Cover photo for Erle  H. Howatt's Obituary
Erle  H. Howatt Profile Photo
1929 Erle 2017

Erle H. Howatt

August 20, 1929 — October 17, 2017

Erle H. Howatt, 88, of Langdon, ND, passed away on Tuesday, October 17, 2017 at Cavalier County Memorial Hospital in Langdon.

Erle Henry Howatt was born August 20, 1929 to William (Ray) and Veda (Johnston) Howatt in Maida, ND. Erle married Thelma Bergman on October 24, 1956. They moved to Hannah, ND. They began raising their family, and he became an active member of the Hannah community.

During the years that followed, Erle owned the Sarles Grain Elevator and was a partner in an implement dealership in addition to farming. He was mechanically inclined and a professional welder. He enjoyed improving land for grain production. He could keep older equipment up and running and took pride in that. He served on the Hannah School Board, American Legion and Odd Fellows. He had a competitive nature and among others, enjoyed curling, card games, chess and shuffle board. He stayed physically fit on a Nordic Track for years and walked many miles, enjoying the exercise. After retirement he continued traveling and made friends everywhere. He had an outgoing personality and charismatic nature. He faithfully attended to his wife in her final years and was always a father who could be counted on when we needed him.

Surviving Erle are his children: Scott Howatt of Hannah, Tracy (John) Frankowski of Irving, TX, Lisa (James) Pearson of Omaha, NE and Heidi Monette of Langdon; fourteen grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; siblings: Bernice (Jack) Fox, Stanley “Pat” (Leona) Howatt, Marlene Landry and Margaret Ann Downs; and sister-in-law Phyllis Howatt. He was preceded in death by wife Thelma, his parents, sons Rock & Reed, brother Gerald Howatt and brothers-in-law Harry Landry and Ronald Downs.

Funeral services for Erle will be held at 1:00 p.m. on Monday, October 23, 2017 at the United Methodist Church in Langdon, ND. Visitation will take place starting at 11:00 a.m. until the time of service at the church on Monday. Burial will be at St. Michael’s Cemetery, Wales, ND.

"When our Dad died, Erle was eight years old. We all stopped being kids- now it was chores and more chores. I don’t remember Erle ever complaining. One day when he was about eleven or twelve years old, he complained about his stomach. Mom drove him to the Langdon Hospital where they removed his appendix, and he stayed there about a week. We were so relieved to have him back home. There were no antibiotics in those days. Walking to school was fun except in bad weather. Erle would let me hang on the back of his jacket so we wouldn’t get separated and also hold the fence up so I could climb through without tearing my jacket or getting cut on the barbed wire fence. Erle was a good student and all country kids had to take 8th grade exams. He scored 6th in the state! My brothers missed many days of school because they were needed at home. Erle loved to read and study and would have been successful at anything he chose to do, however, we come from a long line of farmers.

We played games often late into the night. Mom never made us go to bed; perhaps she didn’t have the energy left to stop us from having fun. No matter the game he was good at it and never let me win if I didn’t earn it. We became competitive in a good way. It is difficult to grow up without a father to help you. Erle, with my other brothers, had the responsibility of running a farm for our mom. I remember a few years of riding the tractor at harvest and Erle on the binder and he had great patience with me even when I ran over grain. He could fix machinery like a whiz when we were broken down. Nevertheless, “thank goodness" for the combine!

Checking out the crops with Erle was my favorite thing to do. A few years ago we stopped to watch his son, Scott, combining and he had scared up a badger. It is rare to see one but easy to trip into one of their roadside holes. Erle loved farming; he loved the land. Consequently, he was an excellent farmer. When we went out to look at the crops, there was never a dull moment in our adventure plus we went over some bumpy roads between crop lines.

Erle was a wonderful brother, and as he got older I liked to tell him I loved him because his answer was always “Yep”. I could see the grin on his face or hear it in his voice. Shows of affection were not big in our family, but best friends are. Allen Blair was his buddy since early childhood driving with him to appointments, checking on the crops and going to the casino, and he was there in his last moments with Heidi.

If Gerald were here he would have stories to tell. Pat has always lived close and a coffee partner. Marlene and I live in California and looked forward to our vacations at home and Mesa. Margaret Ann has always been the loving glue in our family with an open home for everyone especially Erle and all his family."

Bernice Howatt Fox, Erle’s sister

Visitation will take place starting at 11:00 a.m. and continue until the time of service at the church on Monday. Burial will be St. Michael's Cemetery near Wales, ND.

Funeral Service

Monday, October 23, 2017
1:00 PM

United Methodist Church
301 15th Avenue
Langdon, ND 58249

Visitation will take place starting at 11:00 a.m. and continue until the time of service at the church on Monday. Burial will be St. Michael's Cemetery near Wales, ND.

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