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Mennonite Weekly Review - June 2009
     Beckler, Lawrence W.;   Bender, Paul E.;   Diener, Clayton H.;    Ewy, Raymond Arthur;    Klassen, Selma Freni Strausz;   Neufeld, Daniel A.;    Richard, Phil Lamarr;    Roth, Dennis E.;   
Mennonite Weekly Review -  June 1, 2009 - 87th Year, No. 22 - p. 9


Bender, Paul E.

Paul E. Bender, 83, of Belleville, Pa., died May 13, 2009. He was born July 9, 1925, to Lewis and Barbara (Miller) Bender in Kalona, Iowa.
He married Leona M. Miller on Dec. 10, 1949.
He served in Civilian Public Service for three years in Terry, Mont., during World War II, attended Eastern Mennonite University and Penn State University, and was ordained for ministry in 1949.
He taught school in Salisbury, Pa., while operating a watch repair shop in Grantsville, Md. He moved to Belleville to be principal at Belleville Mennonite School, pastored several churches, including Allensville Mennonite Church for 22 years, and owned and operated a watch and clock repair business and a tax preparation service.
He was a member of Allegheny Mennonite Conference since 1948, a 19-year member of Big Valley Mennonite Historical Society, and an active member of Barrville Mennonite Church, serving as elder, teaching Sunday school and occasionally preaching. He enjoyed his family, friends, astronomy, biking and genealogy.
Survivors include his wife, Leona; six children, Lois Arnold of Bronx, N.Y., John Bender and his wife, Mildred, of Greensboro, N.C., Roy Bender and his wife, Connie, of Lancaster, Titus Bender and his friend, Amy, of Belleville, Miriam Ferguson and her husband, John, of Mechanicsville, Va., and Loren Bender and his wife, Judy, of New Holland; a brother, Daniel Bender and his wife, Ora; four sisters, Nina Yoder, Mary Miller and her husband, Lloyd, Vera Yoder, and Gladys Fisher and her husband, Robert; a sister-in-law, Frieda Bender; 14 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by a son, Kevin Ray; a grandson, Ryan Bender; a son-in-law, Roger Arnold; and a brother, Clarence.
Services were held at Maple Grove Mennonite Church. Burial was in Allensville Mennonite Cemetery.


Neufeld, Daniel A.

Daniel A. Neufeld died March 7, 2009. He was born Nov. 19, 1917.
A graduate of Whittier (Calif.) College in 1941, he served in Civilian Public Service prior to embarking upon a career as a teacher. In 1942 he entered the CPS camp in North Fork, then moved to Three Rivers. Son Paul was born in Dinuba before his wife, Gladys, joined him in Terry and Belton, Mont. The next stop was Freeman, S.D., where he taught at Freeman Academy and daughter Phyllis was born. Then it was on to Hillsboro, Kan., and Tabor College, where he taught and coached, and daughter Joyce was born. The family finally settled in the Reedley area, where he continued to teach, and daughter Christine was born.
He is remembered as one who served — as a teacher, as a principal at Immanuel High School, as Hartland Camp director, and as a volunteer at the MCC Nearly New Store in Reedley. In retirement, he directed the U.S. Mennonite Brethren Christian Service Program.
Survivors include his wife of 67 years, Gladys; a son, Paul, and his wife, Judy, of Wasco; three daughters, Phyllis Byers of Oakhurst, Joyce Braun and her husband, Bill, of Fresno, and Christine Wall and her husband, Sam, of Madera; two brothers, Charles and his wife, Verna, and Raymond and his wife, Ethel; brothers-in-law Bob Willems and his wife, Lucille, and Norman Willems and his wife, Lollie; sister-in-law Verna Wright and her husband, Cliff; four grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.
Burial was in Kingsburg Cemetery. A memorial service was held at Kingsburg Mennonite Brethren Church.

Mennonite Weekly Review - June 8, 2009 -  87th Year, No. 23 - p. 9


Beckler, Lawrence W.

Lawrence W. Beckler, 86, of Seward, Neb., died March 8, 2009, in Peoria, Ariz. He was born Dec. 11, 1922, to William and Anna (Roth) Beckler on a farm southwest of Milford, Neb.

