Eugene ‘Gene’ Rahrich, 95, of Bismarck
Gene was born July 25, 1917, in Linton the son of Lawrence and Mary (Horner) Rahrich. He grew up on the family farm near St. Michael, in Emmons County. In 1935 at the age of 17 he joined the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) and worked on various projects in Valley City, Two Harbors, Minn., and at the Coulee Dam in Washington, serving until 1938. He enjoyed his time with the Corps and told many stories of his experiences there as a young, adventurous man.
He enlisted in the Army in March, 1941 where he earned the rank of Sergeant. He served as a Military Police officer on the west coast and in North Africa. He was honorably discharged in November, 1945.
Gene returned to North Dakota and together with his brother, Wendelin, purchased and worked a farm in Emmons County until 1951 when he went to work for the Farmer’s Union in Bismarck.
Gene married Sybella Ternes in May, 1951, and together they raised seven children. The family lived in Hebron where he worked for the Farmers Union until 1966. They lived for a short time in Zeeland before moving to Bismarck in 1968 where Gene purchased and operated Northbrook Skelly until 1977.
Gene was an active member of the Church of Corpus Christi, the Knights of Columbus, Fraternal Order of Eagles, and the Bismarck community at large. Gene and Sybella were quick to volunteer to help anyone in need and could often be found delivering Meals on Wheels, providing rides to families in need, or selling St. Mary’s Carnival tickets. He enjoyed life to the fullest and did not believe in being bored. He loved spending time with his family and friends and was always ready for a game of cards, a day of fishing, and never turned down a drive to the casino.
Gene could fix anything that needed fixing and would find a way to make things last just a little bit longer. He also knew when there was no more “fixing” and time to put things away. In his last days, with a motion that was uniquely his own - the turn of a key - he told his family it was “time to turn it off.”
Gene will be dearly missed by his children, Cindy Bertsch, Bismarck, Allen, Portland, Ore., Larry (Chris), Brighton, Colo., Ray (Joni), Bismarck, Barb (Kevin) Hougen, Aurora, Colo., Kathy (Jerry) Frohlich, Boulder, Colo., and Donna (Bob) Sands, Highlands Ranch, Colo.; 14 grandchildren, Sara (Tom) Regner, Bismarck, Nicholas (Nicole) Rahrich, Maple Grove, Minn., Rachel Rahrich, Fargo, Mike Rahrich, Janay Rahrich, Mary Rahrich, Melissa Rahrich, all of Brighton, Tessa (Bobby) Cam, Aurora, Matthew Hougen, Sam Hougen, both of Denver, Colo., andAdam and Jason Rahrich, Pflugerville, Texas; and four great-grandchildren, Alexander, Liam and Gavin, Maple Grove and Gabriel Richard Cam, Aurora; one brother, Myron, Fargo; and three sisters, Barbara, Strasburg,Anne (Ralph) Johnson, Oakland, Calif., and Lillian (Dan) Hennessey, Reno, Nev.
He was preceded in death by his loving wife, Sybella; five brothers, Wendelin, Alexander, Leo, Allen, and Richard; and four sisters, Marie, Johanna, Odelliea, and Viola.
A Mass of Christian Burial was held on Thursday, Feb. 7, 2013, at 10:30 a.m. at Church of Corpus Christi in Bismarck with the Rev. Paul Becker officiating.
Burial was at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Bismarck.
Go to www.parkwayfu neral.com to share memories of Gene and to sign the online guestbook.