Mountrail County Medical Center will provide quality health care services to Mountrail County and the surrounding area including; Primary medical care, emergency care, swing bed and clinic services.


On October 23, 1944, a public meeting was held to discuss the need for a community hospital.  After a favorable response, a goal of raising $75,000 was set and would have to be collected before further action could be taken.

On April 17, 1946 a meeting was held and determined that the $75,000 in pledges and cash had been reached. Articles of Incorporation and By-laws were adopted. The first trustees were:

  1. M. Kincannon – Farmer
  2. Henry T. Sand – Farmer
  3. A. Walters – Ford Dealership
  4. Steve Severson – Farmer
  5. Peter Peterson – Farmer
  6. A. H. Nelson – Banker
  7. Earl Reynolds, Jr.- Farmer
  8. Clabor Hovda – Farmer
  9. A. LeMieux – I.H. Implement Dealership
  10. Charles Cvancara – Farmer
  11. Alvin Larson – Texaco Bulk Plant
  12. Albert Holm – Farmer
  13. Ollie Hermanson – Farmer
  14. George E. Lee – Farmer
  15. W.G. Matson – Telephone Company

A. Walters was named the first president of the organization.

On September 5, 1946 the Board of Trustees purchased Lots 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6.  Block 1 in Everson’s 1st Addition to the City of Stanley for $4,000 from Max Bartel. Ira Rush was retained as architect in November 1946 and plans were to be drawn for a 30-bed hospital.

On June 25, 1947 the first annual meeting of the members of the Stanley Community Hospital Association was held. Through the remainder of that year, continued efforts were made to assess the needs of the hospital. A study of preliminary plans indicated that more money would be needed for construction, and a decision was made on December 3, 1947 to withhold construction until more money could be raised.

On April 8, 1949 a special meeting was held and a resolution was passed favoring a reduced 20-bed hospital. At the annual meeting held June 29, 1949, it was voted to proceed with building of the hospital.

On August 4, 1949 a vote was taken and approved, to begin construction of the basement. On March 3, 1950 an application was made for Federal funds. Bids were awarded on October 4, 1950 as follows:

  • Lorvig & Tromsness, Parshall – General Contractors
  • Andrew Jensen, Stanley – Electrical
  • Dakota Plumbing and Heating, Minot – Heating, plumbing, ventilation

On June 12, 1952, the dedication of the hospital was held coinciding with the 50th Anniversary of the City of Stanley, forever memorialized by the dedication plaque and photo on display inside the reception area.  On Monday, August 25, 1952 the hospital opened for business.  In 1958 an addition was built on the south end of the hospital and in 1959 the Medical Clinic Building was completed.

In 1969, a gift of $100,000 from Mr. A. H. Nelson was received in memory of Mr. Nelson’s wife Edna. The Edna Nelson addition provided Intensive Care facilities and additional rooms to the existing hospital. This addition was completed in the Winter of 1971.

A second local fund drive was completed in 1974 to remodel the surgical wing and a third local drive in 1991 was done to raise funds for operating expenses.

In 1996, the Stanley Community Hospital started to explore options to combine the Mountrail Bethel Home and the Hospital under one roof.  Their efforts resulted in the formation of the Mountrail County Medical Center (MCMC) and its governance structure where the Mountrail Bethel Home, Inc. and Trinity Medical Center shall be the sole members of this corporation.  On November 1, 1997 MCMC was formed and purchased the assets of the Stanley Community Hospital.  Plans were made to build a new 11 bed hospital, emergency room and clinic adjacent to the Bethel Home.

In June of 2002, 50 years after the original Stanley Community Hospital opened for business, the newly formed Mountrail County Medical Center opened thanks to loans secured through USDA and Scandia American Bank and a 1999 “When Seconds Count and Quality Matters” Capital Campaign that raised 2.8 million dollars, largely due to the wonderful donations made by Ray Rude.  Mr. Rude was also a driving force and monetary donor towards the implementation of the Avera “eEmergency” Program.

Stanley Community Hospital Board (SCH) remains in existence as the member of the Mountrail County Health Foundation and the directing body of the T.H. Reiarson Trust.  Trust funds from the estate of Thorsten Reiarson were first used in 1979 to purchase various equipment for the Stanley Community Hospital and structural improvements on the building.  In 2014, this trust fund enabled the new T.H. Reiarson Rural Health Clinic to be built after the SCH board pledged $2.195 million dollars towards the project. The new clinic opened for patients in the spring of 2015.  In addition, the Mountrail County Health Foundation’s Capital Campaign “Partnering for the Future” raised 1.6 million for the addition of the Ann Nicole Nelson ER expansion.  This expansion included an enclosed Ambulance Bay, decontamination, trauma and CT scanner rooms.  This addition was completed in the spring of 2014.

