Bert Edward Nordlie, 1936-2003


Dr. Bert Edward Nordlie of St. Cloud, Minn., died June 5, 2003, of complications from a previous spinal cord injury. He was 67.

Bert was born in Denver to Gordon E. and Madeline Nordlie. He spent his childhood in Denver, where he graduated from South High School with honors in 1953.

He was an accomplished pianist and studied piano at the prestigious Lamont School of Music. Bert was a standout athlete in football, track and swimming. He was all-state in discus, shot put and backstroke swimming.

Bert attended the University of Colorado on a football scholarship. He played fullback and linebacker. He earned his bachelor of science degree in geology, graduating with honors. He went on to attend the University of Chicago, where he earned a master's of science and Ph.D.

Bert married Margaret "Peggy" Jane Brummett on Aug. 18, 1957, in Steamboat Springs.

Bert was an associate professor in the University of Arizona's geology department from 1968 to 1974. He was a professor and chairman of the Department of Earth Sciences at Iowa State University from 1974-1999.

His numerous honors include: emeritus professor of geology and atmospheric science, distinguished member of the United States Geologic Society and board member for the ISU athletic department. He also was a member of the National Geologic Society of America and the National Rifle Association. Bert traveled the world on numerous expeditions to study volcanoes and their origins. He is most noted for technical discoveries on the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador, Iceland and Kenya.

His lifelong interests included carpentry work, mineral and numismatic collections, hunting and fishing.

Bert was preceded in death by his wife and father, Gordon Nordlie.

He is survived by two sons, Curt Nordlie of Maple Lake, Minn., and Lt. Col. Craig Nordlie of Yorktown, Va.; his mother, Madeline Nordlie of Denver; a sister, Karen Carpenter of Menlo Park, Calif.; nine grandchildren and one great grandchild.

Burial was scheduled for Saturday at Steamboat Springs Cemetery, where Bert will rest next to his wife.


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