Phyllis Grace Schouwenburg, 85, Sioux Falls, South Dakota, formerly of Hills and Luverne, died Tuesday, Aug. 27, 2019, at the Avera Prince of Peace Retirement Community in Sioux Falls.
A funeral service was Friday, Aug. 29, at the Hartquist Funeral Home in Luverne. Burial followed at Maplewood Cemetery in Luverne.
Phyllis Wessels was born on June 22, 1934, to Fred and Jennie (Bergman) Wessels on the family farm in Rock County. She was raised on the farm and attended country school through the eighth grade. She graduated from Luverne High School in Luverne in 1952. She began working at Tri-State Mutual as secretary to the president of the company. She was proud to be the first person to type on the company’s first electric typewriter.
In 1952 she met Donald Schouwenburg at a Labor Day softball tournament in Steen. They were married on Sept. 16, 1954, at the Ebenezer Stateline Presbyterian Church. The couple first lived in Luverne. In 1956 Don purchased the repair shop in Steen, and the couple moved to Steen, later becoming members of the Steen Reformed Church. In 1960 the family moved to Hills. Along with caring for the family, Phyllis began baking and decorating cakes. Phyllis worked in the Hills-Beaver Creek High School cafeteria for a few years and then served as the secretary to the high school principal for nearly 10 years.
After retirement Phyllis enjoyed spending time with her grandchildren and attending their activities. She was a reading volunteer at the Luverne Elementary School and enjoyed bird watching and beating Don at Wheel of Fortune. In 2015 Phyllis and Don moved to the Avera Prince of Peace Retirement Community in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
Phyllis enjoyed sewing, reading, water and acrylic painting, and sculpting. She created the artwork for the Hills Centennial Cookbook and a life-size chalk drawing of the Nativity, which was displayed in the Steen Reformed Church at Christmas for many years.
Phyllis is survived by her husband, Don; children Constance (Russell) Cambern of Brookings, South Dakota, Lori Inafuku of Minnetonka, and Joni (Curt) Gacke and Julie (Fred III) Rule of Sioux Falls; nine grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; two step-great-grandchildren; seven siblings, Norman (Joyce) Wessels, Enore Boelman, Iva (Edwin) Elbers, and Harold Wessels, all of Luverne, David (Beverly) Wessels and Lowell Wessels of Steen, and Doug (Ginny) Wessels of Hardwick; and sisters-in-law Theresa Wessels and Gert Wessels of Luverne.
She was preceded in death by her parents; brothers Dale, Darrell and Stanley Wessels; sister Vernice Wessels; sisters-in-law Jolene and Sharon Wessels; brother-in-law Edwin Boelman; niece Tina Wessels Martinez; and several nieces and nephews.
Arrangements were provided by Hartquist Funeral Home of Luverne, www.hartquistfuneral.com.