Memorial services for Gerald 'Jerry' Holten will be on Friday, February 16, 2024, at 11:00 a.m. at Fron Lutheran Church in Starbuck with Reverend Paul Johnson officiating. Visitation will be one hour prior to the services at the church. Burial will be at a later date at Fron Cemetery.
Gerald Arnold Holten, the first child of Arnold and Rachel (Norby) Holten was born on August 18,1935 in rural Starbuck. He was baptized at East Zion Church near Starbuck and confirmed at Fron Lutheran Church. Jerry attended Starbuck school through 9th grade before he started working for a farmer near Cyrus. After two years, he decided to finish his schooling at Cyrus High School where he met the love of his life, Joann Anderson. In high school, Jerry played basketball, football, and baseball. They both graduated with the Class of 1955. Jerry and Joann married in 1957 and had a wonderful life together for 66+ years. They had three children together: Bruce, Bobbi Jo, and Brenda. Jerry was employed by the First National Bank in Minneapolis working in business machine repair and record keeping. In 1966, missing family and small-town life, Jerry and Joann bought the Standard Oil Station in Starbuck. He sold the station in the late 70’s and started working at the Minnewaska District Hospital in purchasing and maintenance. He retired in 1995. Jerry was very involved in the community. He was on the city council for 5 years and then the mayor of Starbuck for 10 years. He was honored to carry the Olympic torch through town, help bury a time capsule in the city park and assist in designing Hobo Park. He also assisted in acquiring land for the depot. He loved being a bus driver for 12 years. He had a special place in his heart for all of those that rode Bus #3. Jerry’s favorite hobby was music. He taught himself to play the guitar, the harmonica, and the piano. He was part of many bands: Jerry and the Good Timers, The Snooze Street Singers, and The Starbuck Who. He played guitar for school, church, wedding dances, and holidays. Every Christmas Eve for many years, Jerry played Silent Night on his guitar at Fron Lutheran Church.
As a dad, he was very active in his children’s lives…attending all of their activities. He was kind and loving, with a great sense of humor. Jerry always put his family first and loved being a husband, a dad, a grandpa, and a great-grandpa. We will all miss his welcoming smile, those blue eyes, his big hugs, his positive attitude, the way he could make us laugh, and watching him share his love of music with everyone.
Jerry passed away peacefully surrounded by family on February 10, 2024, at the Glacial Ridge Hospital in Glenwood, he was 88 years old.
Jerry is survived by his wife, Joann Holten of Starbuck; his son, Bruce (Sue) Holten of Starbuck; his daughters: Bobbi Jo (Terry) Johnson of Glenwood and Brenda Christian of Richfield; his grandchildren: Derek (Tiffany) Holten of Starbuck, Justin (Linsey) Holten of Mapleton, ND, Cory (Abby) Holten of Mapleton, ND, and Tanner (Lauren) Holten of Crookston, Kelsey Johnson of Nashville, TN, Katie Anderson of Glenwood, Cody Christian of Richfield, and Ahna Christian of Richfield; his great-grandchildren: Asher, Lennon, Hayes, Bode, Henley, Collins, Cooper, Briar, Lynden Holten and Adalynn Johnson; his sisters: Arlene Stoneburg, Priscilla Loen, Barbara Owen, Jean Goehring; his brother, Kenny Holten; his sister-in-law, Carol Holten; and many aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; his grandson, Scott Gerald Johnson; his great-grandson, Johnathon Thomas-Gerald Johnson; and his brothers: Ray and Otto Holten.
In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to Fron Lutheran Church, Minnewaska Lutheran Home or Holly Ridge.
Services for Jerry are pending with the Starbuck Funeral Home in Starbuck.