Merle A. Kolden, age 91, of Wallace, SD, passed away on Saturday, October 19, 2019, at Clark Avantara in Clark, SD. Funeral services will be at 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 26, 2019, at Calvary Lutheran Church in Wallace. Pastor Scott Dempster will officiate. Music will be provided by Dorothy Anderson as organist. The family is requested to meet by 2:30 p.m. at the church on Saturday for a family prayer service.
Visitation will be at the church in Wallace on Friday from 5-7 p.m. and also prior to the service at the church on Saturday. Arrangements are by Crawford-Osthus Funeral Chapel.
Burial will be at Black Hills National Cemetery in Sturgis, SD on Monday, October 28, 2019, at 10:00 a.m. Military Graveside Honors will be conducted by the Codington County Post #17 of the American Legion, Watertown, and the Military Funeral Honors Team of the U.S. Navy. Honorary pallbearers will be Merle’s family and friends. Active pallbearers are: Randy Kolden, Gary Kolden, Les Kolden, Andrew Kolden, Matthew Kolden and Adrian Alan.
Merle Arden Kolden, son of Magnus and Agnes (Steen) Kolden, was born on August 25, 1928 at Naples, SD. He was baptized and confirmed in Pleasant Lutheran Church, Rural Vienna, SD. Merle attended Foxton Country School through the 9th grade and graduated from Clark High School in 1947. Merle worked for the telephone company as a lineman. He entered the U.S. Navy in 1949 and served for four years as a Machinist Mate 2nd Class.
On July 3, 1952, Merle was united in marriage to Joanne Steen in Miles City, MT. To this union three sons were born, Keith Leroy, Wayne Magnus and Brian Joe. Merle took “on the job training” for a machinist at Oscar’s Machine Shop in Clark. In 1959 he bought the Black Smith and Welding Shop in Wallace, retiring 50 years later.
He enjoyed hunting pheasants and deer. He hunted deer every year for 40 years in the Black Hills. Merle was a rural mail carrier substitute for Henry for 18 years. He has an NRA Life Membership, and he was a ham radio extra class licensed operator. Merle was a member of Calvary Lutheran Church, the LARK Club, the Sons of Norway and the American Legion.
Merle is survived by his wife, Joanne of Wallace, SD; his children, Keith Kolden of Wallace, SD, Wayne (Shellie) Kolden of Scandia, MN and Brian (Pamela) Kolden of The Colony, TX; three grandchildren, Kimberly Alan, Andrew Kolden and Matthew Kolden; two great-grandchildren, Grant and Jolene Alan; and his brother, Milo Kolden of Clark, SD.
He was preceded in death by his parents, one sister, Mavis Porter, and two brothers, Arlo and Lee Kolden.
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