John Nerstad, 76, of Spring Grove

John Everett Nerstad, 76, died June 5, 2019 surrounded by family at his home. 

He was born July 15, 1942 in Spring Grove to James and Edith (Haugstad) Nerstad.  He was baptized and confirmed at Trinity Lutheran Church and graduated from Spring Grove High School in 1960. 

He served in the Army from 1960-1963, serving 2 1/2 years in Germany.  He was a member of Legion Post 249. 

He enjoyed his time touring Germany, drinking German beer and watching the frauleins (young German ladies). 

On returning to the US, he worked for the Soil Conservation Service and rekindled his love for racing cars on dirt tracks and the drag strip. 

He then met the love of his life Carol Van Leeuwe on a blind date and they married on November 16, 1968 during a blizzard. 

In April 1970, they moved to their 20-acre hobby farm, raising and selling apples and Christmas trees. 

As he put it, he was the town “ding-a-ling” working for the Spring Grove Telephone Company for most of his career.  

He then started working with his son JC, striping Kwik Trip parking lots and co-owned the Spring Grove Assisted Living with his wife, children and their spouses.

He loved the outdoors and enjoyed fishing and took several trips to Lake Michigan and Canada. 

He enjoyed looking for morel mushrooms with his brother-in law Fred, watching his grandchildren’s sporting events, reading and racing. 

He enjoyed building and pulling his mini rod with his son, JC.  Towards the end of his life he made a bucket list, which he fulfilled including going on the Freedom Honor Flight with his daughter Nikki in September.  

He especially enjoyed a trip in August to Port Washington, Wis. with his wife, children and grandchildren and caught several salmon on their charter fishing tours.

Survivors include his wife of 50 years, Carol, son JC (Darla) of Spring Grove and their children Devon, Caleb, Isaac and Kolton, a daughter Nikki (Brent) Kimmerle of Winona and their children Adam, Lauren and Lacey, his mother, Edith of Spring Grove, who joined John in Heaven on Friday, June 7, 2019.

Siblings include Loretta (Lawrence) Knutson, Ron (Marion), Diane Nerstad, Linda Nerstad-Kemp (Steve Kemp) and Liz (Neil) Rowley. He is also survived by nieces, nephews, cousins, and his close friend Norval Britain. 

He was preceded in death by his father James, brother-in-law Fred Zieske, cousins, aunts and uncles.

Due to his love of reading, memorials can be made to the Spring Grove Library.

Services were held at Trinity Lutheran Church, on Monday, June 10, 2019, with visitation from 9-11 a.m. and funeral service at 11 a.m.

Pastor Lane Zaffke officiated

Burial was in Trinity Lutheran Cemetery, with military rites provided by American Legion Post # 249 of Spring Grove.

Roble Funeral Home of Spring Grove is assisting the family with arrangements.