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August 28, 1935 ~ June 14, 2023 (age 87) 87 Years Old
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Francis Steele was born to Lewis and Doris (Burnette) Steele on August 28, 1935, on a farm in Young Township in Dickey County, near Merricourt, ND. Francis was the fifth child of ten. He moved with his family to a farm 12 miles northeast of Edgeley in the fall of 1936. Francis attended country school in Russell Township and graduated from Edgeley High School in 1954.
After Francis’s mother died, in May of 1952, he left home and drove gravel truck that summer. He also worked at various jobs during his high school years. After graduation, he worked for LaMoure County Highway Department as a heavy equipment operator building roads in the summer and operating snowplow in the winter. He also worked at the county shop in LaMoure.
In November 1955, Francis was drafted into the US Army and served until November 1957.
On January 6, 1957, he was united in marriage with Myrtle Bjornstad. They lived in Lawton, OK until Francis was discharged from the Army. They returned to Edgeley and farmed for a year. In March 1959, they moved to the NDSU Experiment Station at Edgeley where Francis worked as the foreman for three years. In 1961 they purchased a farm where he and Myrtle farmed until 2006 when they rented out their land. Francis continued to work for area farmers as a pass time for several years. He and Myrtle lived on the farm until January of 2022 when he entered the Benedictine Care Center in LaMoure.
Francis was a member of Willow Grove Methodist Church until he transferred to Edgeley United Methodist Church, where he served on various church boards. Over the years, Francis served on the Edgeley Credit Union Board, was road supervisor for Golden Glenn Township and was a member of the Edgeley Ambulance. He was a Sigco Seed dealer for 10 years and built pole barns for several area farms in the 1970’s.
Francis enjoyed farming, repairing machinery and working in his shop. In his later years he enjoyed working on jigsaw puzzles.
He loved and enjoyed his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren, always expressing his concern for everyone.
Francis is survived by his wife, two daughters Lowann (Wayne) Krueger; Ione (Kevin) Manock and son, Dwight (Shawn) Steele, eight grandchildren Cerise (Dutch) VanLuven, Mandy Hough, Holly Krump, Isaac (Chelsey) Steele, Taylor Krueger, Grant Manock, Mason Steele, Conor Steele and eight great grandchildren. Two sisters, Evelyn Genzel and Margaret Steele and brother, Jim (Mary) Steele and several nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his parents, grandparents, three sisters; Grace (in infancy), Shirley Burland and Betty Blevins; three brothers, Gail, Ben and Stanley.
Services will be held on Tuesday, June 20th at the Wesley United Methodist Church in Edgeley, ND. Visitation at 1:00 pm and funeral at 2:00 pm. Burial will be at Mt. Hope Cemetery, Edgeley.