Lynn William Aas, 100, passed away on October 28, 2021, at his home at The View in Minot.
A longtime Minot community leader, Lynn was born June 4, 1921, on a homestead in rural McLean County, south of Benedict. His parents were George Hjalmer Aas and Anna Emelia (Olson) Aas. He graduated from Velva High School in 1940 and enrolled in the University of North Dakota. In 1942 he, along with many of the young men at the University, enlisted in the United States Army, entering the service at Ft. Snelling. He served in the Army Specialized Training Program at Massachusetts Institute of Technology before his assignment to the 17th Airborne Division. Aas was a combat Infantry soldier and saw action in the Battle of the Bulge. His unit was reformulated and was towed into combat in a glider in Operation Varsity in March of 1945. Receiving wounds in Varsity, he was sent back to the US and eventually discharged. During his service, Lynn received the Purple Heart for his war injuries, and the Bronze Star for bravery behind enemy lines.
Returning to the University in Grand Forks, he completed his education by earning a Juris Doctor and a Bachelor’s Degree in Commerce. Lynn was a member of the Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity and served his Fraternity as President. Out of college, he found employment with the Internal Revenue Service in Minneapolis, where he met the love of his life, Beverly Stockstad from Sioux Falls. They were married in 1952. In 1960 Lynn was transferred by the IRS to Fargo where Beverly and Lynn started their family. In 1960 Lynn moved the family to Minot where he was hired by his college fraternity brother Lloyd Giltner to manage the small but growing Medical Arts Clinic. Lynn managed Medical Arts until his retirement in 1985. After retirement, Lynn and Beverly purchased lake property on Otter Tail Lake in Minnesota and spent many summers there, welcoming their children and grandchildren, along with making many new neighbors and friends.
Keeping with Lynn’s keen interest in building up the Minot community, he and many of his peers formed a coffee club that was quickly named by their spouses as the “Know-It-Alls”. Not satisfied with merely talking and complaining about current events in the community, this coffee club acted on many issues of local concern behind the scenes. They even actively recruited “volunteers” to step up and run for public office. Lynn and Art Ekblad were chairs of the committee to pass the Minot Public Schools bonding issue in 1969 to build the Magic City Campus, and Governor Sinner appointed Lynn to chair a local group to attract a Job Corps Center to Minot, both of which were successful.
From his initial arrival in Minot, Lynn became active in the business community. He served four sessions in the North Dakota Legislature. One of his proudest accomplishments was serving as a delegate from Minot to the North Dakota Constitutional Convention in 1970. He was a 60-year member of the Minot Kiwanis Club, and a lifelong member of the Minot Chamber of Commerce, Elks Club, Minot Country Club, American Legion and First Lutheran Church. He was a life member of the Minot Gun Club and the Disabled American Veterans. He served terms as President of the Minot Chamber of Commerce and the United Way. Lynn was also a member of the State Bar Association of North Dakota and the North Dakota Medical Group Management Association.
Lynn was a longtime member of the Board of Directors of First Western Bank & Trust. He was a director of the Monarch Products Company and Dakco Distributers, Inc. and was a Trustee of the Investors Real Estate Trust. He served as a Director of the First Lutheran Foundation, and was one of the founding members of that Foundation.. He also was a member of the Board of Directors for ND Holdings, Inc. and the Minot Housing Authority.
During his lifetime, Lynn received many awards, including the C. P. Lura award from Minot State University for his contributions to higher education. He served as a member of the Minot State University Board of Regents. Lynn assisted Dr. Gordon Olson at Minot State in its journey to university status in the 1970s and was instrumental with Dr. Olson in launching the Nursing program at Minot State. In his later years, Lynn was delighted to be recognized by the Government of France with the “Legion of Honor Award” for his assistance in the defense of France in World War II. Lynn was a member of the 17th Airborne Division Association and encouraged his sons to accompany him on two trips to revisit the sites where he experienced combat in World War II.
Beverly passed away in 2003. Together they raised four sons: David (Kathy) of Minot, Paul (Melodie) of Madison Wisconsin, Daniel (Terry) of Eden Prairie MN, and Joe (Nancy Morris) of Fargo. Lynn is survived by eight grandchildren: Brian Aas, Amanda Voss, Andrew Aas, Kristen Jones, Julia Aas, Nicholas Aas, Ellen Renkor and Grace Aas. He is also survived by five great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents, brother Henry Aas, sisters Gladys Miller, Clarice Eslinger, Helen Arntzen, and infant brother Carl. He was also preceded in death by daughter Sally Aas and his dear sister-in-law, Sally (Stockstad) Graff.
Celebration of the Life of Lynn Aas: 11:00 a.m. Thursday, November 4, 2021 at First Lutheran Church, Minot. A livestream of the service will be available at www.firstlutheran.tv
Interment: Rosehill Memorial Park, Minot.
Visitation: Wednesday from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. in Thomas Family Funeral Home, Minot.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials to the First Lutheran Church Foundation, Minot State University Development Foundation Aas Scholarship Fund, or to the charity of the donor’s choice.
Funeral Home Link: https://www.thomasfamilyfuneralhome.com/obituary/lynn-aas