Donald Romaine Torreson
Funeral services for Donald Romaine Torreson of Spencer will be held on Monday, July 12, at 1:30 p.m., at Bethany Lutheran Church in Spencer, Pastor Scott Meier officiating. Visitation will be 6-8 p.m. Sunday evening at the Martin Matice Funeral Home in Ruthven. Internment will be at South Walnut Cemetery with military rites provided by the Graettinger American Legion.
Donald Torreson, the son of Carl “Ted” Torreson and Bella (Amdahl) Torreson, was born Oct. 17, 1925, near Wallingford. He passed away on Thursday, July 8, 2010, at Spencer Municipal Hospital. His death occurred after a brief hospice stay, preceded by nearly 10 years of residency at St. Luke’s Lutheran Nursing Home in Spencer.
Growing up on the family farm on Burr Oak Lake, he and his siblings walked each day to a one-room country school, part of the Spring Grove school system. Within months of his graduation from Graettinger High School in 1943, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and served as a military policeman in the Philippines, later receiving an honorable discharge from the service.
Upon his return from the military, he farmed alongside his father at his parent’s homestead five miles southwest of Graettinger. On Sept. 26, 1948, Don was united in marriage with Victoria Lou Gard at Zion Lutheran Church in Ruthven. After marrying, he continued for a time in this working arrangement with his father, but soon began farming the home place on his own. During these years, six children were born.
In December of 1967, Don, Vicky, and their family moved to Terril. There he was employed by Torreson Oil Co., where he drove a DX tankwagon, while supplementing his income by selling hail insurance and seed corn.
In 1978, Don purchased from Haakon Thoreson an independent insurance agency in Graettinger and set up his office in what was formerly the dime store on the south side of Main Street. Vicky worked in the office, as well, and they ran a successful business, with Don retiring in 1995. Within several years, they moved to an apartment in Spencer; a short time later he suffered a major stroke, which led to his move to St. Luke’s. These were difficult years for Don; however, throughout this time, his wife Vicky’s steadfast love for him and devotion to his needs continually uplifted him.
Don was known for being a gracious man, a very good husband and excellent father. Though he enjoyed talking and visiting with family, friends, and neighbors, he was a good listener, and a person who would put the interests and welfare of others above his own.
Don had a love for animals, particularly horses. He also was interested in history and art. Before Don suffered his debilitating strokes, he was involved in wood carving. Other interests were watching documentaries and playing pool and cards.
Don was active in the community, as a member of the American Legion, and served on the volunteer fire departments in Graettinger and Terril. He also served as president of the congregation at Bethel Lutheran Church in Graettinger. His service to the community included his work on the History Book Committee in preparation for the Graettinger Centennial in 1993.
In addition to his wife Vicky, Don is survived by six children: Rodney (Paulette) of Grand Rapids, Mich.; Dean (Vicky) of Macomb, Ill.; Kathleen (Lino) Rodriguez of Coon Rapids, Minn.; William (Martha), also of Grand Rapids, Mich.; Thomas (Carrie) of Maple Grove, Minn.; and Richard (Pamela) of Maplewood, Minn. His survivors also include 10 grandchildren: Tasha, Theodore, Travis, Christina, Jonathan, Victoria, Timothy, Michael, Patricia, and Taylor. Survivors also include three sisters, Helen Hanson of Boulder, Colo.; Ruth (Marvin) Duhn of Emmetsburg, and Carol (John) Miller of Graettinger.
In addition to his parents, he is preceded in death by a daughter, Sheila, who died in infancy, his brother Vernon and sister-in-law Alice, and his brother-in-law Vernie Hanson.