Cover photo for Michael Olson's Obituary
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1958 Michael 2021

Michael Olson

September 4, 1958 — March 1, 2021


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Michael S. Olson, 62, went to meet his Lord and Savior on March 1, 2021, with his mother and sisters at his bedside at CHI St. Alexius Health.

A celebration of his life will be held 4 p.m. Sunday, March 7 at Parkway Funeral Service, 2330 Tyler Pkwy, Bismarck. Masks are required. A service livestream will be available on the funeral home’s website. Please feel free to come to Parkway Funeral Service at 3:30 p.m., prior to the service which begins at 4 p.m. Cremation has taken place so there is no viewing.

Private family burial will be held Monday at Sunset Memorial Gardens, Bismarck.

Michael Olson was born Sept. 4, 1958, in Moorhead, Minn., to Richard (deceased) and Jean Olson. The family lived in Minot and Grand Forks before settling in Bismarck where they stayed.

He attended school at Northridge Elementary School, Hughes Junior High and St. Mary’s High School, where he enjoyed playing football. He graduated from high school in 1976 and went on to UND.

Mike’s career was spent working at the State Penitentiary and the Missouri River Correctional Center where he held positions of corrections officer, lieutenant, acting captain, and unit manager. Mike’s generosity was immeasurable. He would give the shirt off his back to anyone in need and supported various nonprofit organizations.

Favorite times were spent with family at holidays and around the kitchen table, and with friends in the outdoors. Mike loved hunting, fishing, golfing and camping. The smell of pine trees and the lake were his glimpses of heaven. He enjoyed temporary fame for shooting a hole-in-one at Apple Creek Country Club.

His childhood was filled with adventures with neighborhood friends, fireworks, pool parties and fishing trips to Canada with his dad, grandpa and uncle. He cherished times playing softball in the McQuade tournaments and spending time hunting and fishing with his lifelong friends who he adored. A skilled bowhunter, Mike enjoyed his collection of animal mounts and shared stories about each one, especially his bear.

Mike was humble about his many artistic talents. He was a skilled cook, photographer, artist, and writer. His sense of humor often left people in tears of laughter. Mike had a beautiful singing voice. He could do a mean Elvis Presley impersonation, occasionally breaking into his rendition of “Blue Suede Shoes” at events. Now we can officially say, “Elvis has left the building…” for bigger and better things!

Mike adored his mom who was his rock and filled his life with love and many joyous family celebrations. They had meaningful conversations, often at his hospital bedside.

With faithful devotion, Mike read his Bible and prayed as he deepened his friendship with God. May he now enjoy the beauty and splendor of heaven with his family members and friends who have gone before him. We rejoice that he can walk on his own two feet to meet his God.

Special thanks to Dr. Andrew Knudsen and nurse, Ashley, who tended to his medical needs and Mike regarded as friends. Thank you to the staff at CHI St. Alexius Health who cared for him over the years. And thanks to all who have prayed him through this journey.

Grateful to have shared his life are his mother, Jean Olson; sisters, Julie (Gary) Aman and Jill (Thomas) Ackerman; aunts, Carol (Ron) Bodine, Rita Sanders (Steve Holford and Pru Olson; nephews and nieces, Matt Schaefer, Jordan (Laura) Schaefer and Halli, Hanna and Hunter Ackerman; and great-nephews, Zak and Jaxon Schaefer.

He was preceded in death by his father, Richard Olson; infant brother, Jeffrey; uncle, Kenneth Olson; and grandparents, Rex and Selma Olson and Arthur and Georgia Wambach.

Memories of Mike can be shared at Parkway Funeral Service. Mike had a heart for prison work and the homeless. Memorials can be made to Ministry on the Margins or the Benedictine Sisters of Annunciation Monastery.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Michael Olson, please visit our flower store.


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