Myrtle E. Lund Ramstad, 97, of Guymon passed away Monday, August 12, 2013 at the Heritage Community Nursing Home in Guymon.
The daughter of Anton and Julia (Evenson) Lund, she was born on June 25, 1916 near Silva, North Dakota, the seventh of ten children. Myrtle and her siblings attended school in a one-room schoolhouse, and their “bus” was drawn by horses. In the winter the bus was a sleigh with a kerosene round stove and straw on the floor to keep them warm. Strong and full of energy, Myrtle played guard on her girls’ high school basketball team, which wore the high-tech athletic garb of the day—black pantaloons and white blouses with sailor-style collars and black ties. Finishing high school in only 3-1/2 years, she graduated as her class valedictorian.
Growing up Norwegian in a community where English was the primary language gave Myrtle some early challenges in sorting out vocabulary. But later in life when she visited Norway, those early experiences paid off; and she was able to speak fluently with her Norwegian relatives.
The Great Depression and her father’s death from cancer kept Myrtle from her dream of attending college and becoming a teacher. She worked as a “hired girl” at $2-$3 per week plus room and board. When she was working on a farm near Church’s Ferry, North Dakota, she met a tall, handsome hired hand named Frank Ramstad. They were married July 18, 1939 in Jordan, Montana. Shortly after they married, Myrtle became the family bread winner, making it possible for Frank to get his engineering degree at Montana State College.
While Frank was on naval duty in the Pacific during World War II, Myrtle and their daughter Ruth stayed with relatives until war’s end. When Frank returned, his job with Phillips Petroleum took the family to various cities in Texas and Oklahoma. In 1963, they moved from Borger, Texas to Guymon, Oklahoma, where Frank and Myrtle ultimately retired.
In 1967 Myrtle began a 45-year career as an Avon representative. During that time, she annually won top national sales awards, with the exception of only one year—when she was hindered by a broken leg.
Myrtle and Frank traveled extensively and enjoyed trips to the Holy Land, Hawaii, and many parts of the United States and Canada.
Deeply religious, Myrtle was raised as a staunch Lutheran, but her final church home was the Grace Southern Baptist Church in Guymon. She will be remembered for her faith, her many acts of kindness, and her spirit of giving.
Among her finest accomplishments, Myrtle was a loyal wife to her loving husband Frank for almost 70 years, a wonderful mother to three daughters, and a doting grandmother to two grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Her beloved husband, Frank, passed away in 2009. Myrtle’s parents, eight of her siblings, and her grandson Jamie Mandrell also preceded her in death.
Survivors include her three daughters, Ruth Heard of New York, New York, Joan (Mike) Johnson of Guymon, Oklahoma, and Liz Zélandais (Scott Zimmermann) of Madison, Wisconsin; her granddaughter, Carrie Prehoda of Austin, Texas; two great granddaughters, Tiffany Mandrell of Louisiana and Taryn Mandrell of Oklahoma; her brother, Leonard Lund of Minot, North Dakota; and many nieces, nephews, cousins, family, and friends. Myrtle passed with gratitude for the love of God, and the love she received throughout her long life from so many friends and family members.
Funeral services will be conducted Friday afternoon, August 16th at 2:30 p.m. at the Grace Southern Baptist Church with Rev. Tom Freeman officiating. Interment will follow in the Elmhurst Cemetery. Services are under the care of the Bunch - Roberts Funeral Home of Guymon.
The Ramstad family will receive friends at the funeral home on Thursday evening, August 15th from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.
The family suggests that memorials in memory of Myrtle be made to Panhandle Services for Children. Memorials will be accepted at the Bunch - Roberts Funeral Home, PO Box 1112, Guymon, OK 73942.
Friends can sign the online guestbook and leave condolences at www.bunchroberts.com .