The Mountrail County Health Foundation and its board members from SCH, MCMC and MBH are extremely grateful for the financial support provided by present and past area residents and local businesses.  As in the words of Ray Rude during the 1999 Capital Campaign, “we hope the residents in the area understand the importance of looking ahead, understand the changes in healthcare, and will also get behind this important effort and make it successful.”  And in looking at the Donor Wall inside the T.H. Reiarson Rural Health Clinic, we can see how evident this support is still so many years later.  We sincerely thank you for this.


The Mountrail Bethel Home is an ELCA Social Ministry Organization, which will provide skilled nursing care to chronically ill individuals, of all religions. In doing so, the Home realizes it has a mandate from our Lord Jesus, Himself to minister to his people by providing a 24 hour a day, 7 day a week skilled nursing facility.
It is the goal of the Mountrail Bethel Home to create an environment, which seeks to satisfy the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual needs of each resident and their family. To this end the Home is dedicated to employ such professional and non-professional personnel to best serve its residents. In addition the Home will draw upon church, staff, family, community, and friends to carry out this mission.
By command and example of Christ, Mountrail Bethel Home is here to serve you.


The Mountrail Bethel Home began its existence as a affiliate of the Bethel Lutheran Homes for the Aged of Williston on November 1, 1960. The home encompassed what is now the north wing of the Skilled Nursing Facility. In December 1960 the first resident, Victor Laukala was admitted to the 41 bed facility. The homes Superintendent was Rev. Bernie Peterson. The first board members were Lloyd Nelson, W.G. Matson, Pastor Richard Beckmen, and Palmer Dilland.

Turmo was installed as Superintendent on Sunday May 7, 1961. A cornerstone laying and dedication ceremony was held Sunday September 17, 1961.

Mr. Totdahl served as a part-time administrator here and at Watford City from approximately 1963 to 1966.

W G Matson served as administrator of the home from 1966 through June 1969. Mr, Matson also served as the chairman of the Bethel Booster club until 1981 when it was dissolved. The club was formed for the purpose of debt retirement in 1966 and reached its goal of $50,000.00 at that time. In 1969 Pastor Kenneth Michaelis, was hired as the Administrator.

In February of 1969 a gift of $100,000.00 was given by A.H. Nelson in memory of his wife, Edna. This money was used to build the 16 bed Edna Nelson Addition on the south end of the facility. The addition was ready for occupancy in February of 1970 with the dedication held on February 22, 1970. It was later found that an additional $31,079.00 was needed for architects fees. Again Mr. Nelson helped out by donating the $31,079.00.

At the March 8, 1971 annual meeting in Williston the Stanley facility withdrew from the Bethel Lutheran Homes for the Aged of Williston to form a new corporation called the Mountrail Bethel Home, Inc. Delegates from 9 area congregations forming the new corporation held their first meeting that day.

Donations over $1000.00 to the Mountrail Bethel Home. (This may not be a complete list. Please let the office know if there are others.) In 1971 Art Severson gave 100 shares of stock which sold for $3600.00. In 1978 the Mountrail Bethel Home was informed that the home would receive a sum of money and 1/6 of the royalties from three producing oil well from the Martin Hemsing Estate. In 1983 the Bethel Home received $6404.84 from the estate of Carl Hansen. In 1985 $10,000.00 was given in memory of Trygve Nordhougen. Elna and Olaf Solberg donated $9977.50 to the Home in 1988. Laurence Elefson gave the home 1/3 of the proceeds of the sale of 628 acres. In 1993 Aslaug Mitchell left the Bethel Home $1000.00. Also in 1993 Mr. Pete Peterson left the Bethel Home $53,000.00 from his estate.

Ben Suelzle served as the administrator from July, 1971 until March 31, 1979 when he retired. He was followed by Richard John Henkel from Crown Point, Indiana who served as administrator from April 1, 1979 through March 31, 1986. Ernest Streicher served as Administrator from May 5, 1986 through November 4, 1986. Fern Wittmayer who was the Administrative Secretary for many years then filled the Administrator position from 1986 through June 30,1993. Wade Peterson of Berthold assumed the duties of Administrator on July 1, 1993, He was formerly a Business Representative at Trinity Nursing Home in Minot ND for 2 years and the Administrator of a 44 bed Skilled Nursing Facility in Napoleon ND for a year prior to moving to Stanley. Mitch Leupp was hired as the administrator in July of 1996. He was director of Social Services for Trinity Nursing home in Minot and Administrator at Golden Manor in Steele, ND prior to coming to Mountrail Bethel Home.

