Cover photo for Kenneth R. Rusten's Obituary
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1937 Kenneth 2023

Kenneth R. Rusten

December 22, 1937 — November 16, 2023

Fargo, ND

Kenneth R. Rusten, 85, of Fargo, ND, passed away Thursday, November 16, 2023, in his home.

Ken was born December 22, 1937, in Langdon, ND, to Henry and Dorothy (Close) Rusten.  Ken graduated from high school in Milton, ND, completed his bachelor’s degree in teaching from Jamestown College, and a Master’s degree in school administration from Bemidji State University.  He also completed additional graduate work at NDSU.

Ken married Maxine Whaley on August 22, 1959, in Fordville, ND.  They moved to Pettibone, ND where he taught social studies and coached the wrestling team.  After a few years, they moved to Grygla, MN where he served as elementary principal and administrator.  He served in many areas in the school and could even be found filling in to drive school bus when needed.  In his Grygla years he was an avid hunter, fisherman, and loved to go snowmobiling. From there they moved to Fairmount, ND where Ken served as school superintendent.  He enjoyed watching all the school sporting events and extracurricular activities in which his children were involved. Rarely did he miss an event or a game.  During this time, Ken was a member of the North Dakota Association of School Administrators, and was also involved with South Valley Special Education, Southeast Vocational Tech Education and on other numerous committees and boards.  He retired from Fairmount Public School in 1998.  From there he and Maxine moved to Fargo where they lived in retirement. 

One of the things Ken really enjoyed during his years in retirement was the annual fishing trip he made with fellow superintendents.  He also looked forward to coffee with friends and met regularly with his superintendent group.  Ken and Maxine took winter vacations to Texas and Arizona to spend time with family.  Ken was involved in Bethel Evangelical Free church and enjoyed worshiping there.  He also served in the Gideon Ministry for many years.  

Ken and Maxine were blessed with five children, eight grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. He is survived by his wife, Maxine, sons, Randy (Carla) Rusten, Loren Rusten, Matt (Margi) Rusten, and daughters, Geneal (Dave) Knudsen and Karen (Todd) Johnson.  He is also survived by his grandchildren, Josiah, Shaina (Jared) Kitts, Talia (Mason) Edwards, Moriah (Nick) Thomas, Lucas Knudsen, Drew, Olivia, Owen, and three great-grandchildren.  Ken was preceded in death by his parents, Henry and Dorothy Rusten.

A Gathering of Family and Friends for Kenneth will begin at 10:00 AM, Thursday, November 30, 2023, followed by his Celebration of Life at 11:00 AM, in Bethel Church, Fargo.

The Burial will take place in the Milton Cemetery, Milton, ND.

(Korsmo Funeral and Cremation Service, Moorhead, MN)
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Kenneth R. Rusten, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Gathering of Family and Friends

Thursday, November 30, 2023

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

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Celebration of Life

Thursday, November 30, 2023

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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