Saturday, July 8, 2017

Obituary - Edna Rhe Nelson

Edna Rhe Nelson, mother of Jeannette Hill passed away Friday, July 7, 2017 at Ellett Memorial Hospital in Appleton City, Missouri.

Visitation will be held at Sweet Springs Funeral Home in Sweet Springs, MO on Monday, July 10, 2017 from 6:00 - 7:30 p.m.

Funeral services will be held at Sweet Springs Funeral Home in Sweet Springs, MO on Tuesday, July 11, 2017 at 2:00 p.m.
Interment will be in Fairview Cemetery, Sweet Springs, MO

The address for Sweet Springs Funeral Home is 204 Ruby Street, Sweet Springs, MO 65351. Telephone is 660-335-4222.

The family suggests memorial donations may be made to the Presbyterian Church in Sweet Springs or the Sweet Springs Library. Donations may be left at Hill and Son Funeral Home if you wish to do so.

A register book will be available to sign at Hill and Son Funeral Home for those that can not make the visitation or service. 

Edna Rhe Nelson, 96, the only daughter of William Edward and Edna Christ (Sartor) Wylie, passed away peacefully at Ellett Memorial Hospital in Appleton City, Missouri, on July 7, 2017. Born June 10, 1921, Edna Rhe was a lifelong member of the Sweet Springs community, spending her formative years there, and graduating from Sweet Springs High School in 1939. She then attended Central Missouri State Teachers College in Warrensburg, earning a bachelor’s degree in elementary education as well as minoring in music. Following the completion of her education Edna Rhe took an elementary teaching position at the Normandy school district and remained there for two years until marrying her husband of 59 years, Frank Nelson. To this union three children were born: David, Lynnette and Jeannette. Edna Rhe also taught first grade at Sweet Springs Elementary School until her husband returned home from the war. They spent the rest of their lives in Sweet Springs together until Frank’s death in 2004.

Throughout her life Edna Rhe devoted herself to the Presbyterian Church in Sweet Springs, Missouri where she was baptized by her grandfather, the Rev. J. E. Wylie, at age nine. Apart from playing the church organ for more than 50 years, she also taught Sunday School, led prayer groups, and lived as an exemplar of the Christian life. As a mother and grandmother she inculcated into her family Christian values as well as a forthright morality and a desire for the common good. Dedicating her life to the betterment of her family and community, she served in leadership positions on the library board, garden club, and in the school system, while enriching young people’s lives by teaching piano lessons in her small rural community for many years. Beyond this service, Edna Rhe loved all kinds of music, watching wildlife and bird watching. She was a very accomplished organist and pianist, accompanying her high school and college music ensembles and Jeannette’s through many years. She was fancied as the resident expert on ornithology among friends and family. Moreover, she enjoyed reading sacred scripture, devotional literature, Amish novels, but dearest to her heart were detective mysteries, which form the bulk of her personal library. Along with reading, an unyielding passion for needlepoint of all kinds adorns her family’s homes, as well as scores of unfortunate children across the globe who are kept warm by the gifts of her hands. In total she made and gave away, through various Christian philanthropic organizations, more than 100 sweaters and countless numbers of scarves. In her later years, Lynnette and Joe moved into her home where she’d lived most of her married life, and becoming caregivers which allowed her to remain in that home. David and Peggy were always close by to support and help. Edna Rhe was fiercely dedicated to her family and their accomplishments, as even into her 90s she always attended ceremonious events and never overlooked the most minor occasions: every holiday, anniversary, or humdrum triumph was always greeted with unyielding praise and a card. She reminisced often about the family Thanksgiving and Christmas trips to Fulton when she was young that were slowed by the deep snows. Also the many happy evenings spent visiting on her aunt’s front porch swing. Late in the evening she would be found with a “spot” of tea or a cup of “dog-gone tootin’ good coffee”, a book or her knitting. Her warm smile, modest conduct, and gentle touch could bring light into the darkest of times and she will be deeply missed by all her friends and family who loved her dearly.

Edna Rhe is preceded in death by her parents, husband Frank, son-in-law Richard Allen Hill and one very lucky rescue dog, Fiesty, who went everywhere with her.

She is survived by her three children: David (Peggy) Nelson, Lynnette (Joe) Hunter, and Jeannette Hill; three grandchildren: Steven (Rebecca) Nelson, Christina (Douglas) Mackesty, and David (Alexandra) Hill; three great-grandchildren: Adalynn and Liam Nelson, and Olivia Mackesty; and one feline companion Miss Kitty.

Edna Rhe was the finest and godliest of people, and she has gone on to glory with the saints and her beloved savior. For in the words of the prophet: “Blessed are those who trust in the Lord and have made Him their hope and confidence.”