Bernice Rollo of Aberdeen (formerly of Frederick) completed her long and blessed life on Monday, September 25, 2023, at the age of 101. She was born to Sigvard and Thea Berntson on June 8, 1922, in Baker MT. (Both of parents were immigrants from Norway.) Shortly after her birth the family relocated to Mrs. Berntson’s farm near Guelph, ND. (Mrs. Berntson and her first husband had homesteaded and were the parents of three children.) Bernice attended country schools, entering first grade at the age of five. In both elementary and high school one of her teachers was her older sister, Gladys Oliason. She graduated from Guelph High School in 1939 where her eight classmates included her future husband and his sister. She then earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Home Economics from Ellendale Normal and Industrial School. She also holds a master’s degree in English from Northern State Techers’ College in Aberdeen. On September 5, 1944, Bernice married Clifford Rollo of Oakes, ND at the Methodist church in Guelph. During their first year of marriage, they lived in four cities due to Petty Officer Rollo’s Naval duties. As a result, their daughter, Royalyn, was born in Washington, DC. At the end of WWII, they returned to North Dakota and eventually settled in Ellendale where Mr. Rollo had a radio and television repair business. While they were living in Ellendale two more children were born--Cynthea in 1946 and Michael in 1953. Mrs. Rollo was recruited to teach at Frederick High School in 1949. Originally hired to teach Home Economics, her certification also allowed her to teach chemistry and Latin. Over her career she taught English and Home Economics at four High schools, served as the school librarian, and worked as a tutor for over forty years. Bernice was a member of the Methodist churches in Guelph, Ellendale, and Frederick. She was also active in United Methodist Women, serving as the president of the unit in Frederick for several years. She was a member of the Alpha Circle study club and was known for presenting programs about new Broadway musicals, complete with recordings and explanations of literary and historic significance. She was a master of cooking, nutrition, gardening, and food preservation. She canned and
froze fruits, vegetables, chicken and even beef to make sure her family would eat well through the winter. She was an excellent
seamstress, enjoyed playing the piano, singing in choirs and reading. She often remarked that she was looking forward to retirement so that she would have time to read all those books she had missed at leisure. Bernice shattered a bone in her
leg several years ago and patiently endured a long recovery. More recently she contracted a near fatal case of Covid 19 and was hospitalized for three months. Following her release, she moved to Aberdeen Health and Rehabilitation where she resided until her death. Mrs. Rollo is survived by Cynthea and Michael, both of Waukesha, WI, and Russell who resides at Mother Joseph’s Manor in Aberdeen. She is also survived by one sister-in-law, Mary Rollo Fisher, of Minneapolis, MN, one grandson and one granddaughter and numerous nieces and nephews, including Steven Berntson of Guelph. She will be fondly remembered by friends and countless former students. She was preceded in death by her daughter, Royalyn Rollo North, formerly of Medford, WI, three older stepsiblings and her younger brother, Royal Berntson, of Guelph.
Funeral services will be held at the Hoven Funeral Chapel, 300 First Street South, in Ellendale at 1:30 pm on Monday, October 2, 2023, followed by interment at the Ellendale City Cemetery. Family members will greet relatives and friends beginning at 12:30pm at the Chapel. The funeral will be live-streamed here on Bernice’s obituary page. Memorial donations are suggested to the Frederick Methodist Church, the American Diabetes Association or to a charity of your choice.
To watch the service live: keep moving down this page and watch for a black box. At time of the service, click the red area to start the live stream. Please note the service is also recorded and saved here for viewing at a later time.