Cover photo for Leslie Merlin Ellingson's Obituary
Leslie Merlin Ellingson Profile Photo
1924 Leslie 2023

Leslie Merlin Ellingson

January 10, 1924 — July 30, 2023


Leslie M. Ellingson, age 99, of rural Brooten, passed away Sunday morning, July 30, at his daughter's home near Brooten under Glacial Ridge Hospice Care.


Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, August 10, at Hope Lutheran Church in Sunburg.  Interment will be at West Norway Lake Lutheran Cemetery.  Visitation will be from 5-7 p.m. on Wednesday, August 9, at the Peterson Brothers Sunburg Funeral Home and will continue for one hour prior to the service at the church.  Arrangements are entrusted to the Peterson Brothers Sunburg Funeral Home.


Leslie Ellingson was born on January 10, 1924, on the family farm near Sunburg, the son of Ole and Cora (Tollefsrud) Ellingson.  Cora died shortly after childbirth and Leslie was put into the care of his grandparents, Elling and Anna Tollefsrud.


Leslie was a willing helper to his grandparents.  As a young boy, he recalled events during the Great Depression, horse-drawn sleighs and bringing wood into the house for heating.  Leslie enjoyed cutting wood and used wood to heat his childhood home for 99 years.  


Leslie attended country school through the 8th grade.  He was baptized and confirmed in the Lutheran faith.  He began farming with a team of horses.  He witnessed the improvements made with electricity, indoor plumbing, the telephone and road construction.


In 1949, Leslie was married to Adeline Weflen.  To this union they were blessed with 2 daughters, Lois and Connie.  The family enjoyed snowmobiling, visiting the County Fair, attending community parades and taking many trips out west.  Later Leslie and Adeline would make annual trips to Colorado, visiting Connie and her family.  Leslie and Adeline shared 62 years of marriage before Adeline's death in 2011.  


Leslie raised Herford cattle and sheep.  He would bale thousands of small square hay bales.  In his younger years, he also drove milk truck, hauling milk cans to the Sunburg Creamery.  In 1968, he began working for Benson Gravel.  This was a job he really enjoyed and retired after 25 years of employment.


As Leslie slowed down, he began collecting threshing machines and became the curator of threshing machine alley in the Sunburg hills.  He enjoyed reading, especially local and western history, watching the History channel and the 3 Stooges.  Leslie loved open air tractors.  He raked and merged hay for his daughter and son-in-law until the age of 97 years young.


Leslie had an amazing memory and could recall names, dates, events, the weather and many more facts throughout his entire 99 years.  He loved and was very proud of his family, the Sunburg hills and his Norwegian heritage.


He is survived by his two daughters, Lois (and Bruce) Hinnenkamp of Brooten and Connie (and Rick) Curtis of Crawford, CO.; six grandchildren, Kendra (and Ben) Brutlag of Wendel, Dylan Hinnenkamp of Sunburg, Caitlin (and John) Baker of Grand Forks, ND., Bill (and Sara) Hinnenkamp of Alexandria, Betsy (and Casey) O' Connell of Hotchkiss, CO., Dusty Curtis (and Beau Carubia) of Morrison, CO.; and seven great grandchildren.  Also surviving are siblings, Alden (and Jeanette) Ellingson of Richmond and Alice Christison of Bothell, WA., besides many wonderful nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.


He was preceded in death by his wife, Adeline; his parents; his stepmother, Betsy; and brother-in-law, Bob Christison; besides other relatives.





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Leslie Ellingson Program.pdf

Service Schedule

Past Services


Wednesday, August 9, 2023

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

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Thursday, August 10, 2023

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

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Funeral Service

Thursday, August 10, 2023

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Central time)

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Thursday, August 10, 2023

12:00 - 12:30 pm (Central time)

West Norway Lake Lutheran Cemetery, Sunburg


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