Mennonite Weekly Review - March 2009
Evelyn B. Landis; Baer,
Lowell F.; Burkholder, Harold E.; Dick, Anton; Friesen,
Wiebe; Graber, Ryan Scott; Hershberger, Irene; Johns, Edith M. Hoover; Penner,
Luella Esther Tieszen;
Mennonite Weekly Review - March 2, 2009 - 87th Year, No. 9 - p. 13
Baer, Lowell F.
Lowell F. Baer, 96, of
Sterling, Ill., died Jan. 16, 2009. He was born May 28, 1912.
He married Dorothy Musgrave on Jan. 16, 1937. She preceded him in death
on Nov. 22, 1996.
He was educated in the Sterling schools. He was employed by
Northwestern Steel and Wire Co. for 41 years before retiring in 1975.
He was an active member of Science Ridge Mennonite Church of Sterling,
serving in leadership roles. In 1977, he was ordained as a lay
minister, serving in Illinois prisons, and as interim pastor at the
Christian Church in Polo. He served as a volunteer minister in area
nursing homes and church services and for those who had no pastor.
His hobbies included exhibiting Wyandotte chickens at poultry shows. He
was a charter member of Rock River Racing Pigeon Club and served on
various committees in the community.
Survivors include his wife, Lee Gowan Baer, whom he married on April
19, 1998; five daughters, Barbara Ebersole and her husband, James, of
Aurora, Judith Long and her husband, Leonard, of Sterling, Beth Shank
and her husband, Philip, of Wellman, Iowa, Dorothy Ulrich and her
husband, David, of Denver, Colo., and Lila Miller and her husband,
Edward, of Wauseon, Ohio; two stepdaughters, Judy Repass and her
husband, Curtis, of Rock Falls, and June Sullivan and her husband,
Donald, of Sandwich; 18 grandchildren; six step-grandchildren and
Funeral services were held at Science Ridge Mennonite Church. Burial
was in Science Ridge Mennonite Cemetery.
Weekly Review - March 9, 2009 - 87th Year, No. 10 - p. 8
Graber, Ryan Scott
Ryan Scott Graber, 23, of
Hurley, S.D., and died Feb. 12, 2009, in a grain bin accident on his
family farm. He was born April 15, 1985, to Calvin and Linda Graber of
He was baptized May 19, 2002, and received into membership of Salem
Mennonite Church of rural Freeman. His faith was nurtured by his
family, his church and Swan Lake Christian Camp. He served as an usher
at his church.
As a child he demonstrated exceptional aptitude in athletics and
academics, especially mathematics. His cheerful and respectful demeanor
made him a favorite among his family, teachers and coaches. His
pleasant smile and unbending moral character allowed him to unknowingly
serve as a role model.
He was a 12-year member of the Golden Rule/Rosefield Feeders 4-H Club
of Turner County, where he won many awards, including Turner County 4-H
He played in two South Dakota Legion baseball tournaments for the
Marion-Hurley teeners. He was an all-conference basketball player for
the Hurley Bulldogs, and later played on a state champion slow-pitch
softball team for Coca-Cola of Sioux Falls. He enjoyed golf, softball
and independent basketball.
He graduated from Hurley High School in 2003 as valedictorian of his
class. He graduated summa cum laude in 2007 from South Dakota State
University with majors in ag business and ag economics.
He had begun a promising career on the family farm as, together with
his father, uncle and grandparents, he was an integral part of Graber
Jerseys Inc. of Parker and Hurley. He demonstrated outstanding animal
husbandry, crop production and financial management skills. He was the
sixth generation of his family to till the rich soils of Turner County,
and the fifth generation to raise Registered Jersey cattle.
Survivors include his parents, Calvin and Linda Graber; three sisters,
Tracy Petersen, Kayla Graber and Katelyn Graber, all of Hurley; his
grandparents, Jerry and Rachel Graber of Parker and Robert Thompson of
Hurley; a great-grandmother, Mayme Thompson; and his very special
friend, Krista Evenson of Willow Lake. He was preceded in death by his
maternal grandmother, Geraldine Thompson.
