Deaths (January 20, 2016)

? shelli ann (thompson) decou, 53, self-employed in a commercial cleaning business, died Jan. 10 after battling colon cancer.

The service was Jan. 14 at the Cedar Point Community Church. Burial was at Elm?dale Cemetery.

She was born Feb. 7, 1962, to Clarence and Phyllis Thomp?son at Topeka. On June 4, 1992, she was married to Mark Alan DeCou, who survives.

Other survivors include daughter Rachel Elizabeth De?Cou; son Riley Austin DeCou, all of rural Chase County; her parents; brother Kim Thompson of Wichita and sisters Cindy Kelly of New Braunfels, Texas, and Julie Wilson of Troy, Mich.

Memorials may be made to the Children of Shelli De?Cou Education Fund and sent in care of Brown-Bennett-Alexander Funeral Home, 201 Cherry, Cottonwood Falls, KS 66845.

Online condolences may be sent via

? willis d. penner, 84, retired dairy farmer near Hillsboro, died Jan. 17 at the family farm.

A graveside service is at 10 a.m. Friday, Jan. 22, at Haven of Rest Cemetery. The service is at 11 a.m. at Hillsboro First Mennonite Church.

Visitation is 5-7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 21, at Jost Funeral Home, Hillsboro.

He was born Oct. 12, 1931, to Alving and Frieda (Rem?pel) Penner at Hillsboro. On May 25, 1956, he was married to Ruth Ann Pankratz, who survives.

Other survivors include daughters Debbie and husband Mike Goossen of Beatrice, Neb., Sheree and husband Stuart Leppke of McPherson, Tam and husband Tom?Perry of rural Hillsboro; eight grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; sisters Kathryn and husband Leland Flickinger of Moundridge and LaVerna and husband James W. Shaw of Hutchinson.

Memorials may be made to Agri-Urban or Hillsboro First Mennonite Church and sent in care of Jost Funeral Home, 401 S. Washington, Hillsboro, KS 67063.

? howard james rat?z?lAff, 82, a research development technician for Hess?ton Corp., formerly of Hillsboro and Hesston, died Jan. 10 at his home in Oak Harbor, Wash., from cancer.

A private memorial service was at Whidbey Memo?rial Chapel in Oak Harbor with pastor Matt Waite officiating.

He was born March 14, 1933, to Reuben and Julia (Funk) Ratzlaff at Hillsboro. On Sept. 24, 1954, he was married to Rose May Fast, who survives.

Other survivors include children Lyle and wife Jean?ette Ratzlaff of Potts?ville, Ark., Gayle and husband Dan Ast of Wichita, Scot Ratzlaff and Rebekka Hand?schke of Gilbertsville, Ky., and Fern and husband Tim Vogt of Siloam Springs, Ark.; nine grandchildren; three great-grandchildren and sister Doris and husband Norm Friesen of Shafter, Calif.

Memorials may be made to Mennonite Central Com?mittee at: donate.?mcc.?org/cause/food.

Condolences may be sent to the family via whidbey?me?

? Hilda unruh, 88, retired bookkeeper at Faith and Life Press, died Jan. 13 at Bethesda Home in Goes?sel.

A graveside service is at 2 p.m. Jan. 18 at Alexander?wohl Mennonite Church Ceme?tery in Goessel.

A memorial service will follow at 3 p.m. at Alexander?wohl Mennonite Church with pastor Linda Ewert officiating. Visitation is from 6 to 8 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 17 at Be?thes?da Home Chapel, Goessel.

She was born March 5, 1927, to Jacob B. and Martha (Goertzen) Schmidt in Marion County. On June 12, 1951, she was married to Olin Unruh, who predeceased her.

Survivors include son Duane and wife Karen Un?ruh of Goessel; daughters Janice and husband Verney Voth of Goessel and Martha and husband Tom Unruh Szam?becki of Newton; eight grandchildren; six great-grandchildren and sister El?la Schmidt of Hesston.

Memorials may be made to Bethesda Home and Alexanderwohl Mennonite Church, and sent in care of Miller-Ott Funeral Home, 303 E. Main St., Goessel, KS 67053. ?

? tracie alyn (abbott) witkop, 33, a U.S. Navy veteran and U.S. Army wife, of Pooler, Ga., died Jan. 12 after an automobile accident in Effingham, Ga.

The service is at 1 p.m. Jan. 21 at Zeiner Funeral Home, Marion. Burial will be at Lincolnville.

She was born Sept. 13, 1982, to Nancy and James Abbott at Newton, On Jan. 13, 2013 she was married to Robert Witkop, who survives.

Other survivors include her mother and stepfather Thomas Cunningham of Arlington, Texas; her father of Lawton, Okla., and stepmother Carolyn Jones Bair of Atlanta, Ga.; brothers Jeremy Matherly of Sulphur Springs, Texas and Bryan Matherly of Topeka; grandfather Allen A. Abbott, uncles and aunts.

Condolences may be sent to the family at

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