Arlene Schaefer, 90, Dickinson, died on Thursday, April 21, 2022 at CountryHouse Residence, Dickinson, surrounded by her family. Arlene’s Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10 a.m., Friday, April 29, 2022 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, New England with Fr. Dennis Schaefer as celebrant. Interment will take place at Havelock Cemetery, New England. Visitation will be on Thursday from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at Ladbury Funeral Service, Dickinson with a rosary and vigil at 6:30 p.m. with Deacon Victor Dvorak presiding. Visitation will continue one hour prior to the service at the church on Thursday. In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to St. Mary’s Catholic Church, New England.
Arlene Thielman was born October 26, 1931, on a small farm near Regent. She was the daughter of William and Anna (Mesling) Thielman. At the age of six, they moved to a farm near Havelock. Arlene attended school in Havelock through eighth grade. She then attended high school in New England, graduating in 1949.
Arlene met her future husband, Keaton Schaefer, during their senior year in high school. They were united in marriage on October 19, 1949. Keaton and Arlene started their adventure in life together on a ranch north of Rhame for the first two years of their marriage. They then moved to a farm on the banks of the Cannonball River southeast of New England, where they farmed and milked cows for many years, until they retired.
Arlene was an amazing cook and baker, famous for her homemade bread, caramel rolls, pies and paprikash. She was an extremely hard worker and never complained. In addition to raising 11 children and a large garden, she was very much a part of running the farm and milking the cows, always with a smile on her face and the patience of a saint. In her later years, Arlene began making quilts, and made sure everyone who came to visit, left with one.
Arlene loved to dance and was often twirling around the house as she did her work. She loved to read, and always told us “you’ll never be bored if you have a book in your hands”.
Arlene and Keaton enjoyed bowling, playing pinochle and cribbage and spending time with their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She loved attending their sporting events and other school activities. Arlene was also a member of the multi-gallon blood donation club for which she was very proud.
Arlene will be deeply missed by her surviving family and children: David (Sandra), Dickinson, Lynn (Pat) Conmy, Bismarck, Rick (Reyne), Dickinson, Lavonne (Ron) Tormaschy, Dickinson, Dan, Bismarck, Rod (Coleen), Phoenix, AZ, Gary (Susan), Dickinson, Ken (Linda), Dickinson, and Jared “JJ” (Diana), Dickinson; daughters-in-law, Marlene Schaefer, New England and Colleen Schaefer, Dickinson; 90 grandchildren and great-grandchildren; two sisters, Eudora (IG) Sticka, Bismarck, Darlys Bentz, Tempe, AZ; and brother-in-law, Don Niemeier, Mesa AZ.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Keaton in February 2012; her son, Darwin in May of 2018; her son, Kevin in October of 2021; her parents, Bill and Anna; her sister, Yvonne Niemeier; infant brother, Darwin Thielman; and her infant sister, Irella Thielman.
A special thanks to the staff of CountyHouse Residence for the care and comfort provided to Arlene.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers please make a donation to the St. Mary’s foundation in Keaton and Arlene’s honor.
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