Archive | Obituaries

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VIiolet DeBoer Hebbert, ’57

Posted on 23 February 2017 by editor

vdh57Violet Joyce “Vi” Hebbert, 77, died Friday, Feb. 10, 2017, in Liberal, Kansas. She was born Dec. 21, 1939. to Otto and Mabel (Poppen) DeBoer in Milbank, S.D. She married Dale Merrill Hebbert July 11, 1959, in Corona, S.D. He survives. She graduated from Sunshine Bible Academy in 1957 in Miller, S.D.. She later attended the Grace Bible Institute in Omahafor 2 years. She was a member of the Gospel of Grace Church in Hooker, Okla. She was self-employed as a healthcare provider.

Survivors also include children: Timothy Hebbert and wife, Suzi, Bullhead City, Ariz., Terri Saucerman and husband, Roger, Stillwater, Okla., Dean Hebbert and wife, LeAnn, Liberal, and Delton Hebbert and wife, Rachel, Stillwater, Okla.; brothers: Donald DeBoer and wife, DonnaMae, Milbank, S.D., Alan DeBoer and wife, Sharon, Pagosa Springs, Colo., and Eldon DeBoer and wife, Diane, Sioux Falls, S. D.; sister, Pearl Van Haveren and husband, Bruce, Evergreen, Colo.; nine grandchildren:  Erin (Tyler) Watson, Ezekiel Hebbert, TimiLynn (Ryan) Green, Ryan (Nicole) Saucerman, Chelsea (Sam) Saucerman, Abbey Hebbert, Savanna Hebbert, Bailey Hebbert and Hayden Hebbert; and three great-grandchildren: Taryn Watson, Tayla Watson and Nathan Saucerman.

She was preceded in death by her parents; and grandson, Matthew Wade Saucerman.

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Amy Winsinger Bergen, ’51

Posted on 23 February 2017 by editor

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Amy Winsinger Bergen ’51 was born June 8, 1930, to Herman and Marie Winsinger in Pretty Prairie, Kansas. She attended Grace College of the Bible and graduated in 1951.  She then went on to attend Grace Hospital School of Nursing in Hutchinson, Kans., and graduated in 1954.  Amy left for Brazil, to be a missionary. There she met up again with Gerald Bergen and they married.  Amy faithfully served the Lord there with Brazil Gospel Fellowship Mission for over 40 years. Amy joined her Savior on February 16, 2017.

Amy is survived by her husband of 61 years Gerald, son Timothy and wife Judy of DeRidder, Louisiana. Daughter Rachel Foster of Winston Salem, N.C.  Six grandchildren Adriana (Alan) Childress, Joel (Mary Beth) Bergen, Kristian Henry, Olivia Bergen, Bre’Anna Lemos, Bryson Foster.  Five great grandchildren Emery, Hadley, Carter, Nicholas, and Olivia. 

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Linda Grove, ’67-68

Posted on 10 February 2017 by editor

image001Linda L. (Ahrens) Grove, age 68, of Conewago Township, passed away January 15, 2017, at her home. She was the wife of Ted Grove. The couple celebrated their 48th wedding anniversary on August 10, 2016.  Linda was born in York, Penn., on January 1, 1949, the son of the late Kenneth and Marie (Tolbert) Ahrens. She was a member of Grace Baptist Church of York. She was a 1966 graduate of Dover High School and attended Grace University. She accepted the Lord as her personal Savior when she was young and always tried to live her life for the Lord. She was a homemaker and a devoted wife, mother, and grandmother. She enjoyed caring for animals (tame and wild) and had a great love for them. Now she is happy to be in Heaven serving the Lord and taking care of His animals. As the family grew she was very active with assisting in little league and an active participant in co-ed league volleyball. Linda leaves two sons, Jim Grove, his wife, Michele (Shelly) of Dover and their son, Louie, age 13; T.J. Grove, his companion, Samantha Turner and children, Belle Grove, age 15, Chayse Grove, age 8, Sage Turner, age 8, Sadie Turner, age 2, and twins Jacks and Scarlett Grove, age 7 months. She also leaves a sister, Patsy Ryan and her husband, Stuart of Dover; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins. 

