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Dennis Arthur Norlin, 71, died June 7, 2013, at home, following a long illness. He was preceded in death by his parents, Grant Arthur Norlin and Lily Marie (Odland) Norlin. He is survived by Sandra (Roth), his wife of 49 years, his children, Catherine of Highland Park, IL; Dr. Mia Norlin Nagle of Chicago, IL; and Christopher John Severin Norlin of Montgomery, IL. He was the proud and adoring grandfather of three grandsons, Grant, Charles Dennis, and Langston, and three granddaughters, Eleanor, Yasmean, and Maya. He is also survived by his sister, Joy Norlin Bumgardner of Plymouth, MN.
Dennis was born on May 5, 1942 in Sioux Falls, SD. He graduated from Washington High School and went on to earn several other degrees, including a BA from Augustana College (1964), B. Divinity from Luther Seminary (1968), PhD in Protestant Theology from The University of Iowa (1972), M. Library Science from the University of Illinois (1989). His areas of scholarship included the theology of Alfred North Whitehead, Process Thought, and American Church History.
Dennis was a professor of Philosophy and Religion at Purdue University and South Dakota State University (1976-1988); a pastor at St. Olaf Lutheran Church in Ft. Dodge, IA and Zion Lutheran Church in Philo, IL; Director of Pastoral Services at Trinity Regional Hospital in Ft. Dodge, IA; Assistant Undergraduate Librarian at the University of Illinois (1988-1993); the Director of the Devereaux Library at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology in Rapid City, SD (1993-1995); and the Executive Director of the American Theological Library Association in Chicago, IL (1995 -2010). He retired in 2010.
In 2011, he and Sandra moved to their new home on Turtle Lake, near Interlochen, MI, where he was able to enjoy visits from family and friends and time to return to his avocation, music. They began to collaborate on musical compositions, with the goal of writing hymns based on Psalms to give to friends and family on their Christmas list. They also attended concerts at Interlochen Arts Academy, and traveled frequently to Chicago to attend Chicago Symphony Orchestra concerts and the Lyric Opera.
Dennis Arthur Norlin, beloved son, brother, husband, father, grandfather, uncle, friend, pastor, teacher, librarian, director, musician, and always, child of God.
Published in The Argus Leader on June 23, 2013