Obituary — Gerald William Arens

Arens, Gerald (2)

HARTINGTON — Gerald William Arens, 88, Hartington, formerly of Crofton, died Jan. 15, 2016, at the Golden Living Center, Hartington.

Visitation and a Vigil service were Monday at the Wintz Funeral Home, Crofton, and resumed Tuesday at the church.

Mass of Christian Burial was Jan. 19 at the St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church, Crofton, with Rev. Michael Schmitz officiating.

Burial was in the St. Rose of Lima Cemetery, Crofton.

Pallbearers were his nephews, Quentin Reifenrath, David Arens, Larry Arens, Mick Reifenrath, John Arens, Curtis Arens, Brian Arens, Steve Arens and Doug Nelson.

Honorary Pallbearers were his nieces, nephews and the staff at the Golden Living Center.

Gerald was born July 31, 1927, along with his twin brother, Harold, on the family farm near Crofton, to John William and Caroline Mary (Luft) Arens. Gerald was a special need person throughout his life. He attended District 95 country school and St. Rose of Lima elementary school. He made his first confession and received First Communion at St. Rose. He was active on the farm, helping his brothers with various chores.

His main job was tending to the chickens, gathering eggs and helping his mother with housework, and helping in the garden. In 1965, he moved with his parents into Crofton and began attending Region IV School in Bloomfield. This changed his life, allowing him to develop mentally and make many friends. He worked at various places as a janitor, but was very proud of the time he spent as a janitor at Prince Hydraulics, Hartington. Gerald cared for his mother during her illness and then cared for his dad. He had an apartment at the Cottonwood Villa, Crofton, until 2003 and then moved to the Golden Living community, Hartington. In 2006, he entered the Golden Living Center, Hartington.

Gerald enjoyed doing paint by number pictures, latch work and sewing pot holders. He gave many gifts of his work to family members and friends. He was a member of the St. Rose of Lima Catholic Church.

Gerald is survived by two brothers, Irvin Arens, Yankton, S.D., formerly of Randolph, and Alvin (Sharron) Arens, Norfolk; a sister, Eleanor (Sam) Nelson, St. Helena; a sister-in-law, Margaret Arens and her husband, Roger Yates, Crofton; and numerous nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; five brothers, baby Benedict, who died at birth; Raymond (Frances, Norma); Clarence (Arlene); Lawrence (Mary Ann); and twin brother, Harold; three sisters, Cecelia (Albert) Reifenrath, Leona (Raymond) Thunker and Viola (Norbert) Reifenrath.

In lieu of flowers the family prefers memorials to St. Rose School or Parish.