Mahlon Waller

Mahlon Waller
Mahlon Waller

BEMIDJI, Minn. — “Welcome home my good and faithful servant” were the words Mahlon Waller heard early in the morning of March 15, 2013. He ran boldly and upright through the pearly gates of heaven about the time of day the fish would start to bite on the Bowstring River. He was carried by legs that were strong and healthy, with no battle scars or wounds, no need for glasses or hearing aids, breathing deeply the fresh air of heaven. With no more pain and suffering, he entered heaven with a great big smile.

A celebration of Waller’s and a sharing time are 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, March 21, at the Dora Lake Alliance Church. The funeral is 2 p.m. Friday, March 22, at the Tenstrike Community Church. A burial will be held in the spring at the Kinghurst Cemetery near Dora Lake under the direction of the Cease Family Funeral Home of Bemidji.

Mahlon Waller was born on Nov. 20, 1924, in Dora Lake, Minn., to Wesley and Julia Waller, the third of their five children. He attended the one-room Dora Lake school for eight years and then went to high school in Grand Rapids, graduating in 1942. Mahlon enlisted in the Army in June 1943. He was planning to go to officer’s school, but the program was closed because of the need for infantry in the European theater during World War II. After surviving numerous close calls on the front lines, he was severely injured in both legs by shrapnel on Dec. 24, 1944. For the next two years, he would endure countless surgeries and procedures until his release from the hospital Dec. 24, 1946.

During those days in the hospital, Mahlon began corresponding with a beautiful young girl from his home area, Ramona Olson. They were married in June 1947 and were blessed with three children. Mahlon taught high school math for nearly 30 years in Bigfork, Hallock and Stillwater, until he retired in 1980. He then taught two more years at Northwestern Bible College in St. Paul.

Mahlon and Mona would spend their retirement years back on the shores of their beloved Dora Lake. Mahlon was an immediate friend to everyone he met. He had a kind and gentle spirit and was an active outdoorsman enjoying the many years of deer hunting with the Talberg gang and fishing with his friends and family. Most of all, Mahlon was known for his strong Christian faith and God used his loving concern for the spiritual welfare of others to lead many to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.

Mahlon is survived by his loving wife of nearly 66 years, Ramona of Bemidji, and his two sons Timothy of Hines, Minn., and Mark (Beth) of Park Rapids, Minn. His daughter, Rebecca (Jerry Taylor), passed away in 2010. He was also deeply loved by his seven grandchildren, Erica (Jonny) Silva, Benjamin, Andy, Keri, Chris, Caleb, and Josh (Tina) Waller and five great-grandchildren. One brother, Brad (Jean) Waller of Carlton, Minn., and one sister Skip Halverson of Billings, Mont. He was also preceded in death by two brothers, Merle “Cork” and Kearney.

Mahlon was an active member of the local Gideon camp. Memorials will be given to the Gideons International, which provides Bibles in many countries around the world.

  • Nile

    Mr. Whaler was one of my favorite teachers at SHS and another one of my Greatest Generation heroes. Rest in Peace, Mr. Wahler.

  • Cary Stewart

    Mahlon was a spiritual inspiration in my early adult life. He was a humble instructor in the logical mathmatical science. We used to try to consume the math hour with his motivated war stories in High School. Thank you Mona for your spiritual efforts on my behalf! I am happy that you were part of my life.

  • Mike Adams

    I studied Math at Stillwater High School in the sixties with Mr. Waller. He instilled great interest in Mathematics and Logic. I went on to the University of Minnesota and took a minor in Mathematics. I enjoyed his teaching.

  • Tom Huelsmann

    “Mr. Waller” was one of my favorite teachers at Stillwater High School. For two years in 11th and 12th grades I studied math with him. He was a superb teacher who found joy and humor in his subject and passed it on to us students.

    Without him I would not have known about the Klein bottle and the Mobius strip, as well as the other world of sines, cosines and tangents.

    His God and his religion were patently obvious to all of us but it was never forced upon us. Nor did we know of his service to his country.

    He was a good man, a good teacher. I remember him well. My respects and condolences to his family.

  • Lowell Watson

    Working with Mahlon at Stillwater Senior High was both inspiring and motivational. He was a team player and leader! Our prayers to all of his family and friends.
    Lowell Watson
    Math teacher at SHS.

  • Elaine Krueger

    Mona, so sorry to hear of Mahlon’s death. You were faithful servants for so many years. God Bless and take care, Elaine