Taylor County, Iowa obituaries
Pat O'Dell - genpat@netins.net

Akers, Lloyd Merle - Graveside Memorial Services for Lloyd Akers, age 87, will be held Monday, September 10, 2018, at 11:30 A.M. at the Washington Cemetery in Gravity, Iowa. Full military rites will be accorded by Gravity American Legion Post 578. Cummings Family Funeral Home was entrusted with the arrangements for Mr. Akers.

Lloyd Merle Akers was born July 18, 1931, in Gravity, Iowa the son of Merle D. Akers and Goldie O. (Oziah) Akers. After graduation from high school Lloyd entered the United States Navy and served his country from 1952-1956 during the Korean War. Following his discharge from the Navy Lloyd began working at the Bedford elevator before working many years for Taylor County and then the Department of Transportation. In 1959, Lloyd married Ethel Comer of Mt. Ayr. To this union a son, Olin and a daughter Sheryl were born. The couple later divorced.

Lloyd met Charlotte Woods and after a long courtship, they were united in marriage on December 3, 1980. Lloyd and Charlotte lived in Sidney, Iowa where Lloyd served as department head for the DOT until his retirement. The couple moved back to Gravity following retirement and enjoyed traveling south during the winter months. While down south, they enjoyed going to flea markets and storage locker sales. They also enjoyed taking their grandchildren on vacations.

Lloyd had a "heart of gold" and was a devoted husband, father, grandfather and Dachshund lover. He was always loving and supportive of his family and could always be counted on for whatever was needed. Lloyd was a straight forward, well respected man. You always knew where you stood with Lloyd and what he expected from you. Lloyd was also a proud member of the Gravity American Legion Post 578 for over 64 years.

Left to cherish the memories of a wonder husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather are his children, Sheryl DePatten (Pete) of Des Moines, Iowa; Ron Fleetwood and Bonnie Gross of Gravity, Iowa; Jeff Fleetwood of Stanton, Iowa; five grandchildren, Tonya Fleetwood of Brooklyn, New York; Eric Gross (Essie) of Clarinda, Iowa; Stephanie Akers of Pleasant Hill, Iowa; and John and Anthony Soares of Des Moines, Iowa; great-grandchildren, Christian and Jacy Gross of Clarinda, Iowa; sister Deloris Williams of Villisca, Iowa; brother Junior (Edna) Akers of Peru, Iowa and sister-in-law Deloris Akers of Stanton, Iowa; along with many nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.

Preceding Lloyd in death are his parents, Merle and Goldie Akers; wife, Charlotte; children, Olen Andrew Akers and Connie Fleetwood; brother Duane Akers and sister Darlene Armstrong.


Anderson, Wilma Lucile Damewood - Funeral Services for Wilma Anderson, age 94, of Bedford, Iowa, who passed away October 23, 2018, will be held Monday, October 29, 2018 at 10 AM at the Cummings Family Funeral Home in Bedford. Interment will be held at Fairview Cemetery in Bedford.

Wilma Lucile was born to Dean and Ione (Jobe) Damewood on a farm south of Siam, IA on December 5, 1923. She passed away on October 23, 2018 with her family at her side.

She attended rural school and graduated from Bedford High School in 1941. The day she turned 18, she started teaching school and taught for 10 years. 
Leon (Swede) Anderson came home on leave after 4 years of serving in the South Pacific and Wilma and Swede had their first date. Before he went back for discharge, there were engaged, two months later they were married. They celebrated their 25th Anniversary on Feb. 3, 1971 and Swede died the following November. They were the proud parents of 3 children, John Dean, Marcia Louise and Nancy Jane. She loved them beyond measure and was proud of all of them. 

She was 12 when her only sister Mary Lou was born. They had a loving relationship, which later included Elvin and their children and grandchildren. In 1964 she became the City Clerk for the town of Bedford and served in that position for 23 years. One of her proudest achievements was helping get the funding for the Bedford Swimming Pool.

One of Wilma’s greatest honors was being chosen Taylor County Mother of the Year in 1978. She also enjoyed performing “Ma Peasley” with her daughters.
Wilma loved her Lord and served Him faithfully. She was a charter member of the Faith Baptist Church. Wilma especially enjoyed teaching youngsters. She started Sunday school at Bedford Manor and taught for 15 years with many loving volunteers. 

Wilma enjoyed her own family and was always there when needed. When her two son-in laws were added, Henry & Steve, Wilma thought they were the cream of the crop. Then along came 4 Granddaughters, Tricia, Jennifer, Deborah, and Robyn. How Wilma enjoyed and treasured them. Then at 75 she got her first grandson, Connor, who taught her all the flags needed for racecars. Wilma’s life got even richer and along came 4 great grandchildren, Katelyn, Russell, Cauy and Brady. They were the icing on the cake!

Preceding Wilma in death are her husband, Swede, her sister and brother-in-law, Mary Lou and Elvin Miller, and her son, John. Wilma’s love, thoughtfulness and kindness will be cherished and treasured by her daughters, Marcia (Henry) Russell, Nancy (Steve) Davison. Grandchildren: Tricia (Colby) Holmes, Jennifer Russell, Deborah Russell, Robyn (Brian) Bickel, and Connor Davison. Great Grandchildren: Katelyn and Russell Holmes, Cauy and Brady Bickel as well as many nieces and nephews whom she held dear.


Ballard, Sue Ellen Goode - Sue Ellen Ballard, 78, of Indianola (formerly of Lacona), died July 28, 2018, at The Village in Indianola. The family will greet friends from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Monday, August 6, 2018, at the Pierschbacher Funeral Home in Lacona, Iowa. Funeral Services will be at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday, August 7, 2018, at the Lacona United Methodist Church, followed by a luncheon. Burial will be at Cochran Cemetery in Lacona, Iowa. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions be made to the Lacona United Methodist Church or the Good Sheperd Fund at the Village.

Sue Ellen Goode was born March 11, 1940, in Chariton, Iowa, the daughter of Keith and Bernice (Snook) Goode. Sue Ellen’s Warren County roots run deep. She grew up on and around the family’s Century Farm, raising and showing Herefords at the Warren County Fair and Iowa State Fair. Sue Ellen’s family raised Angus, Hereford, and Simmental cattle, hogs, and crops throughout her childhood in southeast Warren County.

Sue Ellen graduated from Lacona High School in 1958. She attended Simpson College, where she was a member of Theta Upsilon sorority. Sue Ellen met William E. Ballard at Simpson, and they were married in 1960. Bill was ordained a deacon in the Methodist Church in 1963, and Sue Ellen started a 49-year career as pastor’s wife.

Sue Ellen and Bill served Methodist and United Methodist churches in Armel, Colorado, and many communities in Iowa including Lacona, Liberty Center, New Virginia Larger Parish, Council Bluffs (Broadway), Hamburg, Rock Valley, Doon, Dysart, Centerville and surrounding Appanoose County communities (Cincinnati, Exline, Jerome, Mystic, Numa, and Unionville), Nevada, Oskaloosa, Eagle Grove, and Bedford.

Sue Ellen also was employed outside the home (and church) in various administrative positions, including those with the Rock Valley Community School District, the Centerville Community School District, the USDA’s Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service in Boone County, Farm Service in Oskaloosa, and Umthun Trucking in Eagle Grove.

Sue Ellen’s life was one of sacrifice, support, and service to God, her community, and others – to Bill as a pastor, to the church, and to her three sons, Bill, Steve, and John. She sewed the costumes, bandaged the knees, baked the cookies, sold the raffle tickets, kissed the foreheads, cheered the victories, and endured the losses – effortlessly being the best Mom her boys could have imagined. She was a shining example of John Wesley’s exhortation that Methodists should “Do all the good you can.”

Sue Ellen was a beautiful, pleasant, kind, respectful, engaging, supportive, encouraging, and empathetic woman with a sharp mind. She had a keen sense of humor, which served her well in a house full of males. Sue Ellen didn’t complain. She overcame a 50-year bout with rheumatoid arthritis and in the end didn’t lose her fight with cancer any more than cancer lost its fight with her – a draw at best.

Sue Ellen was active in numerous church, civic, community, and school organizations throughout her life including being a 50-year member of the Order of Eastern Star, United Methodist Women (serving as statewide vice-president), P.E.O, and the Board of Pensions of the Iowa Conference of the United Methodist Church.

After retiring, Sue Ellen and Bill moved to Lacona, where they purchased an acreage with a home built by her great grandfather Samuel Oxenreider. After Bill passed away in 2015, Sue Ellen moved to the Village, a WesleyLife retirement community in Indianola, her final earthly home.

Sue Ellen’s family meant everything to her. She made all the family dinners (single-handedly until the daughters-in-law arrived), planned all the holidays and reunions, attended all the activities of children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, and vacationed at lakes in Minnesota and elsewhere.

Sue Ellen is survived by her three sons, Bill (Kim Walker) of Centerville; Steve (Jennifer) of Iowa City; and John “Eddie” (Jodi) of Des Moines; six grandchildren, Lindsey and Marty of Oskaloosa; Jack, Ellie, and Maggie of Iowa City; and Georgia of Des Moines; and four great-grandchildren, Maggie Hindley of Centerville, and Hunter, Bently, and Easton Holdsworth of Oskaloosa; a brother, Lisle Goode of Des Moines; a sister, Linda Goode of Des Moines; sisters-in-law, Jane Kliebenstein of Shell Rock and Kristine Ballard of North Liberty; and many nieces and nephews.

