Cover photo for Robert "Bob" Schwagler's Obituary
Robert "Bob" Schwagler Profile Photo
1937 Robert "Bob" 2023

Robert "Bob" Schwagler

March 11, 1937 — April 1, 2023

Robert “Bob” Schwagler, 86, of New Salem, passed away April 1, 2023, at his home surrounded by his loving family.

A Funeral Service will be held at 10:30 AM on Saturday, April 8, 2023, at Zion Lutheran Church, New Salem, ND with Rev. Zelwyn Heide as officiant. Burial will take place later.

Visitation will take place one hour prior to the service on Saturday at the church.

Robert “Bob” P. Schwagler was born on March 11, 1937, to Leopold and Christine (Huber) Schwagler in Beulah, ND. Bob grew up on the family farm and attended grade school in a one room schoolhouse in the Blue Grass area. He farmed with his parents until his father’s death. On February 1, 1956, Bob entered the US Army in Fargo, ND. He was later honorably discharged as a specialist 3rd class on December 18, 1957, in Fort Wadsworth, New York.

Bob met a farm girl in the mid 50’s named Ardella Christian. Bob and Ardella were then married on April 25, 1958. Their union was blessed with three children: Kristie, Rocky, and Todd.  Bob worked for the USDA’s Natural Resource Conservation Service for 36 years as a Civil Engineering Technician assisting farmers and ranchers install conservation practices on their land. Bob worked at the Cross Ranch State Park as a Park Ranger for eight years following his retirement. Bob and Ardella managed what was known as the Sunset Motel in New Salem for five years. They also owned and operated Bob’s Bait and Fishing Tackle Shop in New Salem.

Bob was involved with many organizations and clubs throughout the years. Some included the New Salem Volunteer Fire Department for 35 years where he served as the Fire Chief for 15 of those years and life-time member of the North Dakota Fireman’s Association. Bob, along with several other fireman, was instrumental in organizing the New Salem Fire Protection District. Bob served on its board of directors. Bob also served on New Salem’s Ambulance Service during its beginning years. He was a member of the Central Morton Sportsman’s Club that was instrumental in creating the Bumann-Gaebe fishing pond for kids, senior citizens, and the handicapped. Bob was a member of and served on the New Salem’s American Legion Post 91 Honor Guard. He was also a North Dakota Game and Fish Hunter Education volunteer instructor for 30 years. Bob was an active member of Zion Lutheran Church. Bob served on the church council for many years and was the Sunday School Superintendent for 20 years.

Bob had many hobbies including fishing, camping and hunting. He spent many hours, days, and years on the water in his boat and on the banks of the Heart River with kids, friends, sons, and Edgar (Bob’s brother). Bob and Ardella enjoyed going to and cheering on their children and grandchildren in sporting events both at home and away. Bob was especially interested in basketball and kept up with the sport by officiating Boys High School Basketball for many years with a group of officials from the New Salem area.

Bob will be deeply missed by his children, Kristie (Rick) Baldridge, Rocky Schwagler, and Todd (Sharon) Schwagler; grandchildren, Ashley (David) Wessel, Andrew Baldridge (Heather), Kaitlyn (Ben) Wolden, Eric Lawrence (Jill), Lindsey Schwagler (Bryce), Blake Schwagler and Luke Schwagler; great-grandchildren, Grayson, Emma, and Finley Wessel, Landon, Lane, and Lance Lawrence, Sutton and Brekken Wolden, Zayden Mogle, and Emma and Brock Beals; brothers and sisters-in-law, Evelyn Schwagler, Randy and Linda Christian, Marlin and Sheila Christian, and Loren Christian; and many nieces and nephews..

Bob was preceded in death by his wife of 59 years, Ardella; his parents, Leo and Christine; brothers, Lester and Edgar; sister, Della (Arnie) Flegel; nephew, Darrin Schwagler; father and mother-in-law, August and Louise Christian; and sister-in-law, Mary Christian.



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Service Schedule

Past Services


Saturday, April 1, 2023

9:30 - 10:30 am (Central time)

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Funeral Service

Saturday, April 8, 2023

10:30 - 11:30 am (Central time)

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