Mennonite Weekly Review - November 2011
Obituaries are emailed to MennObits before MWR is printed. Wording may vary in printed version.
Frederick, Charles Richard
Charles Richard Frederick, 86, of Eugene, Ore., and formerly of Iowa City, Iowa, died Oct. 10, 2011, of prostate cancer. He was born July 12, 1925, to Charles and Emma Wingard Frederick in Johnstown, Pa.
He married Sara Lu Graber on Aug. 8, 1953, in Wayland, Iowa. She preceded him in death in 2010.
He earned an undergraduate degree from Goshen (Ind.) College and a master’s degree from the University of Illinois. He taught school in Indiana and Michigan before completing a long teaching career in the Iowa City School District. He was a longtime member of First Mennonite Church in Iowa City.
Survivors include two sons, Charles Jr. of Bloomington, Ind., and Peter of Hamilton, Mont.; three daughters, Catherine Roth of Eugene, Christine Frederick of Jasper and Mary Frederick of Panama City, Panama; nine grandchildren and a great-grandchild.
Miller, Helen Hostetler
Helen Miller, 81, of Cleveland, Ohio, died Oct. 20, 2011. She was born Feb. 13, 1930, to Amra and Ruth Hostetler.
She began her life on a farm in Harper, Kan., as the second of six children. She graduated from Hesston (Kan.) College and received her bachelor’s degree from Goshen (Ind.) College in 1951.
She married Vern Miller on Oct. 28, 1951. They felt called to the city, so they moved to Cleveland.
There they worked with Mennonite Mission Board to build two churches rooted in the community, first Gladstone Mennonite Church, which merged with Lee Heights Community Church. She was well known for playing the organ at Lee Heights almost every Sunday, and she was a vibrant contributor to the Lee Heights congregation throughout her life. In 1983 she was ordained as a minister and served as a pastor alongside her husband. She managed the Ministerial Alliance Retirement Center for 18 years. She served on the MARC board almost until the time of her death.
In all her roles, she was a friend and mentor to many, and even after retirement people looked to her as a constant source of guidance, advice and comfort. She was a vibrant woman who lived with radical compassion, love and practicality. With an easy, resounding laugh and a straightforward honesty, she was a joyful presence in the lives of many. She was a loving role model who laughed and worried and prayed her family into adulthood.
Survivors include five children, Robin Miller and his wife, Cynthia, Rosina Berkey and her husband, Craig, Rochele Beachy and her husband, Nathan, all of Cleveland, Renita Strange and her husband, David, of Cincinnati, and Ryan Miller and his wife, Lisa, of Morganton, N.C.; five siblings; 13 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
Memorial services were held at Lee Heights Community Church. Burial was in Aurora Mennonite Church Cemetery.
Yoder, Merlin Jay
Merlin Jay Yoder, 60, of Bay Port, Mich., died Oct. 24, 2011, at Covenant Health Care in Saginaw. He was born to Luke D. and Cora (Maust) Yoder in Pigeon.
He grew up in Bay Port and graduated from Eastern Mennonite High School, Harrisonburg, Va., in 1969. He attended Rosedale Bible College and Malone College, both in Ohio, and Eastern Mennonite University in Virginia. He also served as a community development worker in Costa Rica, volunteering with Rosedale Mennonite Missions from 1970 to 72.
On Nov. 3, 1979, he married Patricia Shetler, also from Bay Port.
He worked as a farmer, and he loved the earth he knew so well, constantly exploring new and unconventional ways of farming, planting trees along roadsides and tending his gardens. He viewed his life as ministry. He was a founder of the local Foods Resource Bank, a volunteer at the Thumb Breadbasket, and an active member of Pigeon River Mennonite Church. He was passionate about making friends wherever he went. He enjoyed camping, hiking and biking, and he loved exploring unfamiliar terrain.
Survivors include his wife, Patricia; two children, Shari Craig and her husband, Chad, of Pigeon, and Michael Yoder of Harrisonburg, Va.; his mother, Cora; two brothers, Darrel Yoder and his wife, Lynette, and Dale Yoder and his wife, Phyllis, all of Bay Port; a sister, Gloria Diener and her husband, Eugene, of Harrisonburg, Va.; and a grandson, Brayden.
Funeral services were held at Pigeon River Mennonite Church.
Mennonite Weekly Review - November 14, 2011 - 89th Year, No. 41 - p. 9
Freyenberger, Robert J.
Robert J. Freyenberger, 95, of Wayland, Iowa, died Oct. 18, 2011, at Mercy Hospital in Iowa City. He was born Oct. 8, 1916, to Elmer and Emma (Oswald) Freyenberger in Wayland.
He was baptized in his early teens and joined Eicher Mennonite Church. In 1942 he was drafted into Civilian Public Service, in lieu of military service. He served three years and eight months in Terry, Mont.
On April 25, 1946, he married Mildred L. Kephart at her parents’ home.
He farmed in the Wayland and Crawfordsville areas in Iowa. After retiring from farming, he worked as a janitor at the McCreedy Home in Washington for several years. He was a member of the Gideons. He enjoyed visiting with people, spending time with his grandchildren, reading the Bible and praying regularly for Mennonite mission volunteers.
Survivors include four children, Ron Freyenberger and his wife, Ruth, of Goshen, Ind., Kathleen Kennel and her husband, Phil, of Jonesboro, Ga., June Freyenberger of Coralville, and Steve Freyenberger and his wife, Sue, of Wayland; a brother, William Freyenberger of Wayland; three sisters, Ruth Graber of Wayland, Myrtle Gardner of Grand Rapids, Minn., and Ina Eigsti of Hesston, Kan.; six grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Mildred; and a brother, Edward Freyenberger of Kouts, Ind.
Anders, Earl M.
Earl M. Anders, 99, of Souderton, Pa., and formerly of Elroy, died Nov. 6, 2011, at Souderton Mennonite Homes. He was born to Menno and Lizzie (Moyer) Anders in Harleysville.
He was the husband of the late Mary B. (Nyce) Anders.
He was a dairy farmer for more than 40 years in Elroy. After retiring in 1972, he was employed and later volunteered at Souderton Mennonite Homes in the laundry and mail department, until last August.
He volunteered much of his time at Souderton Mennonite Home, Spruce Lake Retreat and Franconia Mennonite Church. He enjoyed board and table games, shuffleboard, genealogy and local history, traveling to Florida and Iowa with his late wife and spending time with his family and friends.
He was a member of Franconia Mennonite Church, where he served as a former Sunday school teacher, superintendent and trustee.
Survivors include five children, Betty Kratz and her husband, Robert, of Souderton, Aldine “Deanie” Frankenfield and her husband, Dale, of Elroy, Rebecca Derstine and her husband, G. Dale, of Elroy, Donald Anders and his wife, Catherine, of Telford, and Earl Anders and his wife, Elaine, of Sutton, Alaska; a sister, Betty Hackman and her husband, Harrison, of Souderton; a brother, Lewis Anders of Kulpsville; 12 grandchildren; 25 great-grandchildren and a great-great-grandchild.
He was preceded in death by a grandson, Barry Anders; two sisters, Alma Nyce and Sallie Landes; and three brothers, Marvin, Willis “Bill” and Linneaus Anders.
Funeral services were held at Souderton Mennonite Summit View Auditorium. Burial was in Franconia Mennonite Cemetery.