Mennonite Weekly Review - September, 2005

Mennonite Weekly Review, September 5, 2005, 83rd Year, No. 36, p. 8

Willis E. Peifer, 93, of Lititz, Pa., and formerly of Manheim, died July 3, 2005, at Landis Homes Retirement Community. He was born to Clayton and Alice Erb Peifer in East Hempfield Township.
His first wife, Mary Rohrer Peifer, died in 1968. His second wife, Anna Mary Harnish Landis Peifer, died in 1999. He then married Grace Kautz Kreider Landis.
He owned and operated his own farm in Penn Township from 1935-98. He also worked as a carpenter for Clifford Denlinger of East Petersburg. A member of East Petersburg Mennonite Church, he volunteered with Mennonite Disaster Service and Mennonite Central Committee at Akron, with Meals on Wheels in the Manheim area and at Landis Homes Retirement Community of Lititz. He was a member of Mill Creek Hunting Club, Tioga County and Enterprise Stock Club of Lancaster. His hobbies included traveling, hunting and fishing.
Survivors include his wife, Grace; two daughters, Blanche R. Myer and her husband, Donald, of Lancaster, and Nancy J. Forrey and her husband, K. Eugene, of Mountville; two stepsons, Lee Landis and his wife, Patricia, of Narvon, and Kenneth Landis and his wife, Carolyn, of Christiana; a brother, Clarence Peifer of Bridgewater, Va.; five grandchildren; four step-grandchildren; 10 great-grandchildren and seven step-great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his previous wives, Mary and Anna Mary; a daughter, Verna R. Peifer; and a sister, Anna Mary Miller.
Funeral services were held at East Petersburg Mennonite Church. Burial was in the church cemetery.

H. Keith Cressman, 80, of Peoria, Ill., died Aug. 3, 2005, at St. Francis Medical Center. He was born July 6, 1925, to Howard Alexander Cressman and Ida Snyder in rural New Hamburg, Ont.
His father was stricken with pneumonia and died in April 1927, so they lived with his mother's parents for several years. He attended Maple Grove School, completed grades nine and 10 in Hespeler and upper school in Preston, Ont. He graduated from Goshen (Ind.) College in 1948, from Purdue (Ind.) University with a master's degree in 1954 and from Michigan State University with a doctorate in 1961.
He married Katherine Mary Crager in 1954. She preceded him in death in 1989. He then married Audrey Musselman on May 28, 1994.
Peoria was his home for 20 years, where he worked as a chemist for Daily Analytical Laboratories, retiring in 1995. He was a member of the American Chemical Society, Sigma Xi, American Society of Agronomy and MEDA. He was also a certified Professional Soil Scientist. He was a member of Mennonite Church of Normal.
Survivors include his wife, Audrey; two sons, Karl and his wife, Sharon, of Farmington Hills, Mich., and Erik and his wife, Lisa, of Lake Elmo, Minn.; a sister-in-law, Miriam Cressman of Cambridge, Ont., a brother-in-law, Elmer Crager of Westport, Conn.; and four grandsons.
He was preceded in death by his first wife, Katherine; and a brother, Howard Cressman.
Memorial services were held at Mennonite Church of Normal.

Mennonite Weekly Review, September 12, 2005, 83rd Year, No. 37, p. 12

Linda Adina Martens, 90, of Fairview, Okla., died July 15, 2005. She was born Sept. 29, 1914, to David C. and Lena (Bartel) Peters near the Indiahoma Mission.
When she was 14 she accepted Christ as her personal Savior. She strived to model her life after Christ.
She attended Corn Bible Academy and graduated from Weatherford High School. She graduated from Southwestern Oklahoma State University with an education degree in 1935. Her first job was teaching at Pleasant View School, where she also coached the boy's basketball team. The next two years she taught at Hobart.
On Sept. 24, 1939, she married Walter Martens in a double ceremony with her sister Katie and Jake Neufeld at Corn Mennonite Brethren Church.
They established their home on a farm northwest of Fairview, where they lived for 53 years. After his death, she stayed on the farm 11 more years before moving into Fairview Fellowship Home in 2004.
She served the Lord at Fairview Mennonite Brethren Church, which included serving on the deacon board with Walter, teaching Sunday school, working in the church library and being an active participant in WMS. She spent many years helping care for residents at Fairview Fellowship Home. She enjoyed gardening and quilting.
Survivors include three sons, Dave Martens and his wife, Pam, Trent Martens and his wife, Sheri, and Erland Martens and his wife, Susie, all of Fairview; two daughters, Anna Regier and her husband, Leo, of Hutchinson, Kan., and Lois Mauro and her husband, Francesco, of Rome, Italy; two brothers, Henry Peters of Corn and Don C. Peters of Stillwater; two sisters, Kathryn Neufeld of Corn and Mayra Harms of Stillwater; nine grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Walter P. Martens; a grandson, Bryce Martens; and a brother, Abe Peters.
Funeral services were held at Fairview Mennonite Brethren Church. Burial was in North Mennonite Brethren Cemetery.

