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Dale Gunderson, 78, of Rudyard Montana passed away on Feb 14, 2018 from complications following surgery for extensive blood loss from a ruptured spleen. Burial was at the Chester Cemetery on March 2, 2018. Arrangements have been handled by Asper Funeral Homes.
Dale Joe Gunderson was born in Great Falls, MT on March 16, 1939 to Douglas Gunderson and Josephine (Plank) Gunderson. He attended Bears Den country school for grades 1-8 and attended high school in Joplin MT where he was involved with music (band, chorus) and sports (basketball, football). Dale graduated as Valedictorian from Joplin High School in 1956. Dale and his family were active members of Immanuel Lutheran Church and were involved in the Sage Creek Pioneers 4-H club. They were fortunate to live within 40 miles of all of their aunts, uncles and cousins (Barrett, Gunderson, Mattson, McClellan) and Grandma Ellen Gunderson, and holiday gatherings of both sides of the family were common.
After graduation from high school, Dale attended and graduated from college. His freshman year was spent at Concordia College in Moorhead MN, but he subsequently transferred to Montana State College (MSC; now Montana State University/MSU) in Bozeman, graduating in 1961 with a BA degree. While at MSC, Dale was a member of the Sigma Nu Fraternity, the MSC Chorale and ROTC, and served in the Air National Guard.
Dale met his first wife, Jean Randall, while at MSC in Bozeman. They were married in September of 1961. Dale and Jean farmed and ranched on the family farm north of Chester before buying their own place at Conrad in 1968. They were blessed with two beloved sons, Randy and Darrin, who were born in 1966 and 1969 respectively. While in Conrad, Dale worked collecting soil samples for Montana Testing Labs, served 3 years as Pondera Country Extension Agent and sold MoorMan feed. The family moved to Moses Lake, WA where Dale continued to sell MoorMan feed to the surrounding dairies until he returned to the family farm in the fall of 1976.
Dale married Lanea Aspevig in October of 1980, and they were married for 37+ years. They farmed and ranched on the family farm east of the Sweetgrass Hills from 1980 to 2005 and later raised bulls at their family home with acreage just north of Rudyard Montana.
Dale’s interests included raising cattle, local and national sports, keeping up with political news, and vocal music (if it had harmony). He sang with the Assembly of God worship team (Chester MT) and played guitar and sang at the Hingham Foursquare Church to ‘help out with the music’. Dale’s favorite vocal music group was the Gaither Vocal Band. His favorite TV shows were Fox News and Hallmark movies – except murder mysteries. Dale and Lanea enjoyed greatly their periodic trips to WA to see Randy, Darrin and families (Randy/Kristine and kids; Darrin/Molly & kids) plus Jean and Joe.
Dale often started or was actively involved in prayer groups and bible studies. He cared about people and always remembered to pray for them. Prayer was important to Dale. He loved his family, friends and Jesus Christ, his Lord.
Dale is survived by his wife, Lanea; son Randy/wife Kristine and grand-children Nicole and David; son Darrin/wife Molly and grandchildren Robby and Alyssa; sister Judy King, brother (Dr.) Leonard Gunderson/wife Katheryn, sister –in-law Jeri (Dennis) Gunderson and brother-in-law Kevin (Robin) O’Neil as well as numerous nieces and nephews. Dale was preceded in death by his parents Douglas and Josephine Gunderson, sister Robin O’Neil, brother Dennis Gunderson, niece Valerie Gunderson and nephew Joshua O’Neil.
Dale was a cattleman; a breeder. A cattleman is one who does careful genetic selection on cattle, trying to raise the best cattle for other people to use in their own herds. He never officially retired, but said when he did, his one hobby would be ‘raising bulls’.
A Celebration of Life will be Saturday, April 21, at 2pm at Chester Assembly of God Church.
A sincere ‘Thank You’ is extended to family and friends for their care and support during this time.