Sue Ellen was preceded in death by her parents; her husband; a brother, Robert Goode; brothers-in-law, George Ballard and Glen Kliebenstein; and sisters-in-law, Diane Oak Goode and Janice Goode


Barks, Noah "Dean" - Noah “Dean” Barks was born April 16, 1934, on the family farm near Sheridan, Missouri to Kenneth E. and Ruth E. (Gunson) Barks. Dean attended a one-room school, the Lone Star School, through 8th grade. He graduated from Bedford High School in Bedford, Iowa in 1952. He played football while in high school, but his favorite sport was baseball, the love for which he passed on to his sons at an early age, by teaching them the fundamentals and desire to play the game.

After graduation, Dean attended two years at Parsons College, Fairfield, Iowa (which is about 25 miles from Ottumwa, Iowa) where he met his bride-to-be, Laura Jo Argo. They were married on May 8, 1955.

Dean served in the U.S. Army from 1957-1959, taking his Boot Camp in Ft. Leonard Wood, Missouri, and additional training at Ft. Lee in Virginia, and his final assignment was in Ft. Clayton in Panama, where he served for 18 months.

He was employed with John Morrell & Co. in Ottumwa, Iowa for 22 years, and retired from Hillshire Farm after 16 years as a Sales Representative.

Upon his retirement, they sold their home in Omaha, and moved to Belle Vista, Arkansas. Soon after, he purchased a golf cart and trailer, spending many enjoyable (and some not so enjoyable, depending on the outcome of the game) days a week on the many courses. They spent 11 ½ years making new friends and getting involved in the church. Dean’s health began to deteriorate, and, with encouragement from family members who wanted their parents closer to them, they sold their home and moved back to Omaha.

Dean is survived by wife of 63 years, Laura Jo (Argo) Barks, two sons, Michael Barks (Kim) of Lincoln, NE and Brian Barks (Eileen) of Bennington, NE, four grandchildren: Laura and Hannah, and Matthew and Olivia, one great granddaughter, Scarlett, and his sister Virginia Winston (Jack) of Shawnee Mission, KS.

Dean loved his family and they always came first. He raised his sons and watched his 4 grandchildren (Laura, Hannah, Matthew, and Olivia) grow to young adulthood. He was a devoted husband.

Noah “Dean” Barks, of Bennington passed away 8/15/18. He is survived by wife Laura Jo, sons Michael Barks (Kim), and Brian Barks (Eileen) 4 grandchildren: Laura, Hannah, Matthew, Olivia, and great granddaughter Scarlett, sister Virginia (Jack) Winston of Shawnee Mission, KS.
Celebration of Life Service: Monday, August 20, 2018 at 10:30 at Reichmuth Funeral Home in Elkhorn with a lunch reception to follow. Interment will be private. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial contributions to Food Bank for the Heartland or St. Croix Hospice


Bebout, Scott Ray - Scott Bebout, age 47, of New Market, Iowa, entered into peace Sunday, September 16, 2018 at his home in New Market. Memorial services will be held 11:00 a.m., Saturday, September 22, 2018 at Ritchie Funeral Home, Clarinda, Iowa with Pastor Tim Maxa officiating. Burial will be at a later date.

Scott Ray Bebout was born April 19, 1971 in Osceola, Iowa to Steve Strange and Kay (Keller) Strange. He spent most of his childhood in the Grand River area hunting, fishing and riding horses. The family later moved to Corydon where he attended school and graduated from Corydon High School in 1989.

Scott started riding bare back horses and then found a career in bull fighting and clowning in rodeos. Through out the 90’s he spent most of his time on the Rodeo trail where he met many of his good friends. 

In 1996, Scott met his wife Mindy Barr, the following year their first child Cori was born. Scott and Mindy married October 10, 1998. The couple settled in New Market, Iowa and in 2003 their second daughter Tanley was born. Scott spent his time hunting and fishing with friends, watching his daughters compete at county fair and queen contests when he could catch up with his rodeo family. Running Coyote hounds was a special favorite pastime and he could be found some nights just listening to a good race.

Preceding Scott in death were his father; maternal and paternal grandparents.

Left to cherish his memory are his wife, Mindy Bebout of New Market, Iowa and their daughters, Cori and Tanley Bebout; brother, Todd Strange and wife Julie and their daughters, Josi and Matti Strange; countless other relatives and friends that became family (far too many to name)


Bowman, Paula Jean Davenport - Paula Bowman, 74, of Lenox passed away on Thursday, August 30, 2018 at Greater Regional Hospice Home - HCI in Creston, after battling cancer for 19 years. She was surrounded by many members of her loving family. Celebration of Life Memorial Service will be 11:00 a.m. Saturday, September 8, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Creston. Pastor John Rutz will officiate the service. Open visitation with family receiving friends will be from 10:00 – 11:00 service time on Saturday at the Fellowship Hall of the Trinity Lutheran Church in Creston. Memorials are suggested to the American Cancer Society or the Greater Regional Hospice Home in Creston. Online condolences can be given at www.powersfh.com. Powers Funeral Home, Creston, Iowa.

God did not call Paula Home. He did not take her from her husband, Charlie. Paula died because she was born into a sinful and broken world. Jesus knew when it would happen; he made a place for her in heaven and welcomed her. Because there is no sense of time in heaven, Paula will simply wake up there, turn around and say to Charlie, “When did you get here?” Paula died with a grin on her face and a tear of joy in her eye. What an awesome God we have.

Paula was born Paula Jean Davenport on a farm near Shannon City, Ia., on December 15, 1943, to Hubert and Yreva (Sanderson) Davenport. She was the first of six children. Paula attended country school southwest of Clearfield, Ia., through the 6th grade before starting the 7th grade at Clearfield Elementary. She graduated from Clearfield High School in 1962.

Paula and her husband, Charlie Bowman, started Sunday school together at the age of 5. They attended the same school in Clearfield from the 7th grade through graduation. Through the end of their sophomore year of high school, Paula thought Charlie was the biggest creep around. Paula was a cheer leader, a homecoming queen and widely regarded as a knock out, especially by Charlie.

At the start of their junior year, two friends arranged a double date that sparked something good. On October 5, 1963, Paula and Charlie were united in marriage before starting their home in Lenox. To this union were born three children: Michael in 1964, Mark in 1967 and Charles (Chuck) in 1970. In 1964, they moved to Creston, where they joined the Trinity Lutheran Church a year later. Paula loved her church and her God. In 1976, the family moved for their final time back to Lenox.

Although she held a few various short-term jobs to help support her family, Paula’s primary occupation – and her favorite by far – was being a mother and homemaker. She delighted in her children and grandchildren. She was active in her church, enjoyed gardening, spending time with family, taking photos and cross-stitch.

Paula is survived by her husband Charles Bowman and three sons: Mike (Dawne) Bowman of Lenox, Mark (Ellyn) Bowman of Bristow, Va. and Chuck (Amy) Bowman of Ottawa, Kan. Other survivors include six grandchildren: Alexandrea (Chris) Meinders, Halee Wymore, Carter Bowman, Parker Bowman, Hannah and Cole Bowman and two great-grandchildren, Kynlee Wymore and Lylah Corbett. She is also survived by her five siblings: sister Joyce (Carl) Merkh and brothers, Alvin (Claudia) Davenport, Harlan (Dee) Davenport, Brian (Marygrace) Davenport and Eric (Debra) Davenport. Paula was preceded in death by her parents


Cameron, Chris -

Christopher Jo (Chris) Cameron was born on September 28, 1986 to Marie Jo (Bolinger) Cameron and Robert (Bob) Alan Cameron in Creston, Iowa. He was the only child of the couple.

Chris attended Clearfield elementary until the 6th grade.  He participated in cub scouts and Webelo’s scouts throughout elementary.   Chris then moved on to Lenox High School where he graduated in 2005.  He played football, basketball, golf, and baseball; lettering in the latter three.  Right after high school he and some friends started up their own band calling themselves “Almost Somebody.”  To date, Chris wrote nearly 3,000 songs.  After high school Chris joined the Clearfield Volunteer Fire Department where he even worked up the ranks to become an officer.  Through the years he helped his father, Bob coach youth baseball, basketball, volleyball, and soccer in Clearfield.  Throughout high school, he volunteered to help Bob coach the Junior High girls’ basketball program at Lenox.  In 2004, Chris would receive his coaching authorization from the State of Iowa and get his own head coaching job after high school.  He coached the Lenox Junior High Boys Basketball as well as the Lenox Junior High Boy’s baseball program.  After some trouble, Chris finally landed in Creston.  His coaching trail landed him helping the Creston youth at the rec league there with the soccer program.  He started at Southwestern Community College in the summer on 2016 working on his AA of Business.  His dream was to open his own business helping veterans with disabilities and mental health issues as he believed the VA didn’t do enough.  He held many interesting jobs in his lifetime meeting many people throughout his life.  Chris had many friends who adored his friendship and loved to hear his constant jokes and even more consistent sarcasm.    He was an avid family man and was often the life of the event.

“Good, better, best; till your good becomes your better and your better becomes your best.  Like his father, Chris often used quotes throughout life and especially involved them with coaching.  He loved mantras as well and used them to fit with everyday life to motivate those around him.  Chris loved his Kansas Jayhawks, was an avid Broncos fan and still believed his Yankees were a dynasty.  Everything he owned was often decorated in Harley colors or some sort of related apparel as was a giant fan of the bikes.  Chris had two hobbies; sports and music.  Chris loved music; anywhere from writing it to playing it.  He played both drums and bass guitar over the years but strangely enough, could not read a lick of music.  In his life, Chris was both an animal lover as well as a huge fan of youth.  He was avid in shaping the minds of youth in multiple local communities through coaching with his father and coaching by himself.  He enjoyed focusing on sports in general as well as teaching them about the importance of life’s qualities.

