Gordon Wayne “Gordy” Person, 87, of Moorhead, MN, passed away on Friday, May 5, 2023, at Sheyenne Crossing Care Center, West Fargo, ND.
Gordy was born on August 12, 1935, to Roy and Mary Frances (Hayes) Person in Britton, SD. He grew up on a farm near Britton, SD. He worked at a local airport where he received his pilot’s license in 1954 at the age of 19. He attended and graduated from high school and joined the United States Army where he served his country. Upon his return from the military, he moved to Fargo, ND, where he began his career at Kundert Aviation, managing the Aviation school from 1965-1973. In 1974, he founded Dakota Aero Tech Aviation and Mechanic School. He worked at the school as an A&P instructor until he sold the business in the 1990’s. Over his time at Dakota Aero Tech, he educated over 2000 aviation mechanics who went on to work throughout the industry. Gordy was united in marriage to his first wife, Ardyce Olson, in 1956. He was later united in marriage to his second wife, Carol Burnside, in 1989.
Due to Gordy’s inability to sit still, he started working again for Mid America Aviation for nearly a dozen years, managing the shop until his second retirement in 2005. Gordy and Carol moved to Twin Valley, MN, where he worked for Shooting Star Casino, again, due to his inability to sit still, retiring for the third time in 2019. He moved to Moorhead, MN, in 2021, where he has lived ever since.
Gordy accomplished many feats in his life, one of which was being inducted into the North Dakota Aviation Hall of Fame with over 50 years of experience. He enjoyed hunting deer, pheasants, geese, etc. and hunted fox from an airplane. He also loved to fish, especially at Churchill River in Canada with his longtime fishing buddies, Dave, Paul, and Gary. He was fond of going on camping trips with his family almost every weekend. He was a great storyteller and loved to visit with people or play a good game of Yahtzee.
Gordy had a natural tendency to be a great mechanic. He was a very humble, gentle, kindhearted man who will be sorely missed by all those he knew and loved.
Gordy is survived by his daughter, Nancy (Mike) Richards; stepson, Audie (LaVonne) Burnside; grandchildren, Ashlee (Niels) Thomsen, Karlee (Evan) Cook, Jeffrey (Delaney Raske) Richards, Jack (Lexi) Richards, and Emma Richards; great-grandchildren, Olin, Lucia, Mariae, Roni, Emmy, and Ella; and many other loving relatives and friends. He is preceded in death by his first wife, Ardyce; his second wife, Carol; son, Brett Person; infant daughter; stepson, Bobby Burnside; parents, Roy and Mary Frances; and siblings, Janice, Donald, Allen, and Sharon.
Visitation will be from 10:00 A.M. to 11:00 A.M., followed by the Mass of Christian Burial at 11:00 A.M., Monday, May 8, 2023, at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, Moorhead, MN. Burial will be at Riverside Cemetery, Fargo, ND, following the service in Moorhead.