Margaret Bundgaard Vanderkolk

Margaret Bundgaard Vanderkolk

  • Funeral Date: 10/19/15
  • Funeral Time: 11 a.m.
  • Date of Birth: 11/09/19
  • Date of Death: 10/14/15
  • Funeral Location: St. John's Lutheran Church, Northfield

Margaret Frances (Prest) Bundgaard Vanderkolk was born to James Richard Prest and Zella Foster Prest on November 9, 1919 at McCool Junction, NE. Margaret graduated from Kramer High School in Columbus, NE in 1937. She was salutatorian of her high school class. Following the interest of her father in golf, she was women’s club champion at the local country club. Margaret went to Doane College where she was editor of the college newspaper and was elected May Queen. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Doane in 1941.

In fall of 1941, Margaret began teaching high school English at Adams, Nebr. Moving on to teach in Wayne, Nebraska in the winter of 1942, she met Axel Bundgaard who was also a teacher and coach at Wayne. On October 31, 1943 Margaret and Axel were married in Columbus, Nebraska. From 1947 to 1961, Margaret and her growing family lived in Waverly, Iowa, where Axel was a coach and teacher at Wartburg College, and where many lifelong friendships for Margaret began. During those years Margaret was a part-time reporter at the local newspaper.

The family moved to South Dakota in 1961, where Axel took a new position at South Dakota State in Brookings. From there, the family moved to Northfield in 1965 and took root in the Northfield and St. Olaf communities. After Axel and Margaret were divorced, Margaret entered into a new successful phase of her life and transitioned into several new careers. She sold real estate, worked at the Northfield News, and impacted Northfield with nearly a decade of service on the City Council from 1978 to 1987. Margaret also had years of service in the local PEO Chapter, League of Women Voters, AAUW, and St. John’s Lutheran Church. Many Ole students will remember Margaret as their landlord, as she rented out the basement rooms of the family home on Highland Ave.

In the fall of 1987, a second marriage to Russ Vanderkolk returned Margaret to the Platte River Valley in Nebraska, near her childhood home of Columbus. After Russ passed in 1997, Margaret moved back to Northfield and reconnected with many old friends in the community and established many new ones.

First and foremost, Margaret viewed herself as a wife and mother. Many great mothers have called Northfield home and Margaret was no exception. Her children will remember her as their greatest fan.

Margaret was preceded in death by her sister Elizabeth who died in the flu pandemic of 1918, brother, Dr. J.R. Prest Jr., by the father of her children, Axel Bundgaard, and by her second husband, Russ Vanderkolk. She is survived by her four children; Elizabeth Wicks (Gary), Eric Bundgaard (Denise), Chris Bundgaard, and Mark Bundgaard. She is also survived by her five grandchildren, Jennifer McNamara (George), Anne Wicks (fiancee Mike Humphrey), Andrew Wicks (Anna), Trygve Bundgaard (Charlotte), and Tycen Bundgaard (Shan) – and Trygve and Tycen’s mother Kim Bundgaard; and her eight great grandchildren. The family has requested memorials be directed to Doane College, Wartburg College, St. Olaf College, or St. John’s Lutheran Church, Northfield.

Funeral Services will be 11:00 am Monday, October 19th at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Northfield with burial at Oaklawn Cemetery. Visitation will be Monday 1 hour prior to Services at the Church.

Arrangements by the Bierman Funeral Home of Northfield.

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