Obituaries

Obituaries Harold K. Fiedler

Harold K. Fiedler, age 77, of Vermillion, formerly of Sioux Falls and Gayville, died Saturday, Sept. 13, 2003, at Avera Sacred Heart Hospital, Yankton.

A funeral service was held 10:30 a.m., Wednesday, Sept. 17, at the First United Methodist Church, Yankton with the Rev. Dayne Zachrison officiating.

Burial was in the Union Cemetery, Wakonda, with military honors provided by Ernest-Bowyer VFW Post No. 791, Yankton.

Visitation was from 1 to 9 p.m. Tuesday, at Ray, Cantrell & Wintz Funeral Home, Yankton with a Masonic Service at 7 p.m. by St. John's Masonic Lodge No. 1, A.F. & AM, Yankton.

Harold "Tiny" Fiedler was born Dec. 9, 1925, at Yankton to Albert and Emma (Nelson) Fielder. He spent his childhood years in Gayville and graduated from Gayville High School in 1943. He enjoyed music and sports activities, and often proudly recalled that he was a member of the 1943 District Champion Basketball Team. On March 31, 1944, he entered the U.S. Army. After training at Camp McCoy, WI, he was sent overseas and participated in the liberation of Europe with the 76th Infantry Division. He achieved the rank of sergeant and was awarded the Good Conduct Medal, Germany Occupation Medal and the European Service Medal.

During his duty, he served in the Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe campaigns. He was honorably discharged in June of 1946, and returned to live in Gayville where he assisted his father in Fiedler Implement Company.

On Feb. 10, 1947, he married Elizabeth Jorgenson at Vermillion. He was the Democratic candidate for Yankton County Treasurer in 1950. The Fiedler family moved to Omaha, NE in 1952, and he took employment as a ticket agent with Braniff Airlines. They returned to South Dakota in 1959, and he purchased the Corey Hotel and Cafe in Gayville.

With the assistance of his wife and children he operated the business until 1964. He then enrolled in college in 1964, and later moved to Vermillion where he managed the VFW Club while attending The University of South Dakota. In 1968, he graduated from USD with a bachelor of science degree in sociology.

Mr. Fiedler was employed as a drug and alcohol counselor for the state of South Dakota Division of Vocational Rehabilitation, serving Yankton, Vermillion, Sioux Falls and surrounding areas. He enjoyed his work as a counselor and was very dedicated to helping his clients by assisting them in finding employment, returning to school and becoming productive members of society.

The Carroll Institute and River Park recognized him for his efforts in helping clients and families with substance abuse problems.

With a zest for life, he especially enjoyed the time with his family, the yearly Nelson family reunion, reminiscing about his experiences in World War II. Those who knew him well will recall his fondness of relating stories of General George S. Patton visiting his Army battalion during combat. He also treasured attendance at the 76th Infantry Division Association reunions.

He was a member of the Minnehaha Masonic Lodge No. 5 A.F. & A.M., Sioux Falls, El Riad Shrine and the Provost unit of the El Riad Shrine.

The Fiedlers were active members of the El Riad Shrine Dance Club and Mr. Fiedler danced well, in spite of a below the knee amputation.

An enthusiastic supporter of University of South Dakota sports, he and his wife were season ticket holders for several years, attending Coyote football and basketball games. Hazardous winter weather was endured often during the trips to the Dome to enjoy their Coyote games, win or lose, he loved the Coyotes.

He was a proud member of the Gayville American Legion and a life member of Ernest-Bowyer VFW Post No. 791, Yankton.

He will be greatly missed by his family and his devoted dog, Sam. He is survived his wife, Elizabeth of Vermillion; three sons, Ronald (Patricia) of Mesa, AZ, Richard of Sioux Falls and Barry (Barbara) of San Jose, CA; two daughters, Barbara (Leland) Papik of Mission Hill and Annette (Jerry) Moye of Burleson, TX; four grandchildren, Tyler Fiedler of Alexandria, VA, Conrad Fiedler of Manteca, CA, and Albert Valdez and Ashley Valdez of Burleson, TX.

His parents and a brother, Robert, preceded him in death.

Helen Brunick

Helen E. Brunick, 87, of Vermillion, formerly of Wakonda, died Monday, Sept. 15, 2003 at the Avera McKennan Hospital in Sioux Falls.

Helen E. Welby was born July 28, 1916 in Yankton County to Mark and Katherine (Stanage) Welby. She attended rural schools, Yankton High School, and graduated from the Gayville High School. She worked at a clinic in Vermillion during WWII, and later worked for Dr. Margaret Faith in Wakonda for many years. She married Sidney Brunick on May 8, 1943 in Santa Anna, CA. They lived in Wakonda for many years before moving to Vermillion in 1997.

Mrs. Brunick was a member of the Vermillion VFW Ladies Auxiliary, the St. Agnes Church in Vermillion and a past member of the St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Wakonda.

