Neil F. Kelstrom, 82, Turtle Lake, died May 13, 2018, at the CHI Community Memorial Hospital in Turtle Lake.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, May 17, at St. Olaf Lutheran Church of rural Turtle Lake, with The Rev. Randy Emgarten officiating.
Interment will follow in the St. Olaf Lutheran Cemetery.
Visitation will be held Thursday one hour prior to time of service at the church.
Neil was born Feb. 22, 1936, in Bismarck, to Floyd and Hilda (Lick) Kelstrom. He was raised near Flasher and graduated from Flasher High School in 1954. Neil ranched with his father for a number of years following high school. He attended Thief River Falls Area Technical College in Minnesota, earning aircraft and power plant mechanics degrees in 1964. He married Eileen Jacobs in 1958 in Bismarck and they raised two children, Cindy and David. Neil worked for Midstate Aviation and owned and operated Midstate Aero Repair for several years. He then worked for OK Aviation in Bismarck until 1978. Neil went to work as a diesel mechanic for North American Coal Falkirk Mine in 1978 and retired from the mine in 1997. That same year, Neil and Eileen moved to a farm north of Turtle Lake where Neil enjoyed flying his airplane. He built his own airplane, a Fisher Celebrity, which he later sold. Neil was passionate about flying and loved giving people airplane rides. His hope was to inspire every passenger with a love for aviation. He enjoyed repairing and fixing anything mechanical. Neil was a member of the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) and the Aircraft Owners and Pilot Association (AOPA).
He is survived by his wife, Eileen Kelstrom, Turtle Lake; one daughter and son-in-law, Cindy and Rich Larcombe, Minot; one son, David Kelstrom, Bismarck; one granddaughter, Kathryn Larcombe, Minot; his siblings, Arlene Bahm, Shields, Phyllis Hudeburgh, Great Falls, Mont., Judy McDowall, Mandan, Gary Kelstrom, Jamestown, and Jeanne (Alan) Reinke, Maricopa, Ariz.; and many nieces and nephews.
Neil was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers-in-law, Glen Bahm and Mark Hudeburgh; two nephews, Mark McDowall and Trevor Kelstrom; and one niece, Laurie Erickson.
Offer condolences to Neil’s family and sign the guest book at www.goetzfuneralhomes.com. (Goetz Funeral Home, Washburn and Turtle Lake)