He was a charter member of Bellwood Mennonite Church in Milford. He also attended Trinity Mennonite Church in Glendale, Ariz. He was a member of Rotary International, Seward Country Club, Seward County Historical Society, Seward Area Chamber of Commerce, Mennonite Economic Development Associates, and served on Seward City Council and Southeast Community College Board of Governors. He was the former owner/ operator of Beckler’s Implement of Seward.

Survivors include his wife, Lillian (Stutzman) Beckler, of Seward; two sons, Richard Beckler and his wife, Ruth, of Lincoln, and Larry Beckler and his wife, Teri, of Pasadena, Calif.; two brothers, Robert Beckler of Beaver Crossing and Charles Beckler of Friend; two sisters, Mary Jantzi of Lebanon, Ore., and Donna Stauffer of Milford; four stepchildren, Rebecca Kremer and her husband, Dale, of Sun City, Ariz., Warren Eicher and his wife, Donna, of Lincoln, Tamara Wergin and her husband, Ron, of Lincoln, and James Eicher and his wife, Kaye, of Columbus; five grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; nine step-grandchildren and nine step-great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his first wife, Della (Reeb) Beckler; a brother, Orie Beckler; and a sister, Edna and Wallace Stauffer.
Memorial services were held at Bellwood Mennonite Church of Milford. Burial was in Seward Cemetery.

Mennonite Weekly Review - June 15, 2009 - 87th Year, No. 24 - p. 9


Klassen, Selma Freni Strausz

Selma Freni (Strausz) Klassen, 94, died April 7, 2009, at Schowalter Villa in Hesston, Kan. She was born Jan. 2, 1915, to Peter J. and Anna (Flickner) Strausz near Moundridge.
She was baptized upon her profession of faith on June 16, 1929, at Eden Mennonite Church of Moundridge. She later transferred her membership to Alexanderwohl Mennonite Church at Goessel, where she was involved with Willing Workers Sewing Circle, the education committee, and teaching Sunday school and Bible school.
She married Rudolph A. (R.A.) Klassen on October 22, 1937. He preceded her in death on Dec. 1, 1990.
Their first home was in Newton. They established a farm near Goessel in 1944, where they lived until 1962. At that time, they moved to Lebanon, Kan., where they lived for 11 years. They were associate members of Lebanon United Methodist Church. She was active in Women’s Society of Christian Service and taught Sunday school and Bible study classes. She was also a 4-H leader. They moved back to Goessel in 1973. She moved to Schowalter Villa in 2003.
She was a graduate of Moundridge High School and Salt City Business College in Hutchinson.  She worked as a clerk, typesetter and secretary. She loved the Lord dearly and had a passion for Bible study and Bible teaching. She had a heart for missions and devoted her life to God, family, church and community.
Survivors include four children, Donald Klassen and his wife, Roine, of Sioux Falls, S.D., James Klassen and his wife, Ly, of Dallas, Texas, Vernell Miller and her husband, Paul, of Hanston, and Cynthia Goerzen and her husband, Les, of Goessel; a brother, Melvin Strausz and his wife, Viola, of Hutchinson; eight grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
Besides her husband, she was also preceded in death by an infant daughter, Agnetha Ann; and six siblings, Lorena, Orlando, Ruth, Benjamin, Esther and Walter.
A memorial service was held at Alexanderwohl Mennonite Church of Goessel.


Diener, Clayton H.

Clayton H. Diener, 90, of Hesston, Kan., died June 4, 2009. He was born Dec. 10, 1918, to Harry A. and Amanda (Selzer) Diener in Proctor, Mo.
He married Inez Snyder on June 22, 1945, in Albany, Ore.
He was a retired surgeon. He worked in general medical practice in Puerto Rico, Haven and Hesston prior to serving as chief of surgery at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Wichita for 25 years. He was a member of Whitestone Mennonite Church of Hesston.
Survivors include his wife of almost 64 years, Inez Diener; three sons, Don Diener and his wife, Maria, of Las Vegas, Nev., Dwight Diener of Hesston and Dennis Diener of New Haven, Conn.; three brothers, Edward Diener and his wife, Esther, of Archbold, Ohio, Paul Diener of Hesston and Herman Diener and his wife, Mary Ellen, of Hutchinson; and a sister-in-law, Carrie Diener.
He was preceded in death by four brothers, Daniel, Truman, Willard and Harold Diener.
Memorial services were held at Whitestone Mennonite Church of Hesston. Burial was in Eastlawn Cemetery.


Roth, Dennis E.

