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Jerome Waltner

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Jerome Waltner, 82, passed away peacefully on May 13 at Avera Sacred Heart Hospital due to complications from Influenza B. He was born Dec. 3, 1937 in rural Hurley, S.D. to Harry and Amanda (Kaufman) Waltner. 

His early years were spent at the farm working with his brother, sister and parents.

He attended Norse District 38 Country School one mile from the family farm until eighth grade. He graduated from Freeman Academy in 1956. He graduated with honors from South Dakota State College (SDSU) in 1960 and was crowned Hobo (Homecoming) King in 1958 and 1959.

He was baptized upon confession of faith on May 29, 1955 at Salem Mennonite Church, near Freeman, S.D., by Rev J Herbert Fretz.

On Aug. 31, 1962 he was united in marriage to Sheila J. Westegaard.

Together they shared life, joys and sorrows for 57 years, all of which were devoted to farming near Hurley.

He had many interests including avid reading, genealogy, farming, horses, classical music, introduced registered Holsteins to the family farm and bred black Herefords, fishing and meteorology. He was a member of a saddle club and enjoyed pinochle. He participated in many beard judging contests of which he won many prizes and awards. 

Jerome is survived by his wife, Sheila; his wonderful children: his first son is Stewart (Edythe) Waltner, Bloomington, Ill., his second son, Harry (Karla) Waltner, Tea, S.D., his third son, Eugene (Nancy) Waltner, Newton, Kan., his first daughter Ila (Daniel) Lynch, Hudson, N.H., and second daughter, Lanna (Karl) Lebkuchner, Cranston, R.I; Grandchildren Emily (Matt) Grevan, Fort Collins, Colo., Amanda Waltner, Bradley, Aerana, Cassandra and Cody Waltner, Tobias and Caleb Lynch, Janet and Mae Lebkuchner; siblings Joyce Adrian, Freeman, and Gordon (Sharon) Waltner, Freeman; and his wife’s siblings, Carolyn Westegaard, Mitchell, S.D. and Sharon (Bruce) Leach, Austin, Texas.

Jerome was preceded in death by his parents; his grandson, David Waltner; and brother-in-law Rodney Westegaard.

Private family graveside services will be held at the Salem Mennonite Cemetery. Walter Funeral Home is assisting the family.

In lieu of flowers, please provide a gift in Jerome’s name to the following charity: Swan Lake Christian Camp, 45474 288th St, Viborg, S.D. 57070