Philomena “Minnie” Marie Kerksiek, 101, of Greeley, passed away on Monday, September 14, 2020 at Grace Pointe. She was born March 5, 1919 in Ellis, Kansas to John and Clara (Schuster) Reitmayer. Her parents met as six-year old children on a ship from Austria to America. Their families settled in Ellis, Kansas and John and Clara married as young adults, raising six girls and five boys.
Minnie grew up on the family farm and at the age of ten, she met Henry Kerksiek, who just arrived from Germany to work on the John Reitmayer farm along with his older brother. Henry told his brother he was going to marry that little girl as soon as she grew up. True to his word, Henry indeed married Minnie when she turned 15. They lived in Kansas, moved to Colorado, Oregon and then back to Colorado. They raised six children, three boys and three girls. Henry and Minnie spent many years in Strasburg, Colorado before buying their own dairy farm in Wiggins, Colorado. They had many happy years there before Henry went to Heaven in 1975.
After Henry’s death, Minnie stayed on her beloved farm and continued to work at the Wiggins school lunchroom as a cook. In 2008, she sold the farm and moved to Strasburg for several years before moving to a retirement community in Greeley.
Minnie had talents in cooking, baking, gardening and canning. She enjoyed sewing, crocheting, embroidery, crafts and reading as well as her daily Bible study.
Henry and Minnie’s children were blessed to have loving parents that set an example of love, commitment, honesty, integrity, respect for others and love of country. They were all raised on the farm and learned the value of work and a good life. After leaving home, many good times were celebrated as a close family. When the door was closed for the last time at the Wiggins farm, they could hear the voices and feel the joy and laughter of many wonderful Christmas Eve’s and other fun family times.
Thank you mom and dad for all your love all you taught and gave to the family. We look forward to eternity with you and our Lord in Heaven.
Minnie will be fondly remembered by her surviving children; Shirley Rice (Dave) Layden, Henrietta (Terry) Helming, Leroy Kerksiek, Nancy (Lou) Braden and Carl (Kathy) Kerksiek, grandchildren; Theresa Kerksiek, Dona (Bob) Parker, Sandy Rice, Colleen (Dan) Clausen, Cathleen (David) Kurtz, Aaron (Christy) Helming, Tina (Loren) Walker, Lee (Stephanie) Braden, Natalie (Ryan) Danhoff and Brent (Meloney) Kerksiek, 26 great-grandchildren and several great, great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, son Fred, daughters-in-law Bea and Pauline Kerksiek, son-in-law Robert Rice, grandchildren Alan, Toni and Vance, five brothers and five sisters.
Graveside services will be held at 1 p.m. Monday, September 21 at Riverside Cemetery, Fort Morgan, CO. Memorial gifts may be made to “Living Word Fellowship” located in Grand Lake in care of Adamson, 2000 47th Ave., Greeley, CO 80634. Friends may leave condolences at AdamsonCares.com.