Ronald Archer Siblerud, of rural Hartland, Minnesota, passed away peacefully at the age of 94 on September 7, 2023, at Thorne Crest Senior Living Community in Albert Lea, Minnesota. The funeral service will be held at 10:00 am., on Thursday, September 14th, at First Lutheran Church in Albert Lea. Visitation will be one hour before the service, beginning at 9:00 a.m., at the church. Interment will be at Hillcrest Cemetery at a later date. Pastor Joy Knoppel will be officiating.
He was born on February 28, 1929, in Albert Lea, Minnesota, the son of Arthur and Naomi (Hammond) Siblerud. Ron attended high school in Freeborn where he was captain of the basketball team in 1947. After high school, Ron attended Luther College where he played collegiate basketball. As a lifelong sports fan, he enjoyed basketball, baseball, and football.
In 1950, he enlisted in the Army and served nearly two years. During the Korean War, he served in the 58th Field Artillery Battalion, 65th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division. After his honorable military service, he returned to live in Freeborn County where he was married to Donna Dahl on February 14, 1953. They had two daughters, Cheryl and Rhonda, and were happily married for 60 years.
Early on his vocational path, Ron along with Bob Blowers, owned and operated a Mobil gas station in the Northside business district of Albert Lea. From there, they decided to start a business named Bob and Ron Builders. Ron led the crews in building houses, including entire subdivisions. His work added significantly to the volume of affordable family housing during decades when Albert Lea greatly needed more family homes for growth. Further, as a founding co-owner and builder of the Stables Supper Club, he provided Albert Lea a premier dining and dancing establishment where memories were made for decades. Lastly, he worked for 14 years as a Greenview maintenance foreman at the Interstate 35 rest-stop near the Iowa border, which was rated #1 statewide under his leadership.
Ron was a devoted husband and family man. He enjoyed fishing trips with his children, nieces, nephews, and brothers-in-law. He was a wonderful grandfather, who enjoyed spending time outdoors playing games and spoiling his granddaughters with rides to the gas station for “treats.” In his later years, one of Ron’s favorite pastimes was spending time with his great-grandchildren. He will be remembered for his fun-loving spirit and abundant generosity. Ron wholeheartedly believed in the Lord, and it is of comfort to know that Ron is now in the conscious presence of the Lord.
Ron was preceded in death by his infant brother, his parents, wife, and daughters. He is survived by two grandchildren and their families: Amber Koziolek with daughters Faith and Paityn of Emmons, and Ashley (Joshua) Tupa with sons Joshua, Jaxon, and daughter Harper of Albert Lea, and son-in-law, Richard (Debra) Koziolek. Additionally, he is survived by eight nieces and nephews.