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home : obituaries : obituaries
December 14, 2018

Obituaries (1-4-18)

Ronald Kinning, 78

Ronald Lee Kinning, 78, of Arvada, Colo., and Mesa, Ariz. died in Scottsdale, Ariz., on December 22, 2017.  

He was born October 19, 1939 in Rosalie, to Arlis and Dorothy (Davis) Kinning. 

Ron married the love of his life, Georgia (Frey) on April 24, 1960 in Emerson. They had four children, Teresa, Rick, Julie and Jon.

He graduated from Rosalie High School. Ron joined the Marine Corp in 1959. In 1963 he started Kinning Plumbing and Heating in Pender. He was very active in the construction industry and his communities.  

He was a licensed pilot and on the Norfolk City Council. Ron served on numerous community development and business boards including an appointment by the Governor to the Colorado State Plumbing Board.  He consolidated his businesses to Colorado in 1986 and re-launched as RK Mechanical, Inc.  Ron was a mentor, employer and father-figure to thousands of people over the years.  As a highly respected businessman, he assisted others in launching various successful businesses and careers. He retired Chairman Emeritus from RK Mechanical Inc.

Ron cherished family time, camping, boating, fishing, hunting and traveling.  He was an avid gardener and loved sharing stories of his first ripe tomato or bushels of cucumbers. The past several winters have been spent in Mesa, Ariz. He was a member of Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Wheat Ridge, Colo., and Spirit of Hope Lutheran Church in Mesa.

Ron is survived by his beloved wife Georgia (Frey) Kinning; his daughter Teresa (Tony) Kinning-Pflueger of Topeka, Kan.; his son Rick (Marcee) Kinning of Denver, Colo.; his daughter Julie Kinning of Ft. Meyers. Fla.; his son Jon (Aimee) Kinning of Denver, Colo., and numerous grandchildren, great-grandchildren, step-grandchildren, nieces and nephews.  He is survived by his mother-in-law, Helen (Oetken) Frey of Pender, four siblings and his dearly loved toy Schnauzer, Annie.

He was predeceased by his brother Donald Kinning and his parents.

Funeral services will be held at Mile Hi Church on January 11, 2018 at 10 a.m. officiated by Pastor Ron Bock of Holy Cross Lutheran Church.  

Ron’s family will receive relatives and friends on Friday, Jan. 12 from 5-7 pm at Munderloh-Smith Funeral Home.  A Celebration of Ron’s life will be held on Saturday, Jan. 13th at 10 a.m. at the Pender Community Center officiated by Pastor Beverly Rautenberg-Panko of Saint Mark’s Lutheran Church.

Funeral arrangements have been entrusted in Denver, Colo., to Horan and McConaty and in Munderloh-Smith Funeral Homes in Pender.


Joyce Novak, 94

Joyce Harriet (Specht) Novak, 94, of Hooper, died Wednesday, December 20, 2017 at the Hooper Care Center. 

Memorial services were held Tuesday, January 2, 2018 at Munderloh-Smith Funeral Home in Pender with Pastor Allison Siburg officiating. Arrangements are under the direction of Munderloh-Smith Funeral Home in Pender.

Joyce Harriet (Specht) Novak was born to John and Hattie (Melburg) Specht on August 12, 1923 in Barnsville, Minn. She attended and graduated from Barnsville Public School in 1941. After school, she worked at the telephone company in Barnsville. 

She met Louis Novak while he was working on her parents’ farm. 

Louis and Joyce got married July 30, 1945. They had three children Paul, Jon and Wanda. 

 After moving back to Rosalie, she worked at Kubic’s Corner Cafe for years. After leaving the cafe she enjoyed spending time with family, gardening and working outside. She enjoyed sewing and making rugs, playing cards.

She is survived by children, Paul Novak, Jon Novak and Wanda Novak; four grandchildren; and many great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews

 She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Louis Novak; siblings, Jerome and Marian; and daughter-in-law, Joni Novak.


Garnett Zila, 87

Funeral services for Garnett Zila, 87, of Wayne, Nebraska will be 11 a.m. Friday at Brockhaus Funeral Home in Verdigre. Reverend Bev Hieb will officiate, with burial in Jelen Cemetery in rural Verdigre.

