Funeral Services for Esther Marles (Kliewer) Penner was 11 a.m., Tuesday, May 19, 2020, at the Cross Roads Bible Fellowship Church in Balko. Interment followed services at Balko Mennonite Brethren Church Cemetery in Balko. Pastor James Epp presided.
Esther Marles (Kliewer) Penner was the second of seven children born to Sam P. and Marie (Balzer) Kliewer September 30, 1923, at home, near Corn. She went to be with the Lord, and her beloved husband Alvin, May 15, 2020, at Weatherwood Assisted Living, in Weatherford.
She attended Friendship School in the Corn area and completed her education as a sophomore at Corn High School. She began working full time for families in their homes with domestic tasks, caring for families and elderly, in the Clinton, Cordell and Corn communities.
She met dad while working for George and Eva Vogt, caring for twins, Jeanne and Willie and sister Beverly. She often said that Aunt Eva was one of the best to work for.
Esther traveled on a train all the way to Belton, Montana to marry Alvin Penner August 28, 1943. Other than a weekly grocery shopping trip, she stayed faithfully by his side through their whole marriage assisting and caring for their household, and their farm in Balko.
She loved to deliver bountiful, delicious meals to Jerry and Alvin in the fields, and make “midnight snacks” for visiting grandchildren. She enjoyed reading her Bible, listening to Christian programs and music, sewing, cooking, cleaning, and was a devoted caregiver.
Esther was saved at an early age and was involved in her church. She worked as a Sunday School teacher to small children, helped with Bible School, on the food committee to assist with church meals, and in the women’s sewing circle to quilt and make bandages for Mennonite Central Committee and other projects.
Esther loved being outside gardening, chopping weeds and snakes with her hoe, mowing and caring for her flowers. She killed her last rattlesnake at age 92.
Esther lived the last 4 years and 8 months at Weatherwood Assisted Living in Weatherford, though she longed to be back home in Balko. Besides being with her family, one of her favorite outings was to Braum’s for a frozen yogurt twist cone and a Dr. Pepper.
We will miss her presence and fervent prayers on our behalf, but rejoice she no longer has to feel lonely or in pain. Mom’s deepest concern was that her family would all accept the Lord as their Savior, and we would all be in Heaven together one day.
I Peter 1:3 “All honor to God, the God of our Lord Jesus Christ; for it is his boundless mercy that has given us the privilege of being born again, so that we are now members of God’s own family. Now we live in the hope of eternal life because Christ rose again from the dead.”
Survivors include: children, Jerry Penner and wife, Betty, of Perryton, Texas, and Phyllis Miller and husband, Weldon, of Weatherford; grandchildren, Sheldon Miller and wife, Lindy, of Weatherford, April Javorsky and husband, Kenton, of Weatherford, Misti Miller and Chris Henson, of Weatherford, and “Taffy,” of Perryton; great grandchildren, Wesley Javorsky and wife, Melissa, Kimberly Javorsky, Phillip Javorsky,
Graham Miller, Ella Miller, Tripp Miller and Tess Miller, all of Weatherford; brothers, Harvey Kliewer, of Corn, and Gene Kliewer and wife, Norma, of Newton, Kansas; sisters, Wilma Hinz, of Newton, and Ruby Hamm, of Wichita, Kansas; and many dear nieces and nephews.
Preceding Esther in death are; her husband, Alvin Penner; parents, Sam P. and Marie (Balzer) Kliewer; brother, Ronnie Kliewer; and sister, Luella Kroeker.
Memorials in Esther’s memory are suggested to Cross Roads Bible Fellowship in Balko or Corn Bible Academy in Corn, in care of Hornung Family Funeral Home, 1212 W. 2nd Street, Liberal, KS 67901.
Online condolences can be left at hornungfuneralhome.com.