WALLINGFORD - Funeral services for Earnest K. Skattebo, 93, of Wallingford were held 10:30 a.m. Monday, Jan. 23, 2012, at Wallingford Lutheran Church with Pastor Christine Lang officiating. Interment was held at Wallingford Lutheran Cemetery with military rites by the Wallingford American Legion, VFW Post 3388 and American Legion Post 91.
He died Thursday, Jan. 19, 2012, at Rosewood Manor in Estherville where he had lived for two weeks.
Earnest Kenneth Skattebo was born May 18, 1918, to Clarence and Eda (Osher) Skattebo on a farm north of Wallingford. They moved to a farm east of Wallingford two years later.
Earnest K. Skattebo
He attended school in Wallingford through the 11th grade and graduated from Graettinger High School in 1936. He graduated from Waldorf College in 1938.
He married Mary Margaret Eaton at Lost Island Lutheran Church on June 30, 1942. They met when Ernie would bring his sister and Mary Margaret home from Waldorf. He said he always took Mary Margaret home last. He enlisted in the army in 1942 and served as a flight instructor and later a cryptographer. He was stationed in San Antonio and Lamesa, Texas; Rantoul, Ill.; Stornoway, Scotland and Paris, France. After being honorably discharged from the Army Air Corp in 1945 he came back to the Ruthven area to farm and two years later purchased the family farm from his father. He purchased the Osher family farm in 1971 becoming the fourth generation to own that farm. He lived on the Skattebo farm until 1980 when he and Mary Margaret moved into Wallingford and Ernie became "semi-retired". Ernie farmed with his son-in-law, Dan, until 1999 and with his nephew, David, through last year's harvest. In addition to farming, Earnest served on the creamery board, school board, Farm Bureau board, served as a field reporter and committee person with the ASCS, taught Sunday school, directed the church choir, served on church council and other committees. He was a charter member of the Ibsen Lodge of Sons of Norway and a member of the Nordic Lodge in Forest City. He delivered mail to many neighbors over the years and it continued until he entered the hospital. Earnest and Mary Margaret loved to travel - camping as a family and taking bus trips, and they especially enjoyed a trip to Norway where they found the Osher farm and visited their son and daughter-in-law in the Philippines. They wintered in Destin, Fla. for a number of years. In 2009 Earnest went on the Honor Flight to Washington, D.C. to see the World War II Memorial and other memorials. When he was coming down the steps of the Lincoln Memorial a military woman offered to help him down the steps. He said it was so much fun having her help him he should have gone back up and done it again.
Earnest loved the Lord and attended Wallingford Lutheran Church his entire life. One Sunday he missed church and a member called to see if he should be included in the prayer chain. Earnest also loved his family and was especially proud of his grandchildren and pleased to finally become a great-grandfather at age 93. He had a wonderful sense of humor, a smile on his face and a twinkle in his eye.
He is survived by his daughter, Jeanne Handeland (Rex Lundgren), Wallingford; his daughter-in-law, Peggy Skattebo, Colorado Springs, Colo.; his grandchildren Matt (Karen) Handeland, Mark Handeland, Jennifer (Wes) Snyder, Anna (David) Rau, Katie Skattebo, Claire Skattebo, Michael Skattebo and Nathan Skattebo; his great-granddaughter, Ella Marie Snyder; his brother, Clare (Maxine) Skattebo, Ringsted; and sisters Margaret, Williston, N.D., Carol (Duane) Kropf, Kimballton and Lenora Kropf, Ruthven and many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Mary Margaret, in 1999; his son, Jim Skattebo; his son-in-law, Dan Handeland; brothers-in-law, LeRoy Gunderson and Richard Kropf; nephew, Robert Gunderson and niece, Sandra Ackerman.
Online condolences may be sent to www.henryolsonfuneral.com.