Mennonite Weekly Review, September 19, 2005, 83rd Year, No. 38, p. 11

Stella Marjorie Martin, 90, of Orrville, Ohio, died Aug. 19, 2005. She was born March 9, 1915, to Benjamin B. and Myra (Snyder) Shantz at Freeport, Ont.
She trained at Kitchener Waterloo Hospital School of Nursing and graduated as an RN in 1942. She worked as a supervisor at the KW Hospital and did private duty nursing at Victorian Order of Nursing.
In 1945 she left for a 14-month assignment with Mennonite Central Committee at LaPlata Hospital in Puerto Rico. She then attended Goshen (Ind.) College in 1947-48. She returned to Puerto Rico with Mennonite Board of Missions and served there for 23 years in nursing, working as a midwife, starting a rural clinic, doing evangelism and starting a Sunday school and Mennonite fellowship.
She returned to Ontario and married Phares D. Martin on May 2, 1970. He preceded her in death on Dec. 8, 1978. After his death she made a number of trips to Puerto Rico, including several short terms of voluntary service.
She worked at Martin's Book Store in Orrville until her retirement. She served as a volunteer with Hospice of Wayne County and as a member of the Dunlap Memorial Hospital Auxiliary and the Mennonite Nurses Association. She was an active member of Crown Hill Mennonite Church.
Survivors include seven stepchildren, Alice Martin, Grace Martin and Wesley Martin and his wife, Mary Ellen, all of Orrville, Lois Zimmerly and her husband, Denny, of Sterling, Ralph Martin and his wife, Betty, and Carolyn Swartzendruber and her husband, Sandy, all of Goshen, Ind., and Velma Souder and her husband, Stanley, of Telford, Pa.; two brothers, Ralph Shantz of Cambridge, Ont., and Roy Shantz of New Hamburg, Ont.; a brother-in-law, Rae Hilborn of New Hamburg; 21 stepgrandchildren; 52 step-great-grandchildren and 10 step-great-great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by three sisters, Violet Good, Grace Metzger and Edna Hilborn; two brothers, Clayton and Gordon Shantz, and a brother in infancy; and a step-great-great-granddaughter.
Services were held at Crown Hill Mennonite Church of Rittman. Burial was in the church cemetery.


Raymond Vernon Linscheid, 81, of Glendale, Ariz., died Aug. 22, 2005, at Glencroft Care center. He was born Sept. 8, 1923, to Herbert and Sadie (Rupp) Linscheid in Mountain Lake, Minn.
As a youth he attended school in Butterfield, Minn., and graduated from high school in 1941 as salutatorian. In 1938 he was baptized and became a member of Butterfield Mennonite Church.
He married Betty Hartzler on May 21, 1960, at First Mennonite Church in Mountain Lake.
After high school he worked as manager and operator of a local filling station for a couple of years. He then spent four years in Idaho working for his cousin at a farm implement business. After moving back to Minnesota, he worked a number of years at an uncle's hardware store. He became interested in locksmithing and actively enjoyed this until and beyond his retirement. He was a Butterfield substitute rural mail carrier for 15 years and served as Butterfield village clerk for four years. He built a building in Butterfield and established his own short-line implement business for eight years. Then he went to work for four years at an implement shop in Jackson.
He and his wife moved to Hesston, Kan., in 1967, and he was employed by Hesston Corp. as office and grounds maintenance for 18 years until his retirement. In November 1988 they moved to Glencroft Retirement Community in Glendale.
He enjoyed music and played first-chair solo cornet with a municipal band in Minnesota for 15 years. He sang with the Mountain Lake Choral Society a number of years, the Kansas Mennonite Men's Chorus for 18 years, the West Coast Mennonite Men's Chorus in California for eight years and the Arizona Mennonite Men's Chorus. He also participated each Christmas in Minnesota in a 200-member Messiah chorus.
Survivors include his wife of 45 years, Betty; and two brothers, Willis and Delmar of Butterfield.
Memorial services will be held at Trinity Mennonite Church of Glendale.


