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Mennonite Weekly Review - April 2009
  Blosser, Mary Ann  Pankratz;   Boshart, Walter Lorain;   Brockmueller, Gordon Lee;   Dick,Viola Wiens;   Froese, Clarence E.;   Galle, Lorraine;   Kiser, Orvin H., Sr.;   Kliewer, Leon R;   Peters, Bertha Rose Regier;   Richard, Eunice M. Amstutz;   Yoder, Luke D.;    
Mennonite Weekly Review - April 6, 2009 - 87th Year, No. 14 - p. 13


Dick,Viola Wiens

Viola Dick, 90, of Mountain Lake, Minn., died March 16, 2009. She was born Feb. 28, 1919, to Jacob H. and Hulda (Flaming) Wiens near Dalmeny, Sask.
The family roots were in Minnesota, but her father had moved the family to Canada so he would not be drafted into the army in World War I. She was 10 years old when the family moved back to Minnesota. At age 14 she accepted Jesus Christ as her Savior and a year later was baptized and became a member of Carson Mennonite Brethren Church.

She graduated from Windom High School in 1937. A young man named Anton Dick and she both sang in the Carson church choir, and their relationship flourished. They were married on July 12, 1938.

They moved to Delft, where he operated a blacksmith shop. In 1942 they moved to his home farm to begin farming as their primary vocation. Throughout their farming years she was a faithful partner and encouragement to her husband. In 1943 the farm was diversified into a turkey enterprise, which they managed for a number of years. Later they purchased and moved to her home farm, which they operated until retirement. Here they initiated a turkey laying hen business.
After retirement, they spent 10 winters in McAllen, Texas. They also spent time in Italy and Japan, assisting with construction projects for her cousins who were missionaries. She loved to quilt and was active in Women’s Mission Society. She served as junior Sunday school superintendent, taught children’s Sunday school classes, served as Christian Endeavor leader and sang in the ladies chorus. She was a faithful member of the Carson congregation until it closed in 2005. Then she joined Mountain Lake Community Bible Church.

She loved gardening and was known for her generous hospitality.

Survivors include three sons, Mervin Dick and his wife, Jane, of Frederick, Colo., Ronald Dick and his wife, Sandra, of Virginia, Minn., and James Dick and his wife, Diane, of Mountain Lake; a daughter, Loretta Larson and her husband, Bernard, of St. Paul; a sister, Martha Funk of Lakewood, Colo.; 10 grandchildren; 17 great-grandchildren and a great-great-grandchild.

She was preceded in death by her husband of 70 years, Anton, by only 21 days; by a sister, Rosella Jost; a brother, Albert Wiens; and a grandson, Perry Dick.


Brockmueller, Gordon Lee

Gordon Lee Brockmueller, 74, of Freeman, S.D., died March 7, 2009, from cancer. He was born June 29, 1934, to Elias and Lillie (Waltner) Brockmueller.
He was baptized and received into Salem Mennonite Church of rural Freeman on Oct. 22, 1950, where he remained a member all his life. On June 25, 1954, he married Shirley Waltner.

He graduated from Freeman Academy in 1952 and from South Dakota State University in 1956. In 1957 he took a position with International Voluntary Service and served with Shirley in Vietnam until 1961. From 1962 to 1965 he worked in the recruiting office of IVS in Washington, D.C. This led to a position as Food for Peace officer with the U.S. Foreign Aid program in Algeria and Tunisia from 1965 to 1970.

The love of farming brought him back to the family farm in 1970, where he remained the rest of his life. In 1988 he was named South Dakota Eminent Farmer, and his portrait was hung in the corridors of Ag Hall at SDSU. He raised and sold certified seed for many years and was a director on the South Dakota Crop Improvement Board from 1983 to 1995. He was a charter board member of the American Oat Association. He made annual trips to Washington, D.C., to lobby Congress for oat research funding. Raising purebred registered Shorthorns was his passion, and in 1989 he was named Builder of the Breed, the highest award issued by the American Shorthorn Association. From 2000 to 2005 he served on the board of directors of the ASA. He was active in the World Shorthorn Conference and attended conferences in Australia, Canada and Argentina. As president in 2004, he and Shirley hosted the WSC in the United States.

Leadership was one of his greatest gifts. He served on the board of directors of Freeman Academy and Junior College for 20 years. He and Shirley established a scholarship fund with Mennonite Foundation for Freeman Academy students. He served on the board of deacons of Salem Mennonite Church.

