Jerry Bakken, 66, Wahpeton, ND passed away unexpectedly in Rochester, MN on Tuesday, March 21, 2017. Funeral services will be held on Saturday, March 25, at 10:30 AM at Bethel Lutheran Church with Rev. Jule` Ballinger officiating. Visitation will be on Friday from 5 PM to 7 PM with a prayer service at 7 PM at Vertin-Munson Funeral Home, Wahpeton. There will also be visitation one hour prior to the service at the church on Saturday. Interment will be at Fairview Memorial Gardens at a later date. Arrangements are entrusted to Vertin-Munson Funeral Home, Wahpeton, ND.
Jerry was born on January 9, 1951 to Al and Arlene (Jenson) Bakken at St. Mary's Hospital in Wahpeton. He grew up in Wahpeton and graduated from Wahpeton High School in 1969. He went on to attend NDSSS for one year and then enlisted in the US Army in March of 1971.
After he returned from Basic Training he was united in marriage to Karen Gill on December 4, 1971 at Bethel Lutheran Church. After that his 22 year career began in the US Army as a Clerk and Instrument Repairman. The couple was stationed in Oklahoma, Hawaii, Germany, Alaska, and Indiana over those years raising their three children. Jerry received his honorable discharge in 1992 and in 1996 he moved his family back to Wahpeton to be closer to his extended family. He worked for Imation for a time until he started working for the US Postal Service in 1997 and had a sixteen year career there as a letter carrier and retired in 2013.
Jerry was a member of Bethel Lutheran Church and the Wahpeton American Legion. He enjoyed fishing at Deer Lake and hunting with his brothers and was a typical sports dad at his children's soccer matches and eventually became a soccer referee. He was a great husband, father, and brother, but when it came to his grandchildren and great-grandchildren, the pride showing on his face could not be matched. He will be greatly missed by all.
Jerry is survived by his wife of 45 years, Karen, Wahpeton, ND; his children, Timothy Bakken, Tucson, AZ, Michele (Mike) Graves, Wahpeton, Jodi Bakken, Fargo, ND; his grandchildren, Chelsie (Taurean Smith) Bakken, Bailey Graves, Alexis Bakken, Madison Graves, and Brady Graves; his great-grandchildren, Arianna Bakken, Gabby Smith and Emmet Smith; his mother, Arlene Bakken, Wahpeton; his brothers, John (Kathy) Bakken, Evansville, MN, Jeff (Barb) Bakken, Mandan, ND; and many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his father, Al Bakken.
Jerry's Memorial Folder