Victor Sylvester Balzer, 87, of Inman, Kan., died Aug. 30, 2005, at Pleasant View Home. He was born Sept. 18, 1917, to David D. and Agatha Siemens Balzer in McPherson County.
He was a lifelong farmer and Inman-area resident. He graduated from Inman High School and attended Bethel College in North Newton for one year. As a young man he suffered from a lung infection. He welcomed the love and care of Lorene Gaeddert, a nurse who became his wife June 4, 1943.
The couple built a new house on their farm east of Inman, where they raised wheat, milo, beans, corn, cattle and pigs. In 1992, they moved to a duplex at Pleasant View.
He was there for Lorene when she was ill and cared for her until her death on Feb. 6, 1997. He experienced good health until the last year of his life, when he was diagnosed with cancer.
He was baptized and became a member of Hebron Mennonite Church. Later he transferred his membership to Hoffnungsau Mennonite Church, where he was a faithful member until his death.
He was interested in Mennonite faith and history. He put his faith into practice by serving those who needed his care. He enjoyed volunteer work at the Hutchinson Et Cetera shop during his retirement. He helped start the Lucky Leaf 4-H club, in which his children showed champion steers. He was a board member of the Mid-Kansas Coop Association and the district drainage board.
He loved to farm and helped harvest wheat every year until his last birthday. He helped his children with various projects and enjoyed refinishing furniture and donating it to Mennonite Central Committee. He enjoyed traveling overseas and around the United States. He remained cheerful and optimistic as he faced his final illness.
Survivors include his children, Ronald of Newton, Harlin and his wife, Susan, of Hesston, and JoAnn Balzer and Steve Carr of San Jose, Calif.; five grandchildren; his brother, John Balzer of Inman; and his loving friend, Ruth Neufeld of Inman.

Aldine "Bill" Gingerich, 89, of Kalona, Iowa, died Aug. 21, 2005, at Pleasantview Home after a lengthy illness. He was born Dec. 13, 1915, to Christian and Mary (Zehr) Gingerich near Parnell.
He attended Parnell High School. On June 20, 1937, he married Wilma Bender at West Union Mennonite Church near Parnell.
He lived and farmed in the Wellman community all of his life. He was a member of the West Union Mennonite Church, where he taught Sunday school for many years. He enjoyed hunting, fishing and traveling.
Survivors include six children, Lucy Hostetler and her husband, Sanford, of Goshen, Ind., Linda Miller and her husband, Dale, of Kalona; Leland Gingerich and his wife, Julie, of Wellman, Frances Nafziger and her husband, Gary, of Wellman, Twila Miller and her husband, Edward, of Akron, Pa., and Brenda Stauffer and her husband, Ardell, of Akron, Pa.; a brother, Jeremiah Gingerich of Mountain Home, Idaho; and a half sister, Ruth Miller of Wellman; 22 grandchildren and 32 great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Wilma, in January 1998; a sister, Luella Blosser; a brother, Leroy Gingerich; and four grandchildren.
Funeral services were held at West Union Mennonite Church. Burial was in the West Union Cemetery of rural Wellman.

Phoebe May Yoder, 77, died May 30, 2005, of pancreatic cancer, at her home near Bristol, Ind. She was born June 10, 1927, to Ray and Velma (Spicher) Hollopeter in Boneta, Ohio.
She graduated from Sharon Center High School as valedictorian. In 1949 she graduated from Goshen College with a bachelor's degree in home economics.
In July of that year she married Mervin A. Yoder of Clarence Center, N.Y.
With her husband, she served and helped manage Mennonite Youth Village near White Pigeon, Mich., from 1951-64. In 1964 the family moved to Bristol. Shee was a charter member of what became Tri-Lakes Community Church.
Survivors include three daughters, Joanne Yoder and Judy Yoder of Bristol and Anita Reichert and her husband, Ron, of Grand Haven, Mich.; two sons, Jonathan of Bristol and David of Goshen; a sister, Wilma Shank of Goshen; and three brothers, Sheldon Hollopeter and Glenn Hollopeter, both of Medina, Ohio, and Carl Hollopeter of Glendora, Calif.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Mervin, who died May 12, 1990.
Funeral services were held at Tri-Lakes Community Church. Burial was in Trout Creek Cemetery of Bristol.