Dennis E. Roth, 78, of Corry, Pa., died May 28, 2009. He was born June 18, 1930, to Irvin and Esther Hershberger Roth in Seward, Neb.
He was raised and educated in Nebraska and moved with his family to Corry in 1947. As a young man he helped his father on the family dairy farm. He spent two years in Illinois in alternate service with the Mennonite church.
He married A. Joanne Imhoff on Nov. 16, 1957, in Carlock, Ill.
He was the owner and operator of Corry Peat Products, where he was first in partnership with Russ Graham and later with his sons. He was an active member of Beaverdam Mennonite Church. Over the years, he served as an elder, a trustee and an usher in the church. He enjoyed motorcycling, traveling, and held his private pilot’s license. He especially enjoyed spending time with his grandchildren.
Survivors include his wife of 51 years, A. Joanne Roth; two sons, Randal Roth and Roger Roth and his wife, Kathy, all of Corry; a daughter-in-law, Katherine Roth Daniels of Tampa, Fla.; a sister, Marlene Sorenson and her husband, Dick, of Columbus; three brothers, Lonnie Roth and his wife, Jane, of Norristown, David Roth and his wife, Martha, of Corry and Norman Roth and his wife, Christy, of Waterford; seven grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by a son, Bruce Roth.
A memorial service was held at Beaverdam Mennonite Church. Burial was in Lawn Cemetery of Beaverdam.

Mennonite Weekly Review - June 22, 2009 - 87th Year, No. 25 - p. 21


Richard, Phil Lamarr

Phil Lamarr Richard, 56, of Hesston, Kan., died June 7, 2009, at Newton Medical Center. He was born Aug. 3, 1952, to Elmer J. and Eunice M. (Amstutz) Richard in Orrville, Ohio.
He accepted the Lord as his personal Savior and joined Pleasant Hill Mennonite Church, Sterling, Ohio, in 1964. He graduated from Norwayne High School in 1970, and from Goshen (Ind.) College in 1974.
He worked for several radio stations as news director/general manager, followed by employment in communications at Mennonite Board of Missions in Elkhart, Ind., and Eastern Mennonite Missions in Salunga, Pa. In July 2002, he became director of communications at Hesston College.
He married Sandi K. McLaughlin on Oct. 23, 1999, at Akron (Pa.) Mennonite Church.
They began their married life in East Petersburg, Pa. They served a three-month volunteer term with Christian radio station KYKD in Bethel, Alaska, in 2001.
He was a member of Hesston Mennonite Church, where he participated in the bell choir and one of the praise teams. His hobbies included sports, sports card collecting, coin collecting, reading, journaling, and playing and listening to music. He enjoyed playing the piano and was recently learning how to play the organ. He had a great sense of humor and loved to tell jokes. He had a gift of compassion and a sensitive, caring spirit.
In March of 2006, he was diagnosed with lung cancer. In March of 2009, it was discovered that the cancer had metastasized to other parts of his body. Through it all, he kept his deep faith in God.
Survivors include his wife, Sandi; his father, Elmer, of Creston, Ohio; three siblings, Sidney and his wife, Sandra J., of Goshen, Ind., Kristina Gerber and her husband, Steve, of Creston, Ohio, and Kent and his wife, Rita, of Talmage, Pa.; 13 nephews and nieces and a great-niece.
He was preceded in death by his mother, Eunice.
Memorial services were held at Hesston Mennonite Church. Burial will take place in Ohio.


Ewy, Raymond Arthur

Raymond Arthur Ewy, 86, retired farmer of Reedley, Calif., died June 4, 2009. He was born Aug. 19, 1922, to Reinhold and Matilda Ewy.
A graduate of Riverview Elementary, Reedley High School and Bethel College in North Newton, Kan., he loved learning and did so his entire life. He was active in First Mennonite Church, Reedley, in local farming organizations, and served 14 years as Riverview representative to the KCUSD school board. He enjoyed nature, farming, gardening, travel, music and sports.
Survivors include his wife of 54 years, Ellen; three children, Dorothy Boldt and her husband, David, William Ewy and his wife, Hearthy, and Ron Ewy; a brother, Arnold Ewy and his wife, Melva; and six grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by a brother, Daniel Ewy; and a sister, Frances Woodward.
A memorial service will be held on Aug. 8 at First Mennonite Church of Reedley.

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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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