Burkholder, Harold E.
Harold E. Burkholder, 77, of
Baltimore, Md., died Jan. 15, 2009, of complications from a stroke. He
was born Jan. 27, 1931, to Clarence A. and Blanche (Herr) Burkholder
near Lancaster, Pa.
He married Mary Jane Myers on June 16, 1951.
He was baptized at Mellinger Mennonite Church of Lancaster and was a
1948 graduate of East Lampeter High School of Witmer Heights, Pa.
In July 1953, he and his wife moved from near Lancaster to Baltimore to
join a mission project, beginning Wilkens Avenue Mennonite Church,
where he served as a licensed minister and had various other
responsibilities. He was active with several other church plants in the
Baltimore area and served on the board of Mount Clare Christian School.
He was regional director for Mennonite Disaster Service and a board
member of Camp Andrews, Holtwood, Pa.
He was employed by Electric Motor Repair Co. of Baltimore as a master
electrician for almost 50 years. One of his favorite tasks was working
on electric motors aboard ships anchored in the Baltimore harbor.
Survivors include his wife, Jane; two sons, J. Michael Burkholder of
Baltimore and David K. Burkholder and his wife, Rosemary, of
Woodbridge, Va.; two daughters, Ruth Ann Gochnauer and her husband,
James, of Brooklyn, N.Y., and Barbara Sue Liberto and her husband,
Stephen, of Ellicott City; two brothers, J. Richard Burkholder and his
wife, Susan, of Goshen, Ind., and Charles A. Burkholder and his wife,
Aleda, of Green Valley, Ariz.; 16 grandchildren and two
Memorial services were held at Catonsville. Burial was in New Cathedral
Cemetery of Baltimore.
Irene Hershberger, 89, of
Walnut Creek, Ohio, died Feb. 25, 2009, at Walnut Hills Nursing Home.
She was born Jan. 18, 1920, to Homer and Leora (Hostetler) Hershberger
in Walnut Creek.
She graduated from Walnut Creek High School in 1937 and from Goshen
(Ind.) College in 1947 with a bachelor of arts degree. She received her
master of science degree in education from Indiana University in 1956.
She taught business courses at Goshen College for a number of years and
then was executive secretary at Goshen Seminary in Elkhart. She spent a
number of years in Germany working with MCC and traveled extensively in
Europe while there. After returning to the U.S. she went to Walnut
Creek to help her ailing mother. From 1967 to 1987 she taught typing,
keyboarding and business at Central Christian High School in Kidron.
She was known to make students put away their calculators and use their
heads. After retiring from CCHS, she was a tour guide at Yoder’s Amish
Home in Trail for a number of years.
Never married and living with her brother Merlin, she always made sure
his needs were met. Together they traveled and went to concerts and
tours. She was well traveled and an interesting person who always had a
story to tell. She had friends all over the world. She was a member of
Walnut Creek Fine Arts Club, a charter member of Joel Pomerene Hospital
Auxiliary and an active member of Walnut Creek Mennonite Church. She
enjoyed reading, doing crossword puzzles and word searches and playing
scrabble and “pick.”
Survivors include a brother, Merlin Hershberger; a sister-in-law, Norma
Hershberger of Walnut Creek; and nieces Cheryl Yoder of Wooster, Marsha
Snyder of Sarasota, Fla., and Bonnie Mellor of Dover.
She was preceded in death by a brother, Howard; an infant sister,
Marjorie; and a nephew, Ronald.
Services were held at Walnut Creek Mennonite Church. Burial was in the
Mennonite Weekly Review - March 16, 2009 - 87th Year, No. 11 - p. 8
Friesen, Helen Elizabeth Wiebe
Helen Elizabeth Friesen, 83, of
Mountain Lake, Minn., died March 2, 2009, at Sogge Memorial Good
Samaritan Center in Windom. She was born Nov. 3, 1925, in Wichita,
Kan., and was adopted at the age of three months by John H. and Martha
(Claassen) Wiebe of Whitewater, Kan.
