Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10:30 AM Monday, January 6, 2014 at St. Peter Catholic Church, Colman, SD. Burial will be in the St. Peter Catholic Cemetery. Visitation will begin at 3:00 PM Sunday at the Minnehaha Funeral Home, Dell Rapids, with a Rosary at 3:00 PM and a Wake Service at 4:00 PM.
Cecilia Eleanor Baumberger was born on the family farm near Huntimer, SD on June 6, 1914 to Jacob and Alice (Huntimer) Baumberger. She was the fifth oldest in the family of eleven children. She attended country school and graduated from St. Mary High School in 1932. She met her future husband Art, at social gatherings which often included dancing at Swans Beach to Lawrence Welk. They were married in St. Joseph the Workman Catholic Church, Huntimer on June 4, 1935 and spent the next six week honeymoon traveling to Oregon camping along the way. The couple bought the Mergen family farm in 1942. There she and Art raised eight children along with caring for her father in law. She raised vegetables in the large garden besides helping with chickens, dairy cows and farm animals. There were always vegetables, fruit, farm raised meat and fresh bread available for the many meals she cooked not only for her family but for the many visitors that were frequently around her kitchen table. Ceal and Art retired in 1976 in Colman. They continued to enjoy traveling, fishing, gardening, card playing and feeding the birds all of which she continued to do after Art’s death in 1995. She also enjoyed sewing, especially making quilts for her grandchildren and great grandchildren. She moved to Orchard Hills Assisted Living in 2010 and later to Dells Nursing and Rehab Center.
Ceal was always active in her church and community. She was a member of St. Peter Catholic Church where she was a charter member of the St. Elizabeth Catholic Daughters of America Court and a member of the Altar Society and served on the parish Council. She was also a long time member of the choir and after fifty years of singing she retired in 1985. She enjoyed attending community events and was a regular patron of the Colman Library as had had a love of reading.
Ceal’s family was of utmost importance to her. She especially enjoyed her grandchildren and their activities. Grandma Ceal has been a great inspiration to her family. Her strong faith, determination, and calm acceptance of whatever life presented her will be missed.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, an infant son, two daughters, Sister Martin Mergen and Carolyn Wickre, son in law, Jerry Wickre, five brothers, Earl, Charles, Verne, Robert, Terry and five sisters, Ethel Loretta Felton, Veronica Reiff, Edith Cannon and Geneva Bunkers. She is survived by her sons, Del (Carol) of Rochester, MN; Jim (Cheri) of Sioux Falls; Mark (Cheri) of Dell Rapids and three daughters, Mary Ellen (Roger) Scholz of Stuart, NE; Alice (Jack) Majeres of Dell Rapids and Teresa (Jon) Brooks of Spirit Lake, IA, twenty grandchildren and thirty-two great grandchildren.