Survivors include his wife of 54 years, Shirley; two sons, Lee and his wife, Marilyn, of Freeman, and Joseph and his wife, Betty, of Brandon; two daughters, Cindee Evenson and her husband, Tom, and Suzanne Koerner and her husband, Todd, all of Freeman; three sisters, Vivian Gering of Freeman, Cleo Friesen of Mountain Lake, Minn., and Joyce Wipf of Hurley; 11 grandchildren and a great-granddaughter.

Mennonite Weekly Review - April 13, 2009 - 87th Year, No. 15 - p. 17


Blosser, Mary Ann  Pankratz

Mary Ann Blosser, 91, died March 30, 2009, at Kidron Bethel Healthcare in North Newton, Kan. She was born Nov. 8, 1917, to Gerhard G. and Anna (Frey) Pankratz in Goessel.

On June 23, 1946, she married  J. Richard Blosser in Newton. He served 32 years as assistant editor and associate editor of Mennonite Weekly Review. He preceded her in death on Dec. 24, 1998.

She graduated from Bethel College in North Newton with a degree in home economics. She taught for 24 and a half years in the Kansas school system, home economics at the high school level and English, reading and spelling in the seventh and eighth grades. She did office work while attending college and for three years after retiring from teaching.

She was an active member of Bethel College Mennonite Church of North Newton. She enjoyed reading, sewing and quilting. She delighted in having her family together, especially for birthdays and holidays.

Survivors include two daughters, Carol Temple and her husband, Larry, of McPherson, and Debra Penner and her husband, Lee, of Newton; a daughter-in-law, Sarita Blosser of Goessel; and five grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her husband, J. Richard Blosser; a son, Don Blosser; three sisters, Amanda Schrag, Linda Pankratz and Eva (Epp) Unruh; and three brothers, Ted Pankratz, Gus Pankratz and  Peter Pankratz.

Services were held at Bethel   College Mennonite Church. Burial was in Greenwood Cemetery of Newton.


Galle, Lorraine

Lorraine Galle, 81, died April 6, 2009, at Bethesda Home in Goessel, Kan. She was born May 8, 1927, in Valley Center to Oswin K. and Sara (Schmidt) Galle.

She graduated from Valley Center High School in 1945, Bethel College in 1950 and Kansas State University with a master’s degree in 1955. She served as dean of women at Bethel from 1955 to  1961. She then graduated from Washington University in St.   Louis with a master’s degree in   psychiatric social work. She worked at the Topeka State Hospital prior to her accepting a position with Halstead Hospital, where she worked from 1968 until her retirement in 1994.

She was a member of Lorraine Avenue Mennonite Church in Wichita, where she regularly participated in church life.

Shortly after her retirement she was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. She maintained her independence and involvement in activities as long as her body would allow. She and her sister Lillian moved in together so Lillian could help with her physical needs. She enjoyed spending time with her loving family and many friends.

Survivors include two brothers, Karmie Galle of Lawrence and Omer Galle of Liberty Hills, Texas; three sisters, Lillian Galle of North Newton, Darlene Wynn of Council Bluffs, Iowa, and Kathryn Vogt of Wichita; and several nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by a sister, Marianna Ruth Hall.

Services and burial took place at Hillside Cemetery in Sedgwick.


Froese, Clarence E.

Clarence E. Froese, 96, of Inman, Kan., died March 30, 2009, at Pleasant View Home in Inman. He was born Jan. 9, 1913, to Cornelius J. and Sarah (Schmidt) Froese in Inman.

He married Bertha Ann Neufeld on Sept. 5, 1937, at Inman. She  preceded him in death on Aug. 14, 1999.

He graduated from Inman High School. He was a member of Hoffnungsau Mennonite Church, rural Inman, and a former member of Inman Mennonite Church, where he served as a deacon. He was a dairy farmer and also worked for Hesston Corp. He loved God, his family and the land that he was a steward of. 

Survivors include four daughters, Donna Reimer and her husband, John, of Inman, Sarah Friesenhahn of McKinney, Texas, Clareen Beth Wenzel and her husband, Wayne, of Hutchinson, and Cheryl Flaming of Hesston; six grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren and numerous step-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Bertha; a brother, Earl Froese; and a sister, Edna Hildebrand.

Memorial services were held at Hoffnungsau Mennonite Church of rural Inman. Graveside services were held at the North Inman Cemetery.


Boshart, Walter Lorain

Walter Lorain Boshart, 96, of Goshen, Ind., died Feb. 27, 2009, at Greencroft Healthcare. He was born May 30, 1912, to Amos and Abbie (Scott) Boshart in Wayland, Iowa.

