Mandan News

Obituaries – September 8-14, 2012

Linda Friesz

Linda Friesz, 64, Mandan, died Aug. 27, 2012, at St. Alexius Hospital in Bismarck.

Services were held on Friday, Aug. 31, at First Lutheran Church, Mandan, with Rev. Lee Herberg officiating.

Linda was born on March 21, 1948, in Mobridge, to Harold and Avis (Helgreson) Oster. She was raised and educated in Selfridge area. She moved to Mandan after her fourth grade year. On Aug. 15, 1964, she married Tom Friesz in Mandan.

Linda was a loving and self-sufficient person. Not only did she love things such as canning vegetables or even working on crossword puzzles, Linda was very much a family-orientated person. She loved fishing with her husband in places like the Missouri or even Nelson Lake. Linda enjoyed the company of her family, especially her grandchildren. Linda’s career consisted of waitressing at various restaurants in the Mandan area, but she still made time for rummage sales and thrift stores, not to mention decorating for each holiday season.

Linda will be greatly missed by her husband, Tom, Mandan; sons, Rodney and Todd both of Mandan; one special grandchild, Karlee Jean Friesz, 12 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren; sisters, Wanda (Larry) House, Tina (Shannon) Reichenberg and Althea (David) Shepherd, all of Mandan; and one brother, Tim (Arlene) Oster, Mandan.

Linda was preceded in death by her parents; her sister, Sherry Oster; and brothers, Duane and Ron Oster.

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Jerome Geiger

Jerome Geiger, 84, Mandan, died Aug. 24, 2012, at Medcenter One Hospital in Bismarck, the result of complications of surgery.

Mass of Christian burial was held on Tuesday, Aug. 28, at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Mandan, with Rev. Shane Campbell as celebrant. Burial was at the Mandan Union Cemetery, with military honors provided by the Mandan VFW Post No. 707 and American Legion Post No. 40.

Jerome was born on Aug. 24, 1928, to Christ and Clementine (Barnhardt) Geiger in Mandan. He was raised and educated in Oliver County. He farmed until he was drafted into the U.S. Army; he served during the Korean War. He was proud of his commitment to his country while serving in the military. He returned to the farm, which he continued to work. He married Genevieve Schmidt in October 1953 at South Heart. Genevieve died in May 1968. Jerome moved to Mandan in 1964, where he was employed with Nash Finch Warehouse. He married Cecilia Berger Fleck in February 1969. He later worked for N.D. Concrete and then for Melroe as an Assembler which he did for 10 years, retiring in 1984.

Jerome was active in several organizations during his life, including his involvement with the American Legion, the Eagles, the Knights of Columbus and Veterans of Foreign War. He enjoyed a good card game; pinochle being a favorite and old westerns on TV. He liked to dance and had a natural talent for playing the harmonica, often entertaining his family with his tunes. You could also find Jerome fishing on the banks of many North Dakota rivers and lakes. A highlight for him was traveling to Flin Flon, Canada, to enjoy fishing with family. He also enjoyed time playing cards and slots on his trips to casinos. He had the opportunity to travel to Boise just recently to see his daughter Cindy, where they enjoyed games at casinos in Jackpot, Nev.

Old machinery would get his attention, whether collecting or nostalgia. Jerome had an amazing memory and wisdom like no other. He proudly attended many demolition derbies to see his sons and grandsons compete. He loved his grandchildren, who have many fond memories of enjoying cards and dice games at holiday gatherings with their Grandpa. These wonderful memories are in brief a description of what we remember and cherish.

He will be lovingly remembered and sadly missed by his wife, Cecilia; children, James (Sue) Geiger, Mandan, Gerald (Deb) Geiger, Mandan, Cindy Geiger, Boise, Idaho, Allan Geiger, Mandan, and Brenda (Thomas) Schick, Flasher; stepchildren, Robert (Marlene) Fleck, Bismarck, Jerry (Tamera) Fleck, Carlsbad, Calif., Arnold Fleck, Bismarck, Janice (Jeff) Schick, Flasher, Phyllis (Paul) Rittenbach, Mandan; grandchildren, Ryan (Janae) Geiger, Nicolas Geiger, Chad (Kayla) Geiger, Christ (Ann) Geiger, Chris Wentz, Cory (Paula) Wentz, Jesse Fleck, Kayla Fleck, Ashley Fleck, Justin Fleck, Andrew (Alissa) Schick, Alexis (Kyle Schroeder) Schick, Allison Schick, Arika Schick, Mitchell Rittenbach, Shiyel Rittenbach, and Ashley Schick; nine great-grandchildren; siblings, John (Frances) Geiger, Maggie Schafer, Justine Fleck; along with numerous nieces and nephews.

