In memory of
Harlan Opdahl, 79, Litchville, ND passed away at his home on Saturday, May 9, 2020. There will be a time of visitation, while following pandemic guidelines, at the Lerud Mathias Funeral Home in Valley City, ND on Monday from 5PM until 7PM. A private funeral service will be held later. He will be laid to rest at Memory Gardens near Valley City. Harlan was born April 30th, 1941 in Marion N.D., the son of Henry and Irene (Nichols) Opdahl. They lived in Svea Township before moving to Litchville, ND in 1946. His father founded a Chevrolet and Case dealership in 1946 called Opdahl Motors. Harlan ""Wimp"" attended Litchville Public School graduating in 1959. At that time, Harlan and his father went into farming and Opdahl Motors together. Harlan was active in civic and community service. He was a member of the 141st Engineer BT National Guard stationed in Valley City, N.D. (1961-1966). He was a member of First Lutheran Church as well as a council member. Harlan served on the South-Regional Planning Council, and the Sheyenne James RC&D Council. He was the director of the Garrison Diversion Conservancy District for eight years, a Barnes County Commissioner for 27 years, and a Litchville City Councilman for 32 years including 20 years as mayor. Harlan was also a member of the rural fire department. Harlan had many interests. Family celebrations and gatherings were the best of times. Harlan and his beloved English Setter shared the excitement of bird hunting and went on hunting trips with friends, in and out of state. The family began camping with a converted school bus named ""Uff Da"". An up-grade soon became inevitable, in which the family spent a memorable three-week camping trip in several states with special friends. Family time was also spent on the lake with boating and water sports, however, a game of golf was always an option. The annual golf weekend with school friends and their spouses were great times of reminiscing and laughing. Harlan was an all-around sports fan and followed the local high school, college, and professional teams. In his later years, Harlan spent endless hours mowing the grass. The compliments he received on the manicured lawn were motivating, and he continued to expand the boundary lines. In May, 1961 he married Sharon Smedshammer, his wife of 59 years, at North LaMoure Lutheran Church in rural Litchville. Harlan is survived by his wife Sharon, two daughters Dana (Darryl) McClaflin, Chris (Rick) Wyant, two sons Lon (Becky) Opdahl, Brett (Laurie) Opdahl, sister Delores Olafson, grandchildren Brady (Madalyn) McClaflin, Taylor McClaflin, Kaitlyn McClaflin, Breanna Opdahl, Logan Opdahl, Jerod Opdahl, Chase Wyant, and Paige Wyant. Harlan was preceded in death by his parents, Hank and Irene, sister and brother-in-law, Arlene and Curtis Kraft, sister-in-law Kathleen Tangen Bruhn, brother and sister-in-law, Burton and Lois Smedshammer, father and mother-in-law, Ingvald and Olga Smedshammer, and infant granddaughter, Layne Marie McClaflin. In lieu of flowers the family requests donations made to CHI Hospice, LItchville's First Lutheran Church, or Community Center. Lerud Mathias Funeral Home is assisting Harlan's family with arrangements. An online guestbook and tribute page is available at www.lerudschuldt.com.
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