Ruth Elizabeth Martin Bjerke Enstulen of Fargo, formerly Williston, N.D. died on September 17, in Fargo, N.D. at the age of 100.
Ruth was born on a farmstead south of Arnegard, N.D. to Charles and Mabel Martin. She attended Ellsworth Township School No. 1 and graduated from Arnegard High School in 1935.
Ruth married Kermit A. Bjerke on February 15, 1936, on her parents’ farm. The couple moved around N.D., S.D. and Mont. following Kermit’s job before settling in Williston to raise their three children. Kermit passed away unexpectedly in 1966. Ruth ended her 17 year career as a nurse’s assistant at Good Samaritan Hospital shortly after she met Christian Enstulen who was often at the hospital to visit his ill uncle. Christ and Ruth were married on June 29, 1968, and lived on his ranch in the Hay Draw area of rural Alexander, N.D. Christ passed away in 1991. Ruth moved to The Kensington in Williston in 2004 and to Edgewood Vista in Fargo in May 2011.
Ruth always had unwavering faith in the Lord and has been a member of Faith United Methodist Church of Williston since 1951. During her time in Williston, she was active in the church and attended Women’s Circle meetings. She was also a Brownie and Girl Scout leader and was active in the Homemakers Extension Program. While married to Christ, she was involved in the ranching community. She was active in the North Dakota Cattle Women organization, Ladies Aid, the local Lutheran church, Rebekahs Lodge, Sons of Norway, and worked at the election polls. In her later years, she spent much of her time knitting and made dozens of stuffed bears that were donated to underprivileged children.
Ruth’s favorite sports were basketball and softball, which she played in high school. She liked watching N.D. high school basketball and enjoyed following the career of Williston native, Phil Jackson.
While Ruth lived many different places throughout her lifetime, she enjoyed being in the country - she was a true North Dakota country girl. She made friends wherever she lived and cherished longtime friendships with young and old.
Ruth was preceded in death by her two husbands; son, Keith Ray Bjerke; daughter, Jeanne Yvonne Haglund; and one infant grandson.
She is survived by her daughter Carolyn Mae Bjerke; six grandchildren; eleven great-grandchildren and one great-great-granddaughter.
A memorial service celebrating Ruth’s life will be held Saturday afternoon, October 14, 2017, at 2 p.m. at Faith United Methodist Church in Williston. Rev. Ross Reinhiller will officiate and interment of the cremated remains will follow in the Hillside Memory Gardens in Williston.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to Hospice or a charity of your choice.
Friends may visit www.eversoncoughlin.com to share remembrances of Ruth or leave condolences for her family.
The Everson-Coughlin Funeral Home of Williston is caring for the family.