Jerome was preceded in death by his parents; his first wife, Genevieve; stepson, Thomas Fleck; siblings, Frank (Elizabeth) Geiger, Beada (Mike) Frank, Ann (Tony) Himmelspach, Matt (Barbara) Geiger, Rose (George) Schmidt, Adam Geiger, Christ Geiger; and in-laws, Betty Geiger, John Schafer and Ralph Fleck.

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Ralph Hamer

Funeral services were held Thursday, Aug. 30, for Ralph W. Hamer, 87, Lisbon, formerly of Mandan, at the North Dakota Veterans Home, Lisbon. Ralph died Aug. 26 at the Veterans Home. Burial was at the North Dakota Veterans Cemetery, south of Mandan.

Ralph was born Oct. 30, 1924, at Milaca, Minn., the son of Hamilton and Ruby (Doland) Hamer. He graduated from Harvey High School and then attended the University of North Dakota, receiving a degree in journalism. He served in the U.S. Army from 1943 to 1944, being discharged after a heart murmur was detected.

Ralph worked for several newspapers in Litchfield, Minn., before moving to Mandan, where he was employed at the Pioneer and later, the Mandan News. He also worked for the railroad from 1981 to 1989. He never married.

Mandan people will remember Ralph for his cheerful disposition and for his daily walks from his apartment up on Collins Avenue to the Mandan News office, and then on to Dakota Farms ,where he shared a cup of coffee with his many friends. He was a “walking encyclopedia” of high school sports statistics and was happy to relate baseball and basketball scores, as well as players’ stats from the 1940s until present day. Ralph was that favorite eccentric uncle that everyone wishes they had. And it certainly wouldn’t be too much of a stretch to think that upon reaching the Pearly Gates, Ralph and St. Peter enjoyed a friendly discussion of sports before passing through to meet a brand new set of friends.

Ralph’s survivors include two brothers, George (Bonnie) Hamer, Melbourne, Fla., and Roy (Ruth) Hamer, Fargo. He was preceded in death by his parents; a brother, John; and three sisters, Jean, Bess and Twyla.


Larry Morrell

Larry Morrell, 74, St. Anthony, died Aug. 30, 2012, at his residence.

Mass of Christian burial was held on Saturday, Sept. 1, at Spirit of Life Catholic Church, Mandan, with Rev. Chad Gion as celebrant. Burial was at the St. Anthony Cemetery.

Larry was born on July 29, 1938, to Dominick and Magdalena (Doll) Morrell in St Anthony. He was raised and educated in the St Anthony area. Larry was in the United States Army from 1959 to 1962 and was honorably discharged. He married Evelyn Friesz on June 15, 1963, at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Mandan. He and Evelyn took over the family farm in the fall of 1963.

Larry enjoyed farm life and he and Evelyn raised their 11 children on the farm. He liked milking cows, butchering and making sausage and harvesting, especially combining. He enjoyed cooking and making homemade ice cream. Larry loved the holidays, especially Christmas and Easter. He enjoyed playing cards with his children and grandchildren, especially smear, whist and canasta. Larry enjoyed traveling; he and Evelyn went to San Diego in 2008 to visit family and he especially enjoyed the trip Kalispell, Mont., to attend their youngest son’s wedding last year.

Larry will be deeply missed by his loving wife of 49 years, Evelyn; daughters, Sue Hatzenbuhler, Bismarck, Kathy Wolt, Mandan, Margi (Lee) Engelter, New Salem, Carolyn (Kyle) Reisenauer, Mandan, and Lucy (Tom) Bauer, Mandan; sons, Dan, Golden Valley, Chris (Sheena), Mandan, Ted, St. Anthony, and Sam (Dayla), Mandan; 16 grandchildren; one great-grandchild; sisters, Josephine (Peter) Friesz, Mandan, Vivian (Eugene) Boehm, Mandan,  Linda (Joe) Berger, Mandan, and Mary Ann Schaaf, Mandan; and brothers, Martin (Hildegard), Mandan, and Leo(Diane), Wheatland, Wyo.

