Dr. AA Stemsrud Dies Monday Following Stroke Late Sunday Evening
Sudden Death of Dr. Stemsrud a Severe Shock to Community; Physician Here Since 1901; Funeral Today
Residents of Dawson and Lac qui Parle County were severely shocked Monday morning to learn that Dr. Arne A. Stemsrud had suffered a stroke the evening before and that there was no hope for his recovery. The first report Monday morning was that he had died during the night and when the news was spread a short while later that life still lingered, there was a prayer on the lips of every one that his life might be spared. It was only a matter of a few hours, however, when he passed on to eat or no rest, causing extreme sorrow in the hearts of everyone in Dawson. So sudden and severe was the shock that business was more or less at a standstill all day Monday. People were literally stunned when they began to realize that one of Dawson’s most beloved men had been suddenly taken away by death.
Dr. Stemsrud had been afflicted with heart trouble for a number of years and during the last few months he had a careworn look. On Sunday he was about as usual, attending church services both in the morning and evening and calling on friends. Sunday evening he went to the hospital to see the patient’s and left there about 1030 o’clock. Mrs. Stemsrud becoming anxious because of his delayed return, stepped out on the porch of their home and found her husband lying there unconscious. Her screams soon brought assistance and Dr. Stemsrud was brought into the house. The doctors and nurses did everything in their power to revive him but to no avail. He did not regain consciousness. Dr. Stemsrud passed away peacefully about 10 o’clock Monday forenoon.
The funeral will be held today and owing to the limited room in the Presbyterian Church, Rev. Wee offered the use of the Riverside Church, where the services will be held. A short service will be held at the house at 130 and services at the church will begin at 2 o’clock. Dr. HR Upton will have charge of the service and will be assisted by Rev. PO Wee and Rev. GS Froiland. Dr. L Sogge, of Windom, president of the Minnesota State Medical Association, will speak in behalf of the medical profession.
The active pallbearers will be: AJ Peterson, JE Reyerson, William Jackson, Edwin Jackson, Dr. Edw. Borgendale and Guy Hoveland. Honorary pallbearers will be: Theodore Christianson, Frank Willis, JW Dale, AW Ewing, August Ruud and JB Thornby.
The choir will be composed of the Misses Neibel, Barnes, Knadle, and Klyberg and Messrs. Wallace Jackson, Roger Borgendale, Lyder Berg, Junior, and Darvin Danielson.
Arne A. Stemsrud was born in Vaaler-i-Solor, Norway, on March 19, 1872, being 59 years old at the time of his death. He died on April 27, 1931. He came to America with his parents in 1881 when he was 9 years old, settling on a farm northeast of Dawson along the Lac qui Parle River. He attended the district school and after finishing the 8th grade, taught school. He entered Windom Institute at Montevideo in 1892 and completed the four-year course in 2 years, graduating in 1894 as Valedictorian of his class. He was offered scholarships in several colleges but could not accept as he could not afford the expense. Again he taught school and later, in 1897, he entered the Medical School at the University of Minnesota, graduating in 1901.
He was the first interne at the Swedish Hospital in Minneapolis. Dr. Stemsrud began the practice of medicine in Dawson in 1901 and in the same year a partnership in the profession was formed with Dr. HM Johnson, his classmate at the University. This partnership has continued until the present time and is one of the oldest, if not the oldest, medical firms in the state.
In the earlier years of his practice Dr. Stemsrud took postgraduate work in New York, Philadelphia, Boston and Chicago, in general medical work and special work on the eye, ear, nose and throat.
Soon after locating here doctors stem Ruud and Johnson opened a hospital in the Quenemoen house and later in the present nurses home. In 1914 the Dawson Surgical Hospital was organized and built largely through the efforts of Drs. Stemsrud and Johnson and a nurse training school was established. The Dawson Hospital is widely known and has given invaluable service to the community. Very few cities of the population of Dawson have such a well-equipped and efficiently staffed hospital.
On November 29, 1905, Dr. Stemsrud was united in marriage with Miss Minnie Lindell of Grove City, Minnesota, who is a graduate nurse of Northwestern Hospital of Minneapolis. They have had a beautiful home life together for more than 25 years. Seven children came to bless this union: Alice Louise, who is a member of the teaching staff of the Nurses Training School of Yale University at New Haven, Connecticut; Harold Lindell, a student in the medical department of the University of Minnesota, Ruth Eleanor, a student of the Academic College of the University of Minnesota, Marjorie Helen, a twin sister of Marjorie Helen, who died in infancy, Marion Elizabeth and Allen Arne, attending the Dawson grade school. Besides his immediate family, Dr. Stemsrud is survived by 2 brothers, Ole and Martin of Madison and a sister, Mrs. Oley Holton, who resides north of Dawson.
The long and helpful service of Dr. Stemsrud has endeared him to the people of this community. He had many hard and harrowing experiences in the early days of his practice, being frequently lost in the blizzards while out on calls. One night in particular was recalled by his friends this week, when he was lost completely in a snowstorm and saved himself by following a fence line which led him to the Trotter farm south of town where he found shelter in the early morning hours.
Dr. Stemsrud was devoted to his profession and continued at his work when he needed to go away and rest. He was of an even and sunny temperament and always had a cordial greeting for his acquaintances and friends. He never spoke unkindly of anyone and his life at home and in the community was above reproach. He was an elder in the Presbyterian Church of the city, and was a faithful attendant at the services, and took an active interest in the local and benevolent work of the church. The passing of Dr. Stemsrud leaves a vacancy which will be felt in all of the activities of Dawson and Lac qui Parle County.