Chris passed away August 14, 2018. Preceding Christopher in death were his father, Robert (Bob) Cameron; his Grandparents Lloyd and Theola (Monk) Cameron; Everette and Leona (Powell) Bolinger; great-grandparents, Claude and Eva (Greer) Monk; great-grandmother, Ellen (House) Cameron; great-uncles, Cecil and Darrell Monk; and great-aunts, Bertha Monk and Lucille Miller.

Survivors include mother, Marie (Bolinger) Cameron of Fort Morgan, CO; uncles, Tracy (Cindy) Cameron of Lenox; Marty (Shawn) Cameron of Diagonal; Patrick (Sherri) Bolinger of Lenox; Allen (Sandy) Dougherty of Leon; aunts, Kelly (Kyle) Freshour of Lenox; Barb (Mark) Thornton of Fairfield; Patti Knaub of Fort Morgan, CO; great-aunts and uncles; Ronald (Bev) Monk of Marshalltown; Phyllis (Jack) Gourley of Lenox; Paul (Barbara) Monk of Des Moines; Verla Monk of Clearfield; cousins, other family and friends

North Fairview Cemetery, Lenox, Iowa

Armstrong Funeral Homes, Mt Ayr, Iowa


Cross, Bryan Calvin - Funeral Services for Bryan Calvin Cross, who passed away June 24, 2018, will be held Thursday, June 28, 2018, at 10:30 AM at the Bedford United Christian Presbyterian Church. Cummings Family Funeral Home was entrusted with the arrangements for Mr. Cross.

Bryan Calvin Cross was born January 3, 1927 to Thomas John Cross and Mabel (Horton) Cross in rural Taylor County on a farm east of Bedford. During his early years of school he had to walk three miles each day. Later his family moved to town where he walked to a farm west of town to milk cows morning and night. Following his junior year of high school he enlisted in the US Army Air Force during World War II. At the end of the war he was discharged in the fall of 1946, returning to Bedford and graduating with the class of 1947 as salutatorian and with perfect attendance.

After high school he attended Simpson College, then returned to Bedford and drove an oil truck for Ralph Thompson for many years. He was also co-owner of the Owen’s – Cross Hatchery. In the late 50s he purchased his first farm and in 1962 moved to the home farm west of Bedford. They lived there until 2014, when they retired and moved to town. He was an active member of the United Christian Presbyterian Church for most of his life.

He was united in marriage to his best friend, Deloris Rowe from Bedford on June 14, 1959. To this union four children were born: Kyle Cross (Laura) of Red Oak, Janna Karwal (Don) of Elliott, Jill Cooper (Dennis) of Villisca, and Jenifer Cross (Tom Bartels) of Eaton Colorado. He has five grandchildren: Kyra Blatchford, Daniel Cross, Thane Walston, Christian Bartels, and Riley Bartels and one great granddaughter: Haylee Blatchford, along with a host of step grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his parents and 10 siblings and their spouses: Clifford, Thomas, Helen (Charles Owens), Bill (Darlene), Alice (Charles Flint), Fred, Bette (Ed Squires), Peggy (Stuart Allen), Frances (Richard Farr), and Judy (Basil Lucas). He is survived by his wife of 59 years, four children and their families along with numerous nieces and nephews that were very special to him.

He was always a horseman and a member of the Sherriff’s posse in his younger years and a member of the local saddle club for decades. He used to help run, and sometimes competed in the Fourth of July horse races at the fairgrounds. One year, having a girth break while leading his race, he managed to curl up and avoid getting trampled while the other horses jumped over him, coming out with minor scrapes and bruises. In April of 1960 he was a member of a group of 50 men that ran the Centennial Rerun of the Pony Express with his horse “Flare”. They left St. Joseph Missouri and travelled to Salt Lake City Utah, staying as close to the original route as possible and covering it a mile at a time. During the 70s he was known for being in local parades with his horse “Flare” and “our udder horse”, better known as Girly the milk cow that we would saddle and the kids would ride. The pair made it to several of the bicentennial parades in 1976.

Always tinkering and designing a better way to do things he had created a couple of inventions that were very useful on the farm. One was a gate fastener that we still use to this day. The other was a bale cart that he patented and sold to Hesston Equipment in 1976. It was advertised on TV by Hesston during the National Finals Rodeo that year.
For several years he hosted hayrides that were unique and often included ghost stories, spooking, cemetery scavenger hunts, bonfires, homemade doughnuts, hot chocolate, and the occasional lost shoe in the mud. Fall, meant putting on as many as 5 hayrides and were enjoyed by many of the kids in the area.

Anyone who knew him blew a quarter out of his hand to make it disappear, only to have it magically reappear from behind their ear. Often called “The Magic Man”, he was a staple at school events for the kids and grandkids for decades. He lived his life always having fun and shared his life with not only his kids, but many of the nieces and nephews and friends of them. He loved to take road trips his entire life and experience the countryside often being sure to take a car full along for the ride and the experience. If he ever wanted your attention all he had to do was whistle and he loved to challenge people to hum and whistle at the same time.
One of his favorite traditions was going to the Iowa State Fair. Since WWII he had attended every year of the fair until 2015 when he was physically no longer able to go, missing only once in 1952 due to a ruptured appendix. Many of those years he camped at the fair with the family and he has passed this tradition on to the next generations of the family. Always being adventurous, and after many trips and lots of camping (either in a camper or out under the stars), he camped in a tent for the first time in 2000 at the age of 73 while taking a trip through Yellowstone National Park and Glacier National Park


Davison, Ronald Dean - An "Informal Gathering of Family and Friends" for Ron Davison, age 82, of Lenox, formerly of Bedford, who passed away Wednesday, September 12, 2018, at Vintage Park will be held Sunday, September 30, 2018, from 2:00 to 4:00 PM at the Lenox Community Center with friends and family greeting friends. INSTEAD OF FLOWERS the family requests memorials be given in Ron's name. Arrangements were entrusted to the Ritchie Funeral Home of Lenox where we 'Celebrate Life'.

Ronald Dean Davison entered this life on a farm near Hopkins, Missouri on August 8, 1936. Born to Archie Robert and Marguerite Belle (Douglas) Davison, and welcomed home by big sister Patsy. Ron went to school at Hopkins, Missouri until 1944, when the family moved to the farm near Gravity, Iowa where he finished his schooling. He joined the United States Army in September of 1954, during the Korean War serving at Ft. Huachuca in Arizona. While in the service he married his hometown sweetheart, Sharon Jane Reynolds of Bedford at the United Methodist Church in Lordsburg, New Mexico on January 9, 1957. Ron was honorably discharged in July of 1957. Ron and Jane moved to Bethany, Missouri where Ron learned to cut meat at the Hy-Vee grocery store. It was here that their only child Nickie Lee was born on April 4, 1958.

They moved back to the hometown area where Ron would remain for the majority of his life time. They farmed south of Bedford where they raised hogs and crops and milked over 30 cows daily. They farmed east of the Conway Cemetery also where they had a farrow to finish hog operation, along with sheep, cattle, and row crops. They came through the Conway tornado with minimal damage unlike the town that was decimated. Ron retired from farming actively and they moved back to Bedford in the early 70’s.

In Bedford, Ron, with Jane always by his side in any endeavor they undertook, were co-owners of the Wholesale Grocery with William & Richard Cross, where he was head of the meat department. They purchased the Junction Café from Cleo & Naomi Thomas, and the Frosty Trete from Glenn & Luella Straight. He also became a Farm Bureau insurance agent, earning many awards during his tenure. His good nature, quick wit, and 'gift of gab' served him well in all of these endeavors. He enjoyed pranks and good times with his co-workers and customers.

Even though he retired from actively farming, he never really got it out of his system. When they bought the acreage just east of Bedford on the 102 River, he always had animals; be it his favorite sheep, or horses, goats, llama, chickens, rabbits, cats, dogs, or geese . . . no animal ever went hungry on Ron’s farm!
Ron was always active in the community serving on the city council, Jaycees, Lions, the American Legion, or as Secretary of the Taylor County Fair Board.
Ron & Jane loved to travel, especially to Colorado to enjoy the mountains, going on a white water rapid trip, even though he didn’t know how to swim, or to South Dakota for the annual buffalo round-up in Custer State Park getting snowed in sometimes for days.
Together they enjoyed wintering in Rockport, Texas for several years, making many good friends with other snowbirds from across the country.

Ron loved old tractors and he restored several over the years, all shined up driving them in the Bedford 4th of July parade or showing them off at the Taylor County Fair. He loved helping Bill and Clay, moving the big machinery from farm to farm whenever he was needed. He enjoyed helping Jerry Davis with his auctions, where he always came home with something needed, or not, or having coffee with the group at Godfather’s.

In 2014, when their health was failing Ron and Jane moved to Vintage Park in Lenox, Iowa, where he enjoyed the camaraderie with the staff and residents there. He kept busy working on jigsaw puzzles and watering any plant that looked thirsty . . . and some that didn’t!

Ron died at Vintage Park in Lenox, Iowa on Wednesday, September 12, 2018, leaving behind his wife of 61 years Sharon “Jane” Davison; a daughter Nickie and her husband William Henderson; and grandchildren Clay and wife Leah (Siverly); their children Cade & Shea all of Clearfield, Iowa; Grant and wife Elizabeth (Musich); their children Isabel & Jack of Ballwin, Missouri; also Paige and husband Zachary Bowe of San Diego, California. Brothers and sisters, Donna Belle Park, Wanda (Robert) Woldruff, Russell (Deanna) Davison, Raymond (Helen) Davison, Richard (Sharon) Davison, Linda (Floyd) Beason, and Roger (Sharon) Davison; John (Grace) Reynolds, a brother in law and sister-in-law Marilyn Newkirk; along with lots of nieces and nephews and a great bunch of friends accumulated through the years.

