Lester Lehmann, 88 of Freeman, S.D., passed away on Jan. 16, 2019 at Oakview Terrace nursing home.
Lester was born April 16, 1930 to Albert and Edna (Smidt) at Freeman. He was baptized Nov. 25, 1945 by William Claassen at Salem Mennonite Church; he remained a member there until his death.
Lester attended elementary school at District #32, and high school at Hurley, graduating in 1948.
Lester enjoyed playing football in high school and was also homecoming king. He loved baseball and played with the Hurley American Legion team, and in pastures at Turkey Ridge and Freeman. He also played on the Viborg and Hurley town teams. He played softball on the station team at China Lake, Calif. while in the U.S. Navy.
Lester enlisted in the Navy on Sept. 18, 1951. He served two years at the U. S. Naval ordnance testing station in China Lake, and then two years aboard the U.S. Charles P. Cecil DDR 835 Dock at Norfolk Naval shipping yards in Norfolk, Va.
Lester was honorably discharged on September 18, 1955. Upon his discharge he started farming, and then in 1960 farmed jointly with his brother LaVerne until his passing in 1982. Lester retired from his love of the farm in 1996. In 2000 he sold his farm and moved into Freeman.
Lester is survived by one sister, Vernelle (Vernon) Larsen, of Viborg, S.D.; one brother, Eugene (Jim) (Karen) Lehmann of Kent, Wash.; one sister-in-law, Joyce Lehmann of Freeman; and many nieces and nephews and other family and friends.
Preceding Lester in death are his parents, Albert and Edna; brothers Kenny, LaVerne and Dale Lehmann; sister Marcene Scott; sister-in-law Christine; brother-in-law Willis; and two nephews, Kevin (Radar) Lehmann and Tom Lehmann.
A memorial service was held at the Salem Mennonite Church Tuesday, Jan. 22, with pastors Nick Detweiler-Stoddard and Robert Engbrecht officiating. Pallbearers were Patrick Pesicka, Josh Anderson, Larry Larsen, David Scott, Doug Lehmann and Ronnie Petersen. Interment was at the Salem Mennonite Church Cemetery.