Mennonite Weekly Review - October 2011

Obituaries are emailed to MennObits before MWR is printed. Wording may vary in printed version.

 Blosser, Matthew John; . . Gingerich, Alice Ruth Kauffman; . .  Goossen, Edna Marie Ensz; . . Nafziger, Eldon Dean; . . Redekop, Freda Pellman; . . Schulz, Eugene P.; . . Selzer, Lahla Ursula Miller; . . Thiessen, Leonhard G.; . . Weaver, Dale A.; . . Zimmerman, Roy Elvin; . .

Mennonite Weekly Review - October 3, 2011 - 89th Year, No. 35 - p, 9


Redekop, Freda Pellman

Freda Pellman Redekop, 81, of Harrisonburg, Va., died Aug. 8, 2011. She was born in Richfield, Pa.

Before her marriage to Calvin Redekop, for a time she lived in Amsterdam, where she worked with Menno Travel Service, then returned to the U.S. to open an office in Newton, Kan., in the mid-1950s. She learned to know Calvin as he was teaching at Hesston (Kan.) College. After marriage they lived in a number of locations: Chicago; Chihauhua, Mexico; Richmond and Goshen, Ind.; Chaco, Paraguay; Hillsboro, Kan.; and Waterloo, Ont.

The Mennonite community played an important role in her life as she offered consummate hospitality wherever she lived. She graduated from Goshen College with a bachelor’s degree in German in 1990, after taking courses at seven colleges and universities, among them Conrad Grebel University College, Waterloo, Ont. Her intellectual curiosity never waned, and as a versatile reader she enjoyed discussing many topics.

She assisted in editing a number of Calvin’s books and was editor of The Redekop Book, a pictorial genealogy of the Redekop clan. She was also editor for the genealogy in A Pellman Family History.

She enjoyed retirement life and was a member of Park View Mennonite Church, Harrisonburg, in the last 20 years.

Survivors include her husband, Calvin; three sons, William, Benjamin and Frederick Redekop; four brothers, Hubert Pellman and his wife, Mildred, and Charles Pellman and his wife, Anna Mae, all of Harrisonburg, Richard Pellman and his wife, Betty, of Lancaster, Pa., and William Pellman and his wife, Ruth, of Leola, Pa; two sisters, Ferne Pellman of Lancaster, Pa., and Miriam Maust and her husband, Wilbur, of Waterloo, Ont.; and two grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by a sister, Ellen Hartman.


Goossen, Edna Marie Ensz

Edna Marie Goossen, 91, of North Newton, Kan., died Sept. 19, 2011, at Kidron Bethel Healthcare. She was born Sept. 24, 1919, to Bernhard M. and Margaret (Jantzen) Ensz in Plymouth, Neb.

She was a retired teacher, a loving mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, and a friend and mentor to many.

She was educated in Beatrice, Neb., schools and began her teaching career in a one-room school in rural Nebraska during the Great Depression. Eventually she completed her bachelor’s degree in education. On Aug. 19, 1943, she married Henry W. Goossen, a Mennonite ministerial student.
Over the course of their 66 years of marriage, Henry served churches throughout Kansas, and she taught in public schools. From 1966 to 1968, they served with Mennonite Central Committee in South Korea. At the time of their retirement, they settled in North Newton and joined Bethel College Mennonite Church.

Survivors include two daughters, Sharon Bartel and her husband, Bob, of McPherson, and LaVonne Sawatzky and her husband, Ron, of North Newton; a son, Duane Goossen and his wife, Rachel Waltner Goossen, of Topeka; a sister, Helen Entz of North Newton; six grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Henry; a brother, Bob Ensz; and a sister, Amy Regier.
A family committal service was held at Halstead City Cemetery. A memorial service was held at Bethel College Mennonite Church in North Newton.


Blosser, Matthew John

Matthew John Blosser, 33, died July 15, 2011, in Vancouver, B.C., after living there for two years. He was adopted 12 days after his April 7, 1978, birth in Winnipeg, Man.

He grew up in Hesston, Kan., and completed a GED and two years of study at Hesston College. He later lived and worked in Goshen, Ind., and Atlanta, Ga. He had professional interests in social services and engaged in a broad array of work experiences, for which he drew on significant strengths in math and science as well as great abilities in social interactions and sports, including basketball, baseball, soccer and golf. He was most comfortable in the presence of other people and was never shy to engage with others, usually displaying his genuine and disarming trait of humor. He has many friends and family who remember him fondly as being warm, engaging, adventurous and loyal.

Survivors include his father, John R. Blosser; two siblings, Chris Burkhalter Blosser and Kirsten R (Blosser) Overton; two daughters, Baiden Janlee Blosser and Emily Rose Blosser; grandmother Mildred (Loewen) Quiring; and Beck Unternahrer, his stepmother.

He was preceded in death by his mother, Janlee Ruth Blosser; and grandparents Verna and Harry J. Loewen and Elizabeth and Ralph Y. Blosser.

A memorial event will occur on Nov. 5 at Hesston (Kan.) Mennonite Church.