Preceding Ron in death are his parents Archie (1997) & Marguriete (1973), a brother in infancy (1935), sister Patsy Middleton (1993), step mother Beulah Lindsay Davison (1993), Parents- in- law Myron (1983) & Bessie Cox (1988) Reynolds , and brother-in –law Richard Park (2010).


Dunlap, James Sr - 02 Jul 1949 - 13 Jun 2018. Burial of ashes later.


Evans, Marjorie Lucille Ferguson - Marjorie Lucille (Ferguson) Evans was born January 2, 1923, at their family farm east of Lenox, Iowa the daughter of George Andrew Ferguson and Mary Elizabeth (Recknor) Ferguson. She grew up attending country school across the road from her home. Marge and her sisters had to go home every day for a hot lunch while the rest of the students got to bring theirs in a pail. She went eight years to country school and high school in Lenox where she played on two state tournament teams, meeting radio broadcaster, Ronald Reagan. Marge taught one year after graduation, having ten students, earning $40 a month and pair $30 a month for room and board with a nearby family. Since you couldn't be married while teaching in those days, she gave it up to marry Leo Francis Evans on May 19, 1942 in Grant City, Missouri. Following the marriage service, they and their witnesses, Lois Brokaw and Alvin Brown, had a picnic in the park enjoying bologna sandwiches. They then drove to Creston and spent the night at the Iowana Hotel. The following morning they strolled through the 5 & Dime Store and purchased some fresh strawberries before returning to work at the farm!

Seven children were born to bless their lives, Sandra Kay, Joyce Ilene, Patricia Jean, Jacqueline Carol, Michael Allen, Laurie Lou and Nicholas Leo.

Marge was very creative writing poems and skits for special occasions; she enjoyed square dancing, was active in PTA and never missed an opportunity to help her children and others with 4-H projects. Leo and Marge sang with the Lentennial Aires, recording a record for the Lenox Centennial. They farmed until retiring in 1987. For over 25 years, they wintered in Alamo, Texas, being named "Winter Texans" for the City of Alamo in 2004.

Left to cherish her memories are her children Joyce Ilene Weeda of Lenox, Iowa; Patricia Jean Ferris and husband Dave of Lenox, Iowa; Jacqueline Carol Wehrle and husband Mark of Lake Ozark, Missouri; Michael Allen Evans and wife Jill of Minneapolis, Minnesota; Laurie Lou Sybert and husband Lyle of Owasso, Oklahoma; Nicholas Leo Evans and wife Laurie of Creston, Iowa; son-in-law Bob Shields of Atlantic, Iowa; 22 grandchildren; 51 great-grandchildren; 6 great-great-grandchildren; along with many nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.

Preceding Marge in death was her loving husband Leo Evans in October of 2010; daughter Sandra Shields; son-in-law Delbert Weeda; two granddaughters, Jasmine Evans and Lauren Sybert; her parents, George and Mary Ferguson; five sisters, Merle Beggs, Thelma Boltinghouse, Juanita Sweeney, Georgia Stoaks and Helen Brokaw


Foote, Randall Carl - Celebration of Life Memorial Services for Randall Carl Foote, age 46, of Bedford, Iowa will be held Sunday, August, 5, 2018 at 2 P.M. at The Cummings Family Funeral Home. Cummings Family Funeral Home was entrusted with the arrangements for Mr. Foote.

Randall Carl Foote was born March 13, 1972 in Omaha, Nebraska, the son of J.B. Foote and Loretta (Sturm) Foote. Randall entered marriage with the love of his life and soul mate, Rebecca Sheler on April 22, 1995. Randall entered eternal peace unexpectedly on July 31, 2018 at Bergan Mercy Hospital in Omaha, Nebraska.

Randall was a free spirted man that loved to joke around and be anything but serious. He always had a special ornery grin on his face that lit up the room. Randall enjoyed camping, fishing, and spending time with family and friends at the famous Foote BBQs. If you ever called looking for Randall and he didn’t answer right away, you knew he was off relieving the stress of life doing what he loved best, pulling the handle of his favorite slot machine during his down time on the road. Randall truly enjoyed spending every moment of home time he could, with his sweetheart of 23 years, his children and grandchildren. They were his world along with all his brothers, sisters, nieces, nephews and extended family. Randall took pride in the close nit family that they all cherished. Randall loved to sit around a bonfire, enjoying a cold one while laughing and joking with family and friends. On Saturday nights, you could see him and his family sitting at the Corning Race Track cheering and supporting his nephew as he raced with passion. Randall steered 18 wheels down the open highway coast to coast for 17 years. Summertime was the highlight for his wife and children as they went down the asphalt together making deliveries across America creating memories. As the years went by, he became our family “Jesus” through his physical appearance and the tender love in his heart, also given the nickname teddy bear by his wife. He was always willing to bend his ear to anyone that needed the special attention. He had an open-door policy to everyone. It didn’t matter if he had just met you or had known you for years. Randall would listen and then provide his suggestions, opinions or just to let you vent. Randall was an honest man that held no grudges or passed judgement to anyone.

Randall is survived by his wife Rebecca (Sheler) Foote of Bedford, Iowa
Five Children: Julia Marie Sheler Binns and husband Austin Binns, Alexander Claus Foote and significant other Ashley Shannon, Alyssa Ann Foote, Jermiah Isaac Foote and Tabatha Brittnay Foote all of Bedford, Iowa; Four Grandchildren: Connor Daniel Binns of Nebraska City, Nebraska, Graham Royal Hardee of Bedford, Iowa, Sophia Marie Rose Binns of Bedford, Iowa and Logan Allister William BInns of Bedford, Iowa; Five Siblings: Tammy Foote and husband Gilbert Rodrigues, J.B. Foote Jr, Keith Foote and wife Brenda, Denny Foote and Nichole Foote all of Bedford, Iowa; Nieces and Nephews: Kris, Tori, Emily, Kaci, Kody, Cole, Bianca, Dustin, Kaeden, Zackary, Elizzabeth Along with extended family and friends.
Preceding Randall in death is his father J.B. Foote Sr. and mother Loretta (Sturm) Foote


Freeman, Bill - Billie Dean Freeman was born September 13, 1934 to Harland and Doris (Jeanes) Freeman. He passed away November 3, 2018 at Mt. Ayr Healthcare Center in Mt. Ayr, Iowa. 

Bill attended Blockton schools until his junior year when he transferred to Sheridan High School. He graduated from Sheridan in 1952. 

Bill was united in marriage to Ruby Irene Hiatt on October 29, 1955. To this union one son; Danny Dean was born. Bill and Irene, along with Dan and family farmed until his health would no longer allow him to do so. Even after he was not able to go out and do the farming he loved to sit at the front window and watch the crops being planted and harvested.  

Bill served in the United States Navy Reserves where he was an airplane mechanic. He was a member of American Legion Post #443 in Blockton for 26 years. He was also a member of the Masonic Lodge. Bill was baptized into Blockton Christian Church on May 22, 1989. 

Preceding Bill in death were his parents: Harland and Doris Freeman; and brother: Buddy Freeman.

Left to cherish his memory are wife Irene of Mt. Ayr, Iowa; son Dan and wife Barb of Grant City, Missouri; grandson Nick Freeman (Suzi Anderson) of Maryville, Missouri; granddaughter Alaina Freeman (Cody Runde) of Ravenwood, Missouri; sister: Barbara Jean McAlister of Chicago, Illinois, 3 nephews: Roger, Mike and Terry McAlister and many friends. 

Funeral Services will be 11:00 A.M. Thursday, November 8, 2018 at Prugh-Dunfee Funeral Home in Grant City, Missouri with visitation one hour prior to service. Interment in Rose Hill Cemetery in Blockton, Iowa


Freshour, Richard LaVerne - Service for Richard Freshour, 74 of Nodaway, Iowa will be 5pm Sunday, July 1, 2018. Visitation will be from 4 to 5pm Sunday prior to the service at Wolfe Funeral Home in Villisca. Burial will be Monday, July 2, 2018, 2pm at Iowa Veterans Cemetery in Van Meter, Iowa.
Richard LaVerne Freshour was born to Robert and Wilma (Landon) Freshour on February 5, 1944, in Villisca, Iowa. Richard passed away on Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at Good Samaritan in Villisca.
As a child, Richard attended grade school in Villisca, Corning and the surrounding areas, graduating from the Villisca Community High School in 1962. In 1965, during the Vietnam War, he was drafted into the U.S. Army. He was stationed in Alaska and Hawaii prior to being sent to the frontline. He rose in rank becoming a sergeant earning Expert Rifle and Sharpshooter medals with the Tropic Thunder Unit. He lost many friends and gained many nightmares.
Richard married Eldena Ingram in 1967. They lived in Omaha where he attended trade school for auto body work. In 1969, Carol was born. They moved to Lenox and opened Freshour’s Body Shop. Brenda followed in 1972. Richard and Eldena parted after 25 years of marriage. His career included working on cars, hauling, dirt work, deconstruction and a laundry list of other unique opportunities. His shop moved to Brooks and later Villisca and then he tinkered in Nodaway.
As a child he enjoyed reading and working on the farm. As he aged his interest turned to friends, fast cars and faster women. His philosophy on friends: “A friend will come to bail you out … but a true friend will be sitting next to you saying `That was fun. `” Richard could talk to anyone about almost anything and made friends everywhere he went. For just about anyone, he was willing to come rescue, do a favor or at least get them on the road. Later in life he found joy in his grandkids, seeking out unique finds (some might call it junk), barbecuing for fun and benefits, and he just kept on visiting and joking around with everyone.
Richard is survived by his daughter Carol Herrmann and husband Scott with their children Garrett, Josee, and Owenn of Orient; his daughter Brenda Freshour-Johnston and husband David with their children Amelia and Joseph of Grimes; his sister Gloria and Danny Gibler with sons Tim, Steve, Chris and Doug; his sister Colleen and Ralph Cole with sons Matt and Dan and his brother Jacob “Jim” Freshour with son Branden; a caring extended family, and countless friends, designated drivers and partners in crime.
A special thanks to the Good Samaritan staff for their patience and care and Steve and Chris Gibler for the smoked meat at dinner, one of Richard’s favorite foods.


