Cover photo for Gordon Lerfald's Obituary
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1930 Gordon 2014

Gordon Lerfald

April 23, 1930 — July 15, 2014

Gordon Lerfald, age 84, of Broomfield, CO and formerly of Erskine, MN, passed away on Tuesday (July 15th) at Tru Community Care Center in Louisville, CO. Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Monday (July 21st) at Saron Lutheran Church, rural Erskine, with the Rev. Alan Arneson officiating. Interment will be in the church cemetery. Visitation will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. with a 7:00 p.m. prayer service on Sunday (July 20th) at the Carlin-Hoialmen Funeral Home in Erskine. There will also be reviewal for one hour prior to the service on Monday at the church. Arrangements are with the Carlin-Hoialmen Funeral Home of Erskine and messages of condolence may be sent at carlinhoialmen.com.Gordon was born in Erskine, Minnesota on April 23, 1930 to Carl and Anna (Jorde) Lerfald and raised on his family's dairy farm with his brother Robert and his sister Gertrude. He graduated from Erskine High School in 1948 and then decided to leave the farm and pursue an education in science. He received a Bachelors of Science Degree from the North Dakota State School of Science and a Masters Degree at the University of North Dakota. After working a short time in Maryland, he returned to the Midwest and earned a PhD in Physics from the University of North Dakota. He moved his family to Boulder, Colorado in 1959 and worked many years for the National Bureau of Standards. During that time, he spent a year and a half in Norway, his family's roots, where he built rockets and performed research on the Northern Lights. He also worked for NOAA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association for several years where he worked with lasers and researched and documented a number of weather related phenomena's like wind velocity in tornados, rain density, and global warming. In 1982, Gordon and his wife Lila, moved to St. Louis, Missouri where he worked for McDonnell Douglas - now Boeing. He was a Physicist there that designed laser communication technologies used by the military among other high security clearance projects. He retired in the late 1990's with a patent and many other professional achievements under his belt. He continued consulting into the early 2000's.Gordon enjoyed riding his bike with friends on Saturday mornings while living in Boulder, Colorado and spent his evenings making sterling silver jewelry pieces out of wax moldings and natural items such as aspen leaves and miniature pine cones.Gordon was also a beautiful family man. He was married to Lila May Johnson for 44 years before her early passing in 1996 and has two children, Gary Don now 55 and Darla Ann, 52. He and his wife were also foster parents for many years and welcomed over 110 foster children into their home. They were active in their church and generous to all.Gordon spent his last year and a half at Sunrise Assisted Living where he made many new friends and participated in many activities. He was a favorite of both the staff as well as the other residents.Gordon passed away peacefully on Tuesday, July 15, 2014 with family by his side at the age of 84 years. Gordon is survived by his son Gary (Lisa), daughter Darla Figoli (Mike), grandchildren Drew Lerfald (Tara), Karlie Lerfald (Corey), Jennifer Kangar, Becky Betz (Steven), great grandson, Noah Kanger, all of Colorado; brother Robert (Cheri) Lerfald of Erskine, brother and sister in law Milton and Fern Carlson of Winger, MN and numerous nieces, nephews and grand and great grand nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his wife Lila, his parents Carl and Anna Lerfald, his sister Gertrude and brother in law Roy Johnson, and sister in law Lola Lerfald.
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