Akkerman-Ingebrand • Mora, MN

Rock-Ingebrand • Braham, MN

Mora, MN • 320-679-1933

Braham, MN • 320-396-2121


Elmer John Olds passed away on Wednesday, January 26, 2022 at his home at Walker Methodist Levande in Cambridge, MN. He was 96 years old.

MEMORIAL SERVICE will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, April 23, 2022 at Emmanuel Baptist Church in Mora. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service at the church.


INURNMENT will be in the Oakwood Cemetery in Mora.

MEMORIALS: In lieu of flowers the family will be directing memorials to an organization that was dear to Elmer’s heart. Food for the Poor is a Christian organization that feeds children who are living in extreme poverty.

Elmer John Olds passed away on Wednesday, January 26, 2022 at Walker Methodist Levande in Cambridge, MN. He was 96 years old.

Elmer was born on December 13, 1925 in Aitkin County, Minnesota, near McGrath, to Lewis Elmer and Claffie Mary (Christenson) Olds. He grew up on the family farm and attended small country schools. He graduated from McGrath High School in 1943 and the following fall, in the midst of World War II, joined the US Army. After basic training in Texas he was deployed to Europe to join reinforcements in the battle of the Bulge. After the armistice he remained in Germany as part of the occupation force. During that time, he used some of the skills that he had learned on the farm to feed some of the German people who were starving, by hunting and dressing out deer.

After the war, he returned to the farm, bought a truck and started hauling milk to the local creamery. The creamery operator’s daughter caught his eye and he and Marlys Halverson were married in March of 1948. To this union, two daughters were born; Carol and JoEllen.

Marlys was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1951, and over the next twenty years he took care of her and had many different jobs. He was an excellent welder, and in his retirement used his talent to help family and friends fixing this and building that. He also drove school bus for several years, but farming was his passion. He carefully built a small herd of registered Holsteins that were his pride and joy.

Marlys passed away in 1971 and in November of 1973 Elmer married Thelma DeWitt who had also lost her spouse. With the marriage, Elmer gained two step daughters; Franci and Arlie. He and Thelma enjoyed many years of family and travel before they moved to Walker Methodist Levande Assisted Living in Cambridge.

The bedrock of his life was his faith, and this is beautifully reflected in a poem he wrote in recent years expressing his longing to go to his heavenly home.

If God should call me home today
I want you all to know
That Jesus’ blood has paid my way
I’m all packed up to go.

My sins are all forgiven
By the One who loved me so
I’m on my way to heaven
I’m all packed up to go.

There’s so much peace and comfort
In that place to which I go
I’ll be with Him forever
I’m all packed up to go.

So I’ll put my trust in Jesus
While I’m living here below
I’ll wait for Him to call me
Because I’m all packed up to go.

Elmer is preceded in death by his parents; first wife Marlys; sisters, Emma and Ruby; and step-daughter Franci Nelson.

He is survived by his wife Thelma; daughters, Carol (Randal) Reynolds and JoEllen (James) Kastenbauer; step-daughter Arlie (Bill) Ankerberg; step-son-in-law Pete Nelson; 10 grandchildren, Krista (Christopher) Radeke, Susan (Brian) Williams, Timothy (Jody) Reynolds, Elisabeth (Chad) Miller, Rebekah (David) Barshow, Peter (Amy) Ankerberg, Kimberly (Brook) Hodson, Michael Peterson, Matthew Nelson, and Sara (Steve) Caputo; 26 great grandchildren; many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

6 thoughts on “ELMER OLDS”

  1. My Dad Bud Carlson would tell us how great a farmer Elmer was. My Dad told us how he cared for his first wife. After his wife died and Thelmas husband died it was God’s work in getting these two people together. So thankful they had so many years of happiness together. RIP Elmer.

  2. Thelma & family,
    So sorry to hear of Elmer’s passing. Loved his poem.
    I have fond memories of you both. Best landlords we ever had.

    Hugs & love,
    Margie & Dave Bertilson

  3. Elmer was a good friend and neighbor. In later life he described to me his part in the Battle of the Bulge. I have fond memories of those visits. Tedi Schmoll

  4. Hi Thema: So sorry to hear that Elmer has passed away. Condolences to you and your family.
    Gary and Jeanne Gilbertson Erickson

  5. Dear Thelma and family, we are sorry to hear of Elmer’s passing. He is whole and healed in his heavenly home. What a lovely poem! May you feel God’s arms around you and His peace go with you through the days, weeks, and months ahead. Love, Mary & Greg Pearson

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