Ivan Sterry, 83

Ivan John Sterry passed away on Sunday, May 24 in Presho SD at the age of 83.

A private family memorial service was held on Saturday, May 30 at 11 am at the Isburg Funeral Chapel in Presho, SD.

Persons can show support by taking part in the “Together In Spirit” option. Please email your name and a message of support to togetherinspirit@yahoo.com and we will place it on a heart that will be attached to a chair at the service.

The family will be able to read your heartfelt message and know that you are together with them in spirit.

Ivan was born on March 21, 1937 in Fosston MN to Irven and Emma (Milsten) Sterry. He grew up in Fosston and graduated from high school in 1955.

He then went with a longtime friend, Rolly Rue and he traveled to Great Falls, MT area to help local farmers with their harvest, then during the winter months he worked at a mink farm in Fosston, MN.

In 1960, he was drafted by the US Army. After basics, he was stationed in Germany till he was honorably discharged in 1962. From there he started work with the US Forest Service for one summer.

He then started working road construction and did this until he retired in 2011.

Ivan met “the best thing that ever happened to him,” Alta Mae Perry in Bondurant, WY and they were married on Oct. 8, 1963, in Pine Bluffs, WY.

They moved and established their home in Presho, SD in 1966 where they raised their 3 children.

Ivan had many hobbies but enjoyed fishing and hunting the most. He loved to take his children, grandchildren and friend’s children out, to show them his love for the outdoors.

After his retirement, he would spend most of his free time engraving guns. He was well known for his designs and artistry. He engraved shotguns for Pheasants Forever and Ducks Unlimited.

He also did special engravings for his family members and friends. His exceptional talent drew people from across the upper Midwest to have him showcase his artwork on their guns.

Ivan was also a “jack of all trades” he could design it, build it, and fix it, whether it came to metal fabrications, plumbing, carpentry, mechanic or electric work. He was good at it all!

Ivan is survived by his wife Alta Mae, his brother Mike (Collen) Sterry, of Fort Collins, CO, his children Rich Sterry of Westminster, CO, Darrell Sterry, and special friend Jenise Link of Presho, SD, Donna (Trusty) Surat of Brookings, SD. His grandchildren Shelon (Nate) Harrington of Brookings, SD, Killian (Shelby) Surat of Brookings, SD, and Emily (special friend Dylan Wegner) of Omaha, NE and 3 great-grandchildren Myles, Sloan and Malix Harrington and several nieces and nephews.

Ivan is preceded in death by his parents, Irven and Emma Sterry, a sister who died in childbirth and granddaughter Sydney.

In lieu of flowers, please send a donation in Ivan’s name to Lyman Co Ducks Unlimited, P.O. box 307 Presho, SD 57568.

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