Obituary: John Berg

Berg obit photo.jpg
Posted at 12:26 PM, Feb 27, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-27 14:26:27-05

John Berg was born January 30, 1947 in Bozeman, Montana and died on February 17, 2023. He grew up playing backyard baseball with the neighborhood kids with his dad, Lloyd, as the pitcher. After a day of roaming the neighborhood, he was summoned home by his mother, Edna, playing the bugle. John graduated from Bozeman Senior High in 1965. While there, he enjoyed his time playing trombone in the band, wrestling, and playing on the football team. He went on to attend Montana State and graduated with a degree in Chemical Engineering. Shortly after graduation, he reconnected with his classmate, Carolyn Boyd. They were married in 1971 and together for the next 51 years.

After a couple of stops, they settled in Laurel for the next 37 years. While there, John worked at Cenex and made many good friends. He and Carolyn had two children, Sam and Libby. He was a great dad, supporting his kids in any way he could - from making a maze big enough to hold a horse for a science fair project, to driving all over the state to watch his kids’ activities. While at home, John was always doing some sort of project: fixing fences, caring for farm animals, plumbing the sink, and moving irrigation pipes. He liked to be busy. It was in Laurel that he developed a lifelong passion for chain sawing. He rarely saw a tree that couldn’t be improved by removing just a “few” branches.

After retiring from Cenex, John and Carolyn moved back to Bozeman into the same house he grew up in, where he continued to make good friends at Unitarians and around town, while also reconnecting with high school classmates. It was in Bozeman that he thrived as a grandpa. Papa John would read books, pitch wiffle balls for hours, have tea in a little cup, go sledding, or do whatever else his grandkids wanted.

One of the things that was a constant in John’s life was his love of the outdoors and excitement for new things. It started as a kid with family trips to Yellowstone Park and continued for the rest of his life. He was always up for an adventure, happy to be riding his bike, canoeing down a river, or climbing a peak. John was always excited to take someone new along, or to try something new. From spending the night on a ledge climbing Granite Peak, to heading home in the rain, insisting that the end was just around the next bend, his optimism and cheer always made everything better (especially when the end wasn’t just around the next bend).

One constant throughout John’s life was his jolly attitude which continued even through his final years with dementia. He made most situations better just by being there and being happy. He was a good and loyal friend who touched many lives. He had a way of seeing the best in everyone. John was preceded in death by his parents and his brother, Charlie. He is survived by his sisters, Sally Daer and Annie Cicale; his wife, Carolyn Boyd; his children, Sam Berg and Libby Berg Wieczorek; and his grandchildren, Riley, Max, Oscar, Alex, and Ivan. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to The Bozeman Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, Yellowstone National Park, or go spend a little time outside and think of John.

We would like to make a book of stories and photos about John to share with his grandchildren. Please send your favorite stories or any photos to us at:

A celebration of John’s life will be held at the Bozeman Unitarian Universalist Fellowship on Saturday, April 1 at 1:30 P.M.

A live-stream of the service can be found at: []

Arrangements are in the care of Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service. []