Selzer, Lahla Ursula Miller

Lahla Ursula Selzer, 99, of Hesston, Kan., died Sept. 24, 2011, at Schowalter Villa. She was born Aug. 9, 1912, to S. Enos and Ursula Miller in Protection.

On Dec. 23, 1933, she married Truman Selzer in Jet, Okla. He preceded her in death on July 23, 1995.

She was a piano teacher. She was a member of Hesston Mennonite Church. She was also involved with the Mennonite Women’s Service Auxiliary, the library board in Protection, and a member of the Kansas Piano Teachers League.

Survivors include a daughter, Priscilla Boschmann and her husband, Erv, of Indianapolis, Ind.; three sons, Wendell Selzer and his wife, Judy, of Kansas City, Mo., David Selzer of Protection, and Harvey Selzer and his wife, Dana, of Broomfield, Colo.; two sisters-in-law, Berta Miller of Hesston and Mary Ann Miller of Twin Falls, Idaho; eight grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.

Funeral services were held at Hesston Mennonite Church. Graveside services were held at Protection Mennonite Cemetery.

Mennonite Weekly Review - October 10, 2011 - 89th Year, No. 36 - p. 9


Schulz, Eugene P.

Eugene P. Schulz, 92, of Walsenburg, Colo., died suddenly Sept. 1, 2011, at Kalona Iowa. He was born May 11, 1919, to Henry and Elise (Roder) Schulz at La Junta.

His early childhood was tempered by the Depression era. He learned to work hard early, caring for his younger siblings until he went to work as a hired hand at age 11. Aided initially by the local Mennonite church, he went on to attain degrees from Hesston (Kan.) College and Goshen (Ind.) College, as well as a graduate degree in education from the University of Oregon.

After World War II he traveled to Germany to help in rebuilding the country. While there he met Erna Fischer of Dallas, Ore., and after returning to the U.S. they were married in 1949.

They began their life together in La Junta, where he worked for the Mennonite Hospital. In 1954 the family moved to Shallow Water, Kan., where he was principal and taught seventh and eighth grade and served as pastor for the Gospel Fellowship Church in Shallow Water. In 1965 they moved to La Veta, where he again taught school and was pastor in the newly organized Walsenburg Mennonite Church. In 1968 they moved to Walsenburg, where he continued as pastor and taught school. He became known as the “Book Man” as he handled the sale of children’s books through the school, later taking many books to the MCC sale in Rocky Ford. He also served as chaplain at the veteran’s home. In 2004 he moved to Evergreen Gardens Assisted Living Facility in La Junta, and in 2009 moved to live with his son Melvin at Parnell, Iowa. He lived his last couple of weeks at the Pleasent View Home in Kalona, Iowa.

Survivors include three children, Melvin and his wife, Jan, of Parnell, Iowa, Elaine McDonald of Rawlins, Wyo., and Robert of Walsenburg; three brothers, Dean of Canyon City, Vernon of La Junta and Albert of Hollister, Calif.; seven grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Erna; three brothers, John, Carl and Donald; and two sisters, Lucille and Vivian.

Funeral services were held at Emmanuel Mennonite Church in La Junta.

Mennonite Weekly Review - October 17, 2011 - 89th Year, No. 37 - p. 21


Weaver, Dale A.

Dale A. Weaver, 93, of Harper, Kan., died Sept. 28, 2011. He was born June 16, 1918, to Reuben and Ella Newhauser Weaver. He was a miner and owned his own mine.

Survivors include three sisters, Alta Fry, Mary Shue and Wanda Good.

He was preceded in death by six brothers, Francis, Joe, Ernest, Tilman, Truman and Samuel; and six sisters, Ethyl, Myrtle, Ella, Bertha, Edith and Anna.
Memorial services were held at Pleasant Valley Cemetery in Harper.


Gingerich, Alice Ruth Kauffman

Alice Ruth (Kauffman) Gingerich, 100, of Hesston, Kan., died Aug. 16, 2011. She was born to Mary C. “Mollie” (Shank) and Daniel Kauffman in Scottdale, Pa.

At age 13, she went to Eastern Mennonite High School, Harrisonburg, Va. She graduated from Hesston Academy in 1929 and then trained as a teacher at Eastern Mennonite College.

She married Fred Gingerich in 1934. After farming in Versailles, Mo., and Parnell, Iowa, they moved to Chappell, Neb., where she became a Mennonite pastor’s wife, a role she played for the next 40 years.

In Chappell she began writing for publication, first articles for Christian Living magazine and later a biography of her beloved “Papa,” The Life and Times of Daniel Kauffman. She served as literature secretary for the Women’s Missionary and Service Commission of the Mennonite Church, editing the monthly WMSC Voice and traveling to New York City by train each year for the American Bible Society meeting.

After pastoring in Chappell and nearby Julesburg, Colo., Fred and she served Mennonite congregations in Alpha, Minn., Glenwood Springs, Colo., and Crystal Springs, and had several interim pastorates and a three-year teaching assignment at Western Mennonite School, Hubbard, Ore., before retiring to Hesston.

