Evans Funeral Home

"Compassionate Funeral Service"

Carrington and New Rockford, North Dakota
701.652.3003 or 701.947.2911

Secondary Number ~ 701.650.9937

William “Bill” Starke

William  “Bill “ Starke passed away May 19, 2022 at the Lutheran Home of the Good Shepherd, New Rockford ND. Joyce, his wife, their two children Debbie and Clint and several of his grandchildren were with him during his last hours.

William Horton Starke was born August 21st, 1927 to Horton and Alpha Starke. They lived on the Klocke farmstead until 1933 when the family, now including Bill’s sister Carol, moved to the current Starke farmstead in Superior Township.

Bill attended grade school at the Superior Township country school. He and Carol would travel to school in a horse and buggy driven by Horton. In the winter months, Bill and Carol would stay warm wrapped in heavy blankets, resting their feet on heated rocks. Bill continued his education at the New Rockford High School, graduating in 1945. At the time of his death, Bill was one of two surviving members of the class of ’45, the last being Gerta Bachman, also a resident of L.H.G.S. Bill continued his education for 3 months at N.D. State Agriculture School in Fargo. When his father Horton was severely injured in an accident, Bill returned to New Rockford and the family farm.

In 1947 a young lady named Joyce Neuharth moved with her family from Portland, ND. Upon her arrival in the New Rockford area, Joyce enrolled in the high school for her junior year. It was at a school dance that Joyce caught the eye of young Bill and the rest is history. Bill and Joyce were wed September 3rd, 1950. At the time of his passing, Bill and Joyce had been married for 71 years, 8 months and 16 days.

Bill and Joyce made their home on the family farm in the house that Bill and Horton built, and over the years, Bill added on to several times. It was from this base that Bill started a life of farming and public service. Among his many public positions he held are Community Credit Union Board; Eddy County Soil Conservation Board and State Soil Conservation President; Township Supervisor; long time member and volunteer First Congregational Church; member of the New Rockford Lions Club (Melvin Jones award winner, 2004) member New Rockford Eagles 2923 and most notably a member of the N.D. House of Representatives, District 12, 1984-1992. In the House, Bill worked with governors and other members of the House and Senate passing legislation on behalf of N.D. citizens.

Bill also enjoyed upland game bird and duck hunting, deer hunting and the occasional Canadian fishing trip. Bill and his best dog Pepper made quite a team during their many and memorable South Dakota pheasant hunting trips with Bill’s hunting friends. Bill also enjoyed the fall whitetail season, being well remembered for the time he dropped a buck in the middle of the road, loaded it in his pickup and hauled it home.

From an early age, Bill developed a strong interest in woodworking and over the years added to his skillset and tool collection. In his retirement, this passion only grew. His beautiful creations have graced the homes of family, friends and buildings throughout the area. He was most noted for his nativity scenes, known as ‘creches, and his couch tables. Countless numbers of both reside in homes across the country.

Bill is survived by his wife Joyce, daughter Debbie (Dave) McCullum, son Clinton, 8 grandchildren, 3 great-grandchildren and several nieces, nephews and cousins. He was preceded in death by his parents and daughter-in-law Brenda J. Starke.


A Visitation will be from 1:00PM – 2:00PM followed by a Celebration of Life at 2:00PM on Saturday, June 4, 2022 at First Lutheran Church, New Rockford.

Posted Condolences:


  1. So sorry for the loss of a great man. We will miss you in our community. God Bless his memory 😥

  2. I am so sorry for your loss. Bill was a wonderful neighbor and family friend.

  3. I am so sorry to hear of Bill’s passing. Thank you for all you did for the library through the years! My thoughts are with Joyce and all the family at this time. He will be missed but remembered fondly.

  4. So sorry for your lose Debbie your dad and mine graduated together, in my years growing up my dad and l would come out and clean up or cut down the dead trees in the shelter belt around the farmstead, my prayers go out to you and the rest of the family.

  5. We are so sorry for the loss of Bill. He was such a talented man that will be missed by so many people. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

  6. Prayers for Bill’s family. I have a beautiful crèche from Bill and Joyce as a wedding gift that has adorned my home over 35 years.

  7. A dear friend for many years. His and Ken’s love of woodworking resulted in many idea exchanges. He loved his community is shown by his evolvement in so many activities. Prayers for his family.

  8. Sorry for your loss.

  9. I am so sorry for your loss… thoughts and prayers to Joyce and their family

  10. Sending prayers to Joyce and the entire family at this time.
    Dennis (Nelson) let the rest of our family know about Bill’s passing.
    Such a kind and caring man.

  11. We are so sorry for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

  12. My heart goes out to Joyce and family. Bill was a wonderful colleague and friend during our time together in the legislature. He served his community and his state with dedication and integrity. The likes of Bill Starke do not come by every day. God Bless the memory of Bill Starke.

  13. So sorry to learn of Bill’s passing. Our family’s spent a lot of time together while I was growing up, through social occasions and church functions. Mr. Starke was a wonderful man and my heart goes out to his family at this time.

  14. Hi Clint, I see that your dad has passed away. Comfort and blessings to you and your family. My dad passed six years ago and life never quite feels the same. I often think of the fun that we had at VCSU. I hope you are doing well.

  15. I have good memories of the time I served in the ND Legislature with Bill Starke. Bill was exceptional in his willingness to serve his community and his fellow citizens in all the organizations and activities to which he contributed. A life well lived.

  16. Very sorry for your loss. Bill was a great guy. Very friendly. Prayers.

  17. We are so sorry for the loss of Bill. He was such a talented man that will be missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.


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