Hullinger, Robert - Robert Hullinger, 56, passed away unexpectedly June 9, 2018 while visiting family in New Mexico. He fought a hard battle medically and emotionally since a 2005 near fatal accident in Cabo San Lucas, which eventually led to his leg being amputated.

Robert was born May 19, 1962 to parents Donald and Virginia Hullinger (both deceased). Robert attended Cortez High School where he played football, made many life-long friends and where he met his wife Lisa. He graduated in 1980 and then went on to attend Anderson University and Northern Arizona University.

Robert and Lisa founded Glas-West in 1989 and then sold it in 1998. Robert's journey took him from his birthplace in Phoenix, Az to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico where he and his family shared a love of the people, culture and the ocean. From there they lived in Iowa where he enjoyed living his childhood memories of spending time with relatives and being a farmer. Robert is the nephew of Doris Hardee of Bedford. He eventually migrated to Washington State and then back to Arizona where he was active in commercial real estate.

Robert had a way with people. He could talk to anyone and would draw them into his world. He easily made friends wherever he went. We will miss Robert's contagious laugh and his many stories.

Robert is survived by his beautiful daughters, Andra (24), Madisen (21_ and his ex-wife Lisa, all of Phoenix. He is also survived by his siblings Pam Wheatley (husband Jeff) of Pasco, Wa, Marcia Deffenbaugh (husband John) of Kennewick, Wa and Rodney Hullinger (wife Laurie) of Denver, Co., as well as numerous nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles and cousins. He thoroughly enjoyed the time he spent with all of you.

Robert will be greatly missed by all of his family and friends.

Services for Robert were held Saturday October 27, 2018 at the Hardee Farm, Bedford, Iowa. Memorials can be directed to ReasontoHope.org, an assisted living home in Guatemala that Robert was introduced to by his cousin Scott Hardee and his wife Lynda.


Keenan, LeAnn -

LeAnn Keenan, daughter of Lee & Sheryl (Henderson) Keenan, was born in Corning, Iowa on May 20, 1960. LeAnn was welcomed home by her two older sisters, Lynn and Cheri.

LeAnn attended and graduated from Mount Ayr Community School. She furthered her education at Northwest Missouri State University where she earned and received her Masters in English.

LeAnn was a dedicated teacher. She taught Junior High English at CAL Community School and taught High School English at Waynesville, MO. LeAnn returned to Maryville, MO and taught Composition Intro to Literature at Northwest Missouri State University and then taught writing classes at Southwestern Community College.

LeAnn developed and maintained tight friendships with those she met and knew over the years.

LeAnn met the love of her life, Dave Storer, at a writer’s workshop in Iowa City, Iowa. They were married August 6, 2003 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. After living in Michigan for several years, they made their home in Harlan, IA. In 2017, LeAnn and Dave moved to Creston, Iowa. LeAnn loved to quilt, and she created many beautiful quilts. She loved books, writing, cats, football and her beloved nieces.

LeAnn passed away June 23, 2018 at Mercy Hospital in Des Moines, Iowa. She was preceded in death by her parents, Lee & Sheryl Keenan.

Survivors include her husband Dave Storer of Creston, IA; sister Cheri May and her daughter Samantha Hornback of Waukee, IA; sister Lynn (Paul) Baker of Creston and their children Melissa (Rocky) Malloy of Cedar Rapids, IA and Meredith (Don) Wulf and their children Londyn and Hattie of Jewell, IA; other relatives and friends.

In lieu of flowers, you are invited to bring a children’s book to the services and the family will donate to a charity encouraging children’s literacy. In addition memorials are to the Iowa American Legion of Iowa


Knapp, Karole Jeanne -

Karole J. Knapp, 74, of Muscatine, passed away on Sunday, August 12, 2018, at Davenport Lutheran Living.  Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, August 16, 2018, at the Geo. M. Wittich-Lewis Home for Funeral and Cremation Services.  Burial will be at a later date in Clearfield, Iowa.  Visitation will be held on Thursday, August 16, 2018, from 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. at the funeral home.  A memorial fund has been established at the funeral home in Karole’s name.  Online condolences may be left for Karole’s friends and family at www.lewisfuneralhomes.com. 

Karole Jeanne Knapp was born on April 28, 1944, in Creston, Iowa, the daughter of Coral Sylvester and Verle Frances (McMahill) Knapp.  Karole started her education in Sharpsburg, Iowa, graduated from Lenox High School and then attained her Bachelor’s Degree in Education from Northwest Missouri State.  Karole taught 2nd Grade her entire career.  She started teaching in Michigan but spent most of her career at Blue Grass Elementary.  She was a member of the Davenport and Muscatine Education Associations and the National Education Association, The Davenport Area Retired School Personnel Association, Sweetland United Methodist Women and a Muscatine Bible Study group led by Pam Heidbreder.  Karole enjoyed playing the piano and shared her talent at weddings and loved one’s funerals. 

Karole will be missed by a host of friends, including Jim and Karen Beach of Muscatine and Judy and Joe Nimmo of Noblesville, Indiana as well as her Dopp family cousins and McMahill family cousins. 

Karole was preceded in death by her parents, Coral in 1968 and Verle in 2004.


Maynes, Gwendolyn Verlee Tully - Gwendolyn Verlee (Tully) Maynes was born January 6, 1936, at Greater Community Hospital in Creston, Iowa. She was the oldest daughter of Donald and Mineva (Douglas) Tully of rural Lenox, Iowa. Visitation with family present will be Sunday, August 12, between 2 to 4 p.m. at the Lenox United Presbyterian Church, 401 West Michigan Street, Lenox, Iowa. Funeral services will Monday, August 13, at 10:30 a.m. at the Lenox United Presbyterian Church with Rev. Tim Maxa officiating. Following the service, burial will be at West Fair View Cemetery in Lenox.

She grew up attending Grove Township country school #2 and graduated from Lenox High School in 1954. Gwen excelled in music, playing the trombone and was a lifelong vocalist, participating in ensembles, community choirs, and the Lentennial Aires. She especially enjoyed singing with her cousins. She was an excellent solo vocalist as well, singing at church services and at many funerals.

She began her business career at First National Bank at Lenox as a teller. She met Harold Maynes through church, and the two were married January 29, 1956. She continued to keep the books for the farming operation and enjoyed working side-by-side with Harold, raising hogs, cattle, sheep, chickens, dairy, and five children. Gwen did field work of all kinds and ran the combine every year for them and for her children until the early 2000’s, a task she did not give up easily. When Harold went into the real estate business, Gwen was once again working side-by-side with him, keeping the books, obtaining her own real estate license, keeping house and keeping the farm on task. She raised a big garden every year, and along with raising their own meat, she kept her family well nourished. Just for variety, she helped her father build several houses in the area. Harold and Gwen enjoyed their participation in the Da-Sha-May Grazing Association, which was a local effort to increase pasture utilization efficiency. Harold and Gwen were the Omaha WOW TV Farm Family of the year in the late 1960’s.

The family also found time to make trips to Colorado, California, South Dakota, and visiting friends in Florida. As the children grew older, Gwen served as a 4-H Leader, Adams County Youth & Youth Fair Member, and Board Member of the SW Iowa Farm Business Association. Gwen was baptized, married, and served in the Lenox United Presbyterian Church throughout her lifetime. During this time, she served as Lenox United Presbyterian Church Trustee, Elder/Session member, Clerk of Session, Elder Commissioner to Des Moines Presbytery, and a Bible School Teacher.

Gwen would take the kids camping at the Iowa State Fair so they could show their projects and enjoy the fair. She was heavily involved in all aspects of 4-H during her kids’ growing up years and enjoyed attending and participating in fair-related activities. In 2012, she was inducted into Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame for Taylor County at the Iowa State Fair.
As the kids left home and started their own families, Gwen continued to be active in helping them establish their households and being involved in the lives of her grandchildren. She especially loved welcoming each and every grandchild. Great-grandchildren were an additional special blessing for Gwen.

Gwen was very faithful, not only as a co-parent and business partner, but as caretaker for Harold when he developed kidney disease and was restricted by his dialysis and physical limitations until he died in 1995. All the while she continued her church work, real estate responsibilities, baby-sitting, and helping on the farm.

Left to cherish her memory are Kim (Pete) Brantner of Lenox, Karen (Steve) Downing of Creston, Paul (Marcia) Maynes of Lenox, Arnold (Stacy) Maynes and Lyle (Bobbi) Maynes both of Corning. Also surviving is a sister, Bonnie Schrader and a sister-in-law, Lois Maynes of Lenox and step-brother Paul (Eileen) Tyler of Des Moines.

Gwen also leaves behind 16-grandchildren: Lindsay (Shane) Stoaks; Kysa, Chisum, and Heath Downing; Michelle (Adam) Schott; Landon Maynes (Fiancee’ Katie Barker); Susan (Danny) Kastilahan: Becky (Kolby) Bissell; Abe Schweers; Evan (Samantha) Maynes; Sydney Maynes; Alexandra and Rosemary Dotzler; Montgomery Maynes, Kennedi (Ethan) Cretsinger; Chase Maynes; 9-great-grandchildren: Laramie, Laney, Hallie Stoaks; Walker, Hudson, Porter, Hogan Bissell, Louisa Kastilahan; Liam Cretsinger and many cousins, nieces, nephews and friends.

