Obituary of Bernie Kline
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Bernie Kline, 96, of Yankton, passed away Wednesday April 26, 2023, at his home. Bernie’s memorial service will be 10:00 am, Saturday, May 20, 2023, at the Opsahl-Kostel Funeral Home and Onsite Crematory in Yankton. Livestreaming of Bernie’s service can be found at: https://my.gather.app/remember/bernie-kline. Online condolences may be sent at www.opsahl-kostelfuneralhome.com.
Bernard C. Kline opened his eyes for the first time on May 18th, 1926 in a a small farm house near Elk Point, South Dakota. Bernie closed his eyes for the last time on April 26, 2023 at his home in Yankton, South Dakota. He passed away in his sleep after a day that included a nice visit with family, sharing some delicious pie and having a “Toddy” before bed. He was closing in on his 97th trip around the sun, all the while following his own advice; “Do it while you can!”
When Bernie was 18 years old, he was living with his mother and father in Seattle, Washington. It was 1945 and he had just received his draft notice. Bernie dutifully went down to the induction center and approached the table where the U.S. Navy recruiters were sitting. He envisioned himself serving the country on the high seas. But the Navy apparently had their quota for the day and pointed to the next table which was occupied by the U.S. Army. In short order, Bernie was in the Army now. He thought he better get home to his folks and let them know what he had done. Much to his surprise, Bernie was escorted out the door and into the back of a waiting troop truck that promptly headed off to boot camp. World War II waited for no one.
When Bernie returned home from the war, he used his Army pay to buy a Harley-Davidson motorcycle. He rode said motorcycle to the drive-in across the street from his mother’s house in Yankton and caught the eye of a pretty young girl named Geraine Larsen. He convinced her to go for a ride. She did, and as they say, the rest is history. After attending watchmaking school in California, Bernie and Geraine went to Sioux Center, Iowa where Bernie worked at a jewelry store, then went on to work at Crescent Jewelers in Sioux City, Iowa where he and Geraine had two sons. The next chapter of their lives had them making an offer on a jewelry store in Yankton, SD and working together at that store for many years. Bernie and Geraine loved Yankton, their friends and their family very much. Bernie really enjoyed golf and was a board member at Hillcrest Country Club. He and Geraine loved to travel when they could with friends and family. Bernie loved his wife, his children, his town and his country. The universe was lucky to have him. So were we.
Geraine passed away two years ago. We are pretty sure they are together again and playing cards with all of their friends and family that have gone before. Bernard C. Kline is survived by his two sons, David and Doug, their spouses, Mary Ellen and Karin, grandchildren, Carrie, Christopher, Jessica, Shea, Alex and Emily, nine great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.
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