Obituary | Virgil Hendrickson of Scranton, North Dakota | Krebsbach Funeral Service (2024)

Virgil Hendrickson

October 29, 1938 - January 23, 2024

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Obituary | Virgil Hendrickson of Scranton, North Dakota | Krebsbach Funeral Service (1)

Virgil Hendrickson, 85, of Scranton, ND, passed away on January 23, 2024 at the West River Medical Center in Hettinger, ND.

Funeral Services for Virgil will be held on Sunday, January 28, 2024 at 3:00 p.m. at the Peace Lutheran Church in Scranton. Reverend Alex Thompson will officiate with burial to follow in the Peace Lutheran Cemetery, Scranton, ND. There will be a Family and Friends Service for Virgil on Saturday, January 27, 2024 at the Peace Lutheran Church beginning at 7:00 p.m.

Virgil Norman Hendrickson 85 of Scranton,ND, the epicenter of his world, passed away peacefully at West River Health Services in Hettinger, ND January 23, 2024. Virgil was born on October 29, 1938, to Harold and Palma (Pierce) Hendrickson on their farmstead north of Scranton in Stillwater Township. Unfortunately, Virgil’s parents both tragically passed awaywhen he was very young. Virgil quit school in his early teens and went to work with his stepdad Walter Brew. He helped raise nine of his siblings working in road construction with his stepdad. Virgil and Walter were very close,and he always referred to his stepdad as John Wayne. He taught Virgil his hard work ethic and his love for horses. Virgil loved tellingstories of his team of horses, Buttons and Ribbons and how he worked the fields and raked hay with them. This experience later ledto his drawing, literally, thousands of horses just from memory. When asked how he could do that without looking at anything, he would always say, “I spent my youth looking betweenthe ears of a horse!” Virgil only finished junior high school and never attended college. He was a student of life and of common sensical intellect.

When Virgil was 18, he joined the US Navy and served as an Ordnance Officer on the USS Bon Homme Richard CV– 31 Aircraft Carrier. He crossed the Pacific Ocean 4 times during his service from 1957 until 1963. He spent most of his deployment in Japan. He was very proud of his military service to this country.

After discharge he spent a lot of his time at Donald and Bernadine Sipma’s farm north of Scranton. Bernadine was Virgil’s older sister. He and Cordell Eien were married on June 18, 1964. They lived in Dickinson, ND until theymoved to Scranton where Virgil worked for Wagner Construction in Reeder, ND and on his wife’s parent’s farm with his in-laws, Elmer and Eleanor Eien. Virgil eventually went to work at Knife River Coal and worked there for 25 years until he retired in 1994. He continued to help Elmer and Eleanor on the farm. In the mornings if he worked the swing shift or the afternoons if the morning shift. Even when he had graveyard duty, he would still be at the farm later that morning or afternoon. Virgil and Cordell eventually operated the family farm until they retired and started to lease it to neighbors. He loved to work and even more so, help others with their work.

He was the Mayor of Scranton for 12 years after he retired from the coal mine. Everyone knew his campaign slogan, ‘Over worked, Under paidand Under loved’! Knife River Coal, EienFarms, the town of Scranton, and his family were everything to Virgil. Virgil and Cordell were actively involved in just about any and everything that went on in Scranton, Church, School, Community and State when he was a member of the ND Oil and Gas Commission while serving as Mayor of Scranton. He served on City Council for years before becoming Mayor. Church board, Community Club, Jaycees, instrumental in providing the machinery from Knife River for the development of the Scranton School Sporting Complex and doing the heavy lifting with even more machinery for the development of theScranton Golf course. Helping lead Boy Scout Troop 71 with two of his best friends, Riley Ballweber and Frank Dilse. Always helping his kids with their 4-H projects and later would help Cordell while she was on the Bowman County Fair Board at the drop of a dime. Just like anyone or anything that needed assistance. Like the shepherd of his flock of sheep on the west end of town and eventually on the farm, always watching for that one lost sheep, or child, orperson, or activity that was being left behind. Just as Christ has taught. It was said by his best friend’s son Mark Pierce, “Big Virg was a mountain of a man with a heart bigger than his body.”

Virgil’s wife Cordell passed away in October of 2017. Her passing left a void that could not be filled. He had a great support system of family, friends, and relatives that kept him happy, but that void was present until his last breath. But now, it is well! That void has been filled with Virgil and Cordell’s reunion on the grandest farm ever tilled and a city that even Virgil’s epicenter Scranton cannot compare to. Virgil’sshoes are probably too big to ever be filled, but the lessons of how to lead a helping, caring, supportive, joyful life, no matter what hardships are thrown your way, is the legacy Virgil leaves as an example for all to follow.

Virgil is survived by his children Paul (Cathy) Hendrickson, Renee Hendrickson, Tanna Hendrickson, Kjirsten (Bill) Meckert, Grand children Jacob, Emma, and Eleanor (Elle) Mina. Todd (Yvonne) Hendrickson and children Chad, Desirae, and Amber. Brothers Leroy Hendrickson, Raymond Brew, Sister Phylis (Ron) Gibson.

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Obituary | Virgil Hendrickson of Scranton, North Dakota | Krebsbach Funeral Service (2024)
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