Preceding her in death was her husband, Harold V. Maynes, her parents, Don and Mineva Tully; in-laws Joe and Jean Maynes, Wilma Maynes; brother-in-laws Larry Schrader and Joe Maynes, Duane and Alan Tyler; and daughter-in-law, Melissa Maynes


Morris, Bernice Lee Garrett - Bernice Lee Garrett was born April 26, 1930 in Holt Township, Taylor County, Iowa. She attended school in Bedford, Iowa. She then married Drexel Morris in 1946 and to that union they had four children Larry, Connie, Linda and Cathy.
Bernice passed away Monday, June 11, 2018 at Bethany Lutheran Home in Council Bluffs, Iowa.
Preceding her in death was her husband Drexel, parents, one sisters, two son in-laws, one brother in-law and one great-grandchild.
Bernice is survived by her son, Larry (Kathy) Morris and family, Council Bluffs, IA.; daughters Connie Lenoir and family, Council Bluffs, IA., Linda Becerra and family, Council Bluffs, IA., Cathy Auffert (Jerry Lentz) and family, Council Bluffs, IA.; brother Wayne (Darlene) Garrett, Des Moines, IA.; sisters Pauline Constant and family, Denver, CO., Anne Schimintz and family, Missouri, 14 grandchildren, 24 great-grand-children and 1 great-great-grandchild.

Funeral services for Bernice (Mrs. Drexel) Morris, 88 of Council Bluffs, will be privately held for the family. Any correspondence may be sent to the Walker-Merrick-Eickemeyer Funeral Chapel


Pratt, Billy Dean "Bill" -

Billy Dean Pratt, 91, of New Market, Iowa, died peacefully in his sleep at his rural home on October 1, 2018.
He was born September 7, 1927, on a farm northeast of New Market, and was the third of six children blessed to parents Leslie George and Ina Pearl (Jackson) Pratt. Bill lived his entire life in the New Market and Siam areas, having attended country schools and then graduating from New Market High School in 1945. In November of that year, he joined the United States Army and served overseas in Austria, a country which he often fondly remembered for its beauty. After earning the rank of corporal, he was honorably discharged and returned home to "good old southwest Iowa" to marry his high school sweetheart, Hope Amelia Fine, on June 27, 1948, in Clarinda, Iowa. Bill and Hope primarily farmed northeast of New Market for their entire married lives of 70 years, working the busiest parts of the year with brother, Bob Pratt and brother-in-law, George Stanley and their families. Eventually, Bill and Hope bought the "Century Farm" that his great-grandfather G.A. Watson acquired in 1881 and was farmed by his grandparents D.M. Pratt and Isabelle (Watson) Pratt. Bill’s father was born in the same house where he, himself, enjoyed his last breath of life.

In his later years, Bill loved riding his four-wheeler to check on the crops and the neighbors, assembling jigsaw puzzles, rooting for the St. Louis Cardinals, and raising a garden in which he shared its produce with New Market friends. He especially enjoyed playing five-point pitch with his local Community Center buddies whom, he said, were crooked players who fleeced him every chance they got. Bill’s greatest love, however, was his family and just being together with them whenever possible.

Bill was preceded in death by his parents, Les and Ina; sister, LaMead (Cliff) Carmichael; brothers, Bob (Phyllis) Pratt and Dale (Betty Pratt Herzberg) Pratt; parents-in-law, Ralph and Viva (Shields) Fine; sisters-in-law, Elsie Rose (Dick) Burton and Lucille (George) Stanley and brother-in-law, Hollis Naven.

Left to cherish his memory are his wife, Hope; son, Gordon (Marty) Pratt of New Market, Iowa; daughter, Billie Joyce (Karl) Hodge of Maryville, Missouri; sisters, LaDonna Cabbage and Mary (Don) Hargis of New Market, Iowa; grandchildren, Aaron (Raegen) Pratt of Huntersville, North Carolina, Austin (Alicia) Pratt of Glenwood, Iowa, Andrea Pratt of Raleigh, North Carolina, Amelia Hodge of Fort Collins, Colorado, and Billy Hodge of Maryville, Missouri; the Pratt great-grandchildren, Libby, Ashley, Shain, Sophia, and Eli; four step-grandchildren; several great step-grandchildren, sister-in-law, Edith Naven; nieces, nephews, and cousins; special friends, Lee and Cindy Haug of New Market, Iowa

Family visitation will be on Thursday, October 4, from 5 – 7 PM at the Walker-Merrick-Eickemeyer Funeral Chapel in Clarinda, Iowa, with funeral services at the same location on Friday, October 5, at 10:30 AM; the family requests casual dress for both occasions. Burial and military rites will be at Memory Cemetery in New Market, Iowa.


Rayhons, Carole Ruth Rogers - Carole Ruth (Rogers) Rayhons, 70, of Lenox, entered into peace Tuesday, September 11, 2018, at CHI Mercy Hospital in Corning. Mass of Christian Burial will be 11:00 A.M. Friday, September 14, 2018 at St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Lenox, with family receiving friends from 10:00 – 11:00 A.M. in the church fellowship hall. Burial will be at the Nebo Baptist Cemetery in Nebo, West Virginia at a later date. Memorial contributions may be directed to the St. Malachy Catholic School for the new addition. On-Line condolences may be left at www.pearsonfuneralhomes.com.

Carole Ruth Rayhons, the daughter of Aurther and Rosa (Cadle) Rogers, was born December 27, 1947, in Nebo, West Virginia. She attended Clay County High School and graduated with the class of 1965. In 1967 Carole enlisted in the United States Navy, and served in Navy intelligence. She proudly served her country during the Vietnam War, and was honorably discharged in 1969.

On May 17, 1969, Carole married Laurence Leo Rayhons in Texas. The couple would be blessed with three children: Rachael, Christopher, and Matthew. The couple moved to Lenox in the spring of 1975 and Carole began her life as a farm wife. She gave everything to her family, working selflessly to make sure all her family’s needs were met. She was also very involved with her church family at St. Patrick's Catholic Church.

She enjoyed tending to her lawn and gardens. Carole also liked to make plum jelly and many other preserves. She also had a love for cooking, baking, scrapbooking, and raising chickens.

Left to cherish her memory is her husband, Laurence “Larry”, of Lenox; children: Rachael Reed of Lenox and Matt Rayhons and wife Kashayla of Lenox; grandchildren: Alexandrea Meinders and husband Christopher, Dusten Reed, Madison, Phoenix, and Nova Rayhons; and niece, Karla Pierson and husband Mike of Blue Knob, West Virginia.

Preceding Carole in death were her son, Christopher Michael; parents, Aurther and Rosa; three brothers: John, Earl, and Jerry; two sisters: Virginia and Mary.


Root, Josephine Moore -
Josephine "Jody" Root passed away October 27, 2018 in Poulsbo at age 93. She was preceded in death by her husband of 61 years, Maurice Root, and her grandson Mykl Clark. She is survived by her children Jeri Dell Meyer (Jacob), Sharon Billingsley (Edward), and Jeffrey Root (Gail). She also leaves three grandchildren, Ethan Meyer, Jennifer Weir and Larken Root, and four great grandchildren. 

Jody was born in Bedford, Iowa. She married Maurice in Lawrence, Kansas in 1944. She accompanied her husband through numerous moves to many states and overseas to Mumbai, India; Tokyo, Japan; and Mexico City; Mexico. She was an excellent homemaker as well as actively volunteering with many organizations. After they retired to Seattle they spent many winters in Baja Mexico in their motor home. In their later years they enjoyed spending time at their property on Hood Canal. 

There will be no memorial service. Published in The Seattle Times from Nov. 1 to Nov. 2, 2018


Schmidt, Venita Shirlene Kirby Sobotka -

Venita Shirlene Kirby, 88, of Mount Ayr, died Aug. 21, 2018 at University of Iowa Hospitals in Iowa City.

Funeral services will be 4 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 26, 2018 at the Clearfield Christian Church in Clearfield with Pastor Sherry Wiley officiating. Burial is in the Diagonal Cemetery. Armstrong Funeral Home in Mount Ayr is in charge of the arrangements. Open visitation will be held at the funeral home from 2 to 8 p.m on Saturday, Aug. 25, with the family present to receive friends from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at the Clearfield Christian Church. Memorials need to be sent to the Clearfield Christian Church. Online condolences may be left at www.armstrongfh.com.

Venita was born March 4, 1930, north of Gravity at a place called Oak Hill to Oma Winifred (Brown) and Lawrence Clyde Kirby.

On June 14, 1947, Venita married Leonard Sobotka. Leonard died from cancer Sept. 29, 1973.

She was an active member of the Clearfield Christian Church as a Sunday school teacher, a girls 4-H Club leader, as well as a Boy Scouts den mother. Venita was a 64-year member of the Clearfield Unit #97 American Legion Auxiliary where she served as Unit President, Taylor County President and 7th District President. She also served as Americanism Chairman and Junior American Legion Auxiliary leader for many years.

On Oct. 24, 1978,Venita married Ernest (Ernie) Schmidt. Ernie died June 20, 1999.

Survivors include her daughters, Connie Cooper of Bedford and Karen (Mike) Schaefer of Maloy; seven grandchildren, Jackie (Peter) Cooper-Bennett, Wendy (Matt) Poore, Darcie (Neil) Cooper, Devan Cooper, Jennifer (Billy) Bell, Billy (Suzi) Schaefer and Timothy (Jennifer) Schaefer; 15 great-grandchildren, Aidan and Noah Cooper-Bennett, Breia and Mallory Bell, Danielle (Kurtis Norwood) Poore and Kirsten Poore, Sadie and Nathanial Cooper, Samantha, Loryn, Natalie and Tate Schaefer, and Katelyn, Tyler and Colton Schaefer; two great-great grandchildren, Adelynn Wahlstedt and Levi Norwood; three sisters-in-law Dorothy Kirby, Lois Anne Sobotka and Sharon Sobotka; brother-in-law Roy Lumbard.