Visitation will be one hour prior to services at the funeral home.

Garnett died Sunday, December 31, 2017, at Providence Medical Center in Wayne.

Garnett Marie Zila, daughter of Soren and Emma (Block) Sorensen, was born June 8, 1930, on a farm near Creighton. She graduated from Creighton High School. 

On September 9, 1948, Garnett was united in marriage to Melvern Zila in Center. They were blessed with six children, Donald, Robert, Thomas, Richard, William and Connie.

Garnett was a cook at several restaurants throughout her lifetime, including Felix’s Café in Verdigre, PoPo’s in Pender and Wayne and Schantell’s in Pender. She was a wonderful mother who provided loving care to her children. Garnett loved spending time with her family. She watched Wheel of Fortune every evening while enjoying a chocolate marshmallow ripple ice cream cone.

Garnett is survived by her children, Donald Zila of Thurston; Thomas Zila of West Point; William Zila of Riverton, Iowa and Connie White of Wayne; eight grandchildren, Jeff Smalley of Wayne, Nicole White of Omaha, Nebraska, Jeanette (Maurice) Norton of West Point, Patti (Mike) Owen of Omaha, Christine (Mike) Kruger of Omaha, Shannon Zila of Lincoln, Sherri Otten of Omaha, and Brian Zila of Wayne; eight great-grandchildren, Lacy (Bobby) Dugan, Alex (Jamie) Norton, Ellen, Libbie, and Aiden Owen, and Aidan, Megan, and Jacob Zila; and siblings, Vivian (Sorensen) Hampton of Platte, South Dakota, Marilyn (Sorensen) Christensen of Crossville, Tennessee, and Lyla (Hampton) Sorensen of Verdigre. 

She was preceded in death by her husband, Melvern Zila; sons, Richard and Robert; grandson, Brent Zila; daughter-in-law, Caroline (Beckmann) Zila; parents, Soren and Emma Sorensen; and brother, Vernon Sorensen.

Annette Artz, 99 

Annette Artz, 99, of South Sioux City Nebraska passed away Monday, Dec. 25, 2017, at a South Sioux City nursing home.

Celebration of Life was held at 2 p.m. Friday, Dec. 29, 2017, at Regency Square Nursing Home in South Sioux City. Burial followed at Dakota City Cemetery.

Arrangements were under the direction of Nelson-Berger Northside Chapel. Online condolences may be expressed at

Annette was born with her twin, Anne, Nov. 20, 1918, in Whiting, Iowa, to William and Chloe Parr. After high school graduation, she studied and obtained her Certificate of Cosmetology. On Nov. 24, 1943, she was united in marriage to Jack Artz in Rochester, Minnesota. Annette was a lifetime active member of St. Paul United Methodist Church. Annette and Jack owned and operated the Midway Bar on Dakota Avenue. After many traveling adventures, they relocated to Hollywood, Florida, in the early 1950’s. A few years after the arrival of their daughter, Deborah Ann, they returned to South Sioux. The couple opened, owned and operated Jack Artz Package Liquor Store and several other South Sioux properties. They were passionate about life, family, and helping others with their giving hearts.

After Jack’s passing in 1965, Annette followed her passion of helping and serving others with memberships in South Sioux Chamberettes, St. Paul UMC Women’s Society, Royal Neighbors Association, American Business Women’s Association (elected Woman of the Year twice), Dakota County Election Committee and Parents Without Partners. Annette served as President, Vice President Madam Trustee, Treasury and Secretary for multiple terms in many of these organizations. She excelled in cooking, crafts, sewing, leadership and her faith while instilling these qualities and skills in her daughter.

She is survived by her only child, daughter Deborah Ann, granddaughter Alyssandra Annette DiGregory, Ardis Artz (whom she loved like a daughter), several nephews and nieces and many friends. She was preceded in death by her parents, husband Jack, infant brother Everett Parr, six sisters; Erma, Violet, Anne, Mary Jane, Wilma, Joan, brother Neal and granddaughter Angelique Christel.

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