Joseph 'Joe' Halvorsen


Joseph "Joe" Marshall Halvorsen, 94, died Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2013, at Sidney Health Center in Sidney, Mont.

Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 23, at Pella Lutheran Church in Sidney with Pastor Charlane Lines officiating. Interment of cremains will be in Sidney Cemetery.

He was the youngest of seven children born to Hans J. Halvorsen, a Norwegian immigrant, and Anna Margrethe Walla Halvorsen. He grew up on Deer Creek near Glendive.

Before World War II, having attended Montana School of Mines in Butte, he went to Hawaii to work for Morrison-Knutsen at their Red Hill Project on Oahu, building underground storage facilities for the Navy. He was living on Oahu when Pearl Harbor was bombed, but after working seven days per week for 22 months, he requested to be terminated so he could return to the mainland to enlist in the service. In Butte, he joined the Army Air Force on March 15, 1943. He served in the Philippines and New Guinea, earning the rank of corporal. After the Japanese surrender, he was stationed in Japan. He received an honorable discharge on Sept. 15, 1946.

He married Hazel Enkerud in 1950.

He partnered with his sister, Betty, in Northern Building and Loan, and with his brother, Bud, at Pioneer Loan and Realty, although his greatest business interest continued to be in oil and mineral investments.

He and Hazel traveled together, working to sign up mineral leases for various national oil companies and independently, sometimes logging more than 50,000 miles in a year.

He was club golf champion at the Sidney Country Club, and often a tournament champion. He loved golfing enough that he donated a bridge at the 13th hole to improve the course and the enjoyment of the club by all members.

If he wasn't golfing, he'd be fishing with his boon companions on Lake Sacajawea, Fort Peck Reservoir or Garrison Reservoir.

He and Hazel had no children of their own, but they played a huge role in the lives of their nieces and nephews, especially the daughters of his brother, Bud, and Bud's wife, Vita, and the daughters of Hazel's brother, Sever Enkerud, and Sever's wife, Esther.

He was a serious student of current events, politics, sports and world affairs. For many years he participated in the Sidney VFW Memorial Program, raising the American flag during the playing of Taps. Every year, rain or shine, he carried one of his brothers' flags while walking in the Memorial Day Parade. He enjoyed passing on this tradition to his Enkerud nieces and great-nieces.

His philanthropy benefited Montana Tech (scholarship), the MonDak Heritage Center (an original J.K. Ralston painting), the Sidney Country Club (Joe's Bridge at the 13th hole), Community Health Care Foundation, Pella Lutheran Church and many others.

Survivors include one brother-in-law, Sever Enkerud, and his wife, Esther; nephews and nieces, Kenneth Eyer and his wife, Sally, Janet Wheless, John Halvorsen and his wife, Bette, Andrew Knoski and his wife, Jeannie, Georgia Dunning and her husband, Paul, Dan Thomson, Nancy Nealy and her husband, Bob, Jeannie Cutburth and her husband, Michael, Karen Kostner, Margaret Hatcher and her husband, Larry, Ruth (Kim) Reineking, Beth Eacker and her husband, Geoff, Kim Lacey and her husband, John, Ava Sunnarborg and her husband, Randy, Paula Enkerud and Tena Ketchum and her husband, Bruce; and many great nieces and nephews.

Friendships with Joe lasted a lifetime. Those whose lifetimes ended before his will be happy for his company again. In his beautiful clear tenor voice, he'll sing "Hear we are together, a right good jolly crowd. Smile at one another! Everybody sing out loud!" Those of us left behind will miss him dearly. Aloha, Uncle Joe!

In honor of Joe, his family suggests donations to the Community Health Care Foundation or VFW Post #4099 of Sidney.

Remembrances, condolences, and pictures may be shared with the family at


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