Earl Martin Knutson, 94, of Vermillion, South Dakota, passed away Sunday, Jan. 6, 2013, at Sanford Vermillion Hospital.
A visitation and video tribute was held from 6 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013, with a prayer service at 7 p.m. at Bergen Lutheran Church, in rural Meckling, with Pastor Ralph Egbert officiating.
A funeral service will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 11, 2013, at Bergen Lutheran Church with a committal ceremony held immediately after at Evergreen Cemetery, rural Meckling, with military honors conducted by Vermillion Clay County Post #3061.
Pallbearers for the service are John Harrenga, Bret Harrenga, Matt Knutson, Josh Dutcher, Dan Dutcher, and Adam Knutson (In Memory).
Earl was born on Aug. 12, 1918, in rural Vermillion to Martin and Emma (Lund) Knutson.
In 1942 he enlisted in the U.S. Navy where he served in both the Pacific and European theatres.
After his honorable discharge from the military, Earl moved to Fresno, CA, where he worked as a carpenter and also owned a vineyard.
Earl married the love of his life, Betty, on Jan. 3, 1981, and they remained happily devoted to one another until his passing.
In his free time Earl loved to spend time at Vermillion Senior Citizens Center, attend Navy reunions, play BINGO, participate in adopt-a-grandparent, camping, discuss politics, and spend time with his grandchildren.
Earl was also very active in his community, maintaining active memberships to the V.F.W., Bergen Lutheran Church, Clay County Ramblers, Evergreen Cemetery Circle, and the Carpenters Union.
Earl is survived by his wife, Betty; his children, Marty (Chris) Knutson, Tom (Denise) Knutson, Lowell (Cindy) Knutson, Jerilyn Wimer, Dale (Connie) Dutcher, and Jim Harrenga; many grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and great-grandchildren; and his sisters, Gladys Ryken, and Marlene Imperatice.
Earl was preceded in death by his daughter, Gail Harrenga; his parents, Martin and Emma (Lund) Knutson; his grandson, Adam Knutson; his brothers, Henry Knutson, and Arnold Knutson; and his sister, Maxine Sundborg.
Services have been entrusted to Kober Funeral Home of Vermillion.
Condolences may be posted online at www.koberfuneralhome.com