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Bob Lind, Published January 25 2014

Neighbors: Buddies still neighbors after all these years

Orin Larson and Myron Bjelverud have been buddies since they were teens, and that’s quite a while ago: Orin was born Nov. 3, 1922, and Myron was born Feb. 28, 1923.

The boys were neighbors in Galesburg, N.D., where they were baptized and confirmed in the Elm River Lutheran Church and where they graduated from high school.

Both enrolled at the North Dakota State School (now College) of Science) in Wahpeton. But this was an ominous time, because war was looming.

Because there was talk of air warfare, both Orin and Myron decided to major in aircraft mechanics. And the two were together when they heard the news about Pearl Harbor.

After graduating, both enlisted in the Navy, went to boot camp together at Farragut, Idaho, then were sent to the naval aircraft school at Norman, Okla. Following this, they were sent to the West Coast for assignment. Orin served at the West Coast Naval Air Station, Seattle, and Myron was stationed on Whidbey Island near Seattle, then at Pearl Harbor. Neither of them was in combat.

Marriage, jobs

When the war ended, Orin and Myron returned to Galesburg and both married, Orin to Jeanette and Myron to Beverly.

Both men joined the American Legion post in Galesburg and their wives joined its auxiliary.

But then the pals went their separate ways. Orin became a depot agent for the Burlington Northern Railroad at Clifford, Portland, Mayville and Emerado, N.D., while Myron became a grain buyer at Rustad, Minn., for the Red River Grain Co., then at the Berthold (N.D.) Farmers Elevator for 25 years.

Both men retired about the same time but, while not in the same town, weren’t far apart: Myron and Beverly retired in Galesburg and Orin and Jeanette made their home in Mayville, just north of Galesburg.

Retirement home search

When both men were 90, and without telling the other couple, they and their wives made a big decision: They’d seek an assisted-living home. And wouldn’t you know it, they both found openings, independently of the other couple, in the same place: Edgewood Vista in Fargo.

Jeanette passed away last October. But Orin continues to live at Edgewood Vista, as do Myron and Beverly.

So, the neighbor kids from Galesburg, who posed for a picture together when they were in the Navy and again in their Legion outfits, are still neighbors after all these years.

If you have an item of interest for this column, mail it to Neighbors,

The Forum, Box 2020, Fargo, ND 58107; fax it to (701) 241-5487; or email blind@forumcomm.com