The Mountrail Bethel Home has served as an employer to many wonderful, caring people who genuinely care for the residents that entrust their care to us. We currently have 57 Medicare licensed skilled nursing beds, 12 one and two bedroom apartments, and approximately 100 full and part time employees.

Over the years Mountrail Bethel Home was affiliated with 11 Lutheran Churches in the area. They included the American Lutheran Church of Stanley, Knife River Lutheran of Stanley, First English Lutheran of Lostwood, St Olafs Lutheran of Tagus, Our Saviors Lutheran of Blaisdell, Faith Lutheran of Palermo, Holy Cross Lutheran of Powers Lake, Hope Lutheran of Coulee, Bethlehem Lutheran of Ross, Zion Lutheran of Berthold and Free Lutheran of Stanley. On a larger scale the Mountrail Bethel Home is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and strives to carry out the churches mission of caring for those who can not care for themselves. Our affiliation was previously with the American Lutheran Church up to the time of its merger with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America in 1988. Two of the affiliated churches have since closed their doors – those being St. Olafs of Tagus and Hope Lutheran of Coulee.

In the fall of 1996 the Stanley Community Hospital approached the Bethel Home to look at working in cooperation or merging services in some manner. This resulted in the formation of Mountrail County Medical Center in the fall of 1998. This new corporation took over operations of Stanley Community Hospital on October 31st, 1998. As of October 1, 1997 the Hospital and Nursing home starting sharing the administrator between them. Other services and staff also have been working in both facilities including nursing and dietary. As the hospital cut costs several staff were able to transfer to Mountrail Bethel Home and retain their jobs.

YRH partners was hired as the architect for a new hospital addition that was added to Bethel home campus. This addition integrated the services and staff of Mountrail Bethel Home and Mountrail County Medical Center for a more efficient operation. Jackson & Associates from Evergreen, Co. was hired to assist in a fund raising project to help pay for the integration of the hospital and nursing home. The project was developed from information that was derived from a marked study done by Health Planning and Management Resouces from Edina, MN. Tha t helped determine market size and scope of services needed.

The hospital project was completed and the new facility opened to care for patients on June 3, 2002. The facility included an Emergency room, eleven acute care beds, a rural health clinic, physical therapy, laboratory and medical records. Over the next several years several changes were made to the new facility and new services offered. Physical Therapy moved downstairs and shares a space with a cardiac rehabilitation program that was developed from a grant that was received by Mountrail County Health Center. Also within that remodel project was the addition of several apartments to house laboratory staff that did not live in town that were on call as well as traveling physicians to cover Emergency Room call.

At the same time the hospital project was under construction Ray Rude a former Stanley area resident who was considering moving back to Stanley and the founder of Duraflex International, the company that had developed the modern day diving board made a generous donation to the Stanley community and surrounding area. He donated a state of the art warm water pool complex that was attached to the south side of Mountrail Bethel Home. This facility consists of a 30’X 40’ warm water pool that is equipped with a ADA ramp, spa area, flume, locker room and meeting room space. This aquatic center has been marketed throughout the area and services young an old alike. It has many programs that benefit area residents in the areas of exercise, therapy, swimming lessons and many other areas. The aquatic center was also completed in the early summer of 2002 in time for the Stanley Centennial.

Mountrail Bethel Home has recently gone through some updating of the facility. New resident closets were installed as well as new flooring. Both of these items were orginal furnishings of the facility.

Mountrail Bethel Home and Mountrail County Medical Center are currently at the beginning phases of implementation of Electronic Health Records. This is being mandated by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to enhance the quality of healthcare on a nation wide basis.

Mountrail County Medical Center is also looking at expanding some services that are being offered in Stanley. Recenty added are mobile MRI services and Computed Tomograhpy (CT) is also being planned to be installed in the facility in the near future.

Along with the above metioned services are several facility updates that are being planned. Mountrail Bethel Home is looking at building a new chapel for the residents, families and community that Mountrail Bethel Home serves. The current chapel was built in 1967 and no longer meets the space needs of our facility. Also being considered is expansion of the kitchen and dinning room at Mountrail Bethel Home. This to provide a more efficient dietary preperatio area and accommodate the residents dining needs.

Along with these projects the area to house the CT scanner, enlarging the Emergency room area, adding office space to accommodate the business and Information Technology needs and remodel of eht clinic area to provide better efficiency are also being planned.

A major impact to Mountrail County Medical Center in the past several years and projected years to come is the development of the oil exploration and production that have had major impacts on our Emergency Room, clinic and community. We are looking at updating our equipment to be able to meet these needs and also our staff’s ability to manage the care of these patients as they present a different challenge in managing the injuries that we are seeing come to our facility.