Erma Seiffert Ferguson, 93, Scottsbluff

Erma Seiffert Ferguson, 93, of Scottsbluff, died Saturday, April 13, 2013, at Golden Living Center, Scottsbluff.

Her funeral service will be held at 10:00 a.m., Thursday, April 18, 2013, at First Christian Church, Scottsbluff with Pastor Arlene Johnson officiating. Interment will be in the Fairview Cemetery, Scottsbluff.

Friends may visit from 1:00 to 8:00 p.m., Wednesday, at Dugan-Kramer Funeral Chapel, Scottsbluff. Memorials may be made to First Christian Church, Prairie Haven Hospice, or charity of the donor's choice.

Erma was born September 26, 1919, to Albert "Bert" and Goldie Holmes in Scottsbluff, the third of four children, a brother and two sisters. Her parents were from early pioneering families who before 1900 moved to Western Nebraska at Wayside and the Crawford area. At the end of World War I, Erma's family moved from Fort Robinson to Scottsbluff, where her father worked as boiler house foreman for Great Western Sugar Company until his retirement in the early 1950s. The family lived on an acreage in town where Erma learned her gardening skills from her father. During summers growing up, she also learned to "box" and paint from her father, and often joined him in painting landscapes, flowers, and Nebraska scenes. She became a good artist, from creating oil paintings to miniature folk-art on discarded circular saw blades. She painted most of her life.

Erma received an Associate of Arts Degree from Scottsbluff Junior College, a Bachelor of Science Degree from Chadron State College, and took additional coursework toward a Master of Science Degree from the UNL Extension Division at Chadron.

She was married to Clifford Seiffert from1939 until his death in 1986. They had three children; two sons and a daughter. In 1989, Erma married Robert Ferguson of Scottsbluff. Robert had two adult sons.

Erma worked for many years in the Scottsbluff school system, first as Director of the Roosevelt Elementary School Cafeteria during the mid-1950s and later as an elementary school teacher at Roosevelt Elementary and from 1960 until her retirement in 1989, at Longfellow Elementary. She especially liked reading, teaching Nebraska history to her fourth grade classes, and introducing many students to the Oregon Trail sites in the valley.

Erma was an avid reader and in retirement she spent her time with reading, crocheting, gardening, raising tomatoes and lots of flowers including a large rose bed, improving her oil painting and working on crafts, square dancing, traveling to visit family and friends, and entertaining family, friends, and her bridge group in her home.

Erma was a lifelong member of the First Christian Church of Scottsbluff and served in a number of capacities: as youth and adult Sunday school teacher, Church Youth Fellowship leader, Church board member, and was active in Christian Women's Fellowship. Throughout her life she was also active in the community and in the city, early on in Parent Teacher Association activities, serving as local president; facilitating the Roosevelt Elementary city sponsored Public Health Awareness and Care Program in their student dental health, clinics and immunization programs; as an early supporter of the women's Get-Out-The-Vote voter registration campaigns in Scottsbluff; and volunteer instructor in the Scottsbluff-Gering sponsored Adult Basic Education Center programs at Nebraska Western College.

She is survived by her three children, Garth Seiffert and his wife, Patricia, Stephen Seiffert and his wife, Barbara, and Mary Moyer and her husband, Merlin; seven grandchildren; ten great-grandchildren; two great-great-grandchildren; and Robert Ferguson's two sons, Wayne and his wife, Joyce, and Robert "Bob" and his wife, Glenda, and their children and grandchildren.

Erma was preceded in death by her parents; her brother, Homer Holmes; sisters, Thelma Ferguson, and Rheba Whittaker; husband, Clifford Seiffert; husband, Robert Ferguson; and grandson, Dana Seiffert.

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