Published in York Daily Record & York Dispatch on Jan. 18, 2017

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Elinor Katherine Goertz, ’46

Posted on 03 February 2017 by editor

83a1cc5e-798a-487a-be1b-04433402c181Elinor Katherine Goertz ’46 was born on September 24, 1925, in Steinbach, Manitoba, Canada, to John and Anna Barkman. She had an older brother, Paul, and a younger sister, Verda. After a number of moves, the family settled in Henderson, Neb., where Elinor graduated from high school. She attended Grace Bible Institute, graduating with the second graduation class in 1946. She met her first husband, Charles Boehr, at Grace and they were married on June 1, 1947. Their child, Charles, was born in 1950, in Winona Lake, Indiana. Her husband, Charles, was tragically killed in a car accident shortly after the birth of Charles. Elinor subsequently moved with infant Charles to Upland, Indiana, to obtain her B.A. degree from Taylor University. At Taylor she was reacquainted with a former Grace student, Reuben Goertz, who also was attending Taylor. Elinor and Reuben were married in Henderson on January 31, 1954. A daughter, Cornelia, was born in 1955, in Haxtun, Colorado, where Elinor and Reuben were involved in planting a church. Having felt God’s call to the mission field, Elinor and Reuben, along with Charles and Cornelia, set sail for Germany in 1956. Elinor and Reuben served as missionaries with Greater Europe Mission in Germany and Canada for more than 30 years. While serving in Germany, the twins, Samuel and Susan, in 1958, in Heidelberg. After retiring in 1998, Elinor and Reuben moved to Colorado Springs to be close to family. They settled into Go Ye Village in Tahlequah, Oklahoma, in 2007. Reuben passed away on December 24, 2009. 

Elinor was a gifted teacher, musician, counselor, and inspirational speaker. She had a deep abiding faith in God. She trusted the Lord to sustain and provide no matter the situation or difficulty of the task. She was an amazing prayer warrior – someone who truly prayed without ceasing. Her home was open to everyone and there was always room for one more plate at the table. She loved to entertain making everyone who entered her home feel special. She especially delighted in cooking favorite foods for her children and grandchildren – Sunday roasts, verenika, zwieback and her heavenly strawberry jam. Her hands were always busy, knitting, sewing or cross-stitching. She delighted in knitting beautiful and creative sweaters for her grandchildren. She loved to play games and work with puzzles. She lovingly reminded her grandchildren to read their Bible. She treasured spending time with her grandchildren. She loved to gather them around her for a game of Skip bo or to work a puzzle. Their accomplishments were her pride and joy in life. In her eyes, they were perfect! Elinor was technologically savvy and kept in daily contact with those she loved on her iPhone, texting or sending selfies or photos. She was a loving, encouraging, faithful friend to a countless number of people. At the time of her death she was still in regular contact with friends in Germany. Even with the death of Reuben in 2009, she kept on serving the God she loved, encouraging others to join her in the work of the Lord. The Lord called this good and faithful servant home on January 28, 2017, in Tahlequah, OK, at the age of 91. A blessed sister, wife, mother, grandmother and friend, that can never be replaced.

Elinor is preceded in death by her mother, father, husband Charles Boehr and second husband Reuben Goertz, her brother, Dr. Paul Barkman, and her sister, Verda Prieb. Those left to carry on her legacy include her sons and daughters, Rev. Charles Goertz and wife Beverly of Denver; Connie Sturm and husband Rev. Jon Sturm of Portland, Oregon; Susan Holm and husband Rev. Jason Holm of Cologne, Germany; and Dr. Samuel Goertz and wife Andrea Goertz of Montvale, N.J. There are eleven grandchildren and five great grandchildren. She also leaves her very special friend and sister, Maryann Andres, and three sisters-in-law, Frieda Barkman, Bette Friesen and Liz Hanes, as well as many cousins and a host of friends.

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Peter Tschetter, ’54

Posted on 03 February 2017 by editor

Rev. Peter William Tschetter was born on December 17, 1922, to Peter S. and Kathrine (Wipf) Tschetter on a farm near Huron, S.D., in Beadle Co. Peter died two days short of his 94th birthday on December 15, 2016,  in Windom, Minn. He attended Fairfield Country School #4 and high school in Aberdeen, Huron, and Doland, S.D., graduating in 1941. He married his high school sweetheart, Beulah Glanzer, on December 12, 1943. To this union three children were born, Jacquelynn, Randall, and Rachel. Pete farmed in the Huron area until 1949 when he moved his family to Omaha where he attended Grace Bible Institute graduating in 1954. He began his public ministry in 1956 serving churches in Cedar Creek, Neb., Butterfield, Minn., Bridgewater, S.D., and in Mt. Lake, Minn. He retired from active ministry in 1992, but he continued to preach in various Mesa, Ariz., senior retirement courts for 17 years. His message was that Jesus Christ died for the sins of the world and by grace alone, by faith alone in Christ alone one can know right now that one has eternal life (1 John 5:13). He loved to hunt, fish, try new things, tease and kid around with people, and was forever looking out for the betterment of everyone, both physically and spiritually. He went to the Holy Land, to all 50 states and all Canadian  provinces.

