Sister Helen Nemmers

Helen NemmersSister Helen Nemmers, 93, a Sister of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, died November 3, 2015 at Presentation Convent, Aberdeen, SD. Mass of Resurrection will be 11:00 a.m., Monday, November 9, 2015 at Blessed Sacrament Chapel, Presentation Convent, Aberdeen, SD. Reverend Joseph Sheehan, celebrant and homilist. Visitation from 4:00 – 7:00 p.m., Sunday, with a liturgical wake at 7:00 p.m. at Blessed Sacrament Chapel.  Spitzer-Miller Funeral Home, 1111 S Main Street, Aberdeen is in charge of arrangements. Burial will be at Sacred Heart Catholic Cemetery. Condolences may be left at

Helen Catherine was born May 20, 1922 to Magdelene (Roeder) and Joseph Nemmers in Granville, IA. She attended St. Mary’s elementary and high school in Dell Rapids, graduating in 1940. Helen Catherine entered Presentation Convent September 1, 1941 and made her first profession of vows August 10, 1944.

Sister Helen (once known as Sister Urban) earned a Bachelor of Music Education and History degree at Alverno College, Milwaukee, WI in 1963 and a Master of Music Education degree at Catholic University of America, Washington, DC in 1970. She taught music and choir at schools in Humboldt, Aberdeen, Madison, Sioux Falls and Dell Rapids, SD plus Willmar and Anoka, MN from 1945 until 1977. She was director of Religious Education at Guadalupe Parish, St. Paul MN (1979-1980). In 1980 Sister Helen went to Guerrero, Mexico where she served as a catechetical missionary for 17 years. In 2002-2007 Sister Helen became part of the team working at Caminando Juntos, the Hispanic ministry in Sioux Falls. She retired to the motherhouse in Aberdeen in 2009. Sister Helen co-authored two books “17 Years in Mexico” and “17 Years in Mexico: A History in Pictures”.

Sister Helen is survived by her community family of Presentation Sisters, one sister Charlotte Nemmers Hinricher, one brother, Quintin, Dell Rapids, SD and many nieces and nephews.

She is preceded in death by her parents Magdelene and Joseph Nemmers, three sisters, Mary Page, Florence Ginsbach, Sister Gertrude Nemmers, PBVM, and seven brothers, Reverend Leonard, Reverend Charles, Urban, Aloysious, Arnold, Roman, and John Nemmers.

Share and Like this story:

Bernette Westhoff

Bernette WesthoffBernette M. Westhoff, 89, of Salem, passed away on Thursday, November 5, 2015 at Golden Living in Salem. Funeral mass will begin at 10:30am on Monday, November 8 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Salem. Visitation will begin on Sunday at 2pm with a 3pm rosary and a 7pm rosary and wake service all at Kinzley Funeral Home in Salem. Condolences may be left at

Bernette is survived by her children: David Westhoff of St. Paul, MN, Connie (Dwane Wylie) Westhoff of Manhattan, NY, Mary Lee (Mike) McHugh of Aberdeen, SD, Rachelle (Bob) Barrett of Peoria, AZ, Denise (Joe) O’Neill of Summerfield, FL, Dan Westhoff of Salem, SD, Karen (Dan) Westhoff-Rogers of Oklahoma City, OK, Ken (Paige) Westhoff of Garretson, SD, and Kristi (Chris) Waechter of Grand Forks, ND; 18 grandchildren; 8 great-grandchildren; one brother, Steve (Connie) Weber of Salem, SD; four sisters, Sr. Rosemary Weber of Yankton, SD, Joyce (Duane) Kappenman of Montrose, SD, Theresa Weber of Scottsdale, AZ, and Phyllis Zwart of Dell Rapids, SD; as well as numerous nieces and nephews.

