Norman Botker, 83, of Le Mars, died Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2003, at the Brentwood Good Samaritan Center in Le Mars.
Norman Elmer Botker was born Sept. 12, 1920, at Ortonville, Minn., the son of Elmer and Violet (Johnson) Botker. Norm grew up near Clinton, Minn., and graduated from Clinton High School. He attended and graduated from the University of Minnesota at Minneapolis with a bachelor's degree in dairy science.
Norm served his country during World War II in the United States Navy as a dive bomber pilot from June 1942 to October 1945. He was united in marriage to Dorothy Vestal on May 6, 1943, at Clinton, Minn.
After his discharge from the Navy, he went to work for Land O'Lakes Dairy in Minneapolis as a cheese specialist. Norm and a friend later purchased a creamery in Polson, Mont. The family moved to Reedsburg, Wis., where he set up a cottage cheese program.
In 1959, Norm and his family moved to Le Mars where he started his career with Wells' Dairy. Norm was instrumental in helping establish the Wells' Blue Bunny Credit Union and had served on the board of directors for several years.
Norm was very proud that he had been a blood donor all of his adult life. He enjoyed his acreage, being able to have a large garden, fruit trees and growing Christmas trees. He was a long-time member of St. John's Lutheran Church, Le Mars, the Heeren-McHale-Wilken American Legion Post of Brunsville and the Christmas Tree Association.
Survivors include his wife, Dorothy of Le Mars; two daughters, Jill Wells of Le Mars and Peggy and her husband, Steve Dickman, of Brunsville; a son and daughter-in-law, Paul and Sherri Botker of Houston, Texas; six grandchildren, Mike Wells and his wife, Kristen, Brian Wells and his wife, Wendy, Neal Wells and his wife, Karen, Nicholas Dickman, Daniel Dickman, and Katelynn Botker; seven great-grandchildren, Brady, Dylan, Tyler, Zachary, Caleb, Naomi and KariAnna Wells; two brothers and sisters-in-law, Vernon and Marilyn Botker of Clinton, Minn., and Donald and Shirley Botker of Ortonville, Minn.; a sister and brother-in-law, Leota and Iver Moberg of Clinton, Minn.; and several nieces and nephews.
Norm was preceded in death by his parents.
Funeral services will be at 1:30 p.m. Saturday at St. John's Lutheran Church, E.L.C.A., with the Rev. Gary Landsness officiating. Interment with graveside military honors provided by the Heeren-McHale-Wilken American Legion Post #724 of Brunsville, will be in Resthaven Memory Gardens Cemetery, rural Le Mars. Visitations will be after 3 p.m. today (Friday) at the Carlsen Funeral Home in Le Mars with the family present to greet friends after 6 p.m. followed by a prayer service at 7 p.m.
Pallbearers will be Michael Wells, Brian Wells, Neal Wells, Nicholas Dickman, Daniel Dickman, and Mark Botker.