Verna Mildred Ganstrom
July 31, 1919 – November 4, 2018
Verna Mildred Ganstrom was born in Prescott, Oregon on July 31, 1919 to Nils and Anna Nordquist. She attended high school in Portland, Oregon at Girls Polytechnic (now Benson). After graduating, Verna worked two years to earn money for college. She fulfilled her dream and went to Bethel College in St. Paul, Minnesota for one year, where she met Don Ganstrom. One thing that drew them together was that they both felt God’s call to the Mission field. Both needed to finish their education, so Verna went back to La Grande. They were married in La Grande, Oregon and then returned to Bethel College and Seminary, where Don finished seminary and Verna worked as an executive secretary at Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing. Before leaving to serve in the British Cameroon, their first child Norris was born. So they were getting onboard a ship with a nine month old and trunks loaded with diapers and four years of outfits for this young one to wear. After eight years of service, they returned to the States and spent the rest of their careers in ministry in Illinois, Washington, Minnesota, North Dakota, and Oregon. Verna played an active part in their church ministries, as they served the LORD together. She was known for hosting meals at their home (her post roast being a favorite (and warmly welcoming new members to the church, leading women’s groups and teaching Sunday school.
Verna will be remembered as a hardworking, organized, and disciplined woman with a sweet spirit.
She was preceded in death by Don in 2009, and will be missed and remembered by her children Norris Ganstrom of Pocatello, Idaho, Glennis Coulter of Portland, and by grandchildren Shelly, Christy, Timothy, Stephan, and Cheri, thirteen great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, November 17, 2018 at 2:00 PM at Trinity Fellowship, 2700 SE 67th Avenue in Portland. The family requests no flowers, but if you choose to honor Verna in any way, donations can be sent to North American Baptist Missions in her memory.
- Celebration of Life Saturday, November 17, 2018