Survivors include his wife, Beulah Tschetter; children, Jacquelynn (Jim) Linscheid, Randall (Wanette) Tschetter and Rachel (Larry) Engbrecht; grandchildren, Jason (Brenda) Engbrecht, Jeremy (Lindsey) Engbrecht, Michelle (Ty Callahan) Tschetter, Jessica (Tom Graham) Engbrecht, Kim Tschetter, Lori (Kerry Hofer) Tschetter, and 16 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by parents, Peter and Kathrine Tschetter; brothers, Arthur and Jonas; sister-in-law, Susanne; grandson, Matthew Tschetter; great-granddaughter Ava; niece, Patrica Mendel and her 4 children.

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Agnes Tharp, ’61

Posted on 03 February 2017 by editor

Agnes Tharp ’61, of Bourg Les Valence, France, formerly of Mt. Lake, Minn., died Dec. 29, 2016, at the age of 78 in France.

Agnes Luella Buhler was born to the late Aron and Mary Buhler on Nov. 24, 1938, on the family farm in Mt. Lake. The fifth of six children, she attended public schools in Cottonwood County and graduated as valedictorian of Mt. Lake High School in 1956. At a young age, she professed her faith in Jesus Christ and was a member of Cornerstone Bible Church of Mt. Lake. Agnes worked on the family farm for a year after high school. She then attended Grace Bible Institute in Omaha, Neb., graduating in 1961. After graduation, she worked as a secretary for a year before entering the mission field. Agnes worked with Greater European Missions in Wheaton, Ill. Her first assignment in 1966 led her abroad to work at European Bible Institute in Lamorlaye, France, where she met her future husband.

She married Gregory Tharp in September 1969. Their union was blessed with two children. Agnes also attended Sorbonne University to study French. From 1970 to 1982, Greg and Agnes were foster parents to five children placed by Departmental Coordination of the Medical and Social Program in France. Agnes was hired in 1985 to the Christian printing IMEAF as an executive secretary, where she worked 20 years until her retirement in 2005.

Agnes was an active member of the Reformed Church of Bourg Les Valence, France, where she organized musicians and played for various church services. She learned to play piano at a young age, and her love of singing and music continued through church and various activities in France. She learned to play harp in later years, taking lessons in Valence, France. Agnes also led prayer groups on Tuesdays and Thursdays. She was known for her love of flowers and, because of her generous spirit and pleasant personality, was loved by many.

Agnes was preceded in death by her parents, sisters Eleanor and Lillian and brothers-in-law Melvin and Ventura. Survivors include her husband, Greg; children Etienne of Valreas, France, and Stephanie of St. Paul Trois Chateaux, France; three grandchildren; twin sisters Martha and Mary of Mt. Lake; brother Paul of Holbaek, Denmark; and brothers-in-law John of Mt. Lake and Noel of Keizer, Ore.

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Alvin Claassen, ’55

Posted on 03 February 2017 by editor

587412753500dAlvin Merle Claassen, age 79, entered heaven on Jan. 8, 2017, in Whitewater, Kans..  He was born on December 3, 1937, to Henry and Elsie (Claassen) Claassen of rural Whitewater.  His grade school years were spent in the one-room Claypool School House 3/4 of a mile from his home.  His high school years were completed at Berean Academy and he attended Grace Bible Institute for one semester.  He accepted Jesus Christ as his Savior as a youth, was baptized and became a member of the Emmaus Mennonite Church, where he remained a faithful member until his death. 

In the spring of 1956, Alvin began a two-year 1W program, an alternative to military service, at the KU Medical Center pathology laboratory in Kansas City.  It was during this time that he met Elaine Bechtel, a student at Bethel Deaconess Hospital School of Nursing, who was also in Kansas City, studying for three months at Children’s Mercy Hospital.  At the end of these two years, he turned down a permanent job offer to work in the pathology lab. He chose to return home to farm with his Dad.

On April 10, 1960, Alvin and Elaine were married in the Deer Creek Mennonite Church in Deer Creek, Okla. They established their home in rural Whitewater, where he farmed with his father, Henry and then his son, Gary.  He was happiest when working and was not even considering retirement, when in October of 2014, he was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer.

In addition to farming, Alvin served the church and community in many capacities.  He served several terms on the church relief committee, which included a number of years as chairman of the Newton Area Meat Canning Project, a relief program to provide food for needs around the world.  He was also an insurance secretary for 15 years with Mennonite Property Aid Association, served several terms on the Board of Directors for Wheat State Manor ,and was on the Board of Trustees for the Benton Volunteer Fire Department District 7 for 38 years.

He also enjoyed 39 years of working for Murdock Township.  This involved maintaining 52 miles of gravel and dirt roads with regular grading, hauling rock and pushing snow, a job that sometimes meant working all night so everyone else could get out in the morning.  At the same time, he was elected to the Township Board for 32 years.

All these accomplishments meant far less to him than his nearly 57 years of marriage to Elaine and the family they raised.  Four children were born to this union of Alvin and Elaine: Michael, Denise, Gary and Warren.