Larry was preceded in death by his parents; sons, Charles and Kelvin; sisters, Carolyn, and an infant sister; and brothers, Jack and Charles.

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Elizabeth Schmidt

Elizabeth “Betty” Viola Schmidt, 87, of Upland, Calif., died peacefully on June 21, 2012, in the presence of loved ones.

A short service was conducted by the Rev. Jim Rothschiller on Monday, Sept. 10, at the North Dakota Veterans Cemetery, Mandan, where she was laid to rest by her husband of 55 years.

Betty was born Sept. 23, 1924, to Frank and Elizabeth Rothschiller and was raised in a family of 10 other siblings until her marriage to Leonard L. Schmidt, who preceded her in death on Aug. 17, 1997. They lived in Mandan until their move in 1964 to Upland, where she resided until her death.

Betty was an active member of St. Joseph’s Catholic Churches in Mandan and Upland, as well as St. Madeliene’s Parish in Pomona, Calif., where she participated in the Altar Society and His Hands. She was also an active member of Women of the Moose, where she was crowned Queen of Sponsors for North Dakota and South Dakota in 1959. Aside from being a great homemaker and helping in all her husband’s businesses (10-Spot bowling alley, Buckhorn bar, Len’s market & U-Store-M), she found time for her passions that included sewing, crafts, photo albums, seashells, reading and patch blankets.

She is survived by her seven children and their spouses, Frank and Gloria  Schmidt, Gail and Ray Andrade, Gladnie and Chuck Bender, Lori Rucker, Pat and  Loretta Schmidt, Dee Clark and Lenny Schmidt; 18 grandchildren; 19 great-grandchildren; three great-great-grandchildren; and six siblings, Geri and Wayne Ayers, Loretta Pendergast, Angie Zent, Jim and Arlene Rothschiller, Tom Rothschiller and  Rita White.

In lieu of flowers, please direct any contributions to the N.D. Militia Foundation, Box 5511, Bismarck, N.D. 58501 in memory of Leonard L. and Elizabeth V. Schmidt. (Draper Mortuary, Ontario, Calif.)


Lydia Schock

Lydia Schock, 96, Mandan, died Aug. 30, 2012, at the Mandan Living Center.

A funeral service was held on Tuesday, Sept. 4, at the Mandan United Methodist Church, with Reverend Bruce Adams

officiating. Burial was at the Elgin Cemetery.

Lydia was born Nov. 3, 1915, in Willa, to John and Elizabeth (Hirning) Rieger. She attended school north of Burt through the eighth grade. On Aug. 5, 1939, Lydia married Karl K Schock in Burt.

An industrious woman, Lydia worked alongside her husband on their farm in rural Elgin, where they raised grains and livestock. She milked cows by hand and cared for the chickens, ducks, geese and turkeys. Before they had electricity, Lydia used a washboard for her laundry and made her own lye soap. She was a creative cook and wonderful baker, especially bread, kuchen and cookies.  Always providing hearty meals for her family, Lydia canned everything from meat and chicken to all of the vegetables she grew in her garden.

Music and performing in the church with her parents and siblings was something Lydia always loved. She enjoyed playing games, reading and tending to her flower garden. A member of Hope Conservative Congregational Church in Elgin, Lydia later attended Mandan United Methodist Church.  Moving to Mandan in 1997, Lydia lived at Liberty

Heights, where she made many friends. A very kind and giving spirit with an enduring faith in God, Lydia will forever be remembered by those who knew and loved her.

Blessed to have shared her life are her children, Nyla Schock, Mandan, and Dr. Elmer (June) Schock, Greeley, Colo.; grandchild, Darin (Eli) Krause; and great-grandchildren, Cortney and Derek Krause.

Lydia was preceded in death by her parents; her husband in July 1974; her daughter and son-in-law, Darlene (2008) and Willis (1989) Krause; granddaughter, Heather Marie Schock; and three brothers, Henry, Herbert, and Ervin.

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