Obituaries

Obituaries Shirley Gravholt

Shirley Gravholt, 68 of Lesterville, passed away on Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2004 at Sioux Valley Hospital in Sioux Falls.

Funeral services were 2 p.m., Friday, Oct. 1 at St. John's Lutheran Church, Yankton, with the Rev. Dave Gunderson officiating. Burial was in the Garden of Memories.

Visitation was from 1 to 9 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 30 at Kostel Funeral Home, Yankton, with a 7:30 p.m. prayer service. Visitation resumed one hour prior to the service at the church. Pallbearers were Daniel Gravholt, Chris Gravholt, Robert Kerr, Chris Kerr, Brandon Wagner, Randy Bierle and Darrin Bierle. Honorary pallbearers were Alex Wagner, Katie Wagner, Jami Stevens and Angela Gravholt.

Mrs. Gravholt was born to Henry and Vivian (Vanorny) Bierle on Dec. 2, 1935 in Utica. She was baptized and confirmed at Martinus Lutheran Church, rural Utica. She taught in a number of rural schools in South Dakota and northeast Nebraska. Mrs. Gravholt became a school administrator in 1977, working in Emerson, NE, Vermillion, Kyle, Macy, NE and in Mission, as a college instructor. On May 23, 1956, she married Robert Gravholt at Trinity Lutheran Church in Yankton.

She belonged to many organizations: Phi Delta Kappa, Delta Kappa Gamma, Clay County Protection Team, VFW Ladies Auxiliary, Lutheran Women's Missionary League and the Lesterville Community Club. During her career, Mrs. Gravholt received the Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award (nationwide) and Outstanding Administrator Award as principal. Her formal education included a bachelor of science degree in elementary education, along with two master's degrees in administration and special education. She enjoyed reading, playing piano, organ, accordion, sewing, crafts, baking, playing cards and enjoying her grandchildren. More recently she enjoyed writing her weekly articles for the Yankton County Observer, "Coffee with Shirley." Mrs. Gravholt will be greatly missed by her family and numerous friends.

Those who will cherish her memory are her husband, Robert of Lesterville; a son, Terry (Claris) Gravholt of Colbert, OK; three daughters, Susan (Chris) Kerr of Yankton, Roberta (Bobbi) Gravholt of Lesterville, and her special friend Hubert Zimmerman, and Kathy (Warren) Wagner of Utica; her mother Vivian Bierle of Yankton; two brothers, Arnold (Naomi) Bierle of Yankton, and Richard (Judy) Bierle of Utica; nine grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her father Henry Bierle.

Stanley Munger

Stanley Prentis Munger, 83, of Vermillion, died Saturday, Oct. 2, 2004 in Vermillion.

Memorial services were held for Mr. Munger at the United Church of Christ-Congregational in Vermillion on Tuesday, Oct. 5 at 1:30 p.m. Arrangements were under the direction of the Hansen Funeral Home in Vermillion.

Mr. Munger was born Jan. 11, 1921, in Sioux City, IA, to Judge and Mrs. Robert H. Munger (Kathryn Bell Prentis). He was a grandson of the late Charles E. Prentis and Mary Frances Stanley, early Clay County pioneers. Mr. Munger attended Sioux City public schools and graduated from Central High School in 1938. Subsequently he earned a bachelor of arts degree from Morningside College and a bachelor of science degree (animal husbandry) from Iowa State University.

Shortly after Dec. 7, 1941, while attending Iowa State, he volunteered for the U.S. Naval Reserve. He was commissioned an ensign on Dec. 22, 1943. On Dec. 23, 1943, Mr. Munger was united in marriage with Eleanor Elizabeth Witty of Pleasant Plains, IL, at the home of her parents.

Following military duty, Mr. and Mrs. Munger moved to Sioux City, IA (1946), and then to Vermillion (1947), where he pursued a farm management and livestock farming business.

Over the years, Mr. Munger participated in many and various public and private activities including serving as moderator and member of the Board of Trustees of the Vermillion Congregational Church and as a member of the Board of Trustees of the South Dakota Conference of Congregational Churches. Mr. Munger became a member of the Vermillion Rotary Club in 1949 and in 1958 served as district governor of Rotary International District 5610.