Venita was preceded in death by her parents; parents-in-law Edward and Frances Sobotka; sister LaVon Lange; brother Virgil Kirby; brothers-in-law Donald Sobotka, David Sobotka and Ivan (Butch) Sobotka; sisters-in-law Mildred Sobotka and Norma Jean Lumbard; son-in-law Dennis Cooper; and son Duane Sobotka.


Schuster, Wilbur Dean - Wilbur Dean Schuster was born February 28, 1932 at Athelstan, Iowa to Clyde Allen and Letha May (Woods) Schuster. He grew up on his parents’ farm near Athelstan. He graduated Blockton High School then served in the United States Army during the Korean War. Wilbur Dean and Cleta Barber had four children: Bill, Belinda, Beatrice, and Barry.
Wilbur Dean worked on road construction in his early years and turned to farming with his dad Clyde soon after. They farmed in Ringgold and Taylor counties. Wilbur Dean farmed all his working years until retiring in 2012 at age 80. He and his wife, Mary (Brogan) Schuster, moved to Blockton that same year. He needed additional health care in 2014 and moved to Mt. Ayr Health Care Center, Mt. Ayr, Iowa until he passed away August 5, 2018 at age 86.
He was a 30 year member of the Blockton American Legion. Wilbur Dean enjoyed taking Mary to the café in Allendale, Missouri. They enjoyed several winters in Arizona, particularly north Arizona and visiting the Grand Canyon two times.
Wilbur Dean was preceded in death by his parents; sisters Marie (Lawrence) Jackson and Dorothy (Victor) Hobbs; brothers Gene Schuster and Gary Schuster; and granddaughter Isha Pullen.
He is survived by his wife of 39 years, Mary, Blockton, Iowa; children Bill (Kathy) Schuster, Mt. Ayr, Belinda Jeralds, Mt. Ayr, Beatrice (Jim) Weir, Fayetteville, Tennessee, and Barry Schuster, Mt. Ayr; nine grandchildren and eighteen great grandchildren; many friends and relatives.
Funeral services for Wilbur Dean Schuster, 86 of Blockton, will be held 10:30 Wednesday, August 8, at Blockton Christian Church with interment at Blockton Cemetery with military honors by the US Honor Guard and Blockton American Legion. Visitation will be held one hour prior to the service with open visitation in Bedford Tuesday noon until 5 p.m.
Memorials are suggested to Mt. Ayr Health Care Center or Family Choice.
Eickemeyer Funeral Chapel, Bedford, is providing arrangements


Shanks, Mary Ethel Thornton - Funeral services for Mary Shanks, 86 of Urbandale, formerly of Bedford, will be 1 p.m. Saturday at New Life Missionary Church in Bedford with Rev. Bob Thompson officiating. Interment will be at Washington Cemetery, Gravity. Memorials are suggested to New Life Missionary Church Deacons
There is no scheduled visitation. Eickemeyer Funeral Chapel, Bedford, is providing arrangements.
Mary Ethel Thornton Shanks was born March 2nd, 1932 in Taylor County, Iowa to Alonzo and Pearl Ellen (Bradley) Thornton. The family lived southeast of Bedford. Mary attended country school and graduated from Bedford High School in 1950. She married Carroll Lee Shanks in 1950 and they farmed southeast of Bedford, later buying an 80-acre farm west of Bedford. The family moved to Bedford where the couple raised their children: Karen, Alonzo “Lonnie” and Lisa.
Through the years she worked at Wholesale Grocery, the locker, Golds Laundromat and was a cook at the school.
Mary enjoyed quilting for her family, gardening and canning, playing guitar and country music. The kids and grandkids were her life. She loved to have them visit and wanted them all together for dinners, holidays, and to visit and eat with family. She was a wonderful cook making chicken and noodles, cakes and all of the good comfort foods.
Preceding her in death is her husband, son Lonnie, parents, and brothers, John and James Thornton.
Mary is survived by her daughters Karen Shanks, Des Moines, and Lisa (Jeff) Morrical, Ava, Missouri; grandchildren Rabecca (Brian) Jones, Des Moines, Todd Brown, Milford, Illinois, and Lacey (Hieu Diep) Groff, Lincoln, Nebraska; great grandchildren Lauren and Reece Jones, Gabrielle, Peyton and Aubrie Brown, and Chloe and Zoey Groff; sister Bethel (Edward) French, Bedford, Iowa; and sister-in-law Beverly Thornton Kemery, Bedford, Iowa


Shehan, David Rodney - Funeral Services for David Shehan, age 60, of Laurel, Mississippi will be Wednesday, October 3, 2018 at 11 A.M. at The Cummings Family Funeral Home. Interment at Fairview Cemetery in Bedford, Iowa will follow the service.

David Rodney Shehan was born May 17, 1958 in Clarinda, Iowa, the son of Robert Martin Shehan and Ethel Mae (Newkirk) Shehan. David was the 5th of 7 children. He grew up in Bedford, attending Bedford Community School, graduating with the class of 1976. Most people knew him not as David, but as "Shoes." David acquired this name after working in the family owned business, "Shehan's Shoe Box." He also worked for Marvin Salen at Vogt Seed Company, where he grew very close to Marvin. David gave his youngest son, Wesley, the middle name Marvin in honor of him.

In 1980 David moved to Texas where he started his lifelong career in the Oil Industry. In 1987 he married Vickie Golubin. The couple moved to Mississippi where David continued to work as a field technician for Denbury Resources Incorporated of Heidelberg, Mississippi. David retired from Denbury, after 23 years, due to his health in June of 2018. 

David loved people and never knew a stranger. He was always willing to lend a helping hand to anyone in need. David was baptized at the Corinth Baptist Church in Heidelberg, Mississippi. In his younger years, David spent much of his time at his brother John's house, where he loved to ride horses. David also enjoyed music and played guitar for many years. In his free time, David liked to fish, play golf, travel and was a bit of a history buff. He had a quick wit and always had a joke to tell. 

David was a humble man, who always thought he could have done things a little bit better. Even though David lived away from Bedford most of his adult life, Bedford and the friends he made were near and dear to his heart. 

Left to cherish David's memory are his wife, Vickie of Sandersville, MS; five children he loved dearly, Jessica Wheeler of Conroe, Texas, Phillip Shehan (Leanne) of Lawton, OK, Caitie Seaton (Jason) of Wichita, KS, Ashley Watson (Kenneth) of Borger, TX, Wesley Shehan (Kristin) of Ellisville, MS; siblings, Joyce Shehan of Clarinda, IA, Kaye Ware (Len) of Land O' Lakes, FL, Pat Shehan (Jon Ryan) of Conroe, TX; mother, Ethel Mae Hanshaw of Bedford, IA; grandchildren, Emily, Jay, Mackenzie, Reed, Braylee, Gage, Beau, and Jayce along with many nieces, nephews and friends. 

Preceding David in death were his father, Robert Shehan; step-father, Clif Hanshaw; sisters, Janice and Susan Shehan; brothers, Steve and John Shehan; and a step-brother Jim Hanshaw


Spencer, Wilma Kathleen Lee - Celebration of Life Funeral Service for, Wilma Kathleen Spencer, age 94 of Bedford Iowa passed peacefully of natural causes at the Bedford Specialty Care at 3:20 AM, August 24, 2018, will be held Monday, August 27, 2018, at 11 AM, at the Cummings Family Funeral Home.

Wilma was born September 2nd, 1923, to Mattie (Stewart) and James Lee on a farm west of Bedford. They soon moved southwest of town where she grew up an only child, a tomboy who rode her first rag doll like a horse with the arms as reins. She loved helping her father in the field and her mother in the garden but reading and riding her horse, Dandy, were moments she recounted the rest of her life. Bundled onto the saddle at age 5, off they would trot, rain, sun or snow, 1 ½ miles to Patch, a one room country school where she spent the first 8 years of her education. As she grew, Dandy solidified her self-esteem (beating all the boys in a horse race) and her lifelong sense of humor, having playful conversations with him after being bucked off. She rode him to high school, staying with her grandparents and exchanging waves and whistles with the same trainman every day at 7:00 AM. In a journal written long after these events she emphasizes the admiration she felt for her country teachers, “readers, musicians, janitors, recreationalists and counselors” rolled into a disciplinarian sometimes only 10 years older than his/her students and often physically smaller.

In high school, despite being intimidated as a country girl, she excelled and by senior year was dating a classmate, George Spencer, who she always sat beside during the Sunday church service, exchanging high school gossip, but whom earlier she had wanted to “poke in the nose” for kicking her pencil down a classroom aisle. After high school George joined the Navy, they dated during WW II and were married on August 8, 1943.

Together they farmed a small place south of Bedford where Wilma gave birth to a son, Dennis, on April 1,1945 and then moved ½ mile from George’s parents,
Mildred (Keith) and Clark Spencer. Here they lived, loved, farmed and gardened. A daughter, Janice, was born in the home May 13, 1950. The surrounding farm community shared in harvesting, card games and multiple chili /oyster soup suppers. Along with country life she instilled in her two children the love of music, reading, dance and travel. At her upright piano she would recount her nights with her Grandmother Lee rolling up the farmhouse rug dancing to Golden Slippers and completing the night with Rock of Ages.

Determined that her children would have money for the college education that neither she or George enjoyed, and after 8 years on the farm she was invited to work at the Wholesale Grocery, at holiday times in Western Auto and finally several years in the Bedford Style Shop.
Around this time and many years together, George presented her with a new ring to renew their wedding vows and reflected on a relative who had said the marriage would never last because they were both spoiled only children. How wrong she was.

