Vinieta Ethel Kasper

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Vinieta Ethel Kasper, our mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, was born to Pearl R. Merkey and Vinnie Opal (Andrews) Merkey on Dec. 29, 1934, in Cloud Chief, Okla. She peacefully passed away in the early morning hours of Feb. 18, 2016, in her home near Schell City, Mo., reaching the age of 81 years.

Mother received her education at the Lake Valley School in Cloud Chief graduating in 1953 followed by one year of Business College in Oklahoma City.

On Sept. 19, 1954, at the age of 19, she married John Ferd Kasper in Edmond, Okla. They shared 53 years of marriage until dad passed away on June 27, 2007. After their marriage they lived for a few months in Oklahoma, before moving to California where they lived for more than 17 years. While living in California, their home was blessed with two sons and four daughters. During this time, both of our parents gave their hearts to the Lord and were baptized on May 9, 1965, in Winton, Calif., into the Church of God in Christ, Mennonite by Minister John Jantz. She regarded peace with God a precious thing and endeavored to always keep a close relationship with Him, continuing faithful to her vows until the end. She had the special privilege of partaking in communion with the congregation the evening before her death. It was in 1974, when they with their family, moved to Missouri where they became members of the Walker congregation. In 1975, she began employment at the Nevada State Hospital and Rehabilitation Center and worked there until her retirement in 1999.

We remember Mother's good sense of humor, and her positive outlook on life. She was everyone's friend, and many people call her Grandma. The children and grandchildren have special memories of her accepting them just as they were and getting right in there and playing games with them. Grandma was always a bright spot. She was always ready to help anyone in need. Her special hobbies included crocheting and collecting salt and pepper shakers.

Those left to treasure her memories are two sons, John W. and a special friend, Becky Jones, Dederick, Mo., and Bruce and wife, Kathy, Weatherford, Okla.; four daughters, Ethel and husband, Monroe Koehn, Moundridge, Kan., Karen and husband, Gene Koehn, Leland, Miss., Dorothy Covey, Schell City, Mo., and Pearl Kasper, Nevada, Mo.; 17 grandchildren, including Trisha Schmidt, her constant help and companion of 13 years; 19 great-grandchildren; several stepgrandchildren and stepgreat-grandchildren; two brothers, Andrew Merkey and wife, Gwen, of Salt Lake City, Utah, and Charles Merkey and wife, MaryLou, of Cordell, Okla.; and one sister, Opal Floyd of Newalla, Okla. Those who preceded her in death were her husband; her parents; nine brothers; two sisters; and one grandson.

Funeral services for Vinieta Ethel Kasper were held at 10:30 a.m., Sunday, Feb. 21, at Living Faith Mennonite Church, in Walker, Mo., with Brothers Ron Koehn, Robert Smith, John Becker, and Shelby Koehn officiating. Musical selections were provided by the Mennonite Choir. Pallbearers were Devon Schmidt, Leroy Covey, Jaimie Covey, Jordan Kasper, Wyndale Koehn, and Joel Schellenberg. Colton Kasper served as Honorary Pallbearer. Interment followed in the Living Faith Cemetery located on the churchgrounds.

Memorials are suggested in her memory to Children's Mercy Hospital in care of the Lewis-Hoagland Funeral Home in Schell City, Mo., whom were entrusted with the arrangements for Mrs. Kasper.