He married Beverly Miller in 1999.

He was a longtime member of Eighth Street Mennonite Church and held offices in the national and state Piano Technician’s Guild. Known as the “piano’s friend,” he tuned pianos for many local patrons. He was the piano technician for many local school districts, including Concord, South Bend, Elkhart and Middlebury. He was also the piano technician for Morris Civic Auditorium in South Bend and many of their famous guest artists.

Survivors include his wife, Beverly; a daughter, Jean Stucky and her husband, William, of Goshen; two sons, James Boshart and his wife, Betty Jo Bechtel, of Atoka, Tenn., and Richard Boshart and his wife, Cathy Bauman, of Lebanon, Pa.; a stepson, Lane Lewallen of Wheatland; and a brother, Edwin Boshart of Shaumburg, Ill.

He was preceded in death by his first wife, Marietta Storer; his second wife, Ferne Weller; a sister, Constance Wainwright; and two brothers, Maurice and Robert Boshart.

Memorial services were held at Yoder-Culp Funeral Home. A private burial preceded the service in Forrest Grove Cemetery in Middlebury.

Mennonite Weekly Review - April 20, 2009 - 87th Year, No. 16 - p. 9


Richard, Eunice M. Amstutz

Eunice Marie (Amstutz) Richard, 82, of Sterling, Ohio, died March 24, 2009. She born Dec. 30, 1926, on a farm near Dalton, to Elmer J. and Etta M. (Steiner) Amstutz.

She accepted the Lord as her Savior and joined Martins Mennonite Church of Orrville in 1938.

After graduating from Dalton High School in 1945, she worked at Dalton Pottery and Sonnenberg Insurance Co. She attended Goshen (Ind.) College in 1947-1948. In 1948 she did summer voluntary service at Cleveland State Hospital. She spent September 1948 through February 1949 in Skillman, N.J., working under Mennonite Central Committee with epileptic children. She returned to Dalton and worked at Bergs IGA.

On March 26, 1951, she married Elmer Richard at Martins Mennonite Church. They lived on a farm near Sterling and raised four children. She was a full-time homemaker and worked hard on the family farm. She was a member of Pleasant Hill Mennonite Church of Sterling until it closed in 1973, and was a chorister for many years. She then joined Crown Hill Mennonite Church of Rittman. She edited the church newsletter for 12 years and was an active member of the Gideons Auxiliary.

In 1994 she was diagnosed with breast cancer, which she was able to defeat several times. In 2007 it was discovered that the cancer had metastasized to her bones. Through it all, she kept her deep faith in God and strong love for her family.

She is survived by her husband, Elmer; four children, Phil and his wife, Sandra, of Hesston, Kan., Sidney and his wife, Sandra, of Goshen, Kristina and her husband, Steve Gerber, of Creston, Ohio, and Kent and his wife, Rita, of Talmage, Pa.; seven grandchildren; and a brother, Arlin, of Orrville.

She was preceded in death by brothers Arthur and Cletus and an infant brother and sister, Clarence and Mary Ellen.   

The memorial service and burial were held at Crown Hill Mennonite Church.


Yoder, Luke D.

Pastor Luke D. Yoder, 79, of Pigeon, Mich., died April 4, 2009, at Country Gardens in Pigeon, after a six-month illness with ALS.

He was born Nov. 24, 1929, in Greenwood, Del., to David S. and Savilla (Bender) Yoder.

He married Cora Mae Maust on Dec. 28, 1949, in Pigeon.

He served as minister and overseer of Pigeon River Mennonite Church for more than 40 years. He was as a board member for Rosedale Mennonite Missions, Conservative Mennonite Conference, Eastern Mennonite University and the Mennonite Church.

He earned his living as a farmer, owning and operating Yoder Farms on South Bay Port Road. He believed in the importance of family, church, generosity and grace.

Surviving are his wife, Cora Mae; three sons, Merlin and his wife, Patricia, Darrel and his wife, Lynette, and Dale and his wife, Phyllis, all of Bay Port; a daughter, Gloria Diener and her husband, Eugene, of Harrisonburg, Va.; 11 grandchildren; five brothers, David S. Yoder Jr. of Goshen, Ind., Amos W. Yoder of Lititz, Pa., Paul T. Yoder of Harrisonburg, Daniel V. Yoder and Jesse Yoder of Dover, Del.; and two sisters, Naomi Yoder of Blountstown, Fla., and Miriam Hull of Wytheville, Va.

