Terrance “Terry” Walsh

Terrance “Terry” Joseph Walsh, age 85, died on Saturday, November 7, 2020 in Fargo, ND. Private funeral services will be held on Friday, November 13, 2020 at Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Sioux Falls. His service will be available to view online on Friday at 10:30 AM. Please go to for a link to this event. A celebration of Terry’s life will occur this spring and all will be welcome to attend that celebration.

Terrance Joseph Walsh was born on October 9, 1935 in Harvey, North Dakota to Ben and Frances (Meier) Walsh. He was raised on a farm near Courtenay, ND and graduated from Courtenay High School in 1953. Following high school, Terry continued his education at the Gale Institute in Minneapolis MN. In 1954, Terry began his forty-one-year career with the Burlington Northern Railroad, working in the Dakotas, Minnesota, Nebraska, Canada, and Iowa. Starting in 1958, Terry honorably served two years in the United States Army. As regional sales manager, Terry enjoyed serving his customers and was honored as a Burlington Northern Presidential Award Winner in 1989. Terry retired from Burlington Northern in 1995.

Terry was united in marriage with Yvonne K. Huber on December 29, 1972 in Brookings, SD. The couple made their home in Sioux Falls, SD and were blessed with two daughters, Rachelle and Paula. In May 2018, Terry moved to Riverview Place in Fargo, ND to be closer to his family. Terry felt blessed to live in the United States, and especially thankful to live in the Dakotas.

He was a man who lived his life with integrity in everything he did. He poured his love, compassion, support, and empathy into his family and friends. He enjoyed “entertaining” (hosting) cherished loved ones in his life. He loved sitting with his children and grandchildren on his lap telling stories and reading to them. He could often be found sneaking his kids and grandkids away for an ice cream treat. While watching his grandchildren, Terry became a passionate Hawley Nugget fan, attending many football, basketball, baseball, softball and volleyball games and choir and music concerts.

Terry was passionate about all things related to the railroad, from his famously on-time train Christmas cards, to traveling by train, to reading about railroad history.

Terry had a love for travel that began when he was in the Army where he toured Europe during military leave days. He was the planner of many family vacations and once retired, spent years taking bus tours and crisscrossing North America including travel to Alaska, Canada, and Mexico, visiting every state except Hawaii. He enjoyed heading south to Arizona to celebrate the holidays with his family in the Southwest.

A steam threshing enthusiast, he spent many hours at threshing reunions including Rollag, MN and Andover, SD. As a music lover, he attended many concerts including SD Old-Time Fiddlers performances and was named their Fiddle Fan of the Year in 2013. An avid MN Twins fan, Terry could be found most summer evenings either watching or listening to baseball games and attending them in person with family. He was proud of his Irish and German-Russian heritage and enjoyed going to parades and rodeos. He loved attending dances and family celebrations. Often the first on the floor to jitterbug, waltz, and polka, his dance card was always full.

Terry gave to his community by being involved in the Catholic Church, the Elks Club, the Kiwanis Club, and the Transportation and Industry Club, being named Transportation Man of the Year in 1980 for South Dakota.

Terry’s life was devoted to his friends and family. Grateful for having shared his life are two daughters, Rachelle E. Vettern and her husband, Darin of Hawley, MN and Paula J. Balzer and her husband, Nathan of Mesa, AZ; four grandchildren, Evan Vettern, Emily Vettern, Autumn Balzer, and Maxwell Terrance Balzer; one brother, Richard Walsh of Fargo, ND; three sisters, Marjorie Walsh of Fargo, ND, Mona Anderson of Mentor, MN and Vi Bell of Farmington, CT; his ex-wife, Yvonne Walsh of Watertown, SD; and a host of other relatives and countless close friends.

Terry was preceded in death by his parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and brother-in-law, Allyn Bell.

Related Topics: OBITS