Harry W. Ellefson, age 91, of Stevens Point, died February 29, 2012 at the Portage County Health Care Center.
Harry was born June 19, 1920 in Enderlin, North Dakota to Alfred and Anna (Holen) Ellefson. In 1924, the family moved to Glenwood, Minnesota, which was the family home for about 50 years.
After high school, Harry worked for a year and then attended the University of Minnesota for two years. This was followed by a short period of employment by the Soo Line Railroad.
Harry was inducted into the army in April 1942 and served during WWII. Six month later, after basic training and army engineer schooling, he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant. He was honorably discharged.
He married Janet Anderson of Alexandria, Minnesota on February 25, 1943 at Camp Polk, LA. They celebrated their 69th anniversary four days before his death.
They lived in LA, TX, and a short time in KY. Harry served as company commander in a combat engineer battalion that was later shipped to Europe. His time of service led him through northern Europe to eastern Germany, where the German army surrendered. His rank was Captain.
Upon return to the States, Harry returned to Soo Line employment as a fireman.
In 1950, the Korean War started and Harry was ordered back to active duty. He was assigned as a staff officer in the Second Combat Engineer Battalion of the Second Infantry Division in Korea. In 1951, he returned to the United States. He was awarded numerous awards including a bronze star, six battle stars, and a presidential unit citation.
Harry returned to Soo Line employment and was shortly promoted to an official position.
During the following years, the family grew to include six children; moving numerous times to the various headquarters of the company, living in North Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan. During the last thirteen years of assignment, before retirement in 1982, Harry was the Eastern Division Superintendent headquartered in Stevens Point.
Harry was an active member of St Paul's United Methodist Church. He was president of the Wisconsin Conference of Finance and Administration for the United Methodist Church. Other involvements included membership in Rotary and Kiwanis Clubs, Chamber of Commerce, the National Defense Executive Reserve, the Central Wisconsin Planning Commission and several golf clubs. He spent many years playing golf in many locations.
Harry loved to travel. He was able to visit all the US states except Alaska. He also traveled abroad three times to Europe; including a trip to his mother's family home in Norway. There he met over forty relatives.
Following retirement, Harry became a charter member of SCORE Chapter formed in Stevens Point in 1982. This included being Chairperson for numerous years and presenting over 150 small business seminars, counseling hundreds of individuals face to face, via telephone and several hundred via e-mail.
Survivors include his wife, Janet of Stevens Point; five children, Barbara (LeRoy) Johnson of Miltona, MN, Grant of Prescott, WI, Thomas (Patty) of McFarland, WI, Jane (Jed) Malischke of Spooner WI, Gary (Ellinor) of Chandler, AZ; 10 grandchildren & 9 great grandchildren; brother, Ralph (Donna) of Rochester, MN; sister, Margaret ( John) Chipman of Minneapolis, MN; and daughter-in-law Lois of Cape Canaveral, FL.
He is preceded in death by his parents; sister, Agnes; and son, John.
A Funeral Service celebrating his life will be held 11:00 am, Saturday, March 3, 2012 at St Paul's United Methodist Church, Stevens Point, with Rev Howard Hintzman officiating. Visitation will be held on Friday from 5:00 pm to 7:30 pm at Boston Funeral Home and on Saturday from 10:00 am until time of service at the church.
Online condolences may be made at www.bostonfuneralhome.net
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