Share and Like this story:

Georgia Damm Krier


Georgia KrierGeorgia M. Damm Krier, 93, of Dell Rapids passed away on Sunday, November 1, 2015 on All Saints Day at the Dells Nursing and Rehab Center. Her Mass of Christian Burial will begin at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, November 4, 2015 in St. Mary Catholic Church. Interment will be in the Trent Cemetery. Visitation on Tuesday, November 3, 2015 will begin at noon. The family will be present from 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. and the Christian Wake Service will begin at 7:00 p.m. at Kahler Funeral Home. Condolences may be left at

Georgia was born on Easter Sunday at Flandreau, SD, on April 2, 1922, the daughter of George and Nora Earl. She grew up and attended school in Flandreau. She married Kenneth Damm on December 3, 1939 at the First Presbyterian Church in Sioux Falls. The couple moved to a farm near Trent and in 1959 moved into Trent. Ken passed away in 1969. Georgia worked at the Trent and Flandreau schools as a school cook until 1979. She married Leavern Krier on October 12, 1979 at St. Mary Catholic Church in Dell Rapids. They made their home in Dell Rapids. Leavern passed away in 1996. Georgia remained in her home until 2013 when she moved to an apartment in Orchard Hills. She became a resident of Dells Nursing and Rehab Center in February of 2015.

She was a member of St. Mary Catholic Church and Altar Society and volunteered at Padre’s in Dell Rapids. She enjoyed crossword puzzles, Jumbo and playing cards.

She is preceded in death by her two husbands; her daughter, Norma Janssen; her grandchildren, Dennis Auren and Ladena Damm; her sisters, Jerusha Collins and Brita Hudson; her step-son, Joe Krier; step-grandson, Terry and step-great grandson, Jim.

Those left to cherish her memory are her sons, Dwayne (Lorraine) Damm of Bridgewater, Darrell (Judy) Damm of Sioux Falls, Richard (Sarah) Damm of Flandreau and Raymond (Cleo) Damm of Sioux Falls; her daughter, Velma (Vernon) Auren of Flandreau; her son-in-law, Robert Janssen of Trent; her step-children, Jerome (Donna) Krier of AK, Arthur Krier of Dell Rapids, Andy (Marilyn) Krier of IA and Carol of MN; step daughter-in-law, Sharon Krier of Brookings; her 17 grandchildren, 8 great grandchildren and 6 great-great grandchildren; special nephew, Richard Earl and her many nieces and nephews.

Share and Like this story:

Erma Stewart

Erma StewartErma Stewart, age 96, of Ramona, died Sunday, October 25, 2015, at Golden Living Center, Madison.

Funeral Services will be 2:00 PM Friday, October 30, 2015, at St. John Lutheran Church, rural Ramona with burial in the church cemetery. The family will be present for visitation 5-7 PM Thursday at Ellsworth Funeral Home and continues one hour prior to the service at the church. Condolences may be left at

Erma Martha Abraham was born April 17, 1919, near Ramona, to Emil and Ida (Hildebrandt) Abraham. She was baptized and confirmed at St. John Lutheran Church, rural Ramona. She graduated from Ramona High School in 1936 and received her teaching certificate from Eastern Normal School in Madison. Erma married Kenneth Stewart on August 24, 1937, at Big Stone City, SD. They lived in Ramona for a few years before moving to a farm south of Ramona in 1944. She helped on the farm all her life. Her husband died in 1952. Erma later worked for ICAP in Madison, helping elderly residents stay in their own home. She remained on the farm until 2012 when she entered Ramona Assisted Living Center.

Erma was an active member of St. John Lutheran Church & WELCA, taught Sunday School and sang in the choir. She was a member of Lakelanders and Sprouts Garden Clubs, a 35-yr. member of SD Federation of Garden Clubs, a 25-yr. member of Kitchen Blenders Band; HarmoniKats for many years, a life member of SD Farmers Union, and was clerk of Concord School.

Erma was preceded in death by her parents; her husband in 1952; one son Gene; two grandsons Randy & Ricky; one infant sister Donna Mae; and an infant granddaughter Mary Lou Stewart.

Survivors include four sons, Donald (Darlene) of Ramona, Robert (Becky) of Anchorage, AK, James of Rogers, AR and Danny (Linda) of Ramona; two daughters, Carol Bebo of Mitchell and Sandra (Rod) Stanford of Dell Rapids; 21 grandchildren; 34 great grandchildren; and 6 great-great grandchildren.

