Miva LaVern Best, the daughter of Warnie and Ethel (Philbrook) Cargo, was born Oct. 3, 1915, in Britton, S.D. She died at the age of 98 on Tuesday, April 29, 2014, at Trinity Medical Center in Minot.
Miva was raised in the home of her parents and started working for various farmers and ranches at the age of 12. She always said she would do anything but cook, so she milked cows, put up hay, herded cattle, and helped with dishes. She graduated from high school in Bantry. While in school, she participated in basketball and softball. She loved most all sports and in the last 20 years was an avid fan from her easy chair. She and her sister loved to attend dances and that is where she met her future husband.
She was united in marriage to William “Roy” Best on Nov. 21, 1938, in Towner. In 1944, they bought the ranch that Roy’s parents established in 1909. Over the years, they raised mostly Black Angus cattle and horses.
Miva helped with every aspect of the ranch from branding, haying, rounding up cattle, fencing, and helped Roy overhaul tractors and fix machinery. Along with that, she had big gardens, canned and froze produce, cooked hardy, country meals and baked many unforgettable breads and sweets. Miva and Roy both raced POA chariot horses. Roy died July 31, 1990.
Miva continued to live at the ranch until 1998, when she moved to Minot. She visited the ranch nearly every day during the summer, where she enjoyed driving out to the hayfield and sitting on the deck watching the activity in the yard. She shared many stories with her grandchildren about life on the land she loved. The ranch was always home.
Miva and Roy were blessed with three daughters, Charleen, Renee and Becky. She always supported them in their school and church activities along with horse shows and rodeos. She was a member of First Presbyterian Church, Presbyterian Women’s Association, N.D. Cattle Women, N.D. Stockmen’s Association, National Cattlemen’s Association, Republican Party, N.D. Farm Bureau and the Souris River Racing Association.
She was dedicated to her husband and children. They were blessed for sharing her life.
Miva is survived by: her children, Renee Best-Officer, of Minot, and Becky (Gary) Field, of Minot and Towner; grandchildren and great-grandchildren, Shane Lester, of Newburg, Ginger (David) Podoll, of Fullerton, Shelly (Jay) Obergfell, their children, Devon, Austin, and Kordell of Fairview, Mont., Chad (Michelle) Stark, their children, Austin, Kortni, and Samantha of Sedro-Woolley, Wash., Troy Stark of Minnetonka, Minn., Shanna (John) Maynor, their children, Jaryn, Bennett and Teylor of Minot; step-grandson, Eric Field, his children, Kayden, Gabriel, and Gavin of Minot; a sister, Myrtle Fisher, of Minot; son-in-law, Lloyd (Sammie) Lester, of Fairview, Mont.; many nieces, nephews; other relatives and friends.
She was preceded in death by her husband; a daughter, Charleen Lester; son-in-law, Mike Officer; brother, Clyde (Virginia) Cargo; and sisters, Gertrude (Wesley) Naslund and Betty (Ceicil) Gibbs.
Condolences may be shared with the family at the following addresses: Renee Best-Officer, 808-8th St. NW, Minot, ND 58703, or Becky Field, 3218-10th St. SW, Minot, ND 58701.
Funeral services: Will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 10, at First Presbyterian Church in Towner, with Rev. Don Andrews officiating. Burial will be in the Union Cemetery.
Visitation: Will be from 5 until 7 p.m. Friday, May 9, at Anderson Funeral Home in Towner and will continue on Saturday, for one hour prior to the time of services, at the church.
Organist: Elaine Hendrickson
Casket Bearers: Shane Lester, Troy Stark, Roger Best, Galen Best, Dennis Cargo and Rod Cargo
Arrangements with the Anderson Funeral Home of Towner. Online registry: (www.funeralsbyanderson.com).