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Annabelle Bilden

Annabelle Bilden, 84, of Northwood, North Dakota died Monday, August 10, 2009 at the Northwood Deaconess Health Center in Northwood. Her family was by her side during these last weeks as she underwent treatment, but eventually succumbed to cancer.

Funeral Services will be 10:30 am, Saturday, August 15, 2009 at the Northwood Evangelical Lutheran Church in Northwood with Rev. Carol Luecke officiating. The organist is Barb Maristuen, vocal soloist Mona Bilden and Annabelle's grandchildren will serve as casket bearers.

Burial will be in the Northwood City Cemetery.

Visitation will be at the Bilden Funeral Home on Friday from 5:00 pm until 7:00 pm with a 7:00 pm Prayer Service and one hour prior to services in the church.

Annabelle was born on December 9, 1924 in rural Hensel, North Dakota to Thomas and Annie Bell (Creighton) Einarson, the third of six children. She was baptized and confirmed at Vidalin Lutheran Church, a member of the Icelandic Lutheran Synod. After completing country school, she enrolled and graduated from Hensel High School.
Since the fifth grade, Annabelle knew she wanted to be a nurse. With the encouragement of her aunt, who was head of nurses at Northwood Deaconess Hospital, she spent her summers during her high school years working at the Northwood Hospital. It was during this period she met Paul Bilden, later to become her husband for 56 years.

In 1944, Annabelle enrolled at St. Luke's School of Nursing in Fargo and was accepted into the U.S. Cadet Nurse Corps. When joining the Corps, tuition, books, a stipend and a uniform were provided. In return, cadet nurses promised to serve as nurses for the duration of the war (WWII). During her training, Annabelle and classmates worked long hours and attended classes year round for three years, and she had rotations in Fergus Falls and St. Paul as well as St. Lukes. In 2007 she enjoyed the 50th Anniversary of her St. Lukes Class.

Annabelle and Paul Bilden were married at the Swarstad Chapel in Northwood on June 18, 1950. Paul was employed by the family drug store at the time and with the encouragement of his wife, later enrolled at the North Dakota Agricultural College (now NDSU) and was awarded his degree in pharmacy in 1957. Returning to Northwood, he eventually became owner of Bilden Pharmacy, North Dakota oldest family owned drug store. The family soon grew to include five children: Janet, Mark, Wade, Thomas and Robert. Besides maintaining a home for her family and being active in the community and church, Annabelle continued in her profession as a registered nurse at the Northwood Hospital, working either part time or full time, usually nights, until her retirement in 1987.

Annabelle took great delight and enjoyment in her eleven grandchildren, faithfully attending athletic and musical events. She was a 50 year member of the Northwood Literary Club and Northwood American Legion Auxiliary. Northwood Evangelical Lutheran Church and Ladies Aid (WELCA) were a very important part of her life, and she was active as WELCA President, on the Altar Guild, serving at church dinner, smorgasbords, and funerals, playing in the bell choir, and numerous other activities.

Annabelle is survived by her children, Janet of Grand Rapids, MN, Mark (Mona) of Miles City, MT, Wade (Karen) and Bob (Shari) both of Northwood, ND; eleven grandchildren, Rachel, Bethany, Andrea, Amy, Alissa, Danielle, Audrey, Samuel, Tyler, Sonja and Jacob and great grand-granddaughters, Aubrey, Emery, and Aria; three brothers, Leonard (Anna) and Lewis both of Grafton, ND and Harold of Edinburg, ND; in-laws, Mona Lund of Northwood, ND, Hugh and Lenore Kaste of Northfield, MN, Ed and Audrey Gordhammer of Dayton, OH, Barry and Becky Bowles of Tucson, AZ and Peter and Mary Bilden of Boone, IA.
Her husband Paul (2006), son Thomas (1980 and parents preceded her in death.

The Bilden Funeral Home of Northwood is assisting the family with arrangements.

To plant memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Annabelle Bilden, please visit our flower store.


I grew up with Annabelle as a youngster. We were 1st cousens. We visited with Annebelle at her home the end of June. I have many fond memories of our childhood. Our deepest sympathy to her entire family. Bill and Mayme Creighton.

Bill and Mayme Creighton Aug 18 2009 12:00 AM

Please accept my sincere sympathy in the death of your loved one. We had a good visit driving to our 2007 Nurses reunion. My brother, Ken Anderson, took me to Judy Mutchlers and I rode with" the Northwood Girls"Annabelle was one of my favorites in Nursing.She was a wonderful person, so warm, kind and compassionate. Sincerely, Evy Sneva (one of the Larimore girls)

Evy Sneva( St Luke Nurse) Aug 18 2009 12:00 AM

My prayers and good thoughts are with the family. I love you so much Annabelle, we walked the halls of Northwood Deaconess Hosp many nights together. We laughed, cried and worked so hard,the coffee was good, our talks over coffee better. You were with me when Scott was born (you were such a good nurse)I will never forget and when I join you in your beautiful new home, we will again walk the streets of gold together,help the sick, love the elderly(you were such a good nurse!!) Your legacy was always your beautiful family and how you loved them. Glad you and Paul are united again. Your life is a tribute to what a beautiful lady can do for all of us around her. Rest well - you deserve. Love Lorraine

Lorraine Hannestad Aug 15 2009 12:00 AM

Dear cousins and family We send our love and prayers your way. We also remember and celebrate Aunt Annabelle and her wonderful life. Though we all will miss her presence with us, she leaves a great legacy of faith, perseverance, and love of family, friends and others. Dan, Polly, Jeff, Brett, Kevin, and Eric Bowles

Dan Bowles Aug 14 2009 12:00 AM

to Wade, Mark Janet and Bobby, and family. My deepest sympathy to you on the passing of Annabelle. She was such a nice lady. She was always friendly when you talked to her. Leah, Troy erickson, and Audrey Knain

leah knain erickson Aug 13 2009 12:00 AM

Our sympathies to all of the Bilden Family. It's been great over the years working with Annabelle in WELCA, church, GFWC Literary Club, and her professionalism with our Blood Drives was always appreciated.

Bill and Myrna Johnson Aug 11 2009 12:00 AM