He was born to William and Minnie (Carson) Gerdes May 18, 1927, in La Crosse, Wis.He grew up in Pine Creek, Minn., and attended school there and in La Crosse, Wis. He moved to Caledonia, Minn., at age 16 and farmed with his brother, Herb, and father, Bill.
He met Verna Bolduan in 1945 and they married June 13, 1948. In 1954, Gorden and Verna moved to their farm in Ridgeway, Minn. where they raised their eight children.
Gorden leaves a legacy of being a humble, hard-working, Christian farmer who loved his Lord, his family, and working the land including flower gardening. Gorden enjoyed spending time with family and friends visiting, playing cards, table games, and watching his grandchildren grow and play. He was known to climb the 40 foot windmill on their farm to display Christmas lights seen from miles away. His hobbies included fishing, puzzles, painting, and flower gardening. Gorden and Verna enjoyed numerous bus trips together throughout the United States including Alaska.
He touched many lives. He was an active member of Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church Ridgeway and the area community.
Gorden is lovingly survived by his wife of 68 years and 10 months, Verna (Bolduan) Gerdes; children: David (Carol), Fred (Pat), Neil (Cindy), Dale (June), Carmen LaSater, Joan (Bob) Horst, Kevin (Lori), and Martha (Dan) Clemmensen; 31 grandchildren; 47 great-grandchildren; one great-great-grandchild with one due in July; in-laws: Charlotte Gerdes, Arlys Bolduan, Marcile Kuecker, Burton (Joyce) Bolduan and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, William and Minnie Gerdes; parents-in-law, Frank and Martha Bolduan; siblings and in-laws an infant sister, Loreen (Peter) Fokema, Herbert Gerdes, Eleanor (Lauren Petersen and Marvin) Ostrum, Roland Bolduan, Dolores and Bud Schmidt, Alice and Donald Diersen, Mervin Kuecker, and daughter-in-law, Mary (Meyer) Gerdes.
Visitation will be Sunday, April 23, 2017, from 4 p.m. until 6 p.m. at Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church in Ridgeway, and again at the church on Monday, April 24, 2017, from 10 a.m. until the time of the funeral service at 11 a.m. The Reverend Anthony Straseske will officiate.
The family respectfully requests that memorials be considered in lieu of flowers.
Online condolences or memories may be left for Gorden’s family at www.watkowski-mulyck.com.
Watkowski-Mulyck Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.