Raymond Edward MelheimThe Rev. Raymond Edward Melheim died in his sleep on Thursday, September 27, at Eventide Nursing Home in Jamestown, ND. Born on May 19, 1920, in Sioux City, Iowa, to Martin and Mary Melheim, Ray grew up on top of the Morningside hill and attended Joy School with a “gang” of friends in a day when “gang” was a good word. He was working as a fireman on the railroad when WWII started. Ray enlisted in the Army on May 27, 1942, and fought with the 81st Division (Wildcat Brigade) in the South Pacific Theater for 3 1/2 years. He served as a Staff Sergeant in the Philippines, the Battles of Leyte and Peleliu, and took part in the occupation of Japan following the war. He earned the Philippine Liberation Ribbon, a Bronze Star and a Good Conduct Medal. Upon his return stateside, he graduated from Augustana College, Sioux Falls, SD, received a Masters of Divinity from Luther Seminary in St. Paul, MN and was ordained into the Lutheran ministry in 1951.
While on internship in Chetek, WI, he met his love, a farmer’s daughter, Kathryn Lenbom of Chetek, WI and married her on August 26, 1951. For thirty-eight years they served Christ’s church with a love for people and a zeal for missions. Ray enjoyed knocking on doors, telling stories, planting gardens, and dragging stray students, visitors and widowed folks home for Sunday dinners in Souris, ND, Dilworth, MN, Williston, ND, and Parshall, ND.