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Charlie Berg, 86

Charles Allen Berg, 86, lived and died close to his family and West Central Minnesota. When he passed away on January 22, his wife of 66 years was in the next hospital room, and his heart never left Stevens County.

Born in Graceville, Charlie was the son of Carl and Bertha (Osterberg) Berg. He attended country school in Traverse County and graduated from West Central School of Agriculture in Morris in 1945. Following graduation, he farmed with his father and brother, raising grain and livestock.

Charlie married Carol Lamb in 1948 in Staples. They lived on farms in Traverse County and then rented and later bought his grandfathers farm in Stevens County, where they raised four daughters and three sons. Charlie and Carol continued to live on that farm, which is a Century Farm.

Public and community service always attracted Charlie. He served 26 years in the Minnesota Senate, beginning in 1972, winning numerous re-election campaigns and losing just one. While in the Legislature, he continued to farm in the summer months but later rented out the land.

He was active in the Minnesota Cattlemens Association, serving at one time as its president and on the national board of directors. He served on his church council as a Sunday school teacher, on the Chokio Board of Education and on the West Central Educational Development Association in its early years.

Charlie liked fishing and hunting and golf until his last years, spent a couple of weeks in Alaska every summer with three daughters and one son and their families there, where they all enjoyed salmon and halibut fishing.

Charlie was a lifelong stock market investor and encouraged his children to do the same. He mainly invested in Minnesota companies that he knew to be of good character and business practices.

After retiring, he engaged in the sport of day trading, arising early each day to catch the market opening. He clearly enjoyed it. He and Carol also were gracious hosts to the many friends of their children whom they met over the years, encouraging them to visit them at the farm. Many did, including more than a few from Alaska, and found it a thoroughly enjoyable experience.

Charlie is survived by his wife, Carol; daughters and sons, Bonnie Berg, Laurie Berg and husband John Connolly, and Marla Berg and husband John Greely; all of Juneau, Alaska; Charles Jr. and wife Dana of Lindstrom; Colin and wife Ronda of Olivia; Dixie and husband Tim Lippert of Easton; Adam and wife Jami Eistetter of Anchorage, Alaska; fourteen grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; two sisters and two brothers, Robert Berg (Audrey) of Chokio, Janice Arneson (Dave) of Glenwood, Patricia Nokelby (Bruce) of Paynesville, and Richard Fair (Kathleen) of North Oaks; and many nieces, nephews and cousins.

He was preceded in death by his parents and his brother, Carl Jr.

A memorial service will be scheduled. Arrangements are with Pedersen Funeral Home, Morris.