His health began to deteriorate in late 2016, when the weekly chemotherapy treatments could no longer control the spread of the cancer.  He passed from this world with family at his side and entered the Kingdom of God. 

Alvin is survived by his wife Elaine; son Michael and wife Stahli of Newton, Kans.; daughter Denise Olson and husband Paul of Chariton, Iowa; son Gary and wife Carrie of Whitewater; and son Warren and wife Kelly of Wichita. Twelve grandchildren: Emma, Alice and Payne Claassen; Katherine (Bob) Snider of Overland Park, Kans.; Bethany (Joseph) Cherri of Joplin, Mo.; Sarah (Andrew) Alton of Mexico, Mo.; Caleb Olson and fiancée Sarah Hammock of Mexico, Mo; Morgan, Jacob and Evan Claassen; Keegan and Kaden Claassen; two great-grandchildren, Hayden Snider and William Cherri; one brother-in-law, Norman Ratzlaff and one sister-in-law, Sue Bechtel.

He was preceded in death by his parents Henry and Elsie, his sister Wynona and her husband Walter Entz, one brother-in-law Howard Bechtel, one sister-in-law Wanda Ratzlaff and one niece Eileen Doran.

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Herb Schrag, ’51

Posted on 03 February 2017 by editor

4062923_wlppHerbert “Herb” Schrag, 86, died Jan. 8, 2017, in Hutchinson, Kans. He was born March 21, 1930, in Pretty Prairie, to Benjamin A. and Carrie (Graber) Schrag. Herb graduated from Castleton High School and attended Grace Bible Institute. He was employed by Dillons grocery stores for many years, most recently as store manager at the 13th and Main store location. He was a member of First Mennonite Church.

On June 12, 1955, he married Joan B. Biss in Pretty Prairie. She died Nov. 26, 2009. Herb is survived by: daughters, Deborah Williams and husband Bob of Henderson, Nev., Diane Coffman and husband Rich of Auburn, Kans.; sister, Mary Pauls of Manitoba, Canada; and sister-in-law, Patti Biss of Port St. Lucie, Fla.. He was preceded in death by: his parents; brothers, Daniel, Dave, Harvey, Willard, Richard, and Johnny Schrag; sisters, Bertha Schrag, Adina Flickinger, and Ann Friesen.

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Adina Schmidt

Posted on 03 February 2017 by editor

Wife of Dr. Joseph W. Schmidt, Grace University President 1955-1960

Adina Schmidt died January 1, 2017. In addition to serving for many years as registrar at Fresno Pacific University, her lasting legacy is the love and kindness she gave to her family. Adina is lovingly remembered by her five children, Benita, Jerry, Joe, Jim, and John; her grandchildren; and great-grandchildren.

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Peter Tschetter, ’54

Posted on 03 January 2017 by editor

Rev. Peter William Tschetter was born on December 17, 1922, to Peter S. and Kathrine (Wipf) Tschetter on a farm near Huron, S.D., in Beadle County. Peter died 2 days short of his 94th birthday on December 15, 2016, in Windom, Minn. He attended Fairfield Country School #4 and high school in Aberdeen, Huron, and Doland, S.D., graduating in 1941. He married his high school sweetheart, Beulah Glanzer on December 12, 1943. To this union 3 children were born, Jacquelynn, Randall, and Rachel. Pete farmed in the Huron area until 1949 when he moved his family to Omaha where he attended Grace Bible Institute. He began his public ministry in 1956 serving churches in Cedar Creek, Neb., Butterfield, Minn., Bridgewater, S.D., and in Mt. Lake, Minn. He retired from active ministry in 1992, but continued to preach in various Mesa, Ariz., senior retirement courts for 17 years. 

His message was that Jesus Christ died for the sins of the world and by grace alone, by faith alone in Christ alone we can know right now that we have eternal life (1 John 5:13). He loved to hunt, fish, try new things, tease and kid around with people, and was forever looking out for the betterment of everyone both physically and spiritually. He went to the Holy Land, to all 50 states and all the Canadian provinces.

Survivors include his wife, Beulah Tschetter; children, Jacquelynn (Jim) Linscheid, Randall (Wanette) Tschetter and Rachel (Larry) Engbrecht; grandchildren, Jason (Brenda) Engbrecht, Jeremy (Lindsey) Engbrecht, Michelle (Ty Callahan) Tschetter, Jessica (Tom Graham) Engbrecht, Kim Tschetter, Lori (Kerry Hofer) Tschetter, and 16 great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by parents, Peter and Kathrine Tschetter; brothers, Arthur and Jonas; sister-in-law, Susanne; grandson, Matthew Tschetter; great-granddaughter Ava; niece, Patrica Mendel and her four children.

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