SPEARFISH | Lawrence Berger Meland, 101, passed away on Feb. 9, 2019, in Sturgis. He was also known as Scotty, a name he was given when he acquired a Scottish hat left in a sheep herder’s wagon when working at the age of 10 herding sheep in Eagle Butte.
Lawrence was born Feb. 1, 1918, in Eagle Butte to Frederick and Bertha (Finwick) Meland. As a child, he lived in sod houses and log cabins and once lived in a house with a wooden floor. After he graduated from Eagle Butte High School, he worked in the CCC camps during the Great Depression until drafted into the army, 10 months prior to World War II; he finished his European military service by participating in the liberation of various Holocaust camps. He received the Bronze Battle Star for his service in World War II. At the end of the war he went to work for the Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul and Pacific Railway for 33 years until retirement in 1978. His work as a depot agent took him to many towns in North Dakota and South Dakota.
He loved walking great distances, especially between Spearfish and Belle Fourche on his birthday, Feb. 1. Several times, local newspaper reporters interviewed him on those trips and when asked to what he attributed his health at the age of 90, he replied “I have been known to drink a beer or two.”
During the war, he married Irene Weisbrod from Vancouver, Canada in 1942 at Whidbey Island, WA. Lawrence was the last surviving member of a family of six siblings. He was preceded in death by his wife, Irene; two sons, Ricky and Larry; and dear friend of 35 years, Helen Wingenbach.
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Lawrence is survived by four daughters, Lois, Sharon, Lorene and Connie; two sons, Ronald and Omar; 18 grandchildren; 21 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild.
Services will be held at 2 p.m. on Friday, June 21, at Black Hills National Cemetery near Sturgis.
Arrangements are under the care of Fidler-Isburg Funeral Chapels and Isburg Crematory of Spearfish. Online condolences may be written at fidler-isburgfuneralchapels.com.