Wayne B. Yost

WAYNE YOSTWayne Burdett Yost was born in the Wray Hospital, March 25, 1927 to Lawrence Albert and Jessie Olive (Veal) Yost. He passed away February 16, 2014 at Hillcrest Care Center.

He attended Idalia Schools. He worked for Gale Rogers Wheat Farm at Armel, Colorado for two years prior to joining the Army. He served with Headquarters Company 1st  Battalion 311th Infantry Regiment, 78thDivision for five months in the European Theater Operations. He served in the Army from June 27, 1945 to November 29th, 1946. He was serving in Germany when he was hospitalized and was returned to the United States on a hospital ship.

On June 19, 1949, Wayne was united in marriage to June R. Newbanks at the Presbyterian Church in Wray, Colorado. To this union, one son, Allen Wayne Yost was born. Wayne worked for the Yuma County Roads and Bridge Department for 20 years. When he worked for the county he worked for the bridge crew operating heavy equipment. Wayne worked for the City of Wray for 15 years, during the time he worked for the city, he was the foreman of the street department. He retired from the City of Wray, but before he retired, he worked  with Sonny and Merle Ritchey putting in underground sprinklers. Later forming Ritchey, Ritchey & Yost, north of Wray, in which he later retired.

Wayne became a member of the First Christian Church on May 12, 1968. He was a member of the Automaniac’s Car Club. He loved riding his 49 Harley Davidson and once rode on the Gypsy Tour to Sturgis. He was a member for over 65 years of the VFW Club. He served on the Honor Guard during some of that time. He was also a former member of the Elks Club. Wayne was an officer for a few years during that time.

 Preceding him in death were his parents, his parent-in-laws, Izero and Spencer Newbanks, brother, Dean and wife, Mary, sister-in-law, Nell Newbanks Wilson, brother-in-laws, Lloyd, Roy and Louis Newbanks.

He is survived by his wife, June of 64 years; son, Allen; brother, Steve and wife, Joyce; brother-in-law, John & wife, Connie Newbanks; sister-in-laws, Madeline and husband, Joe Conrad; and Merna & husband, Larry Skipworth. He also leaves to mourn many nieces and nephews and other relatives. Wayne will be greatly missed by those who loved him.

Funeral services were held on Saturday, February 22, 2014, 10:00 a.m. at the First Christian Church in Wray, Colorado with Rev. Steve Wynkoop officiating. Interment was held in the Grandview Cemetery in Wray, Colorado. Memorials may be made to the Republican Valley VFW Post #4671. Spellman-Schmidt Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.





George Ekberg

GEORGE EKBERG PHOTOGeorge O. Ekberg entered eternal rest on February 13th.  George was raised in Idalia, Colorado on a family farm, where he learned the values of hard work and love for family.  George served in the United States Navy and is a graduate of Colorado State University.  He married his soul-mate, Kay, on July 8, 1962.  George and Kay resided in Colorado, Alaska and Vancouver, Washington.

George worked as a telecommunication engineer for RCA, Alascom, Pacific Telecom and owned TCM Associates Telecommunication Consulting.  George was involved in working on the dew line and satellite communications throughout Alaska.  George also enjoyed square dancing with his wife Kay at the Dates and Mates Square Dance Club in Vancouver.  George and his wife Kay were so proud of achieving 50 years of marriage.

George was a father of three children Valerie (Dave) of Anchorage, Alaska, Nathan (Vicki) of Aurora, Colorado and Tim (Lilly) of Tigard, Oregon.  George enjoyed the outdoors including fishing, gardening and traveling.  George is survived by his three children, Valerie, Nathan and Tim, a brother Glen Ekberg of Evans, Colorado and 9 grandchildren.  George was preceded in death by his wife Kay, parents Glen and Angie Ekberg, sister Alberta Schritter and brothers Dale and Earle Ekberg.  He will be missed by family and friends.

Services will be held on Tuesday, February 18th at 12:30 pm at Evergreen Memorial Gardens in Vancouver , Washington and on Friday, February 21st , 10:00 a.m.  at the United Methodist Church in Wray, Colorado with Rev. Terry Douglass officiating. Interment will be held in the Glendale Cemetery in Vernon, Colorado.  Memorials may be made to the George Ekberg Memorial Fund. Spellman-Schmidt Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.