After her graduation from Whitewater High School, she continued her
education at Bethel College in North Newton, Kan. In June 1941, she was
baptized at Emmaus Mennonite Church in Whitewater.
On Dec. 2, 1947, she married Willard Friesen, whom she met while at
Bethel College, at Emmaus Mennonite Church. They made their home in
Butterfield until 1990, when they moved to Mountain Lake.
She was a member of Bethel Mennonite Church in Mountain Lake, where she
served as an organist, choir director, Sunday school teacher, Sunday
school superintendent, on the music committee, and was a member of
Worship and Sew. She was also active in many areas of the Northern
District and General Conference Mennonite Church.
She had a special gift of music. She taught piano, was a member of the
Butterfield PTA, participated in the Mountain Lake Choral Society,
wrote a weekly column for the Observer/Advocate in Mountain Lake and
Butterfield. She had several of her works published. She enjoyed
reading, cooking, baking, sewing, knitting, crocheting, writing letters
and music. She became a resident of Sogge Memorial Good Samaritan
Center in Windom in August 2005.
Survivors include her husband, Willard Friesen of Mountain Lake; two
sons, Douglas Friesen and his wife, Sandra, of Elkhart, Ind., and Alan
Friesen and his wife, Charlene, of Webster, S.D.; a daughter-in-law,
Patsy Friesen of St. Cloud; a sister, Agnes Harder of Whitewater; a
brother, Willard Wiebe of Whitewater; two half sisters and a half
brother, whom she met later in life and became friends with; 10
grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by a son, Donald Friesen, in 2008; and two
brothers, Howard Wiebe and Eldon Wiebe.
Funeral service were held at Bethel Mennonite Church of Mountain Lake.
Burial was in Mountain Lake Cemetery.
Johns, Edith M. Hoover
Edith M. Johns, 85, of Goshen,
Ind., died Feb. 5, 2009, at her home. She was born May 1, 1923, to John
Maynard and Mandella (Bachtel) Hoover in Goshen.
She lived in the Goshen area except for six years in Ontario. She was
self-employed as a professional quilter and was a pastor’s wife. She
was a member of Benton Mennonite Church, active in many church-quilting
circles in the area, and a member of the Goshen Aphasia Support Group.
She married Galen Johns on May 16, 1943, at Clinton Frame Mennonite
Survivors include her husband, Galen; four children, Steven Johns and
his wife, Debra, of Goshen, Lois Kaufmann and her husband, Jim, of New
Paris, Loren Johns and his wife, Rachel, of Goshen, and Lindale Johns
and his wife, Melanie, of Benton; a daughter-in-law, Jeanette Johns of
Sheridan, Mich.; five siblings, Lowell Hoover and his wife, Velorous,
Miriam Bontreger and her husband, Vernon, Arlene Hershberger, and
Lucile Chupp and her husband, Menno, all of Goshen; a sister-in-law,
Edna Hoover of Goshen; a half sister, Ruth Hoover of New Paris; and a
half brother, John Maynard Hoover of Glen Flora, Wis.; 14 grandchildren
and 10 great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by a son, Joe Alan; a daughter, Rachel
Nanlee; and two brothers, Norman Richard and Donald Hoover.
Anton Dick, 97, of Mountain
Lake, Minn., died Feb. 23, 2009. He was born Sept. 1, 1911, to John K.
and Helena (Buhler) Dick on a farm between Mountain Lake and Delft.
He was baptized and joined Carson Mennonite Brethren Church, where he
was a member until the church closed in 2005. He then joined Community
Bible Church in Mountain Lake. He attended the District 80 West country
school through the eighth grade.
