John Kenneth Torgerson, the son of Rev. Einar N. and Esther (Brudvik) Torgerson, was born August 11, 1934, in New Westminster, British Columbia, Canada.He died at the age of 76 years on Sunday, July 24, 2011, at the Heart of America Medical CenterER in Rugby, North Dakota.
John was raised in the home of his parents in Canada until the age of 12 when the family moved to Twin Valley, Minnesota, where he completed his schooling.On January 9, 1952, he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force and was stationed at various Air Force bases in the United States and Africa as a jet engine mechanic.He was honorably discharged from active duty on April 27, 1959.Following service, he enrolled at Moorhead State University where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Communication Disorders, graduating with highest honors.Following graduation, he was awarded an Institute of Dental Research Fellowship at Purdue University and earned his Master’s Degree there.John went on to earn his PhD in Communication Disorders at Wayne State University.During his graduate work and following college, he was a Professor at Northern Michigan University, the University of North Dakota, the University of Arkansas, and Minot State University.While teaching, he was also the Director of the Communications Disorder programs at UND, the University of Arkansas Medical Center, and the San Francisco Veterans Medical Center.
On November 26, 1974, he was united in marriage to Elaine Bye at Ann Arbor, Michigan.Following their marriage, the couple made their home in the Detroit, Michigan, area, Little Rock, Arkansas, and Petaluma, California, where they were both Speech Pathologists.In 1980, the couple moved to North Dakota to be closer to their families.John and Elaine taught at Minot State University until retiring to Bad Medicine Lake, Minnesota, in 1997.In 2005, they moved to Rugby, North Dakota, again to be closer to family.
He was a member of the American Speech Language & Hearing Association, Sertoma and Lions Clubs, and First Lutheran Church in Rugby. While at Minot State University, he was presented with the “Distinguished Professor Award” and the North Dakota “Outstanding Clinical Achievement Award”.
He is survived by his wife, Elaine; three daughters, Patrice (Bob) Donald and Valerie Cartier, all of Grand Forks, and Kim (Dave) Jacobson of Minot; numerous grandchildren, great- and great-great-grandchildren; two brothers, Rev. Iver (Austa) Torgerson of Randolph, MN, and Gordon (Cherie) Torgerson of Brooklyn Park, MN; three sisters, Lenore (Jack) Darrah, Lansing, MI, Grace (Darrol) Nichols, Detroit Lakes, MN, and Elsie Himes, Tampa, FL; numerous nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.He was preceded in death by one brother, Walter; brothers-in-law, David Bye and Paul Slette; and his parents.
Memorial services will be held Saturday, July 30, 2011, at2 p.m., at First Lutheran Church, Rugby.
Pastor Mike Pretzer will officiate. Music will be provided by Pam Anderson, organist, and the congregation.
Honorary Bearers will be all family and friends.
Full military honors will be accorded by The Clarence Larson American Legion Post #23 Honor and Color Guard of Rugby and the Minot Air Force Military Funeral Honors Detail.
Arrangements by Anderson Funeral Home, Rugby.
Please Enter Your Facebook App ID. Required for FB Comments. Click here for FB Comments Settings page