Share and Like this story:

Sister Abbie Kennedy

Abbie KennedyThe Mass of Resurrection for Sister Abbie Kennedy, 85, will be 11:00 a.m., Monday, November 2, 2015 at Blessed Sacrament Chapel at Presentation Convent, Aberdeen, SD. Reverend Joseph Sheehan will be celebrant and homilist. Visitation and signing of the guest book will be from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. Sunday with a memorial wake at 7:00 p.m. in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel. Condolences may be left at

Sister Abbie Kennedy, 85, a Sister of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, died Wednesday, October 28, 2015 at Presentation Convent, Aberdeen, SD.

Abbie Margaret Kennedy was born January 8, 1930 in Ekalaka, MT to Rose (Winchell) and Wilfred Kennedy. She attended grammar school in Ekalaka and then graduated from eighth grade in El Cerreto, CA. She graduated from Sacred Heart High School in Miles City, MT in 1948. Abbie entered Presentation Convent September 8, 1948 and made her first profession of vows August 10, 1951.

Sister Abbie (once known as Sister Dolorosa) taught in the diocesan elementary schools at Humboldt, Woonsocket, Dell Rapids, Huron, Mitchell, Sioux Falls, Jefferson, Milbank, SD and Miles City, MT from 1951 to 1983. She also ministered at St. Lawrence Parish, Milbank from 1983 to 1998 and then at Avera McKennan Nano Nagle Inn as Innkeeper from 1998 to 2004. Sister Abbie came to Aberdeen in 2004 working as a volunteer at Avera St. Luke’s Guest House until 2007.

Sister Abbie is survived by her community family of Presentation Sisters; one sister, Catherine Whitney, Miles City, MT, nieces, nephews and cousins.

She is preceded in death by her parents Rose and Wilfred Kennedy, one brother, Thomas and one sister, Mary Fletcher.

Preferred memorial gifts to Presentation College.

Share and Like this story:

Darlene (Lahr) Baumberger

Darleen BaumbergerDarleen Baumberger, 85, of Dell Rapids, passed away on Tuesday, October 20, 2015 at the Dells Nursing and Rehab Center. Her Mass of Christian Burial will begin at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, October 23, 2015 in St. Mary Catholic Church. Visitation on Thursday, October 22, 2015 will begin at 12:00 p.m. A Catholic Daughters Rosary will be prayed at 3:30 p.m. The family will be present at 5:00 p.m. with the Christian Wake Service beginning at 6:30 p.m. at Kahler Funeral Home. Condolences may be left at

Darleen Lahr was born to Evelyn and Tony Lahr in a house in Farmer, SD on July 8. 1930. She attended Catholic School in Farmer until 1941 when her family moved to Dell Rapids. She attended school at St. Mary Academy graduating as salutatorian of her class (’48). She worked at the Dells Theater during high school and later at the Arkota Ballroom during her studies at Nettleton Business School. She trained as a legal secretary and worked for Van Buren and Vogt in Dell Rapids. Later in her working life she worked as a secretary at Farmers National Bank in Flandreau where she was promoted to loan officer, retiring in 1988.

She met her husband, Don Baumberger at a dance in late 1951. The couple married in May of 1952 and made their home on a farm, eventually purchasing a farm near Lone Tree north of Dell Rapids. Darleen raised and process 500 chickens each year, keep books and help manage the business end of the farm. Their family had six children, Evelyn, Paula, a still born baby Rudolph Donald, Therese, “Tess”, Pete and Bruce. The couple purchased a farm near Lone Tree Station north of Dell Rapids. Her husband, Don, passed away in 1984. Darleen married Ken LeBrun in 1988.

Darleen enjoyed family gatherings, playing cards, spending time with family, feeding people, gardening, canning, and baking. She enjoyed caring for her grandchildren and had an interest in current events and was politically active, running for county treasurer in Moody County in the 1980s. She was a member of St. Mary Catholic Church and Altar Society in Dell Rapids and St. Peter in Colman. She was the director of Catechism in Colman. She was a member of the Catholic Daughters of the Americas the treasurer of Padres and a volunteer at St. Mary School. She also belonged to the Red Hatters Club, Bridge and Canasta Clubs, volunteered at the Dell Rapids Museum and participated in ecumenical bible study groups.

She is survived by her children, Evelyn Baumberger; Paula Baumberger (David Peik), Rev. Therese “Tess” Baumberger (Richard Desantis); Pete (Julie Kuehl) Baumberger and Bruce Baumberger; her eight grandchildren and one great-granddaughter; her sister, Kathleen (Gary) Keller and her brothers, James (Jan) Lahr and Tom (Sue) Lahr. She is preceded in death by her husband, infant son, and brother, Dee (Corrine) Kleespie.

