Elviva Kostenko

Elviva Kostenko

May 9, 1918 – October 22, 2022

Elviva (Vi) Kostenko, 104, of Garrison, ND and formerly of Max, ND, died peacefully in the early morning of October 22, 2022, at Sanford Medical Center in Bismarck.

Funeral Services will be held at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Max, ND, on October 28, 2022, at 1:00 PM. Burial will be following the service at the Church Cemetery.  Visitation and family gathering will be at the Thompson Funeral Home in Garrison, ND, on October 27, 2022, from 4:00-5:30 PM. To view a livestream of the service, go to www.facebook.com/garrisonthompsonfh/ or to the Thompson Funeral Home-Garrison, ND Facebook page.

Vi was born on May 9, 1918, to Charles and Andrea St Peter in Joplin Montana. She moved as a child to the Kenmare, ND area where she attended school and helped raise her siblings. There she met a CCC Camp boy from Max, ND named Richard Kostenko. They eloped and married at Plentywood MT, on September 21, 1940.

Most of her married life was spent in Max prior to moving to Garrison in 2001. Her marriage to Dick lasted 68 years with his death in 2008.

In her 104 years she became the family historian of her family and experience with sharp mind until death. She liked to tell people about growing up with the neighbors named Moses, Pope and her family named St Peter. She had many stories of the hard times in the 30’s and of the living on the West Coast while Dick worked as a WWII Defense Welder. During her married life she and Dick never lived alone as most of their sibling stayed with them at one time or another. The 60 years she lived in Max were busy with raising her girls, sewing most of their clothes, wedding gowns and bridesmaids dresses. When she and Dick moved West of Max and become rancher/farmers she cooked many meals for the hired help. She was a wonderful pie baker.

Vi’s hobbies varied from sewing stuffed animals, quilting, doing excellent cross-stitch, crewel work and embroidering well past 100 years old. She became an avid wordsearch player and watched the noon, 4-6, and 10’oclock news, daily Jeopardy, Soap Operas, and Wheel of Fortune.

Her life was filled with joy watching her grand and great-grandchildren grow up. They loved her calm presence, wonderful loving interest in their lives, her independence, hard working hands, and her smile and giggle. She was a beautiful, amazing soul that filled their lives with memories.

One of the quotes that she was known to jot down was: I am old but I am forever young at heart. We are always the same inside. Each year is special and precious. You can only live it once. It is not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many.

Vi is survived by her daughters, Marian Schmidt, Max, ND, Carolyn (Don) Nett, Cocoa, FL, Sharlene Fredrich, Garrison, ND, Darlene (George) Tomlinson, Port St John, FL, Jolene Mann, Casselton, ND; 14 grandchildren; 19 great-grandchildren; two step-great-grandsons; nine great-great-grandchildren; sister-in-law, Raome (Jim) Johnson, Hanford, CA; brother-in-law, Fred Abelseth, Minot, ND; and several nieces and nephews.

Vi was preceded in death by her husband of 68 years, Richard; brothers, Woodrow and Merle; sisters, Harriet, Clarabelle, Odis, and Betty; sons-in-law, Harold, Tony, Arnold, and Dennis; grandson, Stuart.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donations to Muscular Dystrophy Association or a charity of your choice.

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Thursday, October 27, 2022
4:00 PM – 5:30 PM


48 N.E. 3RD

Garrison, North Dakota 58540

Funeral Service

Friday, October 28, 2022
1:00 PM

Our Savior’s Lutheran Church

504 Carvell Street

Max, ND 58759

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