These were years of spirited indomitable energy on the farm, in the town, raising children, then grandchildren and simultaneously supporting and contributing to: The Bedford Historical Museum, Lioness, JT Club, Forever Friends, UCPC Church Women, and the Quilting Group which met in United Presbyterian Christian Church of which she was a lifelong member. Her artistic flair went beyond quilting. She shared a love for ceramics with her mother-in-law, Mildred, and then for several years turned out beautiful paintings now hanging in the homes of her children and grandchildren.

After George passed she formed a tight bond with a group of wonderful women who shared the loss of a husband and they have laughed and cried and taken care of each other and in the last few years especially of Wilma.

There is no stronger bond, however, than Wilma’s love and attachment to her family and they to her. Babies moved into her arms and family passed from her; each coming and going embraced as a part of who she was. She leaves behind her son Dennis Spencer(grandchildren -Christopher Spencer, Kate Spencer Lachance(Michael), Andrea Spencer Kimchi (Eyal), Joanna Spencer Segal(Yaniv)) and his wife Mary Louise; daughter Janice Wilson and her husband Jim (grandchildren-Jina Jackson(Dennis), Jackie Spainhower (Miles), Michelle Wilson(granddaughter in law)); great grandchildren- Devan Jackson, Evan Jeorge Pierson, Danyelle Jackson, Emsley Spainhower, Maizey Lang, Atticus James Wilson, Rami Segal, Shoshan Segal, Lev Kimchi, and Avi Kimchi.

She is preceded in death by her father-James Lee and mother, Mattie (Stewart) Lee, her husband of 49 years, George Spencer, her great grandson, Derek Jackson, daughter in laws, Susan Spencer, Helen Spencer, and her grandson, James Wilson


Stalder, Leo "Bill" Randolph - Leo (Bill) Randolph Stalder died peacefully with Dixie by his side, at the Lenox Care Center on July 30, 2018, at the age of ninety-nine years, one month, and twenty-eight days. The son of Georgia (Roberts) and Fred Stalder, was born a twin June 2, 1919 on the family farm. He grew up attending school, until the 8th grade, along with his many siblings. 

Leo entered into the United States Army during World War II on May 25, 1942 and left November 28, 1945. During this time he served with the 819th Tank Destroyer Battalion as a Technician Fifth Grade truck driver, spending most of his time in Central and South Pacific. His job was to haul supplies, and personnel over all types of roads and terrain. He also kept records on the loads and made minor repairs and adjustments to the trucks. On November 10, 2017 he was presented a beautiful Quilt of Valor, "Unfurled Glory." He was proud to be a Veteran. On the day he passed away he was to have received his Veteran's Service Flag pin, but instead he was given his angel wings. 

After the service, Leo married his young bride and soulmate Dixie Crisp on December 9, 1948. They made their home in Brooks, Iowa. Born to bless their life as a married couple were two daughters Linda and Denise. Leo and Dixie enjoyed gardening so they could can and freeze their produce to enjoy through the winter. They enjoyed walks around their property, their flower gardens, and just being together and talking. Leo first farmed with his father, and then independently. He grew wheat, oats, barley, and corn. Leo also raised hogs and chickens. He spent many years, until retirement, working on the Burlington Northern railroad as a laborer and track liner. He also cleaned up after train wrecks. Leo and Dixie spent many evenings over the years playing cards with their siblings and families. Dixie and he were members of the Salem Brethren Church, Mt. Zion Church, and Brooks Methodist Church. Their home was a Christian home. They were also in the antique business with their daughters.

Leo was a character and a hard worker. He would light up when family came to visit. Leo loved to tell stories and laugh. He played guitar with his daughter Linda along with mouth harps. Leo was also in a band with the Salem Church men. One of his favorite hobbies was pitching horseshoes. He entered many tournaments and won trophies. His property is decorated with horse shoes and harnesses. 

Left to cherish his memory are his wife, Dixie Stalder, daughter Denise Stalder, grandson Kevin Calvert, nieces, nephews, and friends. Welcoming him into heaven are his daughter Linda Stalder; parents Fred and Georgia Stalder; brothers Melvin, Alvin, and Edgar Stalder; sisters Clarissa Wallace, Evelyn Hardisty, twin Leona Kester, and a baby sister who died in infancy; mother and father-in-law Harold and Clara Crisp; brothers-in-law; and other family members. 

Leo was devoted to his family, especially Dixie. They remained together until the end. He was her protector and best friend. He was a great husband, father, grandfather, uncle, and friend. He will be missed by many.


Stalder, Linda Ann - Linda Stalder , 66 of Stanberry, MO
A visitation with the family will be held Sunday, May 27, 2018 at the Faith Baptist Church/Eickemeyer Funeral Chapel in Bedford. A graveside service will follow at 3:30 at the Brooks Cemetery, Brooks, Iowa.
Memorials are suggested to Family Choice to be determined later.
Eickemeyer Funeral Chapel, Bedford, providing arrangements.

Linda Ann Stalder was born June 28, 1951 to Leo Randolph and Dixie (Crisp) Stalder. She passed way unexpectedly May 22, 2018 at her home in Stanberry, MO at the age of 66.
Linda attended Brooks country school and later graduated from Corning High School in 1969. Linda and her family attended the Brooks Methodist Church and MYF. She later has attended the Stanberry Methodist church. Linda lived at home until moving to Missouri where she opened Memory Lane Antique Mall in Maryville, MO. All of Linda’s family was involved in the antique business selling in malls and doing antique shows, including the Weston show where she and best friend (Susan Stoll) sold out in 17 minutes one year later.
Linda had many hobbies, including playing the guitar, decorating, and helping anyone and everyone who needed her. There was not anything Linda found hard to do.
Linda’s sister, Denise, became an adopted sister of longtime friend Susan Stoll and her sister Carolynn Wilson.
She was preceded in death by her great-grandparents Mertie and Fred Thomas, grandparents Clara and Harold Crisp, uncle Fred Crisp and cousin Devona Thatcher.
She is survived by her parents Bill and Dixie Stalder, sister Denise Stalder, nephew Kevin Calvert, and aunt Pam Crisp, and of the home she is survived by Susan Stoll and her beloved pet Ziggy.
Linda was a very special person and we are all going to miss her. God bless you Linda and God’s speed. We will be together again. Linda believed in God and He called her home.
Look out Heaven, here comes Linda! I hope the Angels know what a treasure they have gained!


Wetzel, Dorothy Ellen Hays - Funeral Services for Dorothy Wetzel, age 93 of Gravity, Iowa, who passed away July 21, 2018, will be held Tuesday, July 24, 2018, at 11 AM at the Cummings Family Funeral Home in Bedford.

Dorothy Ellen (Hays) Wetzel was born April 30, 1925 on a farm south of Quincy in Adams County, Iowa, the daughter of Ray Arvine Hays and Ina Lee (Pace) Hays. She was the middle child, with brother Floyd being 13 years older and her sister Alice being 3 years younger. Dorothy was a bit of a tomboy, loving to be outside with her dad helping on the farm. Dorothy would go out in their pasture and get the cows for milking, occasionally finding a dime that her Dad had dropped for her to find as incentive, which always made her happy! In the summer Dorothy would gather the cows barefoot and would occasionally encounter a patch of thistles. Her dad would say, "just run fast through them and it won't hurt." Needless to say it still did! She and Alice always had fun playing house under their lilac bushes. Dorothy had many happy memories of her childhood that she loved to share with others.

Dorothy attended school through 8th grade at Quincy and then attended high school in Corning through the 11th grade. One day she saw an ad in the paper of a couple needing help taking care of their two little granddaughters. Dorothy loved children so she applied and got the job. It was there that she met their farm hand, Cleo Harlan Wetzel, which she soon decided was the "love of her life!"

Dorothy and Cleo were united in marriage October 10, 1944 at the Bedford United Methodist Church Parsonage and went on to celebrate 64 years together! To this loving union four children were born, Ronald Reldon, Robert Charles, Dwight David and finally a daughter Marcia Ellen.

Dorothy loved living on the farm, taking care of her family, putting in a large garden, cooking, canning, baking and sewing. She taught Sunday School and Bible School at the Fairview Church and helped with community gatherings for church, school, 4-H and the WW Club in the Fairview-Holt area. Dorothy decided to take a cake decorating class and made many birthday, wedding and anniversary cakes for family and friends. She baked and decorated all of her children's wedding cakes with Marcia's wedding cake being the last one she decided to do.

In 1968 the couple moved to the Gravity area where they began attending the Gravity Christian Church and on August 20, 1970, Dorothy was baptized into Christ. Dorothy and Cleo attended there until 2006, helping in many different capacities of the church. Dorothy wrote the Gravity New for the Bedford Times Press and two other area papers for over 43 years before deciding to retire! Through the years Dorothy also babysat many children and grandchildren. She loved her 12 grandchildren and enjoyed attending their activities. Later after her great-grandchildren were born Dorothy enjoyed having them come visit her. Dorothy's family was truly the "joy of her life!"

Left to cherish her memory are two sons; Robert Wetzel of Corning and Dwight Wetzel and wife Glenda of Bedford; her daughter Marcia Nickell and husband Galen of Gravity; her sister Alice Ruttan of Kansas City, Kansas, twelve grandchildren and their spouses, 31 great-grandchildren, 3 step great-grandchildren and many other relatives and friends.

Preceding Dorothy in death are her parents, Ray and Ina Hays; in-laws Verne and Hazel Wetzel; her husband Cleo in 2008; her son Ronald in 2008; her brother Floyd and wife Cora; brother-in-law Jim Ruttan; brother-in-law Roy Wetzel and wife Pearl and daughter-in-law Loretta Wetzel.

Dorothy was a devoted wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. Her love will be missed by her family and friends