Gordon Mark Bergman was born as the apple of his parents’ eyes on March 11, 1950 to Helen Marie (Mattie) and Oscar Mark Bergman in Wadena, Minnesota. He passed away on May 15, 2018 in Wadena at the age of 68 years.
He grew up at Route 2 Box 3 Sebeka MN. He spoke fondly of his childhood and the memories he had of being the youngest, and therefore; the best and favorite child in his family. He attended Sebeka Public School and no one was more surprised than he when he graduated in 1968.
In the spring of 1968, Gordy joined the United States Navy. He served in a few places but was most honored with his service on the U.S.S. Enterprise in Vietnam. He received an honorable discharge in 1973. He later served in the Army Reserve. He was able to travel the world and was a “tour guide” of sorts. Whether you stated you were going on a trip somewhere, or he was showing you around the town he called home, he had history and a story to share with you. It was all about the adventure for Gordy. He loved to tell stories. You could believe about half of what he told you, you just didn’t know which half.
As a younger man, Gordy enjoyed a good smoke, a good drink and a lot of good conversation. He perfected the art of storytelling. He learned some hard lessons along the way but believed that those were the things that made him the man he had become.
Gordy married Vallery Horton in October 1973. There were three children from this union: Brian, Renee, and Heidi. He adored his children and grandkids and he couldn’t honestly believe that such amazing people were his offspring. He did his best to make sure that they knew it too.
In his young years, he enjoyed many odd jobs such as an artificial inseminator while living in various towns in Minnesota. In 1977, he was hired on as a janitor at Moorhead State University. He worked his way up the ranks and retired in 2009 as the Grounds and Maintenance Supervisor with the esteemed title of “Commander Bergman”. In 1988, while he was working at MSU, he bought his home place at Route 2 Box 3 Sebeka and moved his family home.
In 2009, he brought his special friend, Rose Bakke, to live with him in Sebeka.
During retirement, Gordy filled his time with farming, family, friends, and making people question why he did different things, like mow the pasture, move horses from pasture to pasture daily, or stack wood in the middle of his pasture. Gordy loved his pasture and being outside. Gordy didn’t believe in living an average life. He did what he wanted to, learned what he had to, laughed inappropriately at every chance, and believed that his smirk could say a thousand words, and that it did!
He was an active member of Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church where he spent countless hours volunteering his talents, though we couldn’t count his singing as one of them. He served on the Hay Creek Cemetery Board and was just given the Deacon job.
Gordy was always willing to lend a hand. Whether you were serving burgers for Cub Scouts or VFW, serving pancakes for Nimrod Boosters, cleaning up yards with the youth, hauling horses for 4H kids, cleaning barns at the fair, mowing cemeteries, putting out service flags for Memorial Day, cutting hay for a neighbor, or elbow deep in calving season, Gordy would take pride in helping you out and end the day by saying “Glad you got to see me”. You may have referred to him as Gordy, Mr. Gordy, Mr. Bergman, Grandpa Gordy or even G-Dawg, but he was always there to help.
Before his passing, Gordy forged a 68-year trail of generosity, laughter, compassion and life lessons. He not only believed but lived by the “Pay it Forward” concept. Gordy had the ability that few people had…he always made you feel better from your interaction with him. He truly was an angel though he certainly would’ve smirked at that description. He took things in stride, both good and bad, with a simple “It will all work out. Life will go on” attitude. He was a bit snarky, smarter than he was given credit for, a confidante, an encourager, and defender of the people or places he loved. The world was a better place with Gordy in it.
He was an active member of Menahga VFW Post 6206 and Berg-Nylund Legion Post 456. He also served as a color guard for both posts.
Gordy was preceded in death by his parents, Oscar and Helen, and a sister-in-law, Elaine.
Gordy is survived by and dearly missed by: his partner-in-crime Rose Bakke; his children: Brian (Julie) Bergman of Royalton, Renee (Jason) Miller of Sebeka, and Heidi (Darin) Mattsonof Sebeka; his grandchildren: Bryan (Brittany) Balzum, Chad Bergman, Chyna Bergman, Chelsea Bergman, Vanessa Bergman, Cody Miller, Shaniah (Chance) Miller, Sierra Miller, Tanner Mattson, Ian Mattson, Otto Mattson; his siblings: Gary Bergman of Anchorage, Alaska, and Gail (Richard) Johnson of Wadena, many nieces, nephews, cousins, adopted kids, adopted grandkids, friends and of course all the people he touched with his guidance, wit, charm, generosity, and personal gift of a frozen chicken.
Visitation will be from 5-8 p.m. on Sunday, May 20, 2018 at Wevley Funeral Home in Sebeka and one hour prior to the service at the church.
Funeral Services will be 11:00 a.m. Monday, May 21, 2018 at Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church in Sebeka. Interment will be at Hay Creek Cemetery.
Arrangements are with Wevley Funeral Home of Sebeka. Online condolences may be left at www.wevleyfuneralhome.com 5-23c