THERON GALE SOMMERFELDT
(1923 - 2020)
Theron Gale Sommerfeldt passed away peacefully on June 18, 2020, at the age of 97, concluding a full and rewarding life, whose central focus was his family. A beloved husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather, he will be dearly missed by his five loving children, Don (Susan), Drew (Valerie), Craig (Sharon), Scott (Lisa) and Tana (Jerry Buss), his foster daughter, Diana Baptiste, his 19 grandchildren, his 46 great-grandchildren, his sisters Venice Harris, Elna Hall and Joy Chatterton, his sisters-in-law Kae Jolley, Dorothy Francis, Carol Francis and Joan Francis, his brothers-in-law Bob Patey and Jack Francis, and many other extended-family members.
Born on May 27, 1923 in Cardston, Alberta, Theron was the fifth child of William and Ella Sommerfeldt, with whom he is now reunited. He has also rejoined his sisters Vergie, Zelda and Karma, his brothers Rae and Karl, and his daughter-in-law Marci.
Having been raised in Glenwood, Whisky Gap, Taylorville, Caldwell and Cardston, Alberta, and having spent many summers herding cattle, cutting wood, and fishing near Glenwood or Beaver Mines and selling vegetables in Waterton, Theron loved being outdoors, particularly in the foothills and mountains. His true enjoyment of camping, fishing and hunting began as a young father, as he took his children and grandchildren on numerous camping and fishing trips.
Horses were a large part of Theron’s life. In his youth, his family depended on horses for transportation, work and pleasure. As an adult, as circumstances permitted, Theron generally owned at least one, and often several, horses, which he kept on his own land or rented pastures. He was happy in the saddle, particularly on the many trail rides that he took with family and friends in the foothills and mountains.
Having thoroughly enjoyed scouting as a youth, his commitment to scouting continued into adulthood. For many years, he served in Scouts Canada, providing leader training and holding several administrative positions.
After serving as an RCAF instrument mechanic in England during World War II, Theron took advantage of the Veterans Bill to obtain a university education. He earned a BSc in soil science at the University of Alberta in 1950, and an MSc in soil physics and a PhD in soil physical chemistry at Utah State University in 1952 and 1961 respectively. During his career as an agronomist, he worked at universities and agricultural research stations in Logan, Utah; Fargo, North Dakota; Aberdeen, Idaho; and Lethbridge. He was a respected researcher, who published numerous scientific papers. He worked on several international assignments, most notably in Egypt, where Delores accompanied him.
An active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Theron served in a variety of callings over the years. Highlights of his church service were the 18-month mission that he and Delores fulfilled in Austria in 1990-92, and their service for many years as ordinance workers in the Cardston Alberta Temple.
Friends are invited to meet with the family at Christensen Salmon Generations Funeral Home, 703 – 13 Street North, Lethbridge, on Friday, July 3, 2020, between 7:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. Family members are invited to meet at the Lethbridge Stake Centre of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 2410 – 28 Street South, on Saturday, July 4, 2020, for a viewing between 10:00 a.m. and 10:40 a.m. and a family funeral service commencing at 11:00 a.m.
The interment will follow at the Archmount Cemetery, 2710 Westside Drive West, Lethbridge. COVID-19 limitations apply. For the LIVESTREAMING link, visit http://www.generationsfh.ca., click on the online obituary for Theron Sommerfeldt, then click on the further link provided.
To send flowers to Theron's family, please visit our floral store.