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Sheldon Jewell Haaland was born on September 23, 1938, in Clarkfield, Minnesota to Jewell and Josie (Hovdesven) Haaland. Sheldon was baptized and confirmed at St. Lucas Lutheran Church in rural Cottonwood. He was a lifelong member there serving on the Church Council and singing in the choir.
Sheldon attended school in Clarkfield and graduated from Clarkfield High School in 1956. He attended Augustana College in Sioux Falls for one year. In 1957, Sheldon had a chance to spend a year on a Farmers Exchange Program in Market Harbough, England. He and some of the other Farmers Union participants then traveled around Europe before returning home. In the Fall of 1958, Sheldon enrolled at Concordia College in Moorhead, graduating in 1961 with majors in Business and Political Science.
Sheldon worked for the State Public Examiners Office for a short time before being drafted into the US Army in the Fall of 1961. He served at Fort Irwin in California for 2 years. Sheldon returned to the State Public Examiners Office in the Fall of 1963 and spent most of his time auditing schools around Minnesota. When his dad asked him if he had any interest in farming, Sheldon decided to return to help with the home farm. In 1967, he found a winter job as an accountant for Gold & Carlson in Marshall. Sheldon enjoyed meeting so many farmers and understood how to complete their income taxes.
On June 21, 1969, Sheldon married Margery Kyvig at Fron Lutheran Church in Starbuck, Minnesota. They raised their two daughters Amy and Allison on the home farm just south of Clarkfield. Sheldon inherited his dad’s love of farm politics so he participated in various boards at the local, state, and national level: Cottonwood Coop, Western Transport, Cenex Harvest States and Southwest Initiative Foundation. Sheldon also enjoyed the opportunity to form an Investment Club (WWI) with nine Marshall businessmen to operate Hardees restaurants in Iowa and South Dakota.
In 1998, Sheldon and Marge retired in Marshall, Minnesota when his Multiple Sclerosis required more handicap friendly facilities. They joined the community of "On Golden Pond" and have enjoyed many new friendships there. Much of their time in retirement has been spent being involved with the Southwest State Minnesota University. They were active in the Mustang Booster Club and Sheldon served on the Southwest Foundation Board helping to create scholarships for incoming students. Both Sheldon and Marge enjoyed attending many Mustang sporting events and activities.
Some of Sheldon's fondest memories are from 4 generations of Haalands sharing the cabin on Lake Minnewaska in Starbuck, Minnesota. He had so much fun watching the kids and grandkids enjoy water sports and spending time with his whole family. Sheldon was especially interested in the activities of his kids and grandkids, whether it was academically, musically, or athletically. He was very proud of all their accomplishments. Sheldon’s day was always brightened with a visit from his grandkids and they brought a big smile to his face every time he saw them.
On Monday, December 18th, 2023, having reached the age of 85, Sheldon passed away with family by his side at the Avera Morningside Heights Care Center in Marshall. Preceding him in death were his parents: Jewell and Josie Haaland, and brother, Gary.
Blessed to have been a part of his life are his wife, Margery Haaland; daughters: Amy (Greg) Manning and children Cydney and Gavin; Allison (Bruce) Abels and children Brooklyn and Beckett; sisters-in-law: Lori Haaland, Alice Swan, Carol (Don) Supataraporn and brother in law William (Kathryn) Kyvig, as well as many nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews, and cousins.
Visitation with the family will be held on Friday, December 22nd from 4-6 PM with a prayer service beginning at 5:45 PM at St. Lucas Lutheran Church, rural Cottonwood. Visitation will continue on Saturday, December 23rd at 10 AM at the church followed by the funeral service at 11 AM. Interment to follow in the church cemetery.