Norwood C. "Woodie" Bondhus was born on March 18, 1930, in Akron, Colorado. Woodie was the second child of Tom and Gladys Bondhus. He was raised on the family farm northeast of Akron. Woodie was always proud of his Norwegian heritage as both his maternal and paternal grandparents were from Norway.
On June 1, 1930, Woodie was received into God's covenant of grace through the sacrament of Holy Baptism at the Trinity Lutheran Church of Akron. He always relied upon his deep faith in God and his acceptance of Jesus Christ as his Savior. On May 21, 1944, he personally confessed his faith by rite of confirmation in the Trinity Lutheran Church, where he remained an active member until the day of his death, January 13, 2014.
Woodie attended grade school at Roadside country school, and graduated from Akron High School in 1947. During his high school years, Woodie was very active in the local 4-H Club.
On June 18, 1950, he was united in marriage to Elizabeth Joan Alishouse at the Methodist Church in Akron. They were blessed with two daughters, Patricia Ann and Cynthia Jo. Woodie and Joan celebrated their 60th Wedding Anniversary on June 18, 2010, with their children and grandchildren.
After graduating from high school, Woodie was a salesman in Lebsock's Men's Store until 1957, when he and Joan opened their own store, Skogmos Deparment Store. In 1969, they opened a second Skogmos Department Store in Yuma, Colorado, which they owned until 1973 when they purchased Carl's and Dale's Men's Store in Akron, changing the name to Woodie's Men's Wear. They later sold the men's store to Darrel and Patty Adolf. In the 1980's, Woodie and Joan expanded their business to include draperies and window coverings. After operating their store for thirty-seven years, they closed the Skogmos store in 1995. Woodie continued to sell and install draperies and window coverings for the next ten years, finally retiring in 2005.
Woodie was a very active member of Trinity Lutheran Church of Akron, having served as President, Trustee and Elder. He was a Charter Member of the Akron Lions Club and was an active member of the club from 1954 until his hospitalization in 2012. In 1995, Woodie received the Melvin Jones Award from Lions Club International. Woodie was also a member of the Akron Chamber of Commerce, receiving recognition from the Chamber for 37 years of service before closing his store in 1995.
Woodie served on the Akron School Board during the 1970's and was very proud of the fact that all of his children and grandchildren graduated from Akron High School.
Woodie and Joan enjoyed traveling throughout the United States and spending some of their summer weekends at the Alishouse family cabin in Idaho Springs. They also enjoyed attending the annual merchandise mart in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and became close friends with many of the other store owners from the Midwest. Woodie enjoyed carpentry, gardening and golf and most of all enjoyed being involved in his grandchildren's lives as they grew to adulthood in Akron.
Woodie passed away after experiencing several health issues following his first hip fracture in May of 2012. Mourning his death are his wife, Joan, who shared 63 years of happiness with him; his two daughters, Patty Adolf, and her husband, Darrel, of Greeley, Colorado, and Cindy Hoyer, and her husband, Kevin, of Akron, Colorado; his four grandchildren, Nathan Adolf, and his wife, Jodi, of Kansas City, Missouri, Nikki Medeles, and her husband, Arnold, of Greeley, Colorado, Brodie Hoyer, and his wife, Leeah, of West Point, New York, and Thea Moeller, and her husband, Matt, of Stonewall, Louisiana. Also missing him are his two great grandchildren, Ragan Medeles and Lorna Hoyer, and a great number of other relatives and friends.
Preceding Woodie in death were his parents and his brothers, Merlin and Everett, his brothers-in-law, Harold Alishouse and Lyle Foutz, and his sisters-in-law, Avis Alishouse, Netta Jane Foutz, Christine Bondhus and June Bondhus.
Funeral services were conducted at Trinity Lutheran Church on January 16, 2014, with Pastor Terry Buethe officiating. Henrietta Uhlenhopp, organist, accompanied those in attendance as they sang "The Lord is My Shepherd" and "I Know that My Redeemer Lives". Serving as pallbearers were Nathan Adolf, Brodie Hoyer, Arnold Medeles, Matt Moeller, Mark Bondhus and Mike Bondhus. Honorary pallbearers were Carl Lindahl, Glenn Alishouse, A.J. Fletcher, Jim McGinley, Jim Thompson and Rob Strauch. Interment followed in the Akron Cemetery with the Bowin Funeral Home in charge of the services. Memorial donations in his name may be made to the Washington County Nursing Home and Trinity Lutheran Church of Akron.