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Alvin Thornes

Sept. 10, 1917-Feb. 8, 2009

Alvin N. Thornes, 91, of Detroit Lakes, died Sunday, February 8, 2009 at St. Mary's Oak Crossing in Detroit Lakes.

Alvin was born the son of Leif and Ingeborg (Selland) Thornes on Sept. 10, 1917, in Marshall County, S.D. He attended grade school in Victor Township, S.D., and graduated from West Central School of Agriculture in Morris, Minn. As a young adult he attended the University of Minnesota, receiving a degree in animal husbandry in 1946, after taking time out to serve in the Army Air Force during World War II.

Alvin married Amy Bolstad on May 8, 1942 in Las Vegas, Nev., before entering the service on May 23, 1942. They made their home on bases in California, New Mexico, Washington, Oklahoma and Nebraska, while Alvin served as a bombardier instructor before going overseas. Overseas, Alvin was stationed in Guam and was the lead bombardier on the last bombing raid of World War II. He was discharged as a major and continued in the Air Force Reserve until 1957.

After completing his education, Alvin was Assistant County Agent in Hennepin County before taking the position of County Agent in Beltrami County in late 1946. In 1948, Alvin taught Adult Farm Management in the Veterans' Training Program for the Blackduck (Minn.) Schools.

In 1952, Alvin joined Land O'Lakes Agriculture Services selling feed, seed & fertilizer in northern Minnesota as well as fertilizer plants to cooperatives, retiring in 1982. Alvin and Amy spent many winters in Florida as well as traveling throughout the United States.

Alvin was an active member of First Lutheran Church, served on the church council and the building and grounds committee. He was also a member of the American Legion and one of the first volunteers for the nutrition program in Detroit Lakes. He enjoyed golfing and was one of the oldest players in the Hospice Golf Tournament; he also enjoyed ice fishing with his friend Roger Roy.

Alvin is survived by his daughter, Andrea Bue of Shakopee, Minn.,; four grandchildren; one great grandson; one brother, Ruben (Judy) Thornes of Sacramento, Calif.,; two sisters-in-law, Carrie Thornes and Dolly Thornes; as well as numerous nieces and nephews.

Preceding Alvin in death were his parents; wife, Amy (2003); son, John; daughter, Julie Johnston; four brothers, Ivar, Loyd, Ole and Harold Thornes; five sisters, Lina Eisenlohr, Cora Jaspers, Helsina Oland and Zella Dagney Gale; sister-in-law, Bertha Thornes; and three brothers-in-law, Robert Eisenlohr, Frank Jaspers and Howard Oland.

A memorial service is scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 14, at First Lutheran Church in Detroit Lakes, with the Rev. H. Wade Dutton officiating. There will be visitation for one hour prior to the start of services at the church. Interment will be in Oak Grove Cemetery, Detroit Lakes.

West-Kjos Funeral Home in Detroit Lakes has been entrusted with arrangements. Those wanting to share memories and condolences are invited to use the funeral home's online messages of sympathy section at