FixGeorgeGeorge Arthur Fix, son and grandson of Yuma County pioneers, died peacefully at his home in Wray early in the morning of February 6, 2014 at the age of 88. George was born to George Fix and Julia Shively Fix in Wray on November 28, 1925.  He spent most of his childhood and youth on his parents’ farm north of Eckley, and graduated from Eckley High School in 1942.  He joined the Army Air Corps at age 18, and served asa B-29 gunner in World War II.  After a short stint at Colorado A & M, George returned to Yuma County, where he farmed near his parents’ home in the Pleasant Valley community. George married Betty Reed in 1947 and, together, they started their family.  After Betty’s sudden death in 1957, George cared for their four children as a single parent. In June 1959, after a short courtship, George married Cleora Welp Witte, a young widow with four children of her own.  Another child was added to this union.  George and Cleora raised their nine children in Wray, where he resided until his death.

  George was elected Yuma County Treasurer in 1958 and served in that capacity until 1970.  He was elected President of the Colorado Association of County Treasurers in 1966.  George and Cleora bought Yuma County Abstract Company in 1968; he acted as President of the company until his death. George loved title work and the title profession.  He strived to do things the right way and developed exceptional expertise in his craft.  His knowledge of Yuma County was unmatched, and he witnessed and embraced Yuma County’s abundant natural gas development.  While active in the business he served as President of the Colorado Land Title Association in 1980-81, was named Title Person of the Year in 1983 and was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2011 in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the title industry.  Wheat farming, however, remained his favorite occupation.  He was always happy to escape from the office and drive a tractor south of Black Wolf Creek, watching the trucks drive by.  George retired in 2012.  In his later years, he loved playing cards and beating everyone at dominoes.

The community benefited from George’s many contributions.  He was an active member of the Wray Lions Club, and was elected past District Governor and received the Melvin Jones Fellow award.  George served on the Wray city council, and was co-founder and long-time officer of the Kitzmiller Grazing Association.  He belonged to both the American Legion and the Veterans of Foreign Wars.  George willingly expressed his strong political values and acted as Yuma County Democratic Party chairman for over 20 years.  George contributed generously to many local projects, including the WRAC, Hospice of the Plains, Old Threshers, local child care centers, Baby Bear Hugs and the Wray Public Library expansion.  The Wray Lions Amphitheater was a favorite project, and George (and his children) invested countless hours in building and maintaining the facility in the 1970’s and 80’s.

 He was strong in his faith and faithfully led daily devotions at home.  In his early adulthood, George was active in the Pleasant Valley Church.  In 1959, George joined Calvary Lutheran Church in Wray, where he was an active member and held various offices.  Family meals always began with George’s prayer special to the occasion.

Family history was a personal interest for George.  He gathered church records from Illinois and Missouri, assembled family trees for his own and his wives’ families, visited cemeteries across the Midwest and arranged for necessary repairs to tombstones, and shared his information with any interested relative.  For his 80th birthday, George presented the

Fix-Witte Family History book.  His life story, “Been There, Done That,” was finished in 2012 (a copy is available at the Wray Public Library).

George was preceded in death by his parents, his sister Beverly Schafer, first wife Betty, daughter Amy Fix, granddaughters April and Jeneé Baucke, and sons-in-law Doug Anderson, David Seboldt and Richard Frihauf.  He is survived by his wife of fifty-four years, Cleora Fix; eight children:  Vikki Fix and husband Dean Spader of Vermillion, SD; Douglas Fix and wife Charlotte Lo of Portland, OR; Dixie Anderson, Margaret Fix Seboldt, James Witte and Shawn Hales, Curtis Fix and wife Julie, all of Wray; Nancy White and husband Alan, Jan Baucke and husband Dan, all of Yuma; 21 grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren, and numerous nephews, nieces, relatives and friends.

Funeral services were held Monday, February 10, 2014 at Calvary Lutheran Church in Wray.  Burial was held at Grandview Cemetery in Wray.

Memorials may be made to the George A. Fix Memorial Fund ~ to be used for various Community Projects.

Spellman-Schmidt Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Deloris L. Zuege

DELORIS ZUEGEDeloris Louise (Bier) Zuege was born September 16, 1928 in Cheyenne County, Kansas to Emauel and Louise (Lampe) Bier. She fell asleep in death on February 3, 2014 at the age of 85 in Wray, Colorado.

Deloris spent the early years of her life living in various places in Kansas and Colorado. In 1940, her parents moved to a farm southeast of Haigler, Nebraska. There she finished her elementary education in a one room school house and completed her education by attending High School in St. Francis, Kansas graduating in 1947.

