Tuesday, March 24, 2015

My Mom

IMG_20150321_085033252(Jan) I’ve always been close to my mom. For most of my married life we lived 20 miles apart. We were together for all of those joyous family occasions as well as back and forth visits between our homes and trips to California and Kansas. She even flew over to visit when Chuck & I lived in Germany. There were lots of phone calls between us and I never doubted for a minute that she loved me. As she grew older, she and dad made their home in an assisted living facility and then after dad’s death, she moved to St Anthony’s Nursing Home. Chuck and I spent part of each spring and summer visiting with her and then made precious phone calls the rest of the year. She was very happy and well taken care of at St. Anthony’s.

My mother died from kidney failure on March 15, 2015. Chuck and I were in Tucson when she became gravely ill and made it back in time to spend eleven days with her. She recognized us and we were able to talk with her. Our family was with her as she died peacefully in her sleep. Her Obituary follows.


Dolores Riesselman, 93 of Carroll and formerly of Halbur, died Sunday evening, March 15, 2015 at St. Anthony Regional Hospital in Carroll.

Mass of the Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Saturday, March 21, 2015 at St. Augustine Catholic Church in Halbur.  The Celebrant will be Fr. Steven Brodersen.  Mass server will be her great grandson Michael Moore.  Music will be by Julie Sibbel and the St. Augustine Choir.  Lectors for the funeral mass will be Dolores’ daughter, Janice Moore and granddaughter, Tracey Wagner.  Gift Bearers will be Dolores’ grandchildren, Janae Carlson, Andy Riesselman and John Riesselman.  Eucharistic Ministers will be Dolores’ daughter, Linda Gilliland; daughter-in-law, Mary Ann Riesselman; and granddaughter, Susie Hulst.  Casket Bearers will be Dolores’ grandsons:  Andy Riesselman, John Riesselman, Tom Brown, Brent Moore, Eric Moore, Josh Moore, Chad Gilliland, Mark Carlson, and Weston Hulst.   Burial will be in the parish cemetery.

Friends may call at the Sharp Funeral Home in Carroll after 5 p.m. on Friday where there will be a Christian Wake Service at 7 p.m. The casket will be moved to St. Augustine Church in Halbur at 9 a.m. on Saturday where visitation will resume2Wedding until time of the funeral mass.

Born on November 9, 1921 at Arcadia, Iowa, Dolores Mary was the daughter of Frank and Catherine (Anstoeter) Ocken.  She spent her younger years in the Arcadia community and attend St. John School.

On August 27, 1946, Dolores was united in marriage to Herbert Henry Riesselman at St. John Church in Arcadia.  Following their marriage the couple made their home in Halbur.  Dolores raised her family, did babysitting in her home, they owned and operated Herb’s Grocery from 1968-1978 and she worked at General Electric in Carroll until her retirement. Dolores and Herb moved to the Swan House in Caroll in 2009 and Dolores moved to St. Anthony's in 2012.

Dolores was a dedicated wife, mother and grandmother. She was a gifted seamstress and spent many hours at her sewing machine sewing and quilting. She loved having a large vegetable garden and many flowers. For all of her married life she and Herb entertained at family and local gatherings, retirement centers, nursing homes and Polka Masses with Herb’s Polka Dots, Esther’s Polka Band and with the Polka Klub of America. Dolores was an active member of St. Augustine Church in Halbur.

IMG_20150321_085002484Survivors include her children: Linda (Richard) Gilliland of Leavenworth, KS, Janice (Charles) Moore of Manning, and Glen (Mary Ann) Riesselman of Templeton; her daughter-in-law, Scarlett Riesselman of Pleasant Hill, CA; 12 grandchildren; 23 great-grandchildren; her sisters: Agatha (Paul) Sailer of Bagley, and Charlotte Ocken of Omaha, NE; her brother, Frank (Ann) Ocken of Omaha, NE; her sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law: Rose Ocken of Carroll, Lawrence Riesselman of Carroll, Walt Riesselman of Vail, Edith Riesselman of Kansas, Regina Frischmeyer of Lidderdale, Andy (JoAnn) Riesselman of Carroll, Leonard (Donna) Riesselman of Halbur, Alice Christiansen of Denison, Katie (Bob) Curnyn of Denison, Linda Riesselman of Omaha, and Vern (Betty) Riesselman of Halbur; as well as many nieces, nephews and extended relatives.

