On March 30, 1945, a little boy, the first of four children, was born to Per Arthur and Gladys Bergstrom. They lived in New Westminster, British Columbia. Later, three sisters arrived - Gail Ritz, Brenda Jacobson and the youngest, Ardelle Thomas.
Les grew up in Birch Hills, Saskatchewan , and spent many hours running trap lines for fur trading and hunting with his dad. He attended Canadian Union College in Alberta, Canada and then Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan where he doubled majored in Biology and Chemistry.
It was during his time at Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan, that he met his future bride, Judy. She saw him in the cafeteria with his roommate, a mutual friend. Later, she asked the friend who he was. Disappointed, she was told he already had a girlfriend that he was planning to marry. However, after Christmas break, the friend returned to announce Les was available if Judy was still interested. Two years later, they married on June 4, 1967. They recently celebrated their forty-fifth wedding anniversary.
Les had been planning to attend medical school but a conversation with his father led him to change his mind and pursue dentistry instead. Les and Judy moved to Loma Linda, California where he enrolled in the Loma Linda School of Dentistry. This is where they met many of their lifelong friends and in their spare time began their lifelong side career of remodeling houses
Before graduating in 1972, they celebrated the birth of their daughter, Heather Lynn in 1972. And 21 months, later, a baby boy, Ryan Todd was born in Ontario, Canada.
Les and Judy spent a short time in Saskatoon before moving to Wyoming, Ontario. They started a dental practice in a town with a population of 1700 people. Purchasing and remodeling homes became a way of life in the Bergstrom household. In the 45 years of marriage, they have renovated 9 homes. Judy would dream it up and Les would respond with, "it can't be done," but somehow he always figured out how to successfully recreate her vision.
In 1983, Les and Judy answered a call that would find them living in Malawi, Africa as missionary dentists from 1983-1987. His quality dentistry brought even the president of Malawi to his care.
Soon, it was time to return and this time the destination was Lebanon, Tennessee. Judy had several family members in the area, including her mom and dad, Donna and Charles Haynie.
"Doc", as he is known at his office, was well-loved by his staff and his patients. He was described by many as gentle, caring, and attentive to details.
His attention to details was also put into practice with his passion for antique car restoration. He was a perfectionist and would bondo, sand and paint a car over and over until it was just righ after hours of looking for the exact original parts. At the time of his death, he had ten antique cars in various stages of restoration.
Some of these include: 1922 Buick Roadster ; 1927 Model T Coupe; 1931 Model A
If Les was not puttering around in his garage listening to Lyle Lovett, he might be found down at the lake fishing. Whether he was fishing by himself or taking one of his grandkids, he loved his time by the water. His son, Ryan and he enjoyed several fly fishing trips to British Columbia. They would meet up with Les' uncle, brothers-in-law and cousins. Those weekends were full of fishing and talking.
He is a very proud grandfather of 8 children and if you visited the office, you would always hear about their escapades.
The visitation will be held at Spring Hill Funeral Home in Madison on July 13 from 5-7 p.m. Services will be held at Madison Campus Seventh-day Adventist Church at 3 p.m. with a graveside service to follow at the Spring Hill Cemetery.
The family wishes to thank all those that have sent cards to Les since the time of his diagnosis. Hardly a day passed without a card in the mail for him and he looked forward to those with joy. We also would like to thank you for the love, support, care and prayer during this time.
Spring Hill Funeral Home & Cemetery in charge of arrangements.