A graveside service with inurnment for Martha and Howard will begin at 11:00 AM on Saturday, June 11, 2022 at Luther Valley Cemetery, 7107 S. Luther Valley Rd., Beloit, WI, with Pastor Martha Nack presiding. A celebration gathering will follow, 12:00-3:00 PM, at the Nelson Family Century Farm of Peggy & Roger Nelson, 8842 W. Plymouth Church Rd., Orfordville, WI. We welcome you to join us.
Howard Gene "Howie" Bjorklund, age 94, passed away October 22, 2021. He was born October 2, 1927, in Chicago, the son of Alice (Nelson) and Casper Bjorklund. The family soon moved to a farm in Orfordville, WI, then to Beloit, WI.
Howard and Martha L. "Marti" Brill met in Beloit High School, class of 1945, and married November 25, 1948. They were blessed with 70 years of marriage until Martha's passing in 2019.
Howard graduated from Bradley University School of Horology, after which he worked for his father-in-law, Henry Brill Jewelers. Several years later Howard followed his desire to be in law enforcement and in 1953 he joined the Beloit Police Department, walking a beat and driving a Harley-Davidson patrol cycle. In 1961 Howard graduated in the National F.B.I. Academy 67th class, Washington, D.C., having been personally appointed by J. Edgar Hoover and certified by US Attorney General Robert "Bobby" Kennedy. In Beloit Howard served as Chief of Police 1963-1969. He then accepted an appointment to the Wisconsin Department of Justice where he served as Assistant Director of the Wisconsin Council on Criminal Justice, and thereafter Director of the Wisconsin Crime Information Bureau. He and Martha moved to Madison, WI in 1971. Later Howard was appointed by Wisconsin’s Attorney General as Administrator, Division of Law Enforcement Services, Wisconsin Department of Justice.
Howard retired in 1988, after which he and Martha enjoyed years of travel (often with relatives), visiting and learning about every state in the US. They also enjoyed international travel, especially cruising the fjords of Norway.
Until recent years Howard continued to serve on numerous law enforcement boards, councils and committees for the National F.B.I. and State of Wisconsin. He was a lifetime member of the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the Wisconsin Chiefs of Police Association for which he served 30 years as Parliamentarian.
Howie had a keen interest in Native American art, historical sights and monuments, nature and photography. He enjoyed golfing and along with Marti, bowling. They spent many years camping, especially having fun vacations with "the Beloit group", couples and friends going back to their high school days.
Beyond measure, Howard and Martha enjoyed and cherished time, activities and events with their children, grandchildren and great-grandsons. Their love and devotion was shared through family generations and will carry on.
Howard is survived by children Jon (Carole) Bjorklund, Sugar Hill, GA, Sonja Rabe, Barry (Joy) Bjorklund and Chris (Aimee) Bjorklund, all in Madison, WI; grandchildren Julia Szokody and John (Courtney) Szokody, Atlanta, Stacey Bjorklund, Phoenix, Lars (Lily) Bjorklund, Denver, Dane (Grace Weber) Bjorklund, LosAngeles, and Sol Bjorklund, Madison; great-grandsons Logan Vega, Phoenix, Avery Szokody and Miles Szokody, Atlanta, and Odin Bjorklund, Denver; sisters-in-law Evelyn Bjorklund, Merrill, WI and Shirley Bjorklund, Wexford, PA.
Joining his wife Martha, Howard was pre-deceased by his parents Alice M. (Nelson) and Casper A. Bjorklund, mother and father-in-law Laura A. (Perkins) and Henry M. Brill, brothers Richard "Dick" Bjorklund and Ronald Bjorklund, brothers-in-law Richard Brill (and wife Irene) and Eugene Brill (and wife Dorothy), son-in-law Jon Rabe, and many aunts, uncles and cousins.
Remembrance donations may be made to our U.S. National Park Service, www.nps.gov/getinvolved/donate.htm.
“Swing the club, don’t hit the ball”
6021 University Ave. Madison
U.S. National Park Service