May 27, 1924 to July 4, 2017
Arletha grew up on the Belfort dairy farm of her parents, Andrew and Mollie (Roggie) Zehr; (deceased). She attended local schools but it was more desirable to be at home helping with the farm duties. Arletha grew up on the Belfort dairy farm of her parents, Andrew and Mollie (Roggie) Zehr; (deceased). She attended local schools but it was more desirable to be at home helping with the farm duties.
When a youth she was baptized in the Croghan Mennonite Church and became interested in Christian service. She attended Eastern Mennonite College in Virginia and Practical Nursing License form New York State. Following her college graduation with a bachelor degree in Religious Education, she taught school in Indiana. She also served one year in volunteer service at the Mennonite Hospital in Colorado.
Arletha married Austin Bender from Grantsville, Maryland, who has been deceased since January of 1988. Austin and Arletha lived in New York State. They purchased the Lewis County Health Camp, located near Glenfield. The camp was converted and built for a 72 bed health care, state approved facility. During their healthcare service each helped with the mission program of the church and gave time many years with the Pine Grove Mission. After the death of Austin, Arletha moved to Maryland.
Her second marriage was to Ervin Yoder, a farmer from Grantsville, MD. She continued with some healthcare service, and also continued in writing, mainly about former history of her ancestry who came from Switzerland, France, and Germany. Several books are published about her great grandparents the Zehr family and Roggie family including the genealogy of each; also other smaller history stories about individuals and churches in our Lewis County. After the death of Ervin, August 2009, Arletha moved back to her home community in Lowville, NY, and continued in writing history about her local area. Thru the years, Arletha wrote and published several books including: Zehr History and Genealogy, Roggie Genealogy, Katie, A History of the Mennonite in Lewis County, NY and Town of Watson. Sketches of History Beaches Bridges.
Her Praise went to God for the Christian Heritage she received and a deep loving concern remained in her heart for her family, others, especially the church, (Denmark Mennonite Church) formerly Hope Mennonite Church.
She is survived by her family with Austin Bender, Arlin and Sharon Bender, Unity WI; Alvis and Yvonne; Castorland; Alfred and Sandra; Lowville; Addison and Katrina; Boyceville, WI; Alma “Tammy” and Walter Lehman, Lowville; son-in-law, Robert and Val Keefer; Croghan; a sister-in-law, Arlene Zehr, Croghan; 25 grandchildren and 38 great-grandchildren, several nieces, nephews and cousins.
Her step family of Ervin Yoder (and his first wife, Mary Anna Bender Yoder), Arliss and Janet; Greencastle, PA; Loretta and Dave Steinhauer, Clayton, DE; Leona and Loren Bender, Meyersdale, PA; Merle and Carol Yoder, Bittenger, MD; 20 grandchildren, 54 great-grandchildren and 11 great-great grandchildren.
She is predeceased by her daughter, Angela “Penny” Keefer, granddaughter, Sallyann Renee Bender; three sisters and spouses, Catherine M. (Vernon) Martin; Leona M. (Amos) Lyndaker; Doris M. (Solomon) Moser; three brothers and spouses, Earl M. (Norine) Zehr; Leo M. (Irene) Zehr and Anthony Zehr and a step-great granddaughter, Jennifer Steinhauer.
Calling hours for family and friends will be at the Croghan Mennonite Church on Friday, July 7, 2017, from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. Funeral services will be held on Saturday the 8th at 10:00 a.m. with ministers of the Denmark Mennonite Church officiating at the Croghan church. Burial will follow in the church cemetery.
Memorials in Arletha’s name may be made to: Denmark Mennonite Church for Bible Distribution, C/O of Kenneth Gerber, 10211 State Route 26, Carthage, NY 13619.
To convey online condolences, please use: www.sundquistfh.com