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Dewey Forsness

Dewey Forsness Dewey Forsness

Dewey Charles Forsness was born Nov. 24, 1931, in Grand Forks, N.D., to Cora Lillian Haugland Rusche Forsness and Arthur Dewey Forsness. Dewey joined older siblings June and Robert Rusche and was followed by two sisters, Arlene and Shirley. In 1933 the family moved from Grand Forks, N.D., to north of Wolf Point, Mont., to work the family homestead. Dewey attended schools in Wolf Point where he was active in band (drums), school plays and football.

Dewey lost his father in a farming accident in 1945, a trauma that stayed with Dewey to the end. At the age of 15, he and his brother Bob became the men of the family, keeping the farm going.

Dewey graduated in 1949 from Wolf Point High School and attended college in Havre, Mont., to learn farm tradesmanship.

After college, Dewey returned to Wolf Point where he met the love of his life, JoAnn Lyons Russell, at a dance in Oswego, Mont., at George's place. Dewey fondly recalled dancing with JoAnn in his arms to Bonaparte's Retreat, a moment in time indelibly etched in his memory. After a whirlwind courtship, they married on Jan. 25, 1953, in Wolf Point. A month-long “honeymoon of a lifetime” ensued.

To avoid the draft, Dewey enlisted in the Army and became part of the Signal Corps. While in the Army in Georgia, JoAnn became pregnant but it was not to be. She suffered a hydatidiform mole. Ignoring the recommendations of Army doctors to never become pregnant again, their first born Layne Arthur entered the world in 1955.

After Dewey was discharged from the Army, the couple returned to Wolf Point and added a daughter, Penny Jo, to the family in 1956. A new home on family land soon followed as did another daughter, Cindy Sue, in 1958. Longing for a second son, Dewey convinced JoAnn to give birth yet again and picked out the name “Scott Dewey” for his second boy. Instead of a second boy, Kitty Aletha arrived in 1963.

Dewey loved to farm and

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