Share and Like this story:

Dorothy Weets

Dorothy WeetsDorothy R. Weets, 93, Pipestone, died Wednesday, October 14, 2015 at the Pipestone County Hospice House in Pipestone. A memorial service was held Saturday, Oct. 17 at Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church, Pipestone with Rev. Jon Olson officiating. Inurnment was in the Jasper City Cemetery, Jasper. Condolences may be left at

Dorothy Ruth Eleanor Weets was born on June 26, 1922 to August and Hortense (Conrad) Peterson in Pipestone and was raised near Jasper. She was baptized and confirmed at Trinity Lutheran Church in Jasper. She attended elementary school in a country school near Jasper and graduated from Pipestone High School. 

On Feb. 21, 1941 she married Rhinehart Weets at her parents’ home. Following their marriage they lived on a farm near Flandreau, S.D. Later they moved to Jasper where she lived for 59 years. In 2004 she moved to Pipestone. In January 2014 she entered the Good Samaritan Communities of Pipestone.

On Thursday, Oct. 8 she was admitted to the Pipestone County Medical Center and on Monday, Oct. 12 she was moved to the Pipestone County Hospice House.

Dorothy was a lifelong member of Trinity Lutheran Church in Jasper where she served on the Ladies Aid. She was also a member of Eden Extension Club.

She is survived by her children, Sandy (Dyer) Downing, Casa Grande, Ariz., Pat Farnand, Federal Way, Wash., Linda (Robert) Moore, Elk River, Susan (Bob) Adams, Rockford, Ill., JoAnn Borcich, Pahoa, Hawaii, Laurie (Dennis) Welu, Pipestone; special niece, fondly referred to as daughter #7, Marlys (Franny) Hazelton, Pipestone and special friend, fondly referred to as son #2, David (Jan) Muller, Pipestone; nine grandchildren; 11 great-grandchildren; four sisters, Juanita Johnston, Leawood, Kan., Irene Schalow, Pipestone, Myrt Sass, Dell Rapids, S.D. and Bernice Alexander, Alexandria, Va.; two sisters-in-law, Marion Peterson, Jasper and Verona Weets, Pipestone and one brother-in-law, Eugene Witte, Dell Rapids.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Rhinehart; son, Gary; great-granddaughter, Megan Laws; siblings, Irma (Fritz) Gehrels, Eloise (Ed) Mitchell, Mildred Witte and Carl Peterson; son-in-law, Charlie Borcich and numerous brothers and sisters-in-law and nieces and nephews.

Share and Like this story:

Paul Hanneman

Funeral services will begin at 2 p.m. Fri., Oct. 16, for Paul Joseph Hanneman, 47, Sioux Falls, who died on Oct. 10, 2015, at his residence. The services will be held in the Randall Funeral Home at Madison, and burial will be in Graceland Cemetery.  Condolences may be left at

Hanneman was born on Dec. 30, 1967, at Madison to Don “Doug” and Shirley (Voeltz) Hanneman. He grew up in Humboldt, Elk Point and Lennox and graduated from Lennox High School. He attended South Dakota State University and the College of the Air Force. He served for 13 years in the Air National Guard and was also a full-time Air Guardsman.

Survivors include a daughter, Brooke Hanneman of Sioux Falls; his parents, Don “Doug” (Carrie) Hanneman of Dell Rapids, and Shirley (Fred) Steffen of Lennox; two brothers, John (Tammy) Hanneman of Junius, and Chris Steffen of Lennox; two sisters, Mary Coppel of Tea, and Sally (Bruce) Rawenhorst of Marion, Iowa; three stepbrothers, Jerry Kerns of Dell Rapids, Todd (Julie) Steffen of Tea, and Mark (Wendy) Steffen of Madison; and many aunts, cousins, nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his grandparents, Martin and Kate Hanneman and John and Gladys Voeltz; and an uncle.

