Neil Ableidinger

Neil Nolan Ableidinger died peacefully at his home in Dickinson on Saturday, Jan. 12, 2013, surrounded by many who loved him. He was 89 years old.

Funeral services were held Thursday, Jan. 17, at 10 a.m. at St. John Lutheran Church in Dickinson. Ministers were Lisa Lewton and Cal Oraw. Interment will be at the Dickinson Cemetery in the spring.

Visitation for Neil was Jan. 16 at Stevenson Funeral Home in Dickinson.

Neil Nolan Ableidinger was born in Miles City, Mont., on Feb. 7, 1923, to John and Merle (Mann) Ableidinger. He spent his formative years in Rhame, ultimately graduating from Rhame High School in 1941. He attended and received his bachelor’s degree at Valley City State University, a master’s degree from the University of North Dakota and completed additional post-graduate studies at the University of Wyoming. In 1945, he moved to New Rockford, where he served as a teacher and school principal. It was there he met his wife Joyce (McKay). The two were married in 1947 and remained so until her death in 1989. In 1951, Neil and Joyce moved to Bowbells where Neil served as superintendent. While there, Joyce gave birth to two daughters, Debra (Greenwood) and Patricia (Schiller). In 1957, the family moved to Beach where Neil again served as superintendent. In 1963, they again moved, this time to Dickinson, where Neil worked as professor and registrar for Dickinson State (College) University. He did so until his retirement in 1984.

Neil was very active during his life; at different points enjoying (amongst other things) golf, aviation, horseback riding and various sporting events. He continued to work out at the West River Community Center until as late as two weeks ago. He was a lifelong champion of education, having served as (in addition to those things already mentioned) Past President of the North Dakota School Administrators and Past President of the Upper Midwest Association of College Registrars.

He was a vocal and active member of the community and in St. John Lutheran Church. And if he could not be found doing any of those aforementioned things, he could almost always be found enjoying the company of friends over a cup of coffee.

Neil was preceded in death by his mother and father, John and Merle Ableidinger; his wife, Joyce; and many dear friends.

He is survived by: his two daughters, Debra (Dann) Greenwood, of Dickinson, and Patricia (Jeff) Schiller, of Upton, Wyo.; his grandchildren, Jay (Shanna) Greenwood, of Dickinson, Lindsey (Christopher) Locken, of Minneapolis, Paige Greenwood, of New York, N.Y., and Neil (Victoria) Schiller, of Upton, Wyo.; his beloved great-grandchildren, Max, Lucy, Oliver, Ethan, Nicolas and Anna; his special friend, Lois Hinrichs; and many others near and far who loved him very much.

Memorials: The family asks that any and all donations or gifts be made to the St. John Lutheran Church Trust Fund.

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(Stevenson Funeral Home, Dickinson)