On August 3, 1947, she was united in marriage to Herman Zuege. They made their home on a farm in Kansas next to the farm she had grown up on. To this union were born four children, Marsha, Louise, Gary and Roger. During the next 53 years, she helped her husband farm and raised three children. Besides being a busy homemaker, she enjoyed quilting, embroidering and crocheting, which were used as gifts throughout the years.

In 2000, she moved to Haigler, Nebraska and in the years that followed she continued to be very active in the community activities. She was a member of the Lady’s VFW Auxiliary, The Red Haters Club, and the Golden Inn. One of her most rewarding activities was going to the Elementary School in Haigler and having the young students there read to her.

As an infant, she was baptized in the Lutheran Church, and years later she was confirmed. When she died she was still an active member of the Lutheran Church in Haigler.

Preceding her in death was her husband of 53 years and an infant daughter, her parents, and one brother, Loren.

She is survived by a sister, Almeda Bier of Longmont, Colorado, three children, Louise Thomsen & husband, Harry of Watts, Oklahoma, Gary Zuege & wife, Pam of Wray, Colorado, and Roger Zuege of Haigler, Nebraska, ten grandchildren, two step-grandchildren, ten great-grandchildren and two step-great-grandchildren, plus a host of brothers and sisters-in-law, nieces and nephews.

She will be dearly missed by all, and we look forward to the day when we will see her again in the resurrection.

Funeral services were held Monday, February 10, 2014, 2:00 p.m. at the Zion Lutheran Church in Haigler, Nebraska with Pastor Chris Farmer officiating. Interment was held in the Haigler Cemetery in Haigler, Nebraska. Memorials may be made to the Golden Inn Senior Center in Haigler, Nebraska.

Spellman-Schmidt Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.









Noel Sullivan

NOEL SULLIVAN OBIT PHOTONoel was born in Chicago, IL. He was raised in Fort Collins, CO until the 6th grade when he and his family moved to the San Luis Valley, CO. He graduated from Sergeant High School (near Monte Vista, CO) in 1977. He graduated from Northwest Nazarene College in 1984 with a degree in Ministry. After college he attended Nazarene Theological Seminary in Kansas City, MO where he met his soon to be wife, Jennie Hight. He graduated with a Masters of Divinity in 1988. Noel also served as an Army Chaplain during his time at seminary.

                On August 20, 1988 he was married to Jennie. After they married they moved to Lincoln, NE where Noel began pastoring his first church, Northside Church of the Nazarene. In March of 1992 their daughter, Deann Noelle, was born and in July of 1994, their son, Matthew Donald, was born.

                In February 1996 Noel accepted the pastoral position in Wray, CO at the Wray Church of the Nazarene. During his 18 years of ministry here in Wray he served as the President of the Wray Ministerial Alliance and he also served as a Chaplain for Marketplace Ministries. He had a heart for ministry and considered it an honor to serve his church and his community. He wanted everyone to hear the message of salvation, so he obediently answered God’s call and started a Spanish Ministry in the area. He loved to tell stories of his mission trips around the world, especially the ones that involved showing the Jesus Film to people who had never heard the Gospel before. He was always encouraging Deann in her passion for music, and he was Matthew’s biggest football and wrestling fan.

                He was preceded in death by his grandparents, Charles and Evelyn (Kopcho) Stark, and David and Alice (Mitchell) Sullivan.

                He is survived by his wife, Jennie Sullivan (daughter of Don and Millie Hight of Joplin, MO) and his two children, Deann and Matthew Sullivan. His mother and father, Arthur and Carolyn Sullivan, of Monte Vista, CO. His brother, David Sullivan and his children, Brandon and Tessa, of Longmont, CO. His sister, Holly (and Pat) Ward and their children, Jacob, Cara, and Leslie; His sister, Cheri (and Bill) Frees and their children, Tyler, Joel, Christian, Abbie, and Jeremy. 

                Funeral services were held February 6, 2014 at 2:00 p.m. at Wray Methodist Church. Interment was held at Grand View Cemetery with full military honors.  The service was officiated by Rev. Norman Stott, Rev. Scott Carranza, Rev. Jerry Jaquess, and District Superintendent David Ralph.

                A memorial has been established to the Wray Church of the Nazarene Building Fund, 410 Blake St. Wray, CO 80758.

Spellman-Schmidt Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.