Charles Dean Younggren, “Chuck,” was born March 16, 1957, to Dean Lowell Younggren and Muriel Dellamae Swanson Younggren at Kittson Memorial Hospital, in Hallock. Chuck was baptized at the Northcote Presbyterian Church, and confirmed at First Presbyterian Church in Hallock.
Chuck lived his early years on the banks of the Red River on the Clifford Younggren farm. He spent time with his brothers catching frogs to go catfishing and played with neighbors and cousins. Before the flood in the spring of 1970, the family moved east of Hallock to Thompson Township. Here Chuck grew up with his brothers, Lowell and Loren, and they became good friends with many neighbor kids. They would gather regularly at the swimming hole in the Two Rivers and ride their Trail 90s all over the country roads.
Chuck grew up loving to hunt with his Ronnander cousins in the Halma swamp, where Uncle Donald made beautiful trails. Many stories about big bucks were told during Aunt Erlyce’s lunch feasts. Chuck graduated from Hallock High school in 1976 and participated in FFA and 4-H. He then went to the AVTI in Thief River Falls for Farm Management. Shortly after graduating, he started working for Midland Ag Services, Hallock. Later, the company moved him to the Stephen location when they became CHS. Those early years formed the Midland softball team where Chuck played every Monday night in the summer with around 14 teams in the league. Chuck also enjoyed playing hockey on the Bruins team, and later the Kings old timers team.
In the early 90s, Chuck quit working for CHS to farm and ranch full time with his brother Lowell. Chuck and Lowell farmed together as partners, getting a good start when Odin and Becky Storien offered their land at an affordable price to the boys, and their dad, Dean, retired from farming. They started with some land and 40 cows, growing their operation for the sixth generation of farmers to step into.
Every winter, Chuck spent time snowmobiling with a few buddies, taking numerous trips out west and up into Canada, as well as the local trails. His early winters he went on several down-hill ski trips to the Rocky Mountains, and in the early 80s, skied five countries in the ALPS. After a knee injury in the 90s, Chuck switched to cross country skiing the local trails and snowmobiling.
Hunting also became a passion where Chuck spent time with his nieces and nephew every fall deer hunting the local woods, teasing and jesting with kids. Chuck went on many out-of-state hunting and fishing trips: caribou in northern Canada, salmon fishing in Alaska and Lake Michigan, moose hunting with Nathan in northern Manitoba, several elk hunts in the Rocky Mountains; he also hunted antelope, bear, cougar and went on many fishing trips up into Ontario. Two of his last hunting trips were to South Africa and he brought home many trophies including: Kudu, Warthog, Cape buffalo and many more.
Chuck was always busy in his shop restoring antique wagons, tinkering and making bird houses for his yard and to give his nieces and nephew for Christmas. He loved his daily visits or calls from his good friend, Ellwood Carlson. He loved to garden and had an outstanding tomato crop every year. From his raspberry patch, family enjoyed many jars of jam and bowls of raspberries with ice cream.
Chuck loved to kayak on the Two Rivers when the water was high and his nieces and nephew remember many fun adventures with him, always keeping an eye out for Amanda’s lost pair of glasses. Chuck shopped for these kids at Cabela’s or Polaris where there are several Christmas photos of the kids lined up in the matching sweatshirts. The kids will always remember Chuck and his fun, teasing attitude, and the hard butterscotch candies and tootsie pops he always carried in his pickup.
In his 50s, Chuck developed early-onset Alzheimer’s. He continued to live at home until July 22, 2014, when he went into KMHC Nursing Home to recuperate after a shoulder surgery, and there he remained. Here, the staff became the family that cared for and monitored his condition. One of the most memorable occasions was when the nursing home staff took him to the Maverick for his 60th birthday. A comfort for Chuck was when his dog, Manford, was allowed to live with him at the nursing home for a couple of years. Manford became a friend to many of the residents and staff. The first 4 1/2 years of his nursing home stay, his mom, Muriel, made it her mission to get Chuck out for a drive almost every day in the summer. Chuck anticipated these fun drives and loved getting out to see the country. They would drive out to see the farm, the cows, the kids, eat at Foxy Roxy’s, go to church, and stop at Cenex in Bronson to buy peanut M & M’s for Manford. Chuck would walk the country roads while Muriel waited for him in the farm yard. He loved the dogs at the farm and was content riding around with his mother.
Chuck’s winters in the nursing home were spent going to high school ball games and hockey games with Dick Satterlund. Dick faithfully picked Chuck up, looked after him and went to all the games with him. Chuck also loved watching the WILD, the TWINS, and all sports on TV in the nursing home. Visiting Chuck, he always remembered to ask about Clarence and what work he was doing with his cows. He loved having the great-nieces and nephews come and visit him. Chuck enjoyed participating in family gatherings and holidays, and many times, probably due to overstimulation with all the people, would leave the house to go outside and play with the dogs or go for a walk.
He is survived by his Mother Muriel; brothers, Lowell (Juli), Loren (Jana); nieces, Jacki (Matt) Przekwas, Amanda (Tim) Caillier, Nikki (Mark) Larson, Savannah (Evan) Bernstrom; nephew, Nathan (Tori)Younggren; great-nieces and nephews, Clarence, Adina, Clifford, Clancy and Betsy Przekwas, Corbin and Lauren Caillier, Harley, Haaken, Swede, Otto and Joel Larson, Axel and Ruth Bernstrom, and Elwood and Dellamae Younggren.
He was preceded in death by his dad, Dean.
Funeral services were Friday, Dec. 18, at 2 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church in Hallock. The service was livestreamed via First Presbyterian Church of Hallock on Facebook. Interment will be in Two River Cemetery, rural Hallock. Rev. Marge Landwehr, presiding; Nikki Larson and Amanda Caillier, prelude and postlude; Savannah Bernstrom, soloist, and Jacki Przekwas, pianist. Honorary pallbearers: Chuck’s nieces and nephew, Dick Satterlund, Duane Ronnander, Bruce Sandahl, Paul Gillie and Bill Wightman.
Austin Funeral Home, Hallock, was in charge of the arrangements. www austinfuneralhome.com