He was preceded in death by a granddaughter, Katie L. Yoder; a sister, Ruth Y. Bontrager; and two brothers, his twin, Mark B. Yoder, and John J. Yoder.

The funeral service was held at Pigeon River Mennonite Church. Burial was in the church cemetery.


Kiser, Orvin H., Sr.

Orvin Herman Kiser Sr., younger brother of Roy Kiser, who founded Waynesboro (Va.) Mennonite Church, died March 30, 2009, after a courageous battle with mesothelioma. He was born May 17, 1932, in Stuarts Draft, to Marvin Turner Kiser and Edna Campbell Kiser.

He was a founding member of Waynesboro Mennonite Church and had served in many capacities, including head teacher of the Open Door Sunday School Class. He enjoyed widespread recognition for his contributions to community service projects, including starting little league football in Stuarts Draft. He served as president of the Stuarts Draft Ruritan Club and was active in the Booster Club and Sportsman Club. For eight years he served on the Augusta County Board of Supervisors, which he chaired in 2001. A builder and businessman with many interests, he was a constant supporter of Christian and civic organizations.

The devotion he enjoyed from community and church friends was demonstrated by an overflow crowd of visitors who attended his memorial service at Waynesboro Mennonite Church on April 4.

Surviving are his wife, Phyllis; two sons, Orvan H. Kiser Jr. and Ronald E. Kiser; a daughter, Teri, Fust; and nine grandchildren.


Kliewer, Leon R

Leon R. Kliewer of Buhler, Kan., died April 11, 2009. He was born May 1, 1945, in York, Neb., to Cornelius C. and Marie Dick Kliewer.

He accepted Christ as his personal Savior and was baptized and became a member of Bethesda Mennonite Church, Henderson, Neb., on June 10, 1962.

After graduating from Bethel College in North Newton, Kan., he married Mary Mierau on June 10, 1967, at Bethesda Mennonite Church. He served two years in alternative service at Methodist Youthville in Newton.

He entered the banking field, serving as a loan officer at the Bank of Whitewater, Kan., and Midland National Bank of Newton. After nine years of banking, the opportunity to own a bank insurance and real estate agency became available in Buhler. He purchased the agency and renamed it Buhler Agency, which prospered and grew for more than 30 years.

He served in the churches where he lived as a Sunday school teacher, treasurer and on various committees and boards, including the Bethel College Alumni Association and Western District Conference board of trustees. He was active in the Buhler Chamber of Commerce, Buhler fall festival committee and Buhler centennial committee.

His greatest joy was being married to Mary and raising three sons. He considered it a privilege and responsibility to support them in displaying their God-given talents, particularly in music.

He is survived by his wife, Mary; three sons, David L. DeHoogh-Kliewer and his wife, Michelle, of Sioux Falls, S.D., Christopher C. Kliewer and his wife, Cara, of Wichita, and Benjamin L. Kliewer of Wichita; and four grandchildren.

Services were held at First Mennonite Church of Newton. Burial was at Buhler East Cemetery.

Mennonite Weekly Review  - April 27, 2009 - 87th Year, No. 17 - p. 9


Peters, Bertha Rose Regier

Bertha Rose Peters, 83, of Henderson, Neb., died April 18, 2009, at Aurora. She was born Aug. 13, 1925, in York County, to John A. and Nettie (Siemens) Regier. 

She married Carl D. Peters on Feb. 21, 1946, at Henderson. 

She worked for 30 years at the Henderson Hospital as a cook and CNA. She was an active member of Bethesda Mennonite Church in Henderson, where she belonged to Mission Circle I and had previously served as Sunday school superintendent and Bible school teacher. She was also a member of Friendship Circle Club.

She always welcomed friends and family to her home and especially enjoyed spending time with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She was a loving wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend and will be missed by everyone she leaves behind.

Survivors include her husband, Carl, of Henderson; a son, Joe Peters and his wife, Lillian, of North Newton, Kan.; a daughter, Linda Heisey and her husband, Daryl, of Rexville, N.Y.; a sister, Pansy Janzen of Henderson; a sister-in-law, Martha Hiebner of Henderson; six grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; two step-grandchildren and two step-great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by an infant brother, Lester; a brother, James Regier and his wife, Evelyn; a sister, Irene Friesen and her husband, Arnold; and brothers-in-law Frank Janzen and Irvin Hiebner.

Graveside services were scheduled for Bethesda Cemetery in Henderson. Memorial services were scheduled for Bethesda Mennonite Church in Henderson.

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Copyright 2003 - 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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