EImo Neal Gerster, age 91, the son of Charles Otis and Daisy Ethel (Scott) Gerster was born Sept. 7, 1916, in Walker, Mo., and passed from this life on Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2008, at his home in Schell City, Missouri.
Elmo attended school in Dederick and then graduated from El Dorado Springs High School, in 1934. On Aug. 14, 1949, Elmo was united in marriage to Rebecca Fern Flake and to their union 11 children were born. They moved to Schell City in 1950 where they made their home for the rest of their lives. Through his working years Elmo worked at the Dederick Store, delivered milk, worked for the telephone company and farmed, but was probably best known for the 19 years that he worked as the janitor at the Schell City School. He retired from there in 1979 and then spent more time gardening and selling produce at the local Farmers Market. He was a longtime member of the First Baptist Church in Schell City where he served as both a Deacon and a Sunday School Teacher. He also worked as a 4-H leader for more than 49 years. He recently served as Grand Marshall of the Schell City Fall Festival.
Survivors include six sons, Neal Gerster and his wife Connie, of Walker; Harvey Gerster and his wife Connie, of Schell City; Gale Gerster and his wife Linda, of Nevada; Lyle Gerster and his wife Kimberly, of El Dorado Springs; John Gerster and his wife Beth, of Nevada; and James Gerster, of Schell City; five daughters, Beth Kemper and her husband Larry, of Nevada; Paula Corbin and her husband Randy, of Carl Junction; Rita Hecox and her husband Frank, of Joplin; Mary Kitsmiller and her husband Gary, of Nevada; and Ruth Gerster of Schell City; one sister, Velva Mae Elder, of Liberty; one sister-In-law, Shirley Flake, of Schell City; 21 grandchildren; 23 great-grandchildren; cousins, nieces, nephews, other relatives, and many friends.
Elmo was preceded in death by his wife Fern who passed away in October 1983 after 34 years of marriage; his parents Charles Otis and Daisy Ethel Gerster; one brother, Jewall Gerster and his wife Mary; an infant grandson, Joseph Gale Gerster; an infant great-grandson, T.W. Corbin; a granddaughter, Joni Marie Gerster; three brother-In laws, Richard Elder, Bob Flake, Bud Hake and his wife Betty; one niece, Claudia Elder; two nephews, Charles Richard Gerster and David Neal Gerster.
Services for Elmo Neal Gerster were held at 11 a.m., Saturday, Jan. 12, at the NEVC Elementary School in Schell City, with Bro. Terry Mosher and the Rev. John Nichols officiating. Musical selections were provided by Connie S. Gerster, Beth Gerster, and Kay Harper. Pallbearers were Jason Gerster, Travis Corbin, Jordan Gerster, Michael Kemper, Tim Richmond, and J.T. Kitsmiller. Honorary pallbearers were Jerry Cox Jr., John Kuhnert, John Hilt, Travis Potter, Brandon Hecox, and Jim Chandler. Interment was in the Green Mound Cemetery, in Harwood. Memorial contributions are suggested to the NEVC School and the Vernon County Youth Fair. The funeral arrangements for Elmo Gerster were entrusted to the Lewis-Hoagland Funeral Home in Schell City.