Hester Barthena Schmidt, 87, Mitchell

Hester Schmidt, 87, of Mitchell, died Sunday, January 13, 2013 at Regional West Medical Center in Scottsbluff. Her funeral service will be held at 2pm on Wednesday, January 16, 2013 at the Morrill Methodist Church with Pastor Rick Reisig officiating. Interment will be at Forest Lawn Cemetery in Morrill. Visitation is scheduled from 2pm until 8pm today at Jones Mortuary in Mitchell. The family respectfully requests that in lieu of flowers, any memorials in Hester's honor be made in care of the church or Mitchell American Legion Auxiliary. Online condolences may be left at www.jones-mortuary.com. Jones Mortuary in Mitchell is in charge of arrangements.

Hester was born October 6, 1925 in Stegall, Ne to Charles and Clara (Bail) Surratt. She received her education and graduated from Morrill High School. After graduation, she moved to Washington to live with her sister Leona and worked in a shipyard. She then returned to the valley and worked for Chester B. Brown Company. She married Ralph Schmidt on November 20, 1948 in Mitchell and they made their home in the Mitchell area.

Hester especially loved her grandchildren. She enjoyed hot air balloons, garage sales, crocheting, cooking and gardening. She tried to teach all the granddaughters to crochet, and gave each grandchild a crocheted afghan for graduation. She also made dolls for all of them. There was a special toy box in the corner for the grandkids to play with. There were chores to do, like feeding the cats, and when grandma had enough, there was always the 'funnies' to watch on television. She always gave shoes for birthdays and pajamas for Christmas; and of course there were always those delicious chocolate chip cookies. She made wonderful cabbage buns, sent the grandchildren on taco runs and enjoyed making mud pies with them on the old stove outside. She made many wonderful meals for her loving family including a big Farmer's breakfast every morning. At 2 years old, all the grandchildren got cowboy boots and everyone loved to watch them try to walk in their new boots.

Hester was the best mom and grandma anyone could ask for. We were always well taken care of and she always seemed to know what we were up to. We love you grandma and will miss you always.

She is survived by her children Steve (and friend Deb) Schmidt, Susan Schmidt, Mike (Natalee) Schmidt and Mark (Kim) Schmidt; grandchildren Lori (Pete) Schaar, Stacy (Jeff) Darnell, Krissa (Lane) Mayer, Candace (Paul) Frohman, Sara (Kevin) Huff, Ryan (and fiancé Kayla Bevins) Schmidt, Eric (Jasmine) Schmidt, Kayla (and fiancé Keevin Hardiman) Schmidt, Andrew Schmidt, Matthew (and friend Lauren Mischke) Schmidt, Brandon (Kim) Schmidt, Brittany (Colton) Lenz; great grandchildren Trevor, Alexsis, Alyissa, Austin, Samantha, Jake, Joshua, Jacob, Jalynn, Gavin, Karsten and Rylee; brother Clyde (Kathy) Surratt and numerous nieces and nephews.

Her parents, husband Ralph, infant daughter Sandra, siblings Leona, Kenneth, Carroll, Iris, Helen and Elmer preceded her in death.

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