Dolores was preceded in death by her parents and parents-in-law; her husband Herbert Riesselman; her son Ronald Riesselman; her great-granddaughter, Megan Lynn Carlson; her sister, Reinildis Venner; her brothers: Norbert and Wilfred Ocken and brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law Andrew Venner, Ada Riesselman, Marie and Bill Wernimont, Lucille, Riesselman, Vince Riesselman, Leonard Frischmeyer, Tom Christiansen, Gordon Podey and Hank Riesselman.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Photos and a change of plans

(Jan) As I write this, we are rolling through Kansas on our way to Iowa. We had planned to visit the Kitt Peak Observatory today and then go to the Escapee Club Escapade gathering in Tucson starting tomorrow but our plans have changed. My mom is is the hospital in Iowa and that is where we need to be.  She has some serious kidney issues. We’ve been in constant communication with my brother who has been with mom all day yesterday and with my sister who left work at noon and arrived to be with mom by late afternoon. The news is hopeful at times, not so much at other times.  My sweet mother is 93 and I did get to talk to her briefly on the phone yesterday afternoon to tell her that I love her.

We left yesterday morning around 9 and the trip has gone fairly well except for an unplanned stop in Truth or Consequences, NM. The MH engine was running kind of rough so Chuck found a parking lot we could stop in and he changed the fuel filters. He keeps a new set in storage and thankfully he is able to do the work.  An hour or so later, we were back on the road. We did stop to sleep for 4.5 hours in Statford, TX. Tonight we should be by my mom’s side.

As mentioned in our previous blog we had been in Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument. We were able to take a couple of wonderful drives to see the amazing Cactus in the Park. It’s a very lush, green part of the Sonoran Desert. Here’s aa few of the photos.


IMG_20150302_152857124_HDROrgan Pipe Cactus National Monument

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On Tuesday Judy the tour guide for Chuck & I and friends Mark & Patsi.  We visited her friend Linda at a beautiful high rise Condo on the beach, Cholla Bay, Puerto Penasco with it’s three different RV Camps on the Beach, the Malecon, Flavios and the fish market down at the Waterfront. We all purchased fresh shrimp! Here’s a few pictures

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Sunday, March 1, 2015

Ajo and Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument

IMG_20150228_102733436(Chuck)We have had friends tell us about Ajo for several years. In 2010 we intended to make the trip with Sheeleys and Poutneys and that fell through at the last minute when we bought our motorhome. This year we again scheduled a visit to this far South area of Arizona.  Ajo is an old mining town which describes many Arizona communities. Some have survived and some are struggling. Ajo seems to have come on tough times since the mine closed in the 1980’s. It is located in the beautiful Sonoran Desert. We stayed at the Ajo Roping Grounds. It has loosely defined sites which provide ample room and a very quiet place to stay for $18 a week. Water and dump are available. DSC_7797We are here with Sheeleys and Mark and Patsy.  We enjoyed several drives and hikes in the area as well as doing many maintenance projects.

(Jan) The photos below are from our trips around Ajo. First column shows a Indian Mortar Stone for grinding seed or grain and Sleeping Circles from the ancient peoples that lived in this area. The bottom photo is the Pit from the Ajo Copper Mine. Copper mining went on in this area from the 1600 through 1980’s. Second column shows Jan, Patsi and Judy at the Federated Church’s doors and Chuck, Mark & Dean at the copper pit’s edge. Third column shows Immaculate Conception Catholic Church and the Ajo Town Square. The bottom photo is of Dean & Judy, Chuck & Jan and Mark & Patsi.



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P2280158(Chuck) After a week we moved down the road to Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument. The desert is very green with the unique Organ Pipe cactus, Saguaro, Palo Verde, Cholla, and several other species of plants with very sharp spines.  The Ajo Mountain Drive is a 21 mile drive which guides you through some of the finest scenery in the monument.P3010193

Tuesday we will take the Jeep to Puerto Penasco, Mexico. It is only a one day trip to explore the area and to take advantage of shrimp which is available at the port.

Soon we will travel East to Tucson to attend the Escapee Escapade. It is a big get together for RV’ers. This will be the first one for us, and it is mostly a social occasion. On the way to Tucson we will stop at the Kitt Peak National Observatory. We are looking forward to the visit. More photos will follow in the next blog.

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