Obituary: K. Wesley Olson

DASSEL, MN (August 29, 2017) — K. Wesley Olson, retired superintendent of the Midwest Conference, died Monday, August 28. He was 87.

Wes was born February 10, 1930, in the dining room of the family farm in Bird Island, Minnesota, to John Arthur (Art) Olson and Mabel Anderson Olson. They initially named him Gerald.

The grueling breach delivery threatened the life of his mother, Mabel, and almost certainly meant the death of the child. The family prayed that God might save them, and God answered their prayers. Mabel lived to the age of 88, and “Baby Gerald” almost as long.

In response to their answered prayers, the family committed him to the Lord in holy baptism on April 10, 1930, at the Methodist church in Bird Island, and changed his name to “Karl Wesley,” a name they deemed worthy of a preacher. It was a fact they hid from him until after his decision to enter the ministry.

Wes earned an associate’s degree at North Park Junior College, and graduated from North Park Theological Seminary. He also earned a bachelor of science degree in anthropology and history from the University of Minnesota. He also did graduate course work at Luther Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota.

He married Harriet Settergren on June 29, 1951.

He served Elgin (Illinois) Covenant Church; Roseville Covenant Church in St. Paul, Minnesota, Salem Covenant Church in New Brighton, Minnesota; and the Evangelical Covenant Church in North Mankato, Minnesota. He served as the Midwest Conference Superintendent from 1986 to 1995.

Survivors include his wife; three daughters, Lynda (Jason) Olson-Lee, DiAnn (Thomas) Bloomquist, and Brenda (Gary) Redding; nine grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. A son, Kent Wesley (Debra) Olson, preceded him in death.

The funeral service will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday, September 10 at Dassel Covenant Church. Visitation will be from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, September 9, and from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. before the funeral.

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1 Comment

  1. Wes was a dear friend and a wonderful mentor for me. He was superintendent when I was serving my first full-time call. What an honor to have this Godly man install me into that role. Wes taught me the love of praying for my colleagues, as he would remind me that he was praying for each church and each pastor within the conference. I felt honored that he and Harriett would take time to pray for me. May God’s peace be with the family and to Wes’ memory.

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