Hecla, SD: Irdene Bonzer, 94, of Hecla passed peacefully Tuesday, October 20, 2020 at Angelhaus in Aberdeen after a brief illness. A private family service will be held at a later date due to COVID-19.
Irdene was born August 17, 1926 to William and Doris (Ripley) Boadwine. She lived in Gary and Hayti growing up, graduating from Hayti High School in 1944. Irdene was a product of the Great Depression and a widowed mother. Her father passed when she was four and her sister, Wila Mae, was two. From her mother she learned early to make the best of whatever happens. Irdene learned how to save by making do with less and by doing things for herself. Following high school, she attended South Dakota State studying home economics. There she met returning WW II veteran Robert (Bob) Bonzer.
Irdene and Bob married in 1947. They moved to Worthington, Minnesota where Bob taught agriculture to veterans. In 1954, Bob and Irdene purchased a farm near Hecla, SD. Irdene became a full-time farm wife and mother. She had many talents, all of which she used to make the lives of her family better. Irdene sewed endlessly, painted and hung wallpaper, cut hair, and helped repair farm machinery. Bob and Irdene were active at St. John’s Lutheran Church. She was in the choir and a Sunday school teacher for many years. She enjoyed providing flower arrangements for worship services. Together, Irdene and Bob raised four daughters and three sons. They enjoyed neighboring with nearby farm families and bowling every Thursday evening at Hecla’s Sand Lake Lanes. After Bob died in 1995, Irdene remained on the farm.
Irdene became a snowbird and spent twenty-one winters in Mesa, AZ. She loved to dance, play cards, exercise, and spend time with friends and neighbors at Mesa Spirit RV Resort. In the summer months Irdene was passionate about gardening, flowers, and bird watching. She had a large collection of peomes and daylilies. She was a member of the American Daylily and Peony Societies and the Aberdeen Area Garden Club. She often gave visitors and family gifts of perennial flower roots for their gardens. Irdene liked to fix things. She did not procrastinate, she got things done. The Midwest work ethic was well instilled. She was a curious life-long learner with a large reference library. Irdene was an avid reader. A highlight for Irdene was traveling with her daughter, Ann, and son-in-law, Dan, on numerous bird watching trips including Belize, Costa Rica, and Hawaii.
In 2017 Irdene moved to assisted living at Angelhaus in Aberdeen. She was happy in her new home, so appreciating the friendly, helpful staff.
Irdene is survived by her children Ann Bormann (Dan), Redmond, WA; Joan Kutter (Will), Huron, SD; Lon Bonzer (Paula), West Fargo, ND; Cal Bonzer (Molly), Halletsville, TX; Sara Holland (Kent), Britton, SD; Gwen Planteen (David), Langford, SD; grandchildren Adam Bormann (Elena), Nate Bormann (Amanda), Angie Dietrich (Chris), Emily Davis (Tim), Allison Mahar (Nathan), Stephanie Soto (Daniel), Mike Zappe (Sammie), Bill Zappe (Lindee), Kevin Zappe (Sally), Eli Bonzer (Barbara), Luke Landreth (Heather), Kendra Fick (Jon), Preston Holland, Rachel Planteen, Drew Planteen (Macy); and 23 great grandchildren.
Irdene was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Robert; son, Paul; sisters, Maurine in infancy, and Wila Mae Mohror Christensen. To share words of comfort with the family, please visit www.pricefuneralchapel.net. Memorials may be given to St John’s Lutheran Church - 511 Main St, Hecla, SD 57446 or The Salvation Army - 1003 6th Ave SW, Aberdeen, SD 57401.
Condolences may be directed to the family in care of Sara Holland — Box 498 — Britton, SD 57430.
An online guestbook and obituary are available at www. pricefuneralchapel.net.