Gladys E. Krabill, 90, of Orrville, Ohio, died Aug. 22, 2005. She was a lifelong resident of the Louisville area until 1995, when she and her husband, Rollin, moved to Orrvilla Retirement Community in Orrville.
She received her teaching certificate from Goshen (Ind.) College. Her first teaching assignment was third grade at North Canton for two years. After raising her family she taught kindergarten at Washington School for four years and then Pleasant Grove for 11 years, where she was Teacher of the Year in 1970-71. After retiring from public education in 1976, she and her husband served at Lake Center Christian School for three years, he as principal and she as a kindergarten teacher.
She was a lifetime member of the Beech Mennonite Church, where her father, O.N. Johns, was minister for many years. She served in many educational roles, including teaching in Sunday school and summer Bible school.
Survivors include a son, Richard S. Krabill of Madison; a daughter, Joan Gross of Syracuse, N.Y.; three siblings, Velma Miller, Lois Yoder and David Johns; and a grandson and two great-granddaughters.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Rollin W. Krabill; and a sister, Esther.
Services were held at Beech Mennonite Church in Louisville. Burial was in the church cemetery.

Mennonite Weekly Review, September 26, 2005, 83rd Year, No. 39, p. 8

Agnes Epp Regier, 97, of Whitewater, Kan., died April 14, 2005, at Wheat State Manor. She was born Sept. 15, 1907, to John and Anna (Regier) Epp on a farm in rural Whitewater.
Because her mother died two hours after giving birth to her, she was initially raised by her paternal aunt, Agnethe (Epp) Thiessen, and Agnethe's husband, Heinrich. When she was 2, she was returned to her father's home.
She attended elementary school in nearby Brainerd and Hesston Academy. In 1932 she moved to Upland, Calif., where she lived with her cousin, Agnes (Thiessen) Wiebe, and Agnes' husband, Alfred. While there, she obtained her high school diploma by completing courses at Chaffey Junior College in Ontario, Calif.
During a return visit to Kansas, she became engaged to Edward B. Regier, a dairyman in rural Whitewater, and they were married Dec. 12, 1935, at Emmaus Mennonite Church in rural Whitewater. He preceded her in death in 1982.
She was a member of the Emmaus church. Supporting missionaries was an important part of her life. She also valued education and was a homemaker at heart. Her family knew her as a loving mother and grandmother. She enjoyed singing, writing and spending time with her and her husband's many nieces and nephews.
She was the last surviving member of her generation of her family as well as her husband's large family. Survivors include her three children, Arlen Regier and his wife, Clara, of Newton, Joyce Keys and her husband, Robert, of Topeka, and Daryl Regier and his wife, Shari, of rural Whitewater; nine grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren.
Her burial and memorial service took place at Emmaus Mennonite Church.

Nancy Short Riegsecker, 70, died Sept. 12, 2005. She was born April 15, 1935, at Archbold, Ohio, to Lucille and Jesse Short.
After years of parenting and community leadership, she returned to college to complete her undergraduate degree at Pitzer College in Claremont, Calif., and did graduate studies at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena. She sang beautifully, thought theologically in the texts of great hymns and lived out of a daily celebration of spirituality that grew from her love of these texts. She was hospitable, compassionate, attentive to the needs of others, empathic with people who suffer, courageous, feisty and passionate about justice.
She served on the Messiah College board of trustees, the board of Ten Thousand Villages, on two corporate boards and various non-profit organizations. She traveled internationally in joint consultation services with her husband, Marlin, as a part of Mennonite Economic Development Associates. She addressed issues of social justice, development, financial responsibility in philanthropy and her particular interest in women in leadership. She sometimes referred to herself as a "radicalized feminist," seeking full gender parity from a perspective of authentic Christian justice.
She was baptized in her youth at Central Mennonite Church and was a longtime member of Zion Mennonite (both in Archbold, Ohio) and then of Seventh Street Mennonite and later of Upland Brethren in Christ Church, both in Upland. For the last 15 years she was a leader, congregational chair, mentor and counselor to fellow members of Peace Mennonite/Brethren in Christ Church, a home-based church in Claremont, Calif.
Survivors include her husband, Marlin; four children, Timothy, Laura Stephenson and her husband, Phil, Jeff and his wife, Michelle, and Joel and his wife, Cynthia; her mother, Lucille of Archbold, Ohio; three siblings, James of Archbold, Linda Short Rychener of Glendale, Ariz.; and Greg of Archbold; and seven grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by twin brothers, Terry and Larry, in 2000.

Copyright 2005 - All rights reserved - Mennonite Publishing House, Scottdale, PA
Used with permission by the Archives of the Mennonite Church, Goshen, INDIANA
Permission granted to private family researchers to use selected portions of these files to tell their family stories.
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