Survivors include her husband Sidney Brunick of Vermillion, two sons, Mark (Norma) Brunick of Viborg, and William (Charla) Brunick of Vermillion; her two daughters, Mrs. David (Jeanne) Christensen of Grand Island, NE, and Mrs. Kerry (Mary Ann) Cameron of Sisseton; a sister, Marianne Morey of Sioux City, IA; 14 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents, four brothers, and four sisters.

Funeral Mass was 11 a.m. Friday, Sept. 19, at the St. Agnes Catholic Church in Vermillion, with burial in the Calvary Cemetery in Vermillion. Visitation began at 5 p.m. Thursday, with a prayer service at 7 p.m. at the Hansen Funeral Home in Vermillion.

Bernice Johnson

Bernice A. Johnson, 92, Vermillion, died Sunday, Sept. 7, 2003, at the Sioux Valley Vermillion Care Center.

Funeral services were 10:30 a.m. Sept. 11 at the First Baptist Church, Vermillion, with the Rev. Elmer "Sandy" Aakre officiating. Burial followed the service in the Canton Lutheran Cemetery.

She was born March 11, 1911, at Spink to John H. and Sophia (Fickbohm) Groon. She married Odell B. Johnson Dec. 6, 1934, in Canton. He died Jan. 25, 1969. She lived in Vermillion since 1976.

She is survived by a daughter, Mardell (Wayne) Ebsen, Lake Andes; a son, Marlynn (Gloria) Johnson, Canton; three sisters, Melvina Aashiem, Canton; Alvina Rosgaard, Rock Valley, IA; and Elaine Olson, Canton; two brothers, Emil Groon, Arlington, and Gerald Groon of North Carolina; nine grandchildren; 13 great-grandchildren and three great-great grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, one sister, one brother and a son-in-law.

John Jones

John Howard Jones, 67 of Wakonda, formerly of Callender, IA, died Monday, Sept. 15, 2003 at his residence in Wakonda.

He was born to J.R. and Nona Jones on Aug. 12, 1936 at Dobbin, TX. He attended grade school in Dobbin and graduated from Clifton High School at Clifton, TX in 1954. He graduated from Luther College at Decorah, IA in 1960 with a BA in classics. He graduated from Lutheran Seminary, St. Paul, MN with a M.Div. and was ordained into the ministry of the American Lutheran Church in 1966.

Rev. Jones was married to Louise Knudson on Aug. 22, 1959 in Norway, KS.

Before graduating from the seminary, he was employed as a machinist, cookware salesman, commercial salmon fisherman in Alaska, and youth director at Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Minneapolis, MN. He served parishes in Norway and Mankato, KS from 1966 to 1973 and Bassett, NE from 1973 to 1987. While at Bassett, he also served as part time chaplain at Valley Hope Alcohol Treatment Center in O'Neill, NE.

He served in Stover, MO from 1987 to 1994, North Preston and Lake Whitewood churches in Lake Preston, from 1994-1996 and Callender, IA from 1996 to 2001. He retired from active ministry in June of 2001 and had been serving in this capacity at Scotland.

Survivors include his wife Louise, Wakonda; two daughters, Laurie Vitale (Todd) of Rapid City, and Heidi Jones of Gilbert, AZ; one son, Eric Jones (Patty) of Gretna, NE; his mother, Nona Jones, Houston, TX; two sisters, Nona Tipps of Lake Kiowa, TX and Lucille Massey of Houston, TX, one brother Jack Jones of Chickasha, OK; seven grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

His father, J.R. Jones a brother Jim Jones, and a granddaughter, Megan Dillon, preceded him in death.

A favorite activity for 39 years was taking family, youth and adult church groups canoeing in the Boundary Waters of Northern Minnesota.

Funeral services were 10:30 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 18, at Zion Lutheran Church in Scotland. Burial followed in the Union Cemetery at Wakonda.

Visitation was from 4 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 17, at the Hansen Funeral Home in Irene.

Verna A. Whitman

Verna A. Whitman, 89, Vermillion, died Friday, Sept. 12, 2003, at the Sioux Valley Vermillion Care Center.

Her funeral service was 2 p.m. Sept. 16 at the Iverson-Siecke Funeral Home, Vermillion, with the Rev. Elmer "Sandy" Aakre officiating. Burial was in the BluffView Cemetery, Vermillion.

Visitation was from 3 to 7:30 p.m. Sept. 15 with the family present from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the funeral home.

She was born Jan. 1, 1914, at Alcester to Eric and Augusta Nielson. She graduated from Alcester High School in 1932. She married M.G. Whitman Jan. 14, 1938, at Vermillion. They operated dry cleaners in Alcester and Beresford, and the University Cleaners in Vermillion from 1952-73, when they retired. Her husband died Oct. 16, 1978.

She was a member of the First Baptist Church, Vermillion.

She is survived by one son, Jerry (Janet) Whitman, Hill City; three grandchildren; and nine great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, one brother and one sister.

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