Earl V. Bakalyar, 77
Funeral services for Earl V. Bakalyar of Lakefield were held Feb. 21 at Immanuel Lutheran Church, Lakefield, with Pastor Roger Hett officiating. Earl V. Bakalyar died at his home in Lakefield on Feb. 17, 2003. Burial was in Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery, Lakefield, with military rites by the Hanson Ward V.F.W. Post No. 4743 and Swen-Rasmussen American Legion Post No. 4.
Casket bearers were grandchildren Jess Bakalyar, Terry Bakalyar Jr., Jerrid Matson, Brenton Matson, Aaron Milbrath and Nicholas Bakalyar. Honorary casket bearers were grandchildren Charlotte Suess, Sheila Nachreiner, Heather Rogotzke, Sally Bakalyar, Mitchell Bakalyar, Shawna Matson, Amber Carson, Samantha Bakalyar, Kaitlyn John, Nathan John and Megan John; and step-grandchildren Luke, Paige, Tom, Nigel, Dawn, Danielle and Shelley. Music was provided by organist Marlene Hendricksen and soloist Myleen Swanson. Funeral arrangements were in care of the Hansen Funeral Home of Lakefield.
Earl Verland Bakalyar, son of John and Anna (Stinar) Bakalyar, was born on April 12, 1925, on his parents’ farm in Hunter Township, Jackson County, Minn. He was baptized on May 10, 1925, and confirmed in the Lutheran faith on April 6, 1941, at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Lakefield. Earl grew up on the family farm and attended country school. Following his education, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy on April 14, 1942, at Tulsa, Okla. He served on the USS Saratoga and received the Victory Medal, American Campaign Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, eight Stars and the Good Conduct Medal. He was discharged on April 12, 1946, at Norman, Okla. Following the service, Earl returned to the Lakefield area.
He was united in marriage to Betty Mead on Oct. 4, 1947, at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Lakefield. Following their marriage, the couple resided in Lakefield. Earl worked for Lakefield Public Utilities for 36 years in the power plant. He retired in 1986 and continued to live in Lakefield.
Earl was a member of the Immanuel Lutheran Church, V.F.W., American Legion and D.A.V. In 1962 he earned the title of All State Commander while serving as Post Commander of the V.F.W. For several years he was manager and coach of the V.F.W. baseball team. He earned his Eagle Scout award in 1960 while serving as assistant Scoutmaster for Troop 81 of Lakefield. He also enjoyed his family, fishing, gardening and playing cards.
Earl is survived by his wife, Betty Bakalyar of Lakefield; five sons and three daughters, Terry and wife Donna Bakalyar of Springfield, Keith and wife Beverly Bakalyar of Odessa, Fla., Linda and husband Harold Matson of Coon Rapids, Bruce and wife Jan Bakalyar of Lakefield, Brad and wife Bonnie Bakalyar of Medford, Ore., Lori and husband Steve Milbrath of Jackson, Scott and wife Linda Bakalyar of The Colony, Texas, and Lisa and husband Bradley John of Lakefield; 21 grandchildren; eight great-grandchildren; and two sisters, Lucille and husband Harry Powers of Claremore, Okla., and Elaine and husband Bud Thiesen of Estherville, Iowa.
Earl was preceded in death by his parents; and six brothers, Jack, Andrew, Daniel, Albert, Leonard, Marvin; and six sisters, Emma, Mary, Alice, Mildred, Esther and Gladys.
Ode to Earl Vernon Bakalyar
By H. Ed Carlson
Ode to Earl Verlon Bakalyar: We buried a comrade today, an old Navy man; he sailed the Pacific in WWII aboard a flat top as Petty Officer Class Two. He has been known as Mr. VFW since coming home. Twice a commander, a gold hat at that, on many offices and committees he sat. He worked for the city and took pride in his job, keeping electricity flowing to light your bulb. He married Betty Mead and they raised eight children, training them all to be citizens honest and true. He was active in Scouting, baseball and youth activities, as such. He enjoyed life to the max, attending his kids' sports and cheering them through. His grandchildren did love him, but he was tough as an old shoe when he told them the way they should go. Earl liked his cigarette and a glass or bottle of brew; sometimes I think his limit was two. He was gregarious in speaking and could really bend an ear when talking to you, though, when drinking, the air could turn blue! I salute you, old buddy of mine, and will meet you again when it comes my time. Ed
Earl Bakalyar, 77
Funeral services for Earl Bakalyar, age 77, of Lakefield will be Friday, Feb. 21, 2003, at 10:30 a.m. at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Lakefield. Rev. Roger Hett will officiate. Burial will be in the church cemetery with military honors in Lakefield. Visitation will be held at Hansen Funeral Home in Lakefield on Thursday, Feb. 20, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. and again at the church one hour prior to the services on Friday. Earl passed away Monday at his home in Lakefield. A complete obituary will appear in next week’s Jackson County Pilot.