AP NEWS

Merna S. Smith

October 11, 2018

Funeral Services for Merna S. Smith will be conducted from the Westmark Evangelical Free Church of rural Loomis, Nebraska on Friday, October 12, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. with Pastor Mike Hellum, officiating. Interment will be in the Highland Cemetery at Bertrand, Nebraska, following a fellowship time at the church.

Merna Sylvia (Johnson) Smith, 99 years of age, of Bertrand, passed away on Sunday, October 7, 2018 at the Bertrand Nursing Home. Merna was born September 12, 1919 at Haxtun, Colorado, the second of eight children born to Roy Eugene and Hanna Ruth (Hadeen) Johnson. Merna received her primary education from rural schools in Phelps County, and then Holdrege High School.

Following her education, Merna moved to Denver, Colorado, where she worked for families providing domestic duties for a few years. She then returned to Phelps County, and on March 21, 1946, she was united in marriage to Darell Willis Smith at Holdrege, and to this union three children were born: Renee Sylvia, Duane Willis and Linda Jane. The family made their home on the farm northeast of Bertrand, where the couple engaged in farming for fifty-two years before their retirement in 1997. During their retirement years, Darell and Merna loved traveling throughout the United States with their friends, and attending concerts together as well. On August 26, 2009, she was preceded in death by her husband, Darell.

Besides her parents, and husband, Darell; she was preceded in death by her grandson, Andrew Davis; brothers: Ray Eugene Johnson in infancy; Delwin Johnson and his wife, Grace; and Kermit Johnson and his wife, Elaine; sisters: Norma Ryden and her husband, Wesley; Sadie Kimberly; and LaVon “Bonnie” Samuelson and her husband, E.L.; brothers-in-law: Spencer Fox and his wife, Lenore; Spencer Griffith; Darrel Meyer; and Warren Jacobson.

Merna leaves to celebrate her life; her two daughters: Renee Davis and her husband, Scott of rural Bertrand; and Linda Steinbrink and her husband, Robert of rural Loomis; one son, Duane Smith and his wife, Debbie of Beatrice, Nebraska; seven grandchildren: Tony Davis and his wife, Suzanne; and Reggie Davis and his wife, Shannon all of Kearney; David Smith and his wife, Amber of San Antonio, Texas; Ashley Belt and her husband, Neal of Omaha; Marcus Steinbrink of Holdrege; Micah Steinbrink of Loomis; and Damon Steinbrink of Bertrand; six great-grandchildren: William and Benjamin Davis; Easton and Harper Belt; and Skylar and Samuel Steinbrink; one sister, Betty Jacobson of Holdrege; sisters-in-law: Verla Matuschka and her husband, Ernest of Chandler, Arizona; and Betty Meyer of Bertrand; and a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

Visitation will be held at the Nelson-Bauer Funeral Home in Holdrege on Thursday, October 11, 2018 from 4:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. with the family greeting from 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

A memorial has been established in Merna’s honor, and kindly suggested to the Westmark Evangelical Free Church, the Nebraska Prairie Museum, the Bertrand Nursing Home, or the donor’s choice.

Expressions of caring and kindness can be sent to the family at Www.nelsonbauerfh.com. The Nelson-Bauer Funeral Home in Holdrege is in charge of the arrangements.

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