Born: July 21, 1932
Died: December 22, 2011
Dr. Norman R. Ericson, age 79, a longtime resident of Wheaton, died peacefully on Thursday, December 22, at Johnson Health Care Center in Carol Stream, Illinois. Norm was born in Loomis, Nebraska on July 21, 1932 to Raymond and
Myrtle Ericson. When he was a young child, the family moved to
Holdrege, Nebraska where his early education took place and where he was
an active participant in church and high school activities. In his
early high school years, he professed faith in Jesus Christ during the
ministry of Rev. Paul Rood.
He attended Trinity College (TIU) for two years, then transferred
to the University of Nebraska to complete his B.A. degree. While at
Trinity College, he met a Minnesota gal, Ruth Peterson, and after a
three-year courtship they were married in 1954 at the lst Ev. Free
Church in Chicago.
During his stint in Seminary, he served for three years as youth pastor
of Winnetka Bible Church. It was here, sitting under the marvelous
preaching ministry of Rev. Harold DeVries, that he gained a renewed
sense of the importance of sound Biblical teaching. Then began a long
trek through years of study at the University of Chicago where he earned
a Ph.D. in Biblical Studies.
His teaching career began in 1957 at Trinity College where he
especially enjoyed teaching Greek. This was followed by "going up the
hill" when he was appointed a professor at Trinity Ev.Div. School. In
1977 he began teaching at Wheaton College and completed his teaching
career at retirement in 2000, concluding 43 years in his chosen
profession. His love of teaching and working with students was a
marvelous fit for him. During his time at Wheaton, he was department
chair for several years and for a time, adjunct professor at Northern
Baptist Theological Seminary in Lombard, IL. His interest in missions
and language study was heightened when he taught in the Summer Institute
of Linguistics in Toronto and New Jersey. He was privileged and enjoyed co-leading three tours of the Holy Lands with Wheaton College.
Throughout his busy life in the classroom, he also gave much time to
Sunday teaching in local congregations as well as his own church, including
several interim preaching positions. His love for The Word and The Church
made these teaching experiences an important "extra". In addition to this
ministry, he worked at extra part-time jobs so that Ruth could be a
full-time mother for their children.
While the children were young, his idea to purchase a tent camper was
met with great enthusiasm by the children. Thus the family traveled to
all the States. This built a lot of happy memories. Norm was fun and we
loved those trips. As empty nesters, Norm & Ruth traveled to many foreign
countries. A favorite pastime for Norm was his big garden -a wonderful
diversion from studies, books and grading papers! Therefore, we enjoyed
healthful produce which was shared with others.
In 1988 he began his involvement with Tyndale House Publishers as a
General Reviewer of the Letters and Revelation sections of the New
Testament for the New Living Translation of the Bible. This was indeed
a highlight in his career, working in the Biblical text with other
scholars and the fine Tyndale organization.
He is survived by his wife of 57 years, Ruth, four children, Brian (Jeani) Ericson of Salem, WI, Beth (Dave) Sanders of Carol Stream, Stuart (Bari) Ericson of Wheaton and Ken (Rebecca) Ericson of Elgin, eight grandchildren, Steve and Holly Ericson, Thomas and Jon Sanders, Dan and Katy Ericson, and Matthew and Alyssa Ericson, and one sister, Delores (Mark) Nilson. He was preceded in death by his parents.
A funeral service will be held on Wednesday, December 28 at 11 a.m. at College Church, 335 Seminary Ave. in Wheaton. Friends may visit with the family prior to the service from 9:30 to 11 a.m.
Memorial gifts may be directed to Wycliffe Bible Translators or Windsor Park Benevolent Fund.
Family and friends may sign a guest book at hultgrenfh.com. For more information, please call Hultgren Funeral Home at 630-668-0027.