LeRoy Ernst


LeRoy H. Ernst passed away suddenly and unexpectedly from natural causes at his home in Bismarck on August 2, 2020 at the age of 79.  A celebration of his life will be held on Monday, August 10th at Bismarck Funeral Home, 3723 Lockport St at 11:00 am.  For those unable to attend, the service will be streamed live on the Bismarck Funeral Home Facebook page.  Family will receive guests on Sunday at the Bismarck Funeral Home from 6:00 – 7:00 p.m. with a prayer service at 7:00 p.m.  Burial will be at the North Dakota Veterans Cemetery in Mandan, ND with full military honors.

LeRoy Harry Ernst was born to Emil and Rose (Schick) Ernst on the Ernst farmstead, 4 1/2 miles west of Roscoe, SD on June 25, 1941, the youngest of four children.  He was raised and educated in Roscoe, graduating from Roscoe High School in May 1959.  In his formative years, LeRoy was a member of St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church in Roscoe, where he was confirmed on April 3, 1955.

Following graduation, he enlisted in the United States Army serving in the 2nd Reconnaissance Squadron with the 10th United States Calvary, where he was stationed for a time in Korea.  Proudly serving his country, he rose through the ranks to become Sergeant.  Following his Honorable Discharge, he went on to complete his studies at Northern State College in Aberdeen, SD, receiving a Bachelor of Science Degree in August 1965.

In January 1964, LeRoy was united in marriage to Arlene Schuck, in Aberdeen, SD.  Following their marriage, they lived in Aberdeen and Fargo before settling in Bismarck in 1965.  From this union, three children were born, Michele, Jason and Michael.  While he didn’t often say it, he was incredibly proud of his children, their accomplishments and the lives they created for themselves.

While creating their home in Bismarck, LeRoy was appointed by North Dakota Governor Bill Guy as the Executive Director of the Government Council on Human Resources from 1965 – 1976.  Following his service in state government, LeRoy was employed as the Managing Director of North Dakota Motor Carriers Association (NDMCA) a statewide trade association headquartered in Bismarck.  During his employment, he was a key factor in implementing rules, regulations, and tariffs on the trucking industry, many of which are still in effect today.  After 30 years with NDMCA, LeRoy retired in September 2006, where he received the Lifetime Achievement Award for his dedication and leadership in the industry.

LeRoy had a lifetime affliction as a Minnesota Vikings fan, staunchly cheering on his team through the good, the bad, and the ugly and was thrilled to able to attend a game every year.  Unfortunately, he was never able to see his beloved Vikings win a Super Bowl.

Following his retirement, LeRoy enjoyed traveling, visiting his children and relatives who lived out of state that he didn’t get to see nearly enough.  He also enjoyed the simple things in life, such as his early morning walks with his beloved rat terrier, Lucy, visiting with his neighbors and chatting on the phone with friends and relatives.  He enjoyed nothing more than conversation over a good meal and a great glass of wine.

Left to carry on without him are his children, Michele, Sacramento, CA, Jason (Stacie), Bismarck, and Michael (Tina Olson), Olathe, KS, his grandchildren, Jaylynn, West Fargo, Joshua, Bismarck and Trevor, Bismarck, his brother Lloyd (Ardella), VA, sister-in-law Darlou, CA, his faithful companion, Lucy, and several nieces and nephews.

LeRoy was proceeded in death by his wife of 54 years, Arlene, who passed away in January 2018, his parents, Emil and Rose, two brothers and sister-in-law, Morris and Dorothy and Wilmer (Willy), and several brother and sisters-in-law, beloved dog Winston.

In lieu of plants and flowers memorials are preferred to the North Dakota Veterans Cemetery or the Central Dakota Human Society, 2104 37th St., Mandan, ND.


To view the funeral service, please click here.

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