On Tuesday, March 14, Norbert Stanley (“Nub,” “Norb,” “Bear,” “Gramps”) Skaran – a man of many names and many talents – entered eternal life surrounded by his family.
Norbert was born on a farm in Grand Meadow Township, Minn., to Olaf and Tillie (Myhre) Skaran on December 9, 1924. He was drafted into World War II military service on December 30, 1942, and entered the Navy the next year after graduating from Grand Meadow High School. Norbert began active duty on December 9, 1944, and served on the island of Guam as a Certified Fireman 2nd Class and Motor Machinist, repairing ships aboard dry dock USS ABSD-3 and sailing aboard the USS Henrico APA-45. During this time, he was often called “Boot,” and passed plenty of his free time playing basketball with the guys. He received a medical discharge on December 22, 1945, to come home and work on his father’s farm.
Norbert soon met his future wife Shirley Ruud, and they married on April 27, 1947, at the Grand Meadow Lutheran Church. They had three children: Michael (Marjory) Skaran, Candace Lovelace, and Richard (Pamela) Skaran. Over the years, he worked as a carpenter in Austin, Minn., for lumberyards in Grand Meadow, Ostrander, and Spring Valley, and finally for NAPA in Spring Valley delivering auto parts. Along the way, Norbert and Shirley also built and managed the Ostrander Nursing Home from 1968 to 1975.
Throughout his life Norbert continued to make a difference in the lives of his community, family, and friends. He was a motorcycle racer in Grand Meadow (raced a 1947 AJS Matchless motorcycle), Cub Scout and Boy Scout leader, stock holder of Root River Country Club, pheasant hunter, bowler, snowmobiler (drove an Arctic Cat Panther nicknamed the “Wrecker”), and active member of the Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church in Ostrander, the VFW, and the American Legion. A self-taught draftsman, Norbert was always building something – from a shower curtain kite to a go-kart to his family’s home to a 4×4 truck puller called “The Nightcrawler” which he worked on with his son Rick.
Norbert was preceded in death by his parents, his brothers Arthur Skaran of Seattle, Wash., and Raymond Skaran of Grand Meadow, and his sister Kathryn Losey of Grand Meadow.
He is survived by his wife, his children, eight grandchildren, and 16 great-grandchildren with three more on the way.
Memorial services for Norbert will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 18, 2023, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Ostrander, Minn., with Pastor Herman Bakker officiating. Visitation will be held from 4-7 p.m. on Friday, March 17, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Ostrander and will continue from 1-2 p.m. on Saturday.
Online condolences may be left at Hindtfuneralhomes.com.
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