Howard Black

howard black

Howard Black, 85, finally got his wish to “go home” surrounded by his family at his north Fargo home Thursday, January 9th 2014.

Howard Earl Black was born June 24th, 1928 to Clifford and Lotty (Bjugstad) Black in the village of Venlo, Ransom County, North Dakota. He went to rural one-room elementary schools, and earned $2 a month for his family by carrying a bucket of water to the school daily, occasionally arriving with the water frozen over. Eventually the family moved to Anselm, and Howard went to high school in Sheldon, ND, where he played basketball, football and baseball for the Sheldon Shadows. He graduated in 1946, and was the valedictorian of his class.

He married Lois Scilley October 14th, 1950 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Sheldon. He apprenticed as a blacksmith, and worked on various farms until they moved to Fargo in 1953. He then became the bus driver and custodian at Holy Spirit church/school. He also ran the concession stand for Holy Spirit at Barnett baseball field in north Fargo. In 1957 he became the owner/operator of the Broadway Phillips service station at 1462 Broadway, which he continued to operate until 1979. In “retirement”, he did bookwork for his son and daughter-in-law at Downtown Photo, as well as driving tractors for Dullea Farms near Georgetown, MN. He and Lois did manage to squeeze in some adventures, visiting Europe and Hawaii in their travels. He was a longtime member of the Fargo Knights of Columbus, Edgewood Golf Course Men's Club and of the Holy Spirit Parish.

He is survived by his wife of 63 years Lois, his children, Mary (James) Shaw, Michael Black, Kathy (David) Dahlsad, and Kevin (Ruth Johnson) Black, four grandchildren, one great-grandchild, and four step-great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his sister Evelyn Seigel (Moorhead, MN) and brother Curtis Black (Lisbon, ND). He was preceded in death by his parents, his sister Gloria Trevino and brothers Arden and Edward Black.

The family is grateful for, and wishes to thank, his extended Holy Spirit Church Family, Hospice of the Red River Valley and all the medical professionals that made possible the “extra” years we had with him.

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Memories Timeline


  1. Mary,
    I was saddened to hear of the passing of your dad. Westy told me about what a wonderful guy he was. Please know that I am praying for peace, comfort and strength for you and your family.

  2. loveland ColoradoDear Lois we are so sorry for you and your family. We will keep you in our prayers.

    Chuck & Eileen Donahue

  3. finley North Dakota
    I am so sorry for your loss Lois. my deepest sympathy to you and your family. I know that you and your husband were a very close couple and you will miss him dearly. I just found out about Howard’s death from Sharon K=I talk to her on Skype often and it is fun to exchange notes after we are retired from work. Tale care.
    marilyn poole

  4. Omaha NebraskaI was saddened to hear of the passing of Howard. He was a great friend to our family and without his help I would have been on foot most of the time. We will be keeping Howard and your family in our thoughts and prayers.

    John Westerholm

  5. Fargo ND
    What a wonderful man! God is happy to have Howard with him today. I recall many evenings after basketball practice at HS spending time at the station with Howard waiting for our ride. He would let us use the phone to call the folks and keep warm waiting. God bless him. To Lois, Mike and are in my prayers.

  6. Fargo ND
    Dear Lois and Family:

    Deeply saddened to see that Howard had passed away. He was a very kind and loving man. He is in the top three men in my life who had the love and kindness for all he met. My sympathies Lois, He will be free of any pain in life in heaven! God bless and keep you and yours, our sympathies to you all!

    Ivan and Loretta Sauvageau

  7. Omaha NEKathy I am so sorry to hear about your Dad’s passing, please know you and you family will be in my prayers!!!!

  8. Yuma AZ
    Dear Lois & family, We are saddened by Howard leaving us before we get back to Fargo. We will miss his smile and humor each morning after Mass. You are all in our thoughts and prayers. Myrna & Gerald

  9. Avon INLois and family
    I am so sorry to read about the death of your husband my thoughts and Prays are with you. May our Heavenly Father wrap his loving arms around you and comfort you. As you know I used to live straight west of Holy Spirit if I still lived there I would see at the funeral but my kids decided it was time to live closer to family so they moved me to Indianapolis, IN where both my daughters live, even if I can’t be there in person, I will be there in spirit. I hope the weather will cooperate and not be so cold. My husband passed away on January 18, 2009 and the day of the funeral it was bitterly cold and a very icy wind blowing. I pray your day will not be like that. I will continue to pray for your healing. God Bless your family. Florence (Heck) Liekhus

  10. Sorry to hear of the passing of your father, Michael. Would like to attend the funeral mass, but unfortunately, need to meet first class at that time. Will be privileged to attend the interment at Holy Cross North Cemetery, for the farewell to a fine man.

  11. Kansas City MissouriDear Mary and Jim, Connie informed me that your father has passed. After reading his obit, he was quite a man! Please know that our prayers and thoughts are with you and your beautiful family. Fondly, Debbie

  12. Kansas City MODear Mary and Jim, we were saddened to hear the news of your father’s passing! Please know you and your family are in our thoughts and prayers. The Surprise Family knows your pain and hope the wonderful memories will help,as they have helped us this past year. Love you guys, The Surprise Family

  13. Sandy Lake ManitobaMary and family,
    Sorry to read of your dad’s passing.
    Howard taught me things about car care that I have used over the years Coke will seal a tire, extra grease zerks will cure squeaks. Always smile when I use those tips or pass them on to others. He had a big heart he took payments on car repairs which helped greatly as a single mom money was tight at times. I have very fond memories which I will always cherish. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  14. Mound MN
    Please accept my most heartfelt sympathies for your loss.

    Howard was a giant in my mind’s eye as he drove us screaming kids home after school from Holy Spirit. And, I appreciate warming up or even hanging out at Broadway Phillips on cold days (I hope I paid for all those candy bars) or when Howard was fixing my car.

    My thoughts & prayers are with you and your family during this difficult time.

    May Howard rest-in-peace in the comfort of God.


  15. Chandler ArizonaLois, Mary, and Kevin,
    I’m so sorry to hear about the passing of Howard. He was a funny, funny man and I always enjoyed seeing him, whether it was at the gas station or a post Fargo North parent hockey game party. He was truly a “character” in every good sense of the word and always left me with a smile on my face.
    Don Dumais

  16. Fargo North Dakota
    Dear Black Family….What a guy Howard was….We depended on him for many years to “fix” our car problems, pump our gas, etc…He always did it with a smile and sometimes a JOKE….Please know how much he was admired by our whole family….God bless his Memory..George and Patti Pratt

  17. Before Ruth and Kevin even started dating, Howard played a part in the Johnson family. I have wonderful memories of him giving me a bad time every time I stopped at the Phillips 66 station to fill up with gas (at, I think 33 cents a gallon) and then putting it on Dad’s tab. I’m gonna miss him, too.
    And Tom always enjoyed visiting with Howard at family gatherings. Always some clever comment.
    Our deepest sympathies to you all.

    Ann and Tom

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