Other services and activities have included: president of the South Dakota Reclamation and Water Development Association; member of the Board of Trustees of the South Dakota Chapter of the National Cowboy Hall of Fame (appointed by Gov. Joe Foss); charter president and CEO of Home Trust Savings & Loan Association (1965-1975); and chairman of the Vermillion Library Board. Mr. Munger was especially proud to be a 50-year member of Incense Lodge No. 2 A.F.& A.M., other Masonic bodies and El Riad Shrine. He was a life member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars and held retired status in the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary.

Mr. Munger is survived by his beloved wife, Eleanor, and their three children. Son George H. Munger (wife, Anne O'Donnell) is an attorney in Bellingham, WA. They have a son, Clark, who is a midshipman at the U.S. Naval Academy. Son Stanley E. Munger (wife, Mary Plambeck) is an attorney in Sioux City, IA. Daughter Kathryn Munger Brown (husband, Dr. David L. Brown MD) lives in Houston, TX. Grandchildren are Elizabeth Munger, Mark Munger, Katie Munger, Sarah Brown, Codie Brown and Clark Munger. Mr. Munger has a cousin, Mrs. E. H. Sibley of Sioux City, IA.

Mr. Munger was a devoted husband and father who cherished the blessing of his 60 years of life with his precious, wonderful and loving Eleanor, and the love, devotion, and support of his children and grandchildren.

Memorials may be sent to the Rotary Foundation, or the UCC trust fund.

Cleta Wantz

Funeral services for Cleta C. Wantz, 82, of Lufkin, TX, were held at 10:30 a.m. Monday, Sept. 27, 2004 in the Carroway-Claybar Funeral Home Chapel in Lufkin, with Dr. Bob Klund officiating. Interment followed in the Garden of Memories Memorial Park.

Mrs. Wantz was born in Holly, CO to the late Mabel (Dutcher) and Frank Carter, and died Wednesday, Sept. 22, at her residence. Formerly of Beaumont, TX, she had lived in Lufkin for 23 years.

Mrs. Wantz, a retired L.V.N., was a member of Believer's Bible Church. She was an avid quilter in her life time and made over 2000 quilts. She loved gardening and also played the piano and violin.

Survivors include her son, Alan Wood of Washington; daughter and son-in-law, Judith and Douglas Sharples of Wakonda; stepdaughters and husbands, Rita and Gerry Kesel of Dublin, OH, Rose and Tom Wilcox of Columbus, OH, Beverly and Gary Fischer of Houston, TX, and Sandra and Bernard Reyes of Spring, TX; a stepson, Gerald Wantz II of Houston, TX; numerous grand and great-grandchildren; sisters Rita Reish, Granada, CO and Dorothy Conard and husband Bob of Cassville, MO; a brother and sister-in-law, Leslie and Stella Carter Sr., Granada, CO, and numerous nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Gerald Paul Wantz, MD.

Carroway-Claybar Funeral Home, Lufkin, TX, was in charge of arrangements.

Kevin Knudsen

Kevin Lynn Knudsen, 42, Viborg, died Sept. 29, 2004, at Avera McKennan Hospital from injuries resulting from a car accident.

Mr. Knudsen was born Nov. 28, 1961, to Robert and Mary Ellen (Nissen) Knudsen in Yankton. He grew up in Viborg and graduated from Viborg High School in 1980. He married Karen Miller on April 8, 1985. He has worked various jobs around the Sioux Falls area and was employed by Cross Country Courier of Sioux Falls at the time of his death.

Mr. Knudsen was an avid Chicago Bears fan and enjoyed golfing, camping with family and friends, and watching most sports, especially NASCAR and football. His greatest joy was attending the many activities of his children.�

Mr. Knudsen is survived by his wife Karen of Viborg; children, Mandy, Jordan, MiKayla, Sage, Keeley, and Tori; his mother, Mary Ellen Nielsen of Sioux Falls; his step-mother, Dori Knudsen of Viborg; and a sister, Kelly Bohrer of Sioux Falls; step-siblings; and many other dear friends and relatives.

He was preceded in death by his father, Bob.�

Funeral services were held at 10 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 2, at the Viborg School Gym, with burial in Viborg Baptist Cemetery, rural Viborg. Following committal services lunch was provided by the Bethany Lutheran Church Women of the ELCA and the Viborg Athletic Boosters.

Visitation was Friday, Oct. 1, from 5 to 8 p.m. at Hansen Funeral Home in Irene.

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