Norris Norman Larson died Feb. 28, 2010, at Highgate Senior Living in Bozeman.
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Norris was born Nov. 28, 1925, to Lars Peter and Lydia (Roras) Larson at their farm home in Elkader, Iowa. He was baptized at Highland Lutheran Church. He attended rural school near his home, then his formal education was cut short because of his father's failing health and the need to work on the family farm.
At an early age he learned to fish the nearby Turkey River. It quickly became a hobby that he enjoyed and loved during all his life.
In 1948 he married Virginia Rose Meisner in Elkader, Iowa. They lived on a farm near his parents' farm through 1956. In January 1957 they moved to Cresco, Iowa, where Norris started a Surge Dairy equipment business. Over the next 28 years, he grew the business from a one-truck operation servicing a single northeast Iowa county to a business that ran four servicing trucks, a retail store, and covered in excess of five Iowa counties. He prided himself on giving the very best service to his customers whenever and wherever it was needed. He was a jack of all trades doing plumbing, electrical, carpentry, stainless steel welding and refrigeration work.
Norris and Virginia were blessed with their four children, Bruce, Dan, Constance and Cathy. Norris dearly loved his family and enjoyed their activities while they were growing up. He especially enjoyed the family (fishing) vacations.
With his sons, he became very involved in Boy Scouts as father, scoutmaster and commissioner, later receiving the Boy Scouts' Silver Beaver Award recognizing outstanding volunteer leadership. He particularly enjoyed participating as scoutmaster in the 1969 National Jamboree at Farragut State Park in Idaho.
He was an active member of First Lutheran Church in Cresco, Iowa, for 42 years, serving in many different volunteer capacities. He served on the Howard Winneshiek Community School Board, the Howard County zoning board, and numerous other civic and community organizations. He was an avid bowler and took great pride in teaching his children and grandchildren to enjoy the sport also. Boating, fishing, hunting, camping and woodworking provided a lifetime of adventures and accomplishments. Norris was an animal lover and thoroughly enjoyed the various family pets. He was especially close to his Dudley and the Froyum's Benji in his last years.
Norris and Virginia enjoyed the last 19 years post-retirement splitting their time between the Good Life RV Resort in Mesa, Ariz., and the northern residences of Iowa and more recently, Bozeman. The grandkids in each location dearly loved the time they spent each year with their grandfather.
Norris was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Rose Ormsby; brother, Merlin Larson; half-brother, Peter Larson; and half-sister, Myrtle Trehus.
Norris is survived by his wife, Virginia; his children, Bruce and Beth Larson of Clarkston, Wash., Daniel and Deb Larson of Bozeman, Constance Larson of Phoenix, Ariz., and Cathy and Bill Froyum of Scottsdale, Ariz.; grandchildren, Tommy (Nicole) Frazier of Fort Atkinson, Wis., Carly, Nicholas and Joshua Froyum of Scottsdale, Ariz., and Kelsey Larson of Bozeman; great-grandchildren, TJ and Liam Frazier of Fort Atkinson, Wis. Norris is also survived by his brother, LaVern (Lorraine) Larson of Sheyboygan, Wis.; a very special brother-in-law, Noel (Ellen) Meisner of Asotin, Wash.; sister-in-law, Faith (Jack) Dredla of Bozeman; sister-in-law, June (Paul) Mathison of Preston, Minn.; and many nieces, nephews and friends in Iowa, Arizona and Montana.
Funeral services will be held at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 2, at Hope Lutheran Church in Bozeman, with a reception to follow.
Memorials may be made to the Alzheimer's Foundation via Norris' Tribute page at the
Web site, http://act.alz.org, by mail to P.O. Box 96011, Washington, DC 20090-6011; or to the donor's favorite charity in Norris' name.
Condolences and memories may be shared with the family at www.dahlcares.com.
Dahl Funeral Chapel
300 Highland Boulevard
Bozeman, MT 59715
Published in Bozeman Daily Chronicle on Mar. 2, 2010