Luella M. Eckenrod, 86, of Sumner, died Saturday, January 30, 2016, at her rural Sumner home.
Funeral services will be held 2:30 p.m. Friday, February 5, 2016, at St. John Lutheran Church in Sumner, Iowa with Rev. Norman Bauer officiating. Interment will follow at the church cemetery. Friends may call from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Thursday, February 4th at Becker-Milnes Funeral Home in Sumner and for one hour preceding services at the church on Friday. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made in her name to St. John Lutheran Church, Community Memorial Hospital, and SEMS, all in Sumner.
Luella Mae, daughter of Wesley and Elsie (Oelwein) Sorge, was born January 5, 1930, in New Hampton, Iowa. As a young girl, Luella attended country school in Banks Township and went on to graduate from Sumner High School in 1948. On October 23, 1949, she was united in marriage with Wilbur (Bill) Eckenrod at St. John Lutheran Church. To this union three children were born. The couple first started farming east of Nashua in the Republic area. In 1961, they moved their young family and all their belongings to Luella’s family farm east of Sumner. Luella enjoyed spending thirty winters in Mesa, Arizona, where she was involved in various volunteer activities including the Welcome Committee. She dearly loved her family, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. She was a member of St. John Lutheran Church, Banks Study Club, the Red Hat Society, and enjoyed card playing, square dancing, and traveling. Bill died on June 29, 1994. They were married for forty-four years. On January 2, 1999, she was united in marriage with Robert (Bob) Weltner at St. John Lutheran Church in Sumner, Iowa. Bob died on September 21, 2004.
Survivors include two daughters, Joyce Bearman of Ionia, and Kay (Lee) Hilgendorf of Rochester, Minnesota; daughter-in-law, Janet Eckenrod of Sumner; five grandchildren, Billy (Jenni) Bearman, Bruce Bearman, Jim (Amanda) Bearman, Sara (Dean) Koester, and Brian (Ashley) Eckenrod; eleven great-grandchildren; three step-children, Diane (Wendall Kueker) Weltner of Sumner, Dan (Carol) Weltner of Sumner, and Deb (Charles) Clark of Russell; six step-grandchildren, Nathan, Natalie, and Nicholas Weltner, Hunter Clark, Michael (Kelsey) Clark, Steven Clark; and three step-great-grandchildren.
In addition to her parents and husbands, she was preceded in death by her son, Marvin Eckenrod; her son-in-law, David Bearman; infant grandson, Joseph Bearman; and brother, Eugene Sorge.