Cover photo for Orville Deckert's Obituary
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Orville Deckert

October 3, 1928 — May 22, 2024

Devils Lake

Orville Deckert

Orville Deckert, a dedicated rancher and beloved family man, passed away at his home in Devils Lake, ND on Wednesday, May 22, 2024 surrounded by his loving family. 

He was born on October 3, 1928, at home on the farm 6 miles south of Arena in Burleigh County, Harriet Township, ND, the son of William and Lena (Ensz) Deckert. Orville's passion for ranching blossomed at a young age when he purchased his first heifer calf and took over the family farm at 16 years of age. This marked the beginning of a lifelong journey filled with love for his cattle and dedication to his craft.

In addition to his successful career in ranching, Orville found love and companionship with Maria Hiebert, whom he married on June 1, 1955, at the Mennonite Zion Church near the ranch. Their love story was blessed with nearly 69 years of unwavering devotion and support for each other.

Throughout his life, Orville's faith in the Lord was steady, and he was baptized in the Mennonite Zion Church—a moment that brought great pride to him. He also excelled in various leadership roles within his church, the community, and agricultural associations and boards;  the Minnesota Valley Breeders Association, American Simmental Association , United Bank ,  Harriet Township supervisor, and the  Burleigh County Township Officers Association. He also led the Harriet Hustlers 4-H Club for 30 years. He was an active member of the Mennonite Zion Church. He participated on the church board and often sang in various groups with his siblings. He supported missions at home and abroad, was a member of the Gideon Society, and served on the FaHoCha Bible Conference Board.

Orville's love for horses, deer hunting, fishing, playing board games, and solving puzzles added richness and joy to his life outside of ranching. His warm smile and kind heart touched all who knew him. He was a man of few words but immense actions, always there for his family and friends when they needed him the most.

Orville is survived by his loving wife Maria of nearly 69 years; children: Jeffrey (Theresa) Deckert, Desiree (Fred) Schmidt, Justin (Carrie) Deckert, Jason (Paula) Deckert, DoRae (Jeremy) Wulbecker; grandchildren: Jonathan (Andrea) Deckert, Larisa (Eric) Netterlund, Jared (Emily) Deckert, Joseph (Neva) Deckert/ Tyler (Renae) Schmidt, Trevor (Kristen) Schmidt, Danica (Adrian) Suarez, Kyle (Janna) Schmidt/ Jaden (Kelsey), Paige (fiancé Alex), Jaxon Deckert/  Darica, Jacen, Ellie Deckert/  Marcus, Josiah, Maria, Eben Wulbecker; twenty-four great-grandchildren; many nieces and nephews; many other cherished family members and friends. 

He was preceded in death by his parents William and Lena Deckert, seven siblings with their spouses: Art (Ethel) Deckert, George (Ann) Deckert, Lillian (Dave) Buller, Elma (Ray) Hinkel, Henry (Doris Jean) Deckert, Bernard (Ruth) Deckert, and Burnette (John) Teske, several nieces and nephews, in-laws Heinrich and Maria Hiebert, and life-long friend, Dale Nitzche.

The memories Orville leaves behind will forever be treasured by those whose lives he touched. His legacy of hard work, love for family, and commitment to faith will continue to inspire generations to come.

Visitation will be held at the Gilbertson Funeral Home in Devils Lake on Tuesday, May 28, 2024 from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. with a time of prayer and remembrance at 7:00 p.m. The funeral service for Orville will be held at Bethel Evangelical Free Church, Devils Lake on Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. There will be a graveside service at the Mennonite Zion Cemetery, rural Wing, ND on Wednesday at 4:00 p.m. May he rest in peace knowing he made a lasting impact on all who had the privilege of knowing him. 


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