Share and Like this story:

Nelson “Nels” LeVan

Nels LeVanNelson “Nels” LeVan, 86, of Dell Rapids passed away Sunday, October 18, 2015.  Funeral services will begin at 11:00 AM Friday, October 23, 2015 at East Nidaros Lutheran Church, rural Baltic, SD.  Visitation with the family present will be from 5:00 to 8:00 PM Thursday at Minnehaha Funeral Home in Dell Rapids.  Condolences may be left at

Nelson was born December 7, 1928 to Nelson, Sr. and Helen (Wertman) LeVan in Montgomery, PA. Nels graduated from Muncy High School in 1946. Nels’ work history include working for a farm co-op, bulk plant manager and territory salesman in the Pennsylvania and New York area. In 1957 he moved to Ohio where he went into the insurance industry. In 1959 he moved to Minneapolis, MN where he continued in the insurance business and eventually opened his own agency, A&L Associated, Inc. in 1964. Nels sold his business in 1969 and moved to Scottsdale, AZ where he continued in sales. In 1971 he moved to Sioux Falls where he and his wife, Lee ran Baltic Corner. In 1975 he went into the liquor industry, retiring as a liquor representative in 1994. Nels and Lee took Baltic Corner over again until their retirement in 2004.

Nels enjoyed hunting, fishing and boating in his earlier years. In his later years he liked golfing, bowling, playing pool and his pets. Nels loved spending time with his wife, kids and grandkids. He was an avid Pittsburg Steelers and Minnesota Twins fan.

Nels is survived by his wife, Lee, Dell Rapids, SD; children, Brian (Leslie) LeVan, Litchfield Park, AZ, Cheryl (Jim) Lakes, Williamsport, PA and Gail (Gary) Barto, Hughesville, PA. Children, Randy (Laura) LeVan, Erie, PA, Michelle (Joe) Daughterty, Newcastle, PA and Ric (Cheyenne) LeVan Mozingo, Cortland, OH. Sons, Kevin LeVan, Sioux Falls, SD and Tim (Patti) LeVan, Bradenton, FL. Daughter, Elizabeth (Mark) Rogers, Dell Rapids, SD. Nels is also survived by many grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren but those closest to him due to locale include grandchildren, Alyssa (Aaron) Johnson, Humboldt, SD, Hayley, Andrew, Riiker and Castynn Rogers, Dell Rapids, SD. Granddaughters, Lisa LeVan, Sioux Falls, SD and Alexis (Will) Kolb, Sioux Falls, SD. Granddaughter, Kaitlin Gnadt, Sioux Falls, SD.

Nels was preceded in death by his parents; son, Sheldon LeVan and other in-laws. 

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to East Nidaros Lutheran Church or the Human Society.


Share and Like this story:

Betty Begansky

Betty BeganskyBetty Begansky, 92, of Rapid City, formerly of Dell Rapids, has passed away on Sunday, October 11, 2015. She was in hospice care in Rapid City. Funeral arrangements are pending for Saturday.

Betty Jean Goranson was born on April 2, 1923 in Dell Rapids, the daughter of John and Marie (Christensen) Goranson. She grew up in Dell Rapids and graduated from Dell Rapids High School in 1941. Betty worked at Dieson’s Department Store for two years and then moved to Sioux Falls to work as a buyer for Fantles Department Store. Betty married Nicholas Begansky on October 15, 1948 in the Lutheran Church of Dell Rapids. They made their home in Dell Rapids and raised their two daughters. Nick passed away in 1981.

Betty was an active member of the Lutheran Church of Dell Rapids and Women of ELCA. She was also a member of the Dell Rapids Hospital Auxiliary, the American Legion Auxiliary, the Dell Rapids Senior Citizens Center, the Dell Rapids Golf Course, and Chapter A.D. P.E.O. Betty enjoyed rolling bandages to be sent to Africa and helped plan several all school reunions. She was very involved in mission trips to the reservations, providing quilts, blankets and support for Native American families. She loved to play cards, watch football and talk to her grandsons and grand nephews. We will miss this classy, sassy, sweet woman. Love you, Mom!

Those left to cherish her life are her two daughters, Kristine (Rolf) Norlin of Rapid City, SD and Nichola Begansky Abeyta, Littleton, CO; and her two grandsons, Alex Norlin and Stephen Abeyta; her niece, Lori (Jacobson) Ostrem (Doug) of Story City, IA and her three sons, Jeremiah, Joshua and Jacob.

Share and Like this story: