Burdell “Birdie” P. LaRoque, 80, Nett Lake,
passed away on Friday, November 28, 2014, at the
Cook Nursing Home.
He was born on November 4, 1934 at White Earth,
Minnesota. He grew up in the Rice Lake/Bagley
area and graduated from Bagley High School,
where he played basketball.
He was married to Noreen Villebrun. Birdie, as
he was known, honorably served his country in
the U.S. Navy. He lived in Nett Lake most of his
life. He worked for the Bois Forte Reservation Tribal Committee in many
capacities including the Bois Forte Sawmill and in maintenance for the Bois
Forte Housing for many years. He enjoyed going to Tribal Pow-Wows,
loved country music, traveling, and trying his luck at the casinos.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Francis LaRoque and Genevieve
Steinart; a son, David Paul LaRoque (1981), his step-father, Gerald Steinart
Sr.; a brother, Gerald Steinart Jr.; a sister, Lorene Matfield; and his former
wife, Noreen Villebrun.
Birdie is survived by his special friend, Mary Porter of Nett Lake; 3 sons,
Ronald LaRoque Sr. of Nett Lake, William LaRoque of Nett Lake and
Michael (Jean) LaRoque of Waubun, MN; 3 daughters, Charlene Brown of
Redby, MN, Florene LaRoque of Nett Lake and Lori (Peter) Drift of Nett
Lake; 3 brothers, Dale (Lorraine) Steinart and James (Becky) Steinart,
both of Grand Rapids, MN and William Steinart of Blaine, MN; 2 sisters,
Joan (Wayne) Launius of Little Rock, AR and Yvonne “Bonnie” Brown of
Northfield, MN; numerous special grandchildren, great grandchildren; and
many nieces and nephews.
SERVICES: Funeral services will be at 11:00 AM Friday at the Nett Lake
Government Center, where the Wake will begin after 5:00 PM Thursday. Fr.
Daniel Debano will be the officiant. The casket bearers will be the grandsons:
Ron LaRoque Jr., Pete Drift Jr., Jimmy John Barto, Coty LaRoque, Mike
Smith, Adrian Brown, Derrick LaRoque and Kenneth Villebrun. The
honorary bearers will be all the other grandchildren. Military honors will
be accorded by the combined honors guards of Bois Forte, Orr American
Legion and the Cook Veterans of Foreign Wars. Interment will be in the Nett
Lake Cemetery. Arrangements are with the Mlaker Funeral Home in Cook.