackduck, Minnesota. She and Duane moved to Jamestown, North Dakota where their son Chris was born. On May 19, 1976 she was united in marriage to Arlin Melgaard in Bismarck, North Dakota. After a move to Fargo they relocated to Bemidji in 1979.
Wanda had a lengthy career at Rural Minnesota CEP, Inc., most recently as a Team Leader. In 2011 she received the State of Minnesota MFIP Supervisor/Manager of the Year award.
Wanda was a member of First Lutheran Church and the BSU Alumni Association. She served on the Community Resource Connection Board, Paul Bunyan Transit Board, Beltrami County Mental Health Advisory Board, and the Family Housing Prevention and Assistance Board (FHPAP) Advisory Committee. She was also a past state president of the North Dakota Mrs. Jaycees.
Wanda was gifted at creating things with her hands such as counted cross-stitch and clever, useful gift items. She collected kokopellis, loved other southwestern décor, and became a gadget nerd with her iPhone and iPad. Wanda was an avid reader of books and more recently read books with her Kindle.
Wanda was dearly loved and is survived by son Chris (Julia) Bartsch of Cathedral City, California and their children Haley and Gavin; stepdaughter Angela (Kirk) Kamin of Mapleton, North Dakota and daughters Jessica and Emily Ballou; stepson Cordell (Nicki) Melgaard of Owatonna, Minnesota, and their children Izzy and Liam. She is also survived by her mother Millie Axvig of Bemidji, Minnesota; her brothers and sisters-in-law David and Beve Melgaard of Audubon, Minnesota; Jerry and Joann Metzgar of Bottineau, North Dakota; her sister of the heart cousin Linda (Roger) Seim of Park River, North Dakota; niece Kaaryn (Joe) Altobelli of Dilworth, Minnesota; nephews Karsten (Steph) Melgaard of Moorhead, Minnesota and Michael (DeAnn) Metzgar of Savage, Minnesota; and several other cousins, aunts and uncles.
She was preceded in death by her husband Arlin on February 2, 2013 and her father Willard.
Online guestbook at www.olsonschwartzfuneralhome.