They were active members of Whitestone Mennonite Church in Hesston. She was in demand as an adult Sunday school teacher at Whitestone and at Schowalter Villa in Hesston.

After Fred died in 1992, she remained in her home until 2002, when she moved to Schowalter Villa. Her 100th birthday celebration July 23 was a joyful occasion.

Survivors include three daughters, Joyce Zuercher and her husband, Bill, Elizabeth Yoder and her husband, Perry, and Ruth Penner and her husband, Milbert; two sons, David Gingerich and his wife, Judy, and Daniel Gingerich and his wife, Linda; 16 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Fred; a half brother, James Kauffman; three brothers, John Mark (as an infant), Paul Kauffman and Homer Kauffman; and two sisters, Eunice (as an infant) and Fannie Sarco.

Mennonite Weekly Review - October 24, 2011 - 89th Year, No. 38 - p. 9


Thiessen, Leonhard G.

Leonhard G. Thiessen, 93, died Sept. 1, 2011. He was born Jan. 3, 1918, to Peter and Kaete Regier Thiessen near Whitewater, Kan.

He received his early education in a one-room school. After grade school he worked on the farm for his grandfather and uncles. He also spent one year attending Hillsboro Bible Academy. Upon his confession of faith, he was baptized and joined Emmaus Mennonite Church. At age 21, he attended the Bible Institute of Los Angeles for one year to learn how to conduct singing. Music was a great part of his life, and he began to sing in a quartet with his brothers at the age of 16. He sang in quar­tets and directed a choir and congregational singing for many years. He spent the war years in Civilian Public Service in Nebraska and Wisconsin.

In 1945 he married Helen Thiesen in Dinuba, Calif., where they made their home.

He ran his own dairy for 21 years. Helen succumbed to cancer in 1978. They were privileged to make a trip to the Holy Land together.
On Dec. 28, 1978, he married Grace Seibel. They were both active in Mennonite Central Committee, where he spent many hours at the loom, weaving rugs. They also enjoyed travel.

He spent the last two and a half years in the Palm Village Health Care Center in Reedley. His greatest joy there was being able to sing in the Village male chorus up to a month before he died.

Survivors include his wife, Grace; two children, Elroy Thiessen of Mazatlan, Mexico, and Karon Meyer of Reedley; three brothers, Willard, David and Floyd Thiessen; five sisters, Edna Flora, Wilma Stucky, Esther Stucky, Selma Entz and Lois Frey; two grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.
Memorial services were held in the Palm Village Chapel.


Nafziger, Eldon Dean

Eldon Dean Nafziger, 79, of Goshen, Ind., died Oct. 6, 2011, at IU Health Goshen Hospital. He was born Nov. 29, 1931, to Eldon R. and Sadie (Sutter) Nafziger in Hopedale, Ill.

He married Laverne Vogt on Sept. 2, 1954, in Hesston, Kan.

A 1953 graduate of Goshen College, he moved to Goshen seven years ago after a lifetime of farming in Illinois. He served many years on multiple Mennonite Church conference committees and was instrumental in establishing the partnership between Illinois Mennonite Conference and the Argentine Mennonite Church. He volunteered for 10 years with the Mennonite Foundation. A member of Berkey Avenue Mennonite Church, he enjoyed Bible study, New Testament Greek and traveling, especially international travel. Locally, he sang with the Evergreen Singers.

Survivors include his wife, Laverne; two daughters, Lee Ann Ewert and her husband, Paul, of Hannibal, Mo., and Donna Suter and her husband, Bill, of Pandora, Ohio; two sons, Eric Nafziger and his wife, Karen, of Hopedale, Ill., and Tim Nafziger and his wife, Izaete, of Goshen; 12 grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; and a sister, Lu Neumann and her husband, Roger, of Goshen.

He was preceded in death by a sister, Pauline Springer.

Funeral services were held at Berkey Avenue Mennonite Fellowship of Goshen. Burial was in Hopedale Mennonite Cemetery.

Mennonite Weekly Review - October 31, 2011 - 89th Year, No. 39 - p. 9


Zimmerman, Roy Elvin

Roy Elvin Zimmerman, 83, longtime resident of the Harper, Kan., area, died Sept. 21, 2011, at Golden Plains Health Care Center in Hutchinson. He was born Feb. 22, 1928, to Joseph and Clara (King) Zimmerman at Harper.

On July 30, 1965, he married Sylvia Estes at Harper. She preceded him in death in October 1971.

He was a member of Pleasant Valley Mennonite Church of Harper and faithfully attended as long as health permitted. He enjoyed singing in the Kansas Mennonite Men’s Chorus. He was a farmer and rancher prior to retiring.

Survivors include a sister, Grace Dettwiler and her husband, Elmer, of Phoenix, Ariz., and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by a brother, Vernon Zimmerman, and three infant brothers; three sisters, Ellen George, Arleta Butz and Frances Zimmerman, and two infant sisters.

Burial was in Pleasant Valley Mennonite Cemetery, Harper.

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