Esther Lorraine Houser of Sidney, Nebraska passed away at her home on Tuesday, January 14, 2020. She was 89 years young.
Cremation has been held and a private memorial service for immediate family on Tuesday, 21 January, 2020; a public service, Celebration of Life will be scheduled for a later date. Memorial donations may be made for trees to be added to Legion Park, Sidney, NE. You may view Esther’s Book of Memories, leave condolences, photos and stories at www.gehrigstittchapel.com.
She is survived by her daughters Sandra Robnett of Greeley, CO and Sidney, NE, Sharon Stutzman (Roger) of Lodgepole, NE, and Susan Schuivens-Le Roy (Sjaak) of Brunssum, The Netherlands, grandsons Adam Kalb of Lodgepole, NE and William Le Roy (Jessica) of Newport News, VA, granddaughters Nataleigh Kalb of Lodgepole, NE, Anna Marie and Sarah Le Roy of Newport News, VA, brother Leonard “Bud” Bartel (Phyllis) of Colorado Springs, CO and sister-in-law Charlotte (Houser) Chadwick of Colorado Springs, CO; senior cousins, Bluebell Clark, Irene (Harold) Drieth, Robert (Arlene) Houser, and many younger cousins, nieces, nephews, grand-nieces and grand-nephews spread around the World. She was preceded in death by her husband, Theodore “Ted” Houser, parents Adam and Eva (Schnell) Bartel, sisters Marie (infant), Stella, Lillian, Anne, Mary Jane, and brothers Harry, Hennie, and Harvey, and parents-in-law, James and Lena (Schroeder) Houser.
Esther was born October 6, 1930, to German-Russian parents, Adam and Eva (Schnell) Bartel of Scottsbluff, NE. She grew up and attended schools in Scottsbluff (Sunflower, The Hague, Roosevelt, and Longfellow). During WWII the family moved to Milwaukee, WI, and after the war moved to Denver, CO, then Sunol, NE where she met the love of her life, Ted. They both graduated from Sunol High School in 1948, were married April 2, 1949 and settled on their farm south of Sunol. Ted, Sandy, Sharon, and Susan, and life on the farm were the joy of her life. Ted and Esther enjoyed dancing and playing cards with friends and family their entire lives. She was a wonderful seamstress, loved playing the accordion, gardening, crocheting, canning, baking, reading and was a master crossword puzzler. She was active in 4-H, Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, BPOE Does, and many other community organizations. She worked in Sidney at the jewelry store, the bakeries, the drug store, and was one of the chefs at The Elks Club for many years. She was never too busy to help anyone anytime. Nearing retirement, she and Ted enjoyed many cruises with close friends. The Hawaiian Islands were her favorite. They traveled across the USA to visit family when family couldn’t make it back to Nebraska. They enjoyed traveling through Canada, parts of South America and Europe, but were always glad to return home to western Nebraska. She loved life and lived it to the fullest. Her eldest daughter, Sandra, was her devoted caregiver and loving companion for many years and lived with her for the last seven. Esther will be remembered by family and friends for her lovely smile, delightful laugh, sparkling blue eyes, and quick wit. Although she will be missed forever, Esther committed her life to God as a young girl with faith that fills those left behind with peace, strength, happiness, and love.