On July 12, 1938, he married Viola Wiens. They moved to Delft, where he
owned and operated a blacksmith shop. In 1942 they moved to his home
farm, and he took up farming as his primary vocation. In 1943 he
injected new vigor into the farm by diversifying to include a turkey
enterprise, which he managed until he retired. Later they moved to
Viola’s 160-acre home farm, which he operated until his retirement and
initiated a turkey laying hen business. After retirement they spent 10
winters in McAllen, Texas, where he often joined men who went into
Mexico to do construction and repair work at an orphanage. He spent
time in Italy and Japan assisting with construction projects for
relatives of Viola who were missionaries.
For a number of years he was a pianist for the Carson Male Chorus,
which had a weekly radio broadcast. At the Carson church he served as a
trustee, deacon, Sunday school treasurer and member of the building
committee when the church moved from rural Carson Township to Delft.
After retirement he pursued woodworking. He made items for the annual
MCC sale in Sioux Falls. At age 82 he developed an interest in leaded
glass and took classes in Windom to develop this skill.
Survivors include his wife, Viola; three sons, Mervin and his wife,
Jane, of Frederick, Colo., Ronald and his wife, Sandra, of Virginia,
Minn., and James and his wife, Diane, of Mountain Lake; a daughter,
Loretta Larson and her husband, Bernard, of St. Paul; 10 grandchildren;
17 great-grandchildren and a great-great-grandchild.
He was preceded in death by his brothers, John, Waldo and Orlando; his
sister, Agatha Boldt; and a grandson, Perry Dick.
Penner, Luella Esther Tieszen
Luella Esther Penner, 86, of
Freeman, S.D., died Feb. 28, 2009. She was born Jan. 12, 1923 to Dr.
Henry P. and Aganetha (Ewert) Tieszen on a farm west of Marion.
She graduated from Marion High School in 1941 and Freeman Junior
College in 1943. She continued at Bethel Deaconess Hospital School of
Nursing, Newton, Kan., earning a Registered Nurse degree in 1946.
Occupationally, she spent her entire life as a medical record
librarian. She was employed in Kansas and Wisconsin hospitals and
worked at regional nursing homes as a self-employed consultant. She
retired in 1988. She had been a member of the American Association of
Medical Record Librarians, as well as the Wisconsin Association of
Medical Record Librarians. She served as president of the latter
She married Randy Penner on Dec. 29, 1946, at Bethesda Mennonite Church
of rural Marion. They first lived in Kansas, then moved to Hudson,
Wis., in 1953. In 1999 they bought a home near Freeman to be nearer her
nieces. Randy died on Christmas Eve in 2002, so she moved to Salem
Mennonite Home in Freeman in April 2003.
Her vocation related to medicine, but her avocation related to food:
cooking, trying new recipes and entertaining. Other hobbies she enjoyed
were bird-watching, letter writing, embroidery and knitting.
She was raised in a conservative Mennonite home and was baptized as a
teenager. They were members of First Presbyterian Church in Hudson,
Wis., then House of Hope Presbyterian Church in St. Paul, Minn. She
became a member of Salem Mennonite Church of Freeman in 2004.
Survivors include seven nieces and nephews: Florence Miller of Freeman;
Joanne Hamre of Baltic; Elaine Doell of Elfrida, Ariz.; Judy Glanzer of
Bridgewater; LeRoy Tschetter of Chattanooga, Tenn.; Charles Tschetter
of Mentor, Ohio; and John Tschetter of Wichita, Kan.
She was preceded in death by her husband of 56 years, Randy; two
siblings in infancy, Albert and Nettie; and three sisters, Ida Rose
Hofer, Arpa Tschetter and Johanna Hofer.
Aldefer, Evelyn B. Landis
Evelyn B. Aldefer, 84, of
Harleysville, Pa., died March 6, 2009, at Peter Becker Community. She
was born to Clinton D. and Ellen (Beidler) Landis in West Rockhill
She was a volunteer as a bed maker at Peter Becker and at Grand View
Hospital, where she worked in the former Grand View Snack Bar.
She was a member of Salford Mennonite Church, where she enjoyed Sewing
Circle and quilting. As a younger woman, she taught summer Bible
school. As the wife of a board member of Spruce Lake Retreat, she
enjoyed volunteer activities at Spruce Lake. Above all, she was a
homemaker, who received special joy from her grandchildren.
Survivors include her husband of 63 years, Sanford A. Alderfer; four
children, Diane L. Kropf and her husband, Eugene, Linda L. Martin and
her husband, Vernon L., Sandy L. Alderfer and his wife, Gail E., and
Dwight L. Alderfer and his wife, Bev, all of Vernfield; a brother,
Merrill B. Landis and his wife, Betty, of Telford; a sister, Catherine
B. Derstine of Vernfield; 12 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
Memorial services were held at Salford Mennonite Church in
Harleysville. There was a private burial in the church cemetery.
There are no obituaries in the March 23
issue of MWR.
Mennonite Weekly Review - March 30, 2009 -
87th Year, No. 13 - p. 9
Schierling, Henry F.
Henry F. Schierling, 92, of
Dallas, Ore., died March 13, 2009, at Dallas Retirement Village, where
he resided for nine years. He was born June 4, 1916, to Peter and Lena
Fast Schierling in Litchfield, Neb.
He married Dora Friesen on July 1, 1941, in Mountain Lake, Minn.
After their marriage, they moved to Portland, where he attended trade
school to be a machinist. He worked in the Portland shipyards.
They then settled on a farm in Dallas in 1945. He enjoyed farming. He
also worked at Caterpillar in Dallas as a machinist and shop foreman
and retired in 1977.
He was an active member of the Evangelical Bible Church in Dallas. He
and Dora enjoyed travel and taking pictures.
Survivors include four children, Karen Graber and her husband, Larry,
Jerald Schierling, Howard Schierling and Sue Olson; 10 grandchildren
and 12 great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Dora, in 1999.
Services were held at Evangelical Bible Church.
Richard M. Kissell, 87, of
York, Pa., and formerly of Thomas Mills, died March 12, 2009. He was
born Sept. 18, 1921, to Ralph and Agnes (Livingston) Kissell in
He was a member of the first graduating class of Conemaugh Township
Area High School. He served in Civilian Public Service during World War
II with assignments in Virginia and Rhode Island. He was a master
plumber and owner of Richard M. Kissell Plumbing and Heating for 44
years. He served as a missionary with the Mennonite church in
Araguacema, Brazil, for 12 years, where he worked tirelessly to improve
all aspects of the locals’ lives. He was an original member of and the
major driving force behind the steering committee that eventually
resulted in building Laurel View Village Retirement Center in
Davidsville. He was a member of Carpenter Park Mennonite Church, and he
faithfully served in various local and regional church capacities
throughout his life.
Survivors include his wife of 64 years, Novelda (Thomas) Kissell of
York; four children, Kathleen Crum and her husband, Peter J., Girven R.
Kissell and his wife, Beth, all of Dallas, Texas, Barbara Scott and her
husband, Thomas R., of York, and Rebecca Richards and her husband, Jay
R., of Harrisonburg, Va.; three sisters, Esther Ems and Ferne Mayak,
both of St. Petersburg, Fla., and Ruth Van Wald of Fort Wayne, Ind.;
and nine grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by an infant brother, Loraine, and brother
A memorial service will be held April 11 at 11 a.m. at Carpenter Park
Mennonite Church, Davidsville, Pa. One of Richard Kissell’s many
projects while in Araguacema, Brazil, was the founding and building of
a K-12 school. In his memory, the RMK Memorial Escola Menno Simons Fund
has been established by the family. Checks should be made to RMK
Memorial Fund and mailed to Barbara Scott, 189 Highland Road, York, PA
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Mennonite Publishing House, Scottdale, PA
Used with permission by the Archives of the Mennonite Church, Goshen,
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