119 Third Street Southwest ~ Rugby, North Dakota ~ 58368-1797
Chapel of the Cross ~ Towner, North Dakota
Jon M. Stork - President / Licensed Director

Phone: 701.776.6381 ~ 701.537.5130
Fax: 701.776.5916
email: afhrugbytowner@gondtc.com


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Burton Kristjanson


8/25/1928 – 4/25/2017

Life-long Rugby resident Burton Lee Kristjanson passed away peacefully on April 25, 2017.  Burton was born in the family home at 417 Second Street in Rugby, North Dakota on August 25, 1928 and lived at the home continuously throughout his life.  His parents were Gladys M. (Riddick) and Thorstein T. Kristjanson, an immigrant from Iceland.  Burton’s older sister Beverly J. (Kristjanson) Freeman, who was also born in the family home.    

Burton was a highly talented musician and singer beloved by the Rugby community. Mr. Kristjanson graduated from Rugby High School in 1946 and attended Augsburg College in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he studied music. Burton could play any piece of music before him, from swing tunes to classical.  Burton is often remembered for playing the organ and singing in the choir at the First Lutheran Church for many years.  During recent years, his musicianship delighted the congregations of many rural churches during Sunday services.

After his father passed away, Burton helped his mother Gladys operate the Rugby Seed House, the family business, and reliably delivered coal during cold winter nights throughout the community.  Always in good humor and offering a kind word, Burton was a friend to everyone he met.  And, his Rugby friends returned his gentle kindheartedness by always inquiring about his well-being, and looking out for him in every way possible.    

Burton is survived by his niece Susan M. (Freeman) Burlingame, a resident of Rugby, and his nephews David J. Freeman and George T. Freeman of Anchorage, Alaska.  He was preceded in death by his sister and brother-in-law, Beverly and Theodore Freeman; and his parents.

Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m. Wednesday, May 10th at the First Lutheran Church in Rugby with burial in the Persilla Watts Cemetery, Rugby.  Pastor Sharon Baker officiating.

Visitation will be held for one hour prior to the service at the church.


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