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Douglas John Elkjer July 19, 1952 - Dec. 2, 2012

Douglas John Elkjer July 19, 1952 - Dec. 2, 2012

WILLMAR - Douglas John Elkjer, 60, of Willmar, died Sunday, December 2, 2012 at Rochester Methodist Hospital in Rochester. His funeral will be 1:00 pm, Saturday, December 8th at First Baptist Church in Willmar. Burial will be in Fairview Cemetery in Willmar. Visitation will be from 5-8 pm, Friday at Harvey Anderson Funeral Home in Willmar, Visitation will continue for one hour prior to the service at the church.

Douglas John Elkjer was born on July 19th, 1952 in Willmar to Harold and Vivian (Forsberg) Elkjer. He was the youngest of two sons. From the time he was very small, Doug added sparkle and fun to everything he touched.

Growing up in Willmar, Doug was involved in sports throughout school and was an avid golfer. He excelled in music and was blessed with a beautiful baritone solo voice. He often laughed about the fact that he received “The Robert Goulet Award” for singing his senior year of high school. Doug’s voice was like velvet. He sang at countless weddings and funerals. One of his fondest memories was singing in The Fourmation, a quartet made up of some of his best friends. With the help of many musicians, they recorded an album, which many friends and family still enjoy today. In singing, Doug communicated his deepest thoughts and convictions…his unwavering love for Christ.

Doug graduated from Willmar High School in 1970. He attended Bethel College in St. Paul, where he sang in the Bethel College Choir. Doug graduated from Bethel in 1976 with a degree in Business. He then returned to Willmar to join his father in working at Corneil Elkjer Insurance Agency. In 1984 Doug became a partner in the agency, and worked in that capacity until 1996 when he left due to health complications.

On June 24th, 1978, Doug married his college sweetheart, Joyce Wold. There wasn’t a day that went by that he didn’t tell Joyce how much he loved her. Their love for each other was deep and strong. Their marriage was blessed with two children, Brian and Kristi. Doug adored his kids and devoted his life to being the very best father he could be. He filled their lives with fun, laughter and unconditional love. He was more proud of Brian and Kristi than anything else in the world, and told them that again and again.

Doug was known for his kind heart and gentle spirit. He was truly selfless. Doug had a charismatic, infectious personality. His wit was truly unique and he was perpetually fun and funny, without even trying. People were drawn to him, as he lit up the room with his smile and spirit. He was a terrific hunting and fishing buddy, as everyone would have a great time even if “they all got away”. No one could tell a story like Doug, especially his fishing stories…where the fish just kept getting bigger with each passing year.

Doug lived a life of remarkable courage and strength, in battling an inoperable brain tumor for over 20 years. Although he faced one physical setback after another, his personality continued to be one of fun, laughter, joy and hope. He focused his energy on bringing glory to God in the midst of his suffering. Doug used every opportunity he could to tell others about all that God had done in his life, and emphasized his commitment to Christ. Doug was an incredible man of God, never wavering.

Doug is survived by his wife, Joyce, and his children, Brian and Kristi Elkjer (fiancé Ryan DeGree), his father-in-law, Rev. George Wold, his brother-in-law, Mark (Marilyn) Wold, along with his nephews, Josh, David and Jeremy Wold.

He was preceded in death by his parents, his brother, Ross, his mother-in-law, Ruth Wold and his brother-in-law, Daniel Wold.