Viola Mary (Wehling) Ritchie Brim passed peacefully to Heaven while at home, surrounded by her family, Wednesday, June 22, 2011, at the age of 93 years.
Viola was born Dec. 19, 1917, on the family farm near Broken Bow to Charles B. and Anna (Thanel) Wehling. Viola attended country school and graduated from Broken Bow High School in 1934, at the age of 16.
While attending high school, and for a time afterwards, she worked for Charles Luce in the abstract business. Viola then worked in Washington, D.C. until the outbreak of WWII, when she returned to Nebraska and worked in the Omaha bomber plant.
After her marriage to Ray, they farmed together until his death. Viola stayed on the farm and worked for the Postal Service over 25 years and was Sargentâ€™s postmaster when she retired in 1989.
Viola married Ray C. Ritchie in Broken Bow Oct. 27, 1943. They lived in the Merna area and later moved to their farm west of Sargent in 1951. They were the parents of Mary Anne, David, Bernard and Virginia Sue. Ray passed March 7, 1964.
Viola married Frank E. Brim in Sargent, Dec. 28, 1970. They moved to Sargent in 1989. Frank passed on in January 2002.
Violaâ€™s greatest joy was her family. She loved them all, unconditionally. Viola gave each of her grandchildren a handmade afghan upon high school graduation. Viola was an active member of her church and community.
She enjoyed playing cards, gardening, sewing, crocheting and knitting. She was involved with Sewing for Babies, Extension Club, 4-H, Sargent Fair, Growing Young Senior Citizens and many other organizations. Viola enjoyed traveling, especially her trip to the Holy Land and Europe with her sister, brother and daughter. Viola also loved her farm and raising Angus cattle.
Viola was a devout Catholic and an active member of Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Maryâ€™s Church and Altar Society. She also served on the Sargent school board.
Viola is survived by her children, Mary Anne (Boyd) Cool of Callaway, David (Joni) Ritchie of sArgent, Bernard (Cheryl) Ritchie of Sargent, and Sue (Dave) Fear of Elm Creek; grandchildren, Judy Jones, Joe Cool, Rebecca Michele, Richard Cool, Anna Cool, Theresa Simpson, Amanda Cool, Nicholas Cool, Megan Cool, Genesa Dzingle, Jon Ritchie, Simon Ritchie, Matthew Ritchie, Melisa Ritchie, Angela Vincent, Brian Ritchie, Renne Taylor and Laura Fear; 28 great-grandchildren; two great-great-grandchildren; sisters-in-law, Teresa Wehling, Wanda Ritchie, Luella Farritor and Lorraine Scott, and a host of nieces and nephews. Viola will also be missed by her special caregiver, Jessica Oâ€™Connor.
Viola will be greeted in Heaven by husbands Ray and Frank; her parents; sisters, Theresa Gunther and Margaret Hutt; brother, Charles and an infant brother; three grandsons, Steve Cool, Ty Vincent and Joshua Simpson; and several brothers and sisters-in-law.
Funeral services were Monday, June 27, at the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Marry Church in Sargent with burial in St. Josephâ€™s Catholic Cemetery in Broken Bow. Rhoad Funeral Home of Sargent was in charge of arrangements.
Published in Custer County Chief, June 30, 2011