Roland Thomas Wivoda
Roland Thomas Wivoda, 88, of Hibbing, died Tuesday, February 19, 2013, during a brief stay at Heritage Manor in Chisholm.
Roland was born September 14, 1924, in Goodland to Thomas and Mary (Calgaro) Wivoda. He spent his childhood and formative years on the family farm in Goodland, eventually moving to a farm in Bengal/Silica. He was drafted into the Navy in 1943 and served as an airplane mechanic in San Diego. There he met the love of his life Betty May (Bennett) and they were married 65 years until her passing in 2010. He attended college at Hibbing Junior College, University of Minnesota, and University of Minnesota Law School earning a Juris Doctor. He practiced law in Hibbing for many years while maintaining the family farm in Bengal. After finding a guitar on an abandoned farm as a child, he became a dedicated musician and sang with a beautiful baritone voice. Sad songs were always his favorite, and he could bring a tear to anyone’s eye with his version of “Old Shep”.
Roland was a dedicated family man, raising six children. He taught all of us to respect others, have good humor, that hard work is honorable, to be curious, and to enjoy life. He was an avid hunter and snowmobiler, and his skills at finding the right place in the middle of a swamp to have a campfire will never be matched. He appreciated the beauty in nature and shared that with everyone around him.
He is survived by his children Rhonda (Jim) Clark of Hibbing, Betty (Vic) Kylochko of Balkan, Roland Jr (Tracie) of Zimmerman, MN, Bill (Norma) of Fairbanks, AK, and Joe (Angie) of Hibbing; siblings Francis (Russell) Fuller of Fairbanks, AK, Maurice (Pat) Wivoda of Hibbing, and Gloris (Russell) Oikari of Balkan; a son-in-law, Randy Herrett of Hibbing; 15 grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren.
Roland was preceded in death by his wife Betty May (Bennett); Parents Thomas and Mary (Calgaro) Wivoda; daughter Mary Ann Herrett of Hibbing; and grandson Randy “Higgins” Herrett.
Visitation will be Friday March 1, 2013, in Dougherty Funeral Home of Hibbing, from 5—7 PM and will continue on Saturday March 2, 2013, in First Presbyterian Church, Hibbing, from 10 AM until the 11 AM funeral service. Interment will be in Maple Grove Cemetery, Goodland, at a